Appearing in "The Second Day"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:

Other Characters:

  • Unnamed female Vietnamese soldier (Only appearance; dies)[1]

Races and Species:


Synopsis for "The Second Day"

Private "Angel" is in the bunker of local drug dealing Marine Coltrane about to shoot heroin. Private Goodwin steps in and stops him because Captain Castle is taking the platoon out and he's needed clean. Coltrane and his right hand man Garcia follow them out, planning to take a violent payment for the heroin Angel didn't pay for, but suddenly stop, when they notice Captain Castle watching in the distance.

The full platoon, the only 29 Marines at Firebase Valley Forge who care enough to go out, go on patrol hoping to utilize their strength. As they walk through the jungle a sniper's bullet hits Private Tedrow in the throat. The Corpsman runs up to assist, to also be hit. When a Marine lying on the ground is shot it's realized there are at least four snipers around them, causing panic throughout the platoon with one exception. Captain Castle steps forward, calmly takes the "the 'sixty" from Private McDonald and blasts the snipers out of the trees despite taking at least one bullet to his own left arm. The platoon has lost six members in all.

While confirming the kills, Private McDonald finds a surviving female soldier. The rest of the Marines crowd the area as he removes his belt and climbs on top of her to rape her. In his mind Private Goodwin compares it to a fight he witnessed as a sixth grader when a much bigger boy brutally destroyed smaller one in an almost man on child way, shattering his face. Just then, Captain Castle shoots the woman in the back of the head while McDonald is still on top of her simply saying, "No Rape. We're here to kill the enemy. That's all."

Goodwin, unable to face what happened, sneaks away to catch his breath behind a tree. From there he sees McDonald dip his face into a creek, washing the woman's brains off. Still hidden, he also bears witness to Captain Castle silently and emotionlessly drown him, kicking his body into the water.

After being fetched home by the helicopters, Castle confronts Goodwin, asking him why he kept quiet about the McDonald killing. Goodwin admits he was scared, but asks why he did it, to which Castle answers that he wanted to "punish him". About the girl Castle says that had he her on a medevac no one in the platoon would have trusted him in combat, and if he'd have handed her over to intel she'd never had told them anything and they'd have taken turns raping her then killed her.

Castle walks away, telling Goodwin he doesn't have to be afraid of him, but Goodwin realizes he still is.


  • Born uses a lot of US Marine and military terminology and slang. Terms from this issue include:
    • Bird of freedom: Any airplane taking soldiers out of country towards home.
    • Charlie: Viet Cong soldiers, from the phonetic alphabet code Victor Charlie.
    • Corpsman: Hospital Corpsman attached to a unit.
    • Humping the boonies: Carrying heavy packs (humps) through difficult terrain (the boonies)
    • Medevac: Medical Evacuation by helicopter.
    • Wire: Trip-wires, often connected to land-mines, surrounding the defensive perimeter.
      • Gap in the wire: A specific open area for troops friendly to walk through.


  • One of the platoon soldiers has an Ace of Spades playing card on his helmet. A number of real soldiers and Marines did the same or similar things with the card, believing (wrongly) that the Vietnamese soldiers thought of the spade as a symbol of death and misfortune.

See Also


  1. First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks

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