by Adrian George Nicolae
One step in front of the other. That’s what it means to go forward. At least to my drill sergeant. Every day and every other night he pushes me without purpose. I ask him why. He grins and bares his yellow teeth, then says I remind him of his son. He lowers his head over my ear and whispers, softly, that he raped and killed him. I stand with my mouth wide open, unable to breathe, much less move. The sergeant takes one step back, puts one finger on each side of my chin and slams it shut. He rubs his sweaty palms over my red cheeks and mutters something I still remember word for word. “If you squeal, I’ll make it worse and nobody will give a damn. If you don’t go the way I push you to, then I’ll make you kill yourself. Private No-nuts, there’s only one thing you can do, and that’s to obey my orders.” I ran like a madman every time he whistled. Even when I had a fever or was dehydrated. Fortunately, he tired of me after a month and latched on another. Unfortunately, my teeth are a mess.
Adrian George Nicolae writes dark fiction and comedy, and has been published both online and offline. He is also the creator of Dialogual, a magazine that publishes dialogue-only stories.
October 22, 2014
Photo by: Gessy Alvarez