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Offline Stan'

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Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« on: May 19, 2009, 02:01:58 PM »

Everything was loud except for the sound of ever-lasting silence.  The bird calls amplified, the roaring neighs of horses, and the deafening rustle of bushes as a wild animal scurried from the man's footsteps.

The lone soldier of the Black Watch fell to his knees, the impact softened by the lovely, lush grass beneath him.  It stood as a contrast to the otherwise brown/green hybrid now transformed in to corpse-ridden muck.  All that was behind him, the bleak looks on friends, the million shell casings, lakes of blood, the Caledonian did not want to look back.  The lead of the bullet grinded against his ribs, scraping the calcium from the bones.  With each inch of movement brought a shock of pain.  Right now, he did not think he could go on.

His Lee-Enfield rifle lay on the ground beside him, cartridge half spent, paint of red on one side.

And then the strangest of sights.  Between the trees ahead of him, a large two-story building coloured in a beautiful blanc.  It stood tall, strong, oblivious to the conflict around its borders.  Not a window smashed, wall blown, or explosion in it's fields.  The well-crafted structure cast a protective shadow over the Stallion at its gate.  The brown mare came closer as the soldier slouched to his knees.  Closing his eyes, he sighed in to his pillow.  A long rest.  That's what he needed.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2009, 02:22:01 PM by Stanmore' »

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2009, 05:35:08 PM »
She had taken him in, hid him from those who would ask questions, or tell anyone else. The last thing the woman needed, was an audiance, or someone who had a problem with what she was doing, what she had done. She had used the help of her husband's personal assistant to bring him away and into the arms of safetly, to transport him into her home, and place him in the quiet, empty room where he now lay. She knew the boy would not tell anyone, he was more loyal to her, than to his own employer. They had a sort of understanding, she helped him, he helped her. Neither got into trouble.
Now, she was in the room alone with the man, the fallen soldier and she set to work around him, removing the damaged fabric that hid his wound, and gently and carefully extracting the bullet that had punctured his skin, and brought him down. She was scared, never having had to do something like this before, for someone she didn't even know, a enemy soldier prehaps? Yet here she was, blood covering her hands, her shirt, the towels and sheets that lay under the soldier.
As she worked, and removed the bullet (finally after what seemed like forever) the blonde haired beauty, wondered if it even was worth it. Would he survive? Getting ready to sew the small wound shut, a door opened from below, and the woman froze. A man shouted up to her, and she panicked, thrusting her hands into the basin of water nearby she quickly scrubbed teh blood off her hands as fast as she could, before slipping her shirt off over her head and donning on a new one. Pushing her hair out of her face she quickly moved back over to the man and checked on him. He was still out. Rushing to the door, she opened it and called down to the man before spotting the boy who was looking out of the room down the hall. Beckoning him to her, she closed the door behind him, and led him over to the soldier.
"Do you know how to sew?" She asked, pointing to the needle.
The boy nodded his head slowly, eyeing the silver needle with the thread and looked back at the woman who's eyes were growing frantic. "Yes.."
"I need you to sew that little hole shut okay? But be careful, and don't worry about hurting him, he wont be waking up anytime soon. Soon as you've done that, clean up quickly, the best you can. And leave the room, don't give my husband a reason to come in. Not yet..."
The man shouted from below again, and she ran back to the door, yelling her response before turning back to the boy. "Hurry Jax." She hissed softly before slipping out, and closing the door behind her.

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2009, 06:23:59 PM »
The Caledonian dreamed.  He dreamed of many things in his long sleep.  Memories and fantasy.

He remembered the events of last week, or how his creative mind believed of them.  Charging forward, over rocks, up hills, lowering his head whenever a whistle came his way.  Hundreds of his fellow soldiers running along with him, taking no time for cover.  The longer they remained in the open, the more chance a bullet was going to hit them.
He had watched the the man to his right trip on a fallen piece of timber.  In his selfish mind, the Caledonian refused to stop, to bend down and help him up.  He merely continued on until the target came in to his eye sight.  Out of three hundred Italian men to his left and right, forty made it to the Austrian trench.  Smoke blinded the soldiers, cracks of rifle and machine gun fire creating panic and confusion.  No one could be sure they were targeting the enemy.

In the end, the Scot made it out in one piece.  When his Lieutenant came over, the Italian showed complete disappointment, much to the Caledonian's annoyance.  How dare he accuse them of slacking, when they risked all their men to break in to one small trench.
It wasn't the first moment of hatred he had for the man.  There was nothing he could do.  Talk back, and he would be shot.  The Caledonian couldn't do a thing but sit and listen, quick, rapid breaths spilling from his mouth, chest beating hard, overclocking at an impossible rate.

Another image, yet it was cut short.  Was it from the beginning of the war?  Yes it was.  The first few days of conflict.  Austrian-Hungarians came towards them, and all the Caledonian needed to do was pull back on the gun.  So many men he killed that day.  Such a mess of bodies.  Such a-

"Ahhhh!"  Screamed the injured man as he shot up, eyes opened wide, staring at the young boy fixing him up.  His words were English, unlike the Italian dialect he had become used to speaking.  "What are you doing!"

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2009, 07:39:14 PM »
The boy had began to work away at the man's wound after the woman left, and with trembling fingers, and a queasy stomach he started to put the needle through his flesh. He didn't want to look at what he was doing, but he knew he had to. It was a terrifying thing to do, bringing the thread and needle through human flesh. Human flesh that bled with each pull through. He wanted to faint, to wretch, but he knew that if he could get through this, then Mrs. Stokes would be very pleased, and even maybe Mr. Stokes as well.
He felt the man stir under him, but thought nothing of it and continued to do as he was asked, poking the needle into his skin. When the soldier woke up screaming, and bolted up into a sitting position, he almost screamed himself, and jumped back a look of complete terror written on his face, the needle dangling from his hand. He was at a loss for words, unsure of what he had just said, or what to say to the man.

Hearing the scream from above, Luca Stokes turned his head away from his wife, Samantha to look up the stairs. "What was that?" He asked, taking a step to investigate the sudden outburst that had happened.
"... It was Jax!" Samantha jumped infront of him and placed her hand gently on his arm, giving as much of a reassuring smile as she could, even though she was now worried about what that scream had ment. "He was ah... cleaning out something, and had complained earlier that he was worried there were spiders inside... I think he may have found one."
Luca's eyes narrowed a bit, and he looked from his wife to the stairs then back at her. "That sounded like a man screaming Sam... Luca's not even fifteen..."
Laughing as easily as she could, she waved the comment off like it was nothing. "Oh, you know... boys and their fears, he could be hitting puberty you know. It's not the same age for everyone. Besides, didn't you hit puberty before fifteen? It's normal for it to be like that, isn't it? Let me.. go check and see what caused him to scream so.."

Before he could answer, Samantha had hitched up her skirt and ran up the stairs towards the room where she had left Jax and the soldier. Turning the doorknob she stepped in, and looked up to see the man sitting on the bed, Jax looking terrified as ever. "You're awake..." her words came out in english first, but realizing he probably didn't understand her, she quickly changed to the italian she spoke to everyone but her husband in. "Don't be frightened, Jax was just fixing you up here, we found you outside... didn't think you were alive, or at least going to make it."
Walking over, she took the needle from Jax and turned him towards the door. "Don't let Luca up here." She said before sending him out. Turning around, needle in hand she raised it a bit. "May I?"

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2009, 08:02:36 PM »
The Scottish soldier watched the two strangers in the bedroom, or where ever it was.  Having a bed in it dropped a large hint as to what the role of the room was, however it could merely have been a storeroom, with a bed pending disposal.  The patchwork down below had helped his wound in the healing process, but he had awoken before it could be properly sealed up.  That needed to be done as soon as possible, or risk infection.  That was always a problem, and it wasn't uncommon for a large amount of men to die from diseases in the trenches and from injuries.

She spoke Italian, that was a surprise.  Although he could have sworn that some English escaped her lips to begin with, or maybe he was just imagining things.  He was still in a slight trance, eyes semi-closed, pain still aching.  Yet he somehow felt a little better.  If it had been them that did this, he would have to thank them.

The name Luca was mentioned, although the Caledonian had no clue as to who that was.  Someone unwanted, anwyay.  A husband maybe?  Employer?  Brother?  Father?  There were a number of titles he could have fallen under, and the Scot guessed every one.  The answer wouldn't be revealed unless he asked.
She came close to him again with the needle in her hand, and he accepted she was here to help him, what ever her name was.  Jax - that was the kid's name.

Dropping his head back down on the pillow, the soldier fell in to a convulsion of coughs, before drifting off once again.  Not once did he nod or say yes to more help, yet there was no more resistance.  Samantha would be allowed to finish.

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2009, 05:21:34 PM »
The fact that he seemed so calm about the situation he now faced, gave Samantha a bit of hope, that this would be easier to do and deal with, then she thought. As long as Jax didn't end up letting it slip to Luca what was being hid in his home, under his nose she'd be okay. The soldier would be healed and set back out. Set back out... to what? be shot at again during this ridiculous war that was going on?
Sighing softly she shook her head as she waited for his coughing fits to die down so she wouldn't have to worry about hurting him anymore than was necissary to begin with. And the fact that he seemed to drift back into sleep, was a plus because she wouldn't feel so bad, poking him with the needle while he was out. Of course, it might not last with the pain that puncturing his skin would cause.
But, as she finished up with the hole that had been in the skin, she didn't have to worry about him causing an outcry or waking up, for he never even stirred. Just lay there, as if knocked out. Samantha was glad, that was all she had to worry about, if it was anything worse... well, Samantha was no nurse, and probably would have had to turn to her husband.
Cleaning up what didn't belong, she stood over the soldier and smiled a bit, patting his cheek before moving a soft hand over his forehead. "I'll come back and check on you, I hope you don't try and get up to leave, not yet anyways..."

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2009, 05:12:05 PM »
The Caledonian seemed to sleep for days, or what he believed to be days anyway.  Without a sense of time, or a watch or clock to look at, it may very well have been a few hours that he lay on the bed, eyes closed, dreaming of horrible things.  Of his best friend Henry, wherever he might be.  Having friends in war was the worst thing you could have.  It only brought on more heartache and agony when something happened to them.  And something always happened to them.
With the room empty, the soldier sat with his legs dangling off the side of the bed, looking out of the window to the landscape.  It was strange.  There wasn't a single hint that the world was in a state of war.  Not even the stretching fields displayed a sign of conflict.  Nothing.  Like the house had taken him to a new world, one of peace.  One where guns had never been invented, and all those thousands of soldiers didn't die.  They all stayed at home, with their families, working away and dying with old age.

But it was all wishful thinking.  That didn't happen to him.  He was here, and he sure as hell was going to die like every other man.  The things he had saw, sometimes the Caledonian wished that if he were to be killed, it would be a simple bullet to the head.
His rifle sat between his legs, hands slowly stroking the wood and metal.  Already, the Caledonian was ready to leave.  Whether the woman wanted him to stay or not, he didn't feel right in remaining here while each man in his division had to face the horrors of the battlefield in front.

Somehow, Private Morris Argyle had escaped the humbleness of the house.  The woman hadn't caught him, nor had the young boy, or even the husband for that matter.  He hadn't properly thanked the woman for patching him up, but he figured even if he hadn't said it, she would feel he appreciated everything she had done for him.  With his helmet back on his head, and rifle in his hand, Morris didn't look back as he walked back to the treeline, coming to the stallion that he remembered seeing before he passed out.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2009, 01:48:31 PM by Stanmore' »

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2009, 01:29:03 AM »
Samantha's husband was strongly against the war that was going on outside, not even very far from where they lived. He did as much as he could to keep himself, and his wife away from it. Even little Jax, which was why Jax was always there, he never went home to his parents. They would come visit him, but Luca would never risk letting him leave to go home. He never left the house without either him, or Samantha present. Samantha felt that Luca was obsessed with keeping them, and Luca safe. He even had spoken about moving the three away from where they were, but Samantha refused to leave her home.
Luca, of course understood. Samantha was still getting over the miscarriage she had experienced a few months into her pregnancy. It had put her into a depression that the woman was now starting to finally get out of, and overcome. She was moving on, but the thought of leaving the house that her baby would have been born in, raised in... was too much for her to think about. She didn't care about the fact the battle was basically outside her door, Samantha didn't want to leave.
So, the fact that Samantha was harbouring a soldier, and keeping him from Luca was a big step, especially if the doctor ever ended up coming across the man in the spare room. The spare room that they were going to turn into the nursery. It had been easy though, to keep the man hidden from her husband. Easier then she had thought it would be. There was no close calls. Not after the only outcry that came from the man. Infact, Samantha was willing to believe Luca had completely forgotten about it.
When she had gone into the room, to check on Morris on the day he left, she wasn't surprised to find the bed unoccupied, and the room empty. Walking over to the bed, she straightened the sheets and fixed the pillow, creating the bed into the form as if it were never used. Turning, she walked out of the room and called down to Jax, to check the property and see if he could find the man anywhere. She wasn't worried Luca would find him, but she didn't want to take any chances. Luca was in the shower the last she checked anyways. When Jax didn't respond, her brow furrowed together and she walked towards the stairs, moving down them slowly, calling the boys name again.
She searched the whole floor, not finding him anywhere and moved back upstairs, thinking maybe he had fallen asleep somewhere but came up empty again. Running out of the house, Samantha shouted Jax's name hoping he'd be somewhere nearby. But again, there was no response. Her heart started to pound heavily and she looked around unable to catch any sort of glimpse of him, or where he could have gone off to.
Seeing a male form ahead of her, her spirits picked up a little bit, it was the soldier. Maybe he had seen Jax. Making a run towards the man a roaring sound filled her ears before the explosion came. The blonde English woman was thrown forward before hitting the ground.Shaking, she turned to her home, which was now reduced to rubble on the ground. A sob broke from her throat at the sight of it and she let out a scream that was of pure horror and pain. Her husband, her home... everything was knocked to the ground. Her husband...
"LUCA." She screamed, tears running down her cheeks as she scrambled to pick herself up. "Luca..." she cried out over and over again the sobs racking her body, causing the words to sound incoherent all together.
Taking a few running steps towards the rubble she stopped, and fell to her knees, her hands turning into fists and bunching up the skirt into their clutches as she sobbed, afraid to move forward knowing of what she'd find, but praying he somehow could have survived.

((It's a really really long and bad post, I'm sorry. I did the best that I could given the pressure I was under. I wont be here tomorrow, George is coming <3))

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #8 on: May 26, 2009, 01:45:42 PM »
It was an all-too familiar sound.  The crash of metal, the explosion and crumbling rubble of a well-built house.  It looked to have stood here for hundreds of years, and all it took was a large artillery shell to bring it all to the ground.  All that craftmanship for nothing.
Her scream was no doubt heard from all corners of the north Italian countryside.  Maybe it brought a smile of satisfaction from the Austrian-Hungarian gunners to hear that their shell had caused some sort of tragedy.  A young wife who had just lost her husband, and perhaps a young boy as well.  How joyous.

The Caledonian approached Samantha, not knowing what to say.  Did he crouch down, put an arm on her shoulder and tell her he was sorry?  Sorry that it was her house that had been targeted?  No, of course he didn't.  It didn't mean anything, saying sorry wasn't going to bring her husband back.  Or little Jax, if that was his name.  Samantha could consider herself lucky that she had walked out of the house when she did.  After all, a few seconds later in stepping out of the door, and she would be a wreckage as well.

Sitting her, mourning, was not a wise thing to do.  Very rarely did a single shell come down on one target.  An artillery gun was usually just one singer in a choir of heavy cannons.  There was no telling when the next one would come down, but the Caledonian didn't want to be around to find out where it landed.
He had been accustomed to death.  Many faces who he would never speak to again, caked in dirt and blood.  Sometimes a piece of them would be missing, exposing a segment of brain or bone of the skull.  Yet Samantha was a young, innocent woman who had no idea of the feelings of being in a war.  So far she had been kept away, but today was the day when the Austrian and Hungarians dragged her in to it.  And I bet they were going to regret it.

"Look, I ken you don't want me sayin' this, but we cannae stand around here.  There's gonna be more of those things rainin' doon on us any minute."  He grabbed her arm, pulling Samantha to her feet.  "Get up.  I'll take you somewhere safe."  It was the least he could do for the aid she gave him.

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2009, 10:27:39 PM »
Samantha couldn't believe it, there before her eyes... her whole world, her home, her husband. Her sweet, sweet caring husband.... broken, destroyed, murdered and killed all in one. Like a heart breaking little package. Her heart felt like it was going to shred into a million little pieces and never recover again. She was trembling from head to toe, unable to control herself. The shock of it all, seeing it through the silent tears that now fell, her voice forgetting how to work. Her vision was blurry but she continued to stare, as if hoping staring long and hard enough would change the vision infront of her.
But, it wouldn't change. No matter how much she wished, and how much she wanted it to rebuild itself, for her to be able to walk back in, and find her husband alive and well stepping out of the shower, his hair dripping wet, a towel around his midsection. None of that, would happen. What she saw before her, was the future that she now held. What she had to figure out. After so long, her husband had tried to protect her, them from the ugliness that was outside of their house.... the war that was casting shadows into everyone else's life but had hardly touched theirs and left an imprint until now.
She heard the soldier come up behind her, his footsteps the only sound other than her breathing and the scream that she had let out what seemed like hours before. Samantha felt a little relieved that he had been unharmed, like herself from the explosion. She hadn't done what she could to help him, for him to die in the end. Of course, she was sure her husband hadn't done what he had, only to die in the end too exposing the face of war to what he tried to protect.
Forcing her legs to work, as the nameless soldier pulled her to her feet she took a dirty hand to her face, trying to wipe away the tears that had stained her cheeks. She didn't want to leave, she wanted to run into the ruble and try to find her husband, she wanted to look and scream his name, hoping he would still be alive some how. By some crazy miracle he would be alive. But she knew better, and knew that he was right, they needed to leave.
"Jax... Jax wasn't inside..." her words came out in english as she spoke, unsure if he understood her or not, but not really caring at the moment. "I don't know where he is, if he's okay..."

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2009, 01:56:17 PM »
The Caledonian didn't like kids.  He didn't want to tell her that he had no real sympathy for the loss of her house, the loss of her life, the loss of her little friend, but more importantly, the loss of her husband.  Someone she had probably loved for so many years.  Yet now he was gone, and they never had a proper goodbye shared between them.  Although maybe her believing that Jax was okay, that he had made it out, would help her somewhat.  Even if just a little.
Then came the familiar whistle.  Another artillery cannon had fired, or maybe it was the same one, and was directing it's shell in the same location it had heard the scream from.  It knew it had hit a heart.  And it wanted more blood.  More pain.  Morris heard it, and was fast to react, irregardless of the hurt in his body.  He pulled Samantha away from the rubble, and began to jog away from the scene towards the treeline he was heading to before the woman caught up with him sneaking out of the house.

The soldier was slightly lowered, keeping his head down and bracing himself for the loud, rupturing thud that signalled the shell had landed and developed a large crater in the ground.  And it came.  Twenty yards away, give or take a few.  Too close for his liking, however.  They couldn't take too chances.  Their hands were joined for now, nothing romantic about it.  Simply to get her away from here, and lead her to safety.  He owed her.
Morris waltzed and darted through trees, ones that seemed to reach for miles in to the sky, a green roof above shadowed the floor.  The wildlife watched with startled panic from the activity, birds, foxes, rodents.  The Scot didn't halt to identify any of the watching eyes, instead, he kept his attention focused on straying away from the explosions and not running in to a brown column.
Soon, he developed a tickling stitch, and it told him they were safe enough to sit down, catch their breath.

"I think we're safe."  He said, watching a small cabin in front of them.

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2009, 03:21:14 PM »
The whistle of the shell startled her, caused a feeling of fear to drop into the pit of her stumach. She wanted to scream but knew there really was no point. It was probably something about her scream that had caused another one to come this way in the first place. To come and try to claim the last living, wounded life that was left. The hunger of war wasn't really satisfied until all the living blood was spilled across the earth's surface. If it wasn't for him, the soldier that had a grip on her arm, Samantha was sure her legs would have probably given out under her and she would have crumbled to a heave of useless limbs to the ground. They felt weak, but in an instant, they were both making their way towards the treeline. His pace seemed to be set at a jog, but Samantha had to run just to keep up with him so he wasn't pulling her along by the hand.
Had it been any other situation, or had she been with anyone else, the English woman knew she would definatly be falling apart, crying from fear, not just because everything she once loved was now lost. But the fact she was with a man who knew war, knew about things that she didn't understand, that her husband didn't understand about it. Knowing this, made her feel more safer even though they were running from something that could easily end their lives, just from making contact with a solid object. Safer, and with a better feeling of surviving.
She knew that a few women that she knew, would probably have stayed there, and welcomed the face of death if it came back to get them, that living without their families, their husbands there was no reason to go on. Had Samantha been alone at the time, she was sure she might have been the same way, but there was no way, she would show that to this man, who faught the war, for people like her, to keep them out of their territory, and have just a few people to live. She wouldn't do that to this man, who obviously wanted to help keep her alive.
The landing of the shell, made her almost scream but she caught it in her throat, and forced it back down. She was already shaking badly enough, no point in adding to the feeling with a scream of terror that would signal that there was still someone alive. She wanted to remain alive, not taunt her death.
Moving with him through the vegitation, she clutched at her skirt to keep it off the ground and away from her feet so she didn't tumble and bring them both crashing down. Her eyes darted around at the animals that were peering at them from hiding, it made her almost want to laugh. It was like a scene from a fairy tale, but this was no fairy tale. This was harsh reality and as she felt her heart beating in her chest, she worried that she would end up collapsing. But kept pushing on as he pulled her forward, deeper into the forest away from those that were the enemy.

When they finally stopped, Samantha slid to the ground, propped up against a tree's trunk and took in deep breaths, trying to calm her heart beat. "Thank you..." she didn't know the man's name, and she wasn't going to make him tell her, he would tell her if he wished, and that was that.
"You're not... you came here from somewhere else, like me. Didn't you? You're not a born citizen..." It wasn't her business, Sam knew that, but she couldn't help but ask the question anyways. Tilting her head towards the cabin she noticed he'd been eyeing she asked "Think it's okay to go in there?"

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #12 on: May 31, 2009, 05:03:58 PM »
He recognised the accent was a stranger to these lands since he first saw her, however, he didn't know exactly how long she had lived here.  It could have been months, it could have been as long as years.  Journeyed from England when she was only a bairn, learning a new language and culture and growing up with a pair of identities.  An English woman, and an Italian wife.  Learning the Italian language for him was tough, and there was times where he would speak the wrong word, or mispronounce a sentence.  Yet they all understood what he was trying to say.  Shouts and screams on the battlefield could always be understood, irregardless of what nationality the person was.

The cabin itself looked empty.  Either the owner was out for a walk, or it had long been vacant.  However, it looked clean, well-maintained.  It brought on suspicion that the Caledonian expected someone to return at any time.  Unless the owner was sleeping.  In his bed, deaf to the artillery shells landing near his house.  Or maybe his body was in the woods, killed.  There were a hundred possibilities and scenarios as to why the cabin was even here in the first place, but the only way they would know was by opening the front door.

"I'm no Italian, no."  It seemed to be all he wanted to say, for now.  As soon as they had somewhere to sleep, somewhere to rest and regain their thoughts, he would be an open book.  Would answer every burning question she had on her chest.

Cautiously approaching the cabin, he at first looked in to the front pair of windows to check for signs of life.  Furniture, all neatly placed as you would expect, a wooden table with a pair of chairs on either side.  A small corner designated as the kitchen, while the remainder was concealed by inner walls and doors.  He expected there to be a bed behind one of the two doors inside.The front door was unlocked, and easily opened with a slight push.  Argyle's steps were soft, so not to cause a creak in the wooden boards below his feet.  A quick look of the main room, and he turned his attention to the last two rooms.  A nice painting of a lake hung between the two doors.  He couldn't tell what lake it was, but he figured it be local, perhaps drawn by the resident himself.

The first door to his right was the bedroom.  Taking up a quarter of the small cabin, it had just enough room for a single bed against the wall, and a wardrobe across from it.  Above the linen of the bed, a curtained window looked in to the forest that seemed to completely surround the tiny building.  The other room appeared to take on the role as bathroom, with what the Caledonian assumed was a toilet and bath.  Returning to the main room, he waved for the woman to join him.  They could at least rest here until the owner came back to kick them out.

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #13 on: June 14, 2009, 03:19:26 AM »
(It's short, I'm sorry. I got in really fucking late, and so... yeah. Don't wanna leave you hanging. Many apologies if it falls short of making sense)

The words that came from his lips, were in the english she grew up around, the english that she spoke for years until arriving in this war ridden city they hid from in the thick trees and bushes. It was the english she remembered her mother speaking her to with, only with a slight difference. It sounded more... north her border. Scotland maybe? It seemed about right, but Samantha couldn't -really- remember. It had been so long ago she heard anyone speak with that accent.

The English woman stood back as she watched the soldier check out the cabin that was in question of them occupying for a short amount of time. She didn't want to get in his way, Samantha was greatful he was even bothering to help her. It wasn't something she would really have expected, even if she had helped him recover. He was a man of war, living to survive and do what was needed to be done. She was just, one seen who could slow him down. At least, to others she expected it would seem like that.
Crouching down, Samantha put her head between her legs as the trembling started in her limps again. Thinking of how she had helped him, kept it from her husband, caused a feeling of angush to flow over her body like the tide coming in during the night. Her eyes began to water again without her even noticing, the little droplets of salty water falling onto the uncrushed leaves between her feet. She wanted to move back time, to the day her husband had suggested they leave Italy until the danger was over. But, she hadn't listened. Didn't want to leave. And now, she wished she had. But had she agreed, then would anyone have been here to aid the fallen soldier, who's time was obviously not ready to be done?
Thinking of this, and everything else, of Jax somewhere, hopefully alive and well, just frightened and cold caused some sortof odd feeling to well up inside the blonde. Standing, she wiped her tears away and looked up to see the soldier beckoning to her. She took a few steps, and decided to run to the safety of the cabin, not wanting to be outside anymore.
Stepping in, she looked around the small place, taking in the small sense of comfort it gave off she turned to him, her palms cupping her elbows. "Do you think, anyone lives here?... I don't want them to come back and raise hell because we've tresspassed..."

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #14 on: June 14, 2009, 11:37:31 AM »
"Maybe.  Maybe they're away somewhere, or maybe they're dead.  There's only one way to find out, and that's to wait for him or her to come back and throw us out the front door."  Morris sat down on a chair at the dining table and rested his rifle on top of the wood.  It had been well maintained, something the Caledonian was proud of.  There were a few men he had known who had trouble firing their weapons, mainly because they hadn't taken care of them.  The gun was your best friend, as some crazy officers would tell you.  The same officers who hid behind the back lines while the common man charged forward to hell.  Passing through your own barbed wire was an achievement in its own right.  Morris had only spent three months on the northern front in France, he preferred it down here.  So much needless death, and no matter how many men died, the generals always got the praise.

He pulled out the cartridges that he had left for his weapon.  Three boxes, each with around eight rounds tucked away.  The rifle itself was nearly full, yet without access to anymore ammo, he'd be running short soon.  That's of course, if he took the route which lead through enemy territory.  Morris couldn't exactly remember where he was, how he had got here.  A map of some sort would be useful, give him a destination to reach.  Yet he had did what he said.  Taken Samantha to safety, away from the artillery shelling.  It wouldn't take long before the shells changed direction to here, however.  Then again, where was safe?  The war moved back and forth many times, next week the Austrian-Hungarians could have taken Milano.  Or the Italian forces could have annexed Austria by the end of the month.  Predictions were for fools.

Having checked the cupboards for any signs of food, Morris cooked them up something to eat with a few scraps of local produce and vegetables.  He heated it up on the stove, and served it to Samantha in a small dish, doing the same for himself.  "Don't expect it tae be tasty, but it'll fill you up alright."  He warned, sitting down once more and staring at the dish.  Having been used to horrible rations for months, it was a welcome relief to have something that tasted surprisingly nice.  Morris looked up to Samantha, wondering if she was going to eat, or was still thinking about her husband.  They could either sit and have her cry out her pain, or try to take her mind away from it.
"I remember this one time, about a year ago, Henry and I went on a little break from the war, stayed in this little house a few miles south of the front line.  There was this old woman that lived there, nice person, told us we could stay for as long as we liked.  Would have been good if we could.  But we used to wake up to the smell of bread in the oven every day.  She made the tastiest loaf you had ever had.  We'd get up early, sit in the back garden and wait for her daughter to come and bring the fresh milk from the farm down the road."  Morris smiled.  "Her daughter was a few years older than me, but she looked as young as a teenager.  We wrote to each other after I returned to the trenches, got a couple of letters, made arrangements to go back down there and spend some more time with her."
His grin quickly erased from his lips.  "Three months later, the house was gone.  Never heard from her again."

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #15 on: June 14, 2009, 04:22:01 PM »
She didn't find it as easy as he seemed to, to sit down and just... wait, rest and relax. Samantha was worried, what if the resident came back, and held a gun to their head? Of course, it was a silly thought, given the fact she was with a man who obviously knew how to deal with danger, and wheild a weapon of his own. She didn't really like the idea of being thrown out of someone elses home, and hoped that with whatever luck was with the two people, it was either an abandoned cabin given the current circumstances, or whomever lived there, was at least kind at heart.
She watched him sit there, with his rifle laid out across the table, and pull out the cartidges. A gun, was the thing that had wounded him, and a gun was what could have taken his life. It was the protection that he had, and a death sentance to another. War was a big bloodbath, the killing of one man, to protect another. To win something another man was too lazy to fight for himself, or to leave it to whomever owned it in the first place. It was because someone didn't like anothers religion, or the look of their skin. The way they were brought up, or the family they were from. War, was the killing of someone's baby, someone's brother or father which led to the revenge that killed the next,and the next.
Sitting down in the chair across from him, Samantha watched him from blue depths as she imagined the horrors he had seen, to keep himself, and a few others alive. This was a man who was someone's baby, who lived in a world thrown upside down and kicked around a bit. And she wondered, if he thought about it that way.

Watching Morris move around the small kitchen, and prepare the creation of a meal Samantha hoped it was something that wouldn't be minded. She hadn't said anything again about the cabin's resident. There were no signs to hint at the possability of someone still living there. They could have left yesterday, or a few days ago and no tell tale signs about it. Nothing seemed dusty, so it wasn't a cabin left for long.
Looking down at the dish he had placed infront of her, Samantha watched him take his seat again, and picked up her fork, moving the cooked holdings around. She didn't feel hungry, but knew that it was probably going to be one of the few things she ate properly between now, and whatever was decided for her to do next.
She began to eat, but stopped as he began to speak, about himself. A story of a day when things were good for him it seemed. Samantha watched the expressions that moved over his face, the way the words came out, and how they sounded. How the grin touched his lips, and then faded like the day he spoke of. So, this man knew of a loss too. More than just on the battlefield. He knew of the loss that came with a close one.
Suddenly no longer hungry, she rose and went to the sink, scraping her plate clean and placed it down. She didn't know if he expected her to say that she was sorry for her loss, or what. But, she guessed by the way he seemed to be, apology for the past wasn't something he wanted to hear.
So, instead she turned around and giving the smallest smile she could, decided it was best to bring something else up for them to think about. "I still... don't know your name. You know mine, I'm sure. Yet, I don't recall ever hearing yours. What is it?"

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #16 on: June 14, 2009, 06:39:39 PM »
By this time, he was merely stabbing at the food in the dish.  He had watched Samantha empty her own meal in to the sink, and he was tempted to do the same.  His short, tragic story had put a downer on the dinner in general, and now it was bringing back memories.  Ones he wished to keep locked away.  Thinking about her.  Thinking what could have been, if only they had ran away instead of playing the roles dished out to him.  Morris, a foot soldier in the Italian army, and Francesca, delivering milk and fresh food to her mother every day.  If only they had joined hands, and ran.  Just kept running, away from it all.  It could have been different.  He wouldn't have ended up in front of Samantha's house, dyring, needing the bullet taken out.  But then she wouldn't have followed him out.  She would have been in the house at the same time her husband was killed from the artillery gun.  Although how could he be sure she'd be inside?  Something else could have dragged her out, Jax's disappearance?  Maybe things were meant to be, and no matter what, she was always going to survive that shelling.

"Names?  Who needs names, when we won't be together for much longer.  A name is a description from another person.  I look at you, and I think of you as Jennifer.  That's not your name, but that doesn't make a blind bit of difference.  We are who others think we are."  He didn't know why he answered with such deep thought, instead of merely responding with his name.  This was no philisophical debate, it was a simple question the poor girl had asked him.  Instead, he had refused to pass on that information.  As of now, she still would think of him as the Scottish soldier.
After thinking about it, Morris decided against keeping up the charade of secrecy.  Why bother?  There was nothing complicated about witholding the name from her.  She deserved to know, at least, the identity of the man who owed her.  "My name is-"
The word was overshadowed by the crash of wood splitting against wood hitting against wood.  Morris was quick to react, his hand grabbed the rifle and pulled it to his eye, watching down the uneven contours of the metal and wood.  There were three men standing at the door, all holding their weapons in a way that seemed threatening.  Two had French rifles, while the third wielded a revolver.  There was movement behind the door that perhaps indicated a fourth member of the party was hiding.
At first, no words were shared, but soon there was a barrage of screaming French phrases thrown at one another.  Morris knew he was outgunned, yet refused to lower his gun.  They were not Germans, obviously, nor were they of Austrian-Hungarian origin.  The French which they yelled with meant they were just like him, foreigners to the Italian Army.  They never wore uniforms, only tattered clothes.  Shirts, trousers, many holes in the cloth.
While two of the guns were firmly watching Morris, one of them men had his own sights on Samantha.  It seemed he was more than prepared to shoot a woman, one without any form of defence.

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Re: Beneath the Fog of the Artillery Gun
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2009, 09:32:56 PM »
His answer not only surprised her, but it amazed that such words, such deep thought came from this man who had his living turned into fighting to survive. An indepth reason, as to why a name wasn't needed, how he even saw her as someone else then she was, then who she was represented by with her name. Samantha was surprised with herself, that she had allowed such... a simple thought as thinking how well educated these men could be, before being sent off to fight, to kill one another and scatter blood through the stars.
Of course, behind it all, she was sure a lot of these men had some sort of educational training, left their jobs, or outside of highschool classes to come here. Some were even probably just graduating when they got pulled in. Not all were mindless men with a gun, who didn't understand anything and only knew the language of where they came from.
This man, this nameless, deep thinking.. tragic ridden man was a good example of that. He showed her a little bit of kindness, that Samantha thought this world had forgotten. Even if it wasn't going to last much longer, he had gotten her out of the current danger, and that was a big act. Samantha didn't understand the way's of a soldier, what they were supposed to do besides fight the enemy, and who they were supposed to look out for. But she was grateful enough that he had decided to return help to her.
When he opened his mouth again, to tell her his name she smiled a little bit, but it quickly vanished and she jumped at the sudden crack of wood, and him, grabbing his rifle. Her throat closed up seeing the men standing there, their shouts going back and forth. Her gaze slid to the Scottish Soldier and then back at the ones who had their weapons pointed at them, the one that was aimed at her. Her hand slid along the countertop slowly, she didn't know what she was looking for, but maybe something that she could possibly defend herself with, would make her feel better. Was this their little lodging? She hoped not, they really didn't seem very happy and it scared her.

 

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