This is a little experiment in short fiction writing. In conjunction with the Mysteryscribe, I will write a small section of a story and post it here. he will read it, write the next section - email it to me for posting. We want to see if it's possible to achieve a good short story this way. So, here it goes.
John had grown to hate the sound of that piece o crap K-Mart alarm clock. He had overslept again. Berg had a lot of trouble sleeping lately. It was after ten already and he was supposed to be there to set up at noon. John Sandberg looked at himself in the mirror he was neither pleased nor displeased with what he saw. He didn’t give a shit really - it just wasn’t his nature.
When his friends saw John, they saw somewhat of an enigma the former Army Ranger Captain. Sure he still looked fit with his shorter than regulation cut and muscled 6 foot 2 frame but they knew of the booze and the toll it would eventually take.
Most of those who served with Capt Sandberg thought of him as a true hero. These were the men who had put their lives on the line in Iraq and Afghanistan just as he had. Others who didn’t have this shared knowledge saw a ruthless barbarian or worse. Yes, John had a reputation for getting answers from the enemy and fast.
It was when that reputation came to light, thanks to some scum of a liberal TV reporter that John’s life began to unravel. There were both official and unofficial inquires into his conduct. Some politicos back home who desperately wanted his head mounted on the walls of their campaign offices The Army saw it in a different light. They would not give up a man with two silver stars and a fist full of purple hearts. The President himself was the one to hang that Medal of Honor around Lt. John Sandberg’s neck as the nation watched on TV.
John could kick himself for being late. Peter Welch, a fellow Army ranger had joined and moved up in the National Park Service. He had called John with an offer of a paying job. The Park Service wanted some photographs to put in a brochure about its Civil War Reenactment Series it was holding at various battlefield sites. This one was just outside Atlanta at Kennesaw Mountain.
You’re late Berg.
Sorry Peter, had a rough night but, who the hell is that! Did you go out and hire someone else to do the job?
Peter had used John’s old nickname – Berg and it didn’t have anything to do with last name.