Voice A: “Dear Voice Recorder Device.”
Voice B: “Wait, Rogue. Are you serious?”
Rogue: “What do you mean?”
Voice B: “You’re seriously gonna call it “Voice Recorder Device””
Rogue: “Well, it’s not a diary or journal, so I can’t just say “Dear Diary” or “Dear Journal.”
Voice B: “Some people give their diary or journals a proper name.
Voice C: “Yeah, like Joseph, or Mr. Crenshaw. It gives it a more personal feel. Like you’re telling your life story to an actual person or something.”
Rogue: “Tch, fine. I’ll think about a name, for now its just “Voice Recording Device.””
Voice D: “You’re already inconsistent. Now its Voice RecordING Device”
Rogue: “Shut up Rookie!”
“Dear Voice Recording Device,” Rogue started again, annoyed. “I am Roger Taylor, but everyone calls me Rogue. I’m the leader of a fire team of specialists, named the Rogue Squad. It’s not a very elaborate name, but I’m not an elaborate person.”
“The big guy over there, that’s Bull. Hey Bull! Say something!”
“Hullo” replied Bull.
“Short and sweet as usual,” continued Rogue. “Bull is our Heavy Weapon Specialist. I can’t remember what his real name is.”
“Brian May” said a bored sounding Bull.
“Right! Well, all I care about are the nicknames. That’s what I always remember! Next is Spyder, spelled with a “y.” Your turn Spyder!”
“What am I supposed to say? It’s not a living person. It doesn’t even do video.”
“Tch, fine! Whatever just say your real name.”
“Jonathan Deacon, at your service,” replies Spyder in a formal voice.
“See, that wasn’t so hard now was it? Spyder is our Intel agent and combat medic of sorts. He can crack any code.”
Spyder coughs, “I wouldn’t say THAT.”
“I would, and am. You’re good. Possibly the best in the service.”
Rogue continued on, “Last and not least is the Rookie. I call him Rookie, but the others call him Redd. His real name is something like Fred.”
“Frederick Bulsara, hi” replied a cautious voice. “I’ve been with you guys on a number of missions, can you please stop calling me Rookie? Besides I’m not really new to the service, just your fire team.”
“Basically I’ve seen some weird stuff in my experience, and more or less have some form of PTSD. It doesn’t hinder my abilities, but the chaplain says I should keep a voice log of some of my thoughts and maybe it will repress the trauma. I don’t know if its gonna work, hell, in most of our missions nothing real exciting happens. But I figured I give it a try.”
“Right now we’re in isolation. We just arrived on base and are awaiting debriefing. So we can’t talk about that mission. I thought it’d be kind of fun to have the other guys participate in the voice recording. They might remember something differently.”
“More like, you might remember something wrong…” says Bull in a whisper.
Either Rogue did not hear it, or he ignored it, and continues, “Thing is I don’t know where to begin. We’ve been on so many missions. But I don’t think I’m ready to tell about Sayonara-“
“Seranoya,” corrects Spyder.
“-yes, Seranoya. I can never remember it right. That’s where shit happened, as they say.”
“So guys, any idea on where to start? I was thinking either the hostage situation in the jungle or the time we infiltrated the enemy ship and took the chopper. What do you say?”
“You give us a choice, but we know you’ll just choose the jungle situation,” comments Spyder, critically.
“Yeah its all you ever talk to civilians about,” said Bull.
“So its decided then! The Hostage situation in the jungle it is!” happily replies Rogue. “It’s a good starting point since it was a rather short operation."
“I don’t even get a say in the matter” says Redd, feeling left out.
“Naturally, you weren’t on either mission,” explains Rogue.
“Alright! Everyone on the landing party get in the dinghy! This is as close as the ships can take us,” the captain explained. He was a stout man, middle aged. His beard, prematurely white, made him look handsome, and distinguished. “To arms men!”
The fire team known as Rogue Squad was standing at the ready. They were to be part of the second raiding party, once the first had secured the landing point. The moment the dingy returns to the ship, they are to set out and eliminate the enemy at all costs.
Rogue wiped the sweat off his forehead. The humidity was immense in the jungle. Rogue’s previous deployment had them in the deserts of Canifa, quite the contrast to the present sticky wet heat of the Nisian jungle. A submachine gun was attached to a strap, which hung low from his shoulder. His secondary handguns were holstered on each hip. His dark long hair flowed in the sea breeze. Impatience showed in his deep blue eyes. He was excited to be on the mission, adrenaline began to pump in his veins. He could smell the fires in the thick jungle.
Buckets of sweat rolled down Bull’s face. The bandana wrapped about his baldhead was already dripping wet. Because civilians will be in the area, Bull was not authorized the use of heavy weapons and instead, carried a pump-action shotgun, and a backup handgun. His broad shoulders showed massive muscles honed from using heavy artillery. He was the tallest of the Rogue Squad, and the most muscular.
Like Rogue, Spyder was armed with a submachine gun. He carried three extra sidearms. Two were standard issue handguns; the third was a gun Spyder has reworked. A custom design built by him, for him and only him. Unlike Bull or Rogue, not a drop of sweat permeated Spyder’s face. Spyder is the scrawny member of Rogue Squad, though that not a very good description. He is thin, but far from weak. What he lacks in size he makes up for in his brain. He had short blonde hair, parted to the side. He could be described as the suave, debonair member of the team.
The dingy pushed off as the preliminary landing team made its way to the shore, or what could pass as a shore. The shore swept about twenty feet before being swallowed up by the jungle. There was no sign of movement in the thicket, but the Noreak army was in there somewhere, out of sight, waiting for the landing party to make landfall.
On the horizon of the sea the sun began to set, painting the sky varying shades of red and orange, a stark contrast to the smoke rising in the distance from somewhere in the jungle. It was most likely a civilian settlement burned by the Noreak army. Or maybe the Nisians themselves burned it before fleeing further in the jungle. Regardless, the Ladscabian army, in particular, Rogue Squad, will have to secure the area.
Rogue Squad’s directives are to make way into a small village called Torak. As far as the Ladscabian army knows, it is unoccupied. Once there, they are to secure the area, and begin radio transmissions back to the ship. Once the other teams make it to their destinations, all units are to converge onto the larger town of Sovrel, which has been occupied by the Noreak forces. Intelligence has determined that there is a sizable unit in Sovrel, but should not outnumber the Ladscabian forces.
As the dinghies reach the shoreline, gunfire suddenly erupts. Unfortunately for the Ladscabian army, the enemy is virtually invisible in the thick jungle. Muzzle flashes are the only indication of where a soldier is. The firefight doesn’t last long as the Ladscabian army retaliates, and more and more soldiers land on the shore and rush into the thicket of the jungle. The Noreak flee deeper into the darkening subtropical forest. All in all, less than five of the twenty or so Ladscabian soldiers lie dead or dying on the Nisian shore. No definite count can be made of the Noreak dead.
The dinghies slowly make their way back to the drop ship to pick up the raiding party, a trip that takes a little over five minutes to make. Rogue Squad gets on the first dinghy that arrives and within minutes makes their way towards the shore and into the rain forest.