Appearing in "The Third Day"
Synopsis for "The Third Day"
Standing around with Private "Angel," Private Goodwin is thinking to himself that no matter how the war actually ends, no one in the world will think it smart to f*ck with the United States after the tactics utilized in Vietnam. Two American jets pass over head as he wonders aloud why the US even bothers with the rest of the world, as it should have everything it could possibly want.
Elsewhere on base, Captain Frank Castle walks with his superior, Colonel Ottman. Castle notes that the jets are flying low, staying under the gathering weather. He mentions that when the coming storm hits it will leave them with no air support. Ottman counters with there still being artillery to back them up, but Castle says they're out of everyone else's range and their own being in horrible disrepair, badly manned, and in need of resupply. Ottman tells Castle he hasn't requested resupply because the war, as everyone but Castle seems to have realized, is almost over and if they'd just shut up and ride it out they can all go home. Castle presses on that this weather is perfect for the enemy, but Ottman continues to ignore him.
When Ottman goes into the head, Castle considers fragging him with a grenade, but reconsiders. When he walks away a voice asks him what stopped him, telling him no one would have known or cared and it would have made it acting commander. The voice asks if he considered fragging him because he would do anything for the lives of his men or if maybe he just wanted to frag him. It asks if Frank wonders about the way he kills at the drop of a hat, if he's worried about the urge he has "to give every motherf*cker in the world exactly what they deserve." The voice says that's the gift it's offering, and if Frank just says the word it can be his.
Castle comes across Private Goodwin tending to his weapon and the two of them talk. Castle confides in Goodwin that he has a family back home--a four year old daughter, and a wife who found out she was pregnant a week after he he began that third tour--and he thinks they may be his last chance. Castle advises the Private to reload his magazines, in case their lucks gone bad considering the day before and their being cut off from the rain, then tells him he sees Angel entering Coltrane's bunker. As Goodwin goes to retrieve Angel, the Voice talks to Frank again. It asks him what the point of that "happy-ever-after" conversation was and tells him that his family isn't his last chance, it is.
Goodwin, meanwhile, bashes Coltrane with the but of his gun and takes Angel for a walk in the rain to sober him up. As dawn approaches Stevie and Angel have a discussion and argument about how much either of them have to live for when they get back to America and what the "real America" is anyway.
In the middle of their discussion explosions begin to go off as Vietnamese soldiers charge the base. The American soldiers rally to defensive positions, but when a flare is put into the air the sheer number of enemy surrounding them puts them into shock, with the exception of Captain Castle, who calmly asks for the 'sixty.
- Born uses a lot of US Marine and military terminology and slang. Terms from this issue include:
- Easing the springs: Removing all cartridges from a magazine.
- Fast mover: Jet
- Frag: The killing of a superior officer, usually because they are either unpopular or thought to be incompetent leaders.
- Grunt: A nickname for an infantryman
- Illumination (illum): A bright flare shot into the air to light up the surrounding area.
- K.I.A. (Killed In Action): A soldier killed by an enemy during combat.
- Sapper: Viet Cong specialty soldiers
- Short: A soldier close to the end of their tour
- Wire: Trip-wires, often connected to land-mines, surrounding the defensive perimeter.
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