Thursday, August 21, 2008

Looking in the mirror

Kain stood alone in the small cabin/office he used to oversee the caravan's operations, store his arms, and, when there was time, sleep in. His discharge mess dress uniform hung from a hook, and he held a small flat case in his hands. His decorations lay nestled into their velvet compartments. He ran his thumb over the smooth face of the kill badges, passing over them and withdrawing the wound badge. It was strange; Kain had generally been unusually lucky. Most of the men he had come up with had suffered serious wounds, some disabling, but Kain had avoided injury entirely until the raid on the hovertank compound. There was no doubt he's earned that medal. The doctors assured him otherwise, but on the damp mornings, Kain swore there was still some shrapnel left inside.

The Infantry Assult Badge, the Tank Destruction, Close Combat, and Sniper badges he left in their spaces. Above the Wound Medal, he affixed the War of the Alliance Ribbon, adding only the Battle of Baja Campaign pin, leaving the rest. He placed the Onyx Ring on his finger; the Legion could not be left behind.

Briefly, he considered the rank insignia. He'd been proud that day, and ashamed. Proud to have been recognized, to have been measured and not found wanting. The shame, well, that came from being recognized too. There were things a man should not be congratulated for....

The sword, of course, was essential. With the Spider's rules, no weapons would be permitted, yet Kain knew they would not deny him his right to carry the weapon. He'd never killed with it, but it had drawn blood for honour.


Hermes 72 - Heavy Gear RPG - Most artwork Copyright 2002 Dream Pod 9, Inc.