Bogleech.com's 2013 Horror Write-off:
" Disposable "
Submitted by Tweinge
Charging forward, we took our stand. I looked around, mainly a scattering of soldiers not unlike myself. A handful of them might have been pre-trained, but the majority stood fresh to the horrors of war, unbroken and unscarred yet. Like myself. Back then, I mean. Back before my mind snapped.
We charged forward at first daylight, coming out of the trenches. A heavy rain had started to fall down, turning the dirt to mud around our feet. The enemy was nowhere in sight. Sandbags with no one crouching behind them, no one popped out to spray us with machine gun fire, bodyless fields with no visible blood. We were getting anxious, the rain pattering off our helmets the only sound, muffling most else from being heard. The commander shouted an order: we were to continue moving until we approached hostiles. Their camp came into view. Not seeing any immediate danger, I turned to my buddy, who was on my left.
"Hell of a day huh?" he said, smiling at me. A bullet struck him in the temple, his face still wearing that smile as he fell forward, toppling over. Immediatley, the calm demeanor of the day turned into something like a mechanical hell. Guns came out of the trees, out of the houses from the camp, from trenches, from people covered with mud... An ambush. And they got us by surprise. My friends fell around me, returning fire at last. I saw one of the hostiles fall out of the tree in which he was perched, face a bloody mess, head cracking on the ground. I was dazed, just standing there, until someone shook me. "FIRE BACK SOLDIER!" he screamed in my face, and I shook my head, coming to grips with reality, returning fire.
We were taking them down, but we were losing a hell of a lot of men. The ground around me was soaking red from all the blood.
The hostiles decided to charge us, coming at us, screaming, a wall of men. I almost panicked, but my companions came to my side, forming our own wall, screaming our own battle charge, which fueled me with the strength I needed. We charged. We met in one bloody collision. Ignoring everything except my survival instincts, I rammed my guns barrel into the face of the nearest hostile and pulled the trigger.
My first kill. A pull of a trigger, and a man lost his life in that instant. But I was too pumped up to harbor over the fact now, and continued to fire at others. I got hit in the face by the butt of a gun. My face, streaked with blood, cracked into a wide grin as I pulled out my knife and tore the mans throat out. Someone nearby turned to fire at me, but was shot down before he could fire. I was slowly losing my fear, being absorbed into the heat of the battle little by little.
Nothing else mattered in that moment except staying alive. I ducked to avoid being shot directly in the face, tackling the shooter by the legs and taking him to the ground, stabbing him in the chest and tripping another who turned to shoot at my back. He fell on his gun, breaking his arm, and I quickly silenced his cry of pain with my pistol, turning his head into bloody chunks of brain and meat. "That's for my friends, you fuckheads." It was no longer about survival. It was about quenching the burning hatred in my soul.
My pistol was kicked out of my hand, and followed up by a heavy booted foot kicking some of my teeth out. I spat out the blood and hit him as hard as I could in the knee with my gun butt, breaking the kneecap on contact and jarring my arms. My companions were not faring as well as me, dying more than killing. The man who broke his kneecap was just as pumped up for battle as I was, ignoring the pain, collapsing on one knee and pulling his own knife out, attacking me. He missed, swiping at me as I rolled out of the way, grabbing my dropped pistol and raising it to his face. His face retained the same angry look as I blew it to oblivion. He continued to move, faceless, towards me, before succumbing to death finally. Someone screamed 'GRENADE!" and the entire scene took on the look of Hell as fire exploded around me. The hostiles and my companions took the brunt of the blast, and bodies fell on top of me as the ground shook and the dirt rained down on me. Someones leg bounced away in the mud a few inches in front of my face, and I played dead, buried under bodies. When I opened my eye, the sky was an angry red.
It appeared that my brain had finally snapped. The hostiles were replaced by huge, hulking monstrosities that had no face or ears or hair, wearing their helmets strapped to their head. Their eyes were empty voids of blackness which seemed to suck up the light, eat it, destroy it. Blood floated around me in midair like we were in space. The number of hostiles appeared to have spread out as they moved forward, chasing the remainder of my squad, who were firing back the best they could while retreating.
I shoved the nearest body off of me and clambered to my feet, drawing the attention of several of the creatures. The first one to notice turned to face me, those empty eyes looking into mine. A gaping hole opened where its mouth should have been, insects crawling out, and it uttered a hideous screech, pointing at me. It aimed its gun at me and fired, and the bullets looked like skulls, heads ablaze. I ran as fast as I could towards the trees, which looked far away, like I was never getting any closer. The bodies were slowing me down. I had to wade through them: they came up to my chin. I didn't remember this many bodies. I glanced back, and the hostiles moved through the bodies like sharks, their entire upper bodies revealed, firing those deadly iron spikes at me. I managed to get to the trees, but was unable to find a way inside. They were all sealed togther, blocking any entry. A bullet hit me in the back, and I fell to my knee, turning to see a group of 4 hostiles. They opened those hideous holes in a mock smile, laughing, and mowed me down with a lead curtain. I felt no pain, only a soothing release of rage...
I woke up in a pool of lost souls, unable to find the way towards the light. No one had named us. We were doomed to remain the same forever. Bred only to die in a war. Clumped together like cheap toys which had broken and been discarded. Disposable. Screams reverberated all around my translucent existance, my friends in arms shuffling around besides me. They looked like giant globs of transparent goo, and whenever they would try to speak, or to gesture to another, their face would emerge for a moment, mouth gaping like a fish, and then delve back into the depths. Back to the core of whatever being they had become. I saw many, many faces, but I could not place a name to any of them: with a jolt of realization, I discovered in an instant that I could no longer remember even my OWN name. Despair shot through me, bouncing off the walls of my mind and multiplying. Gazing up, past the red and rocky walls of our new home, I noticed things watching us from above. Dark things with glowing eyes accompanied by large, snarling beasts. They would point at us and laugh, oh, how horrid of a tale we must be! The lost ones, caught up in someone elses feud, dying for a cause that many of us didn't find worthy. Nothing drove the would-be-heroes except for the idea of glory, an idea quickly scooped out and thrown away by the TRUE face of war that hid behind a knights helmet.
Oh, the horrors of war.