The grenade erupted from the ground.
All his comrades were dead on the battlefield and puddles of blood were all around him. Joseph held tightly to his only remaining photo of his wife, Emily, who remained back home. Tears rolled down his cheeks.
It was just this morning at sunrise when Joseph was put into a rescue mission. Although now he was the only one left of his battalion.
His hands were covered in his comrades’ blood. His left leg was fractured, and his forehead gushing with blood. Josephwas getting dizzy from the blood loss, heart beating faster and his vision limited by the blood rolling down his head. Joseph quickly grabbed his gun which had only 5 bullets left and jumped into a ditch to hide himself from the enemies that surrounded him.
A sound of a man running could be heard. Joseph looked up and looked at his uniform, a swastika, Joseph thought as he pulled his gun up and fired a bullet straight through the head. He assured that he had been killed and hid inside the ditch again.
Joseph was in a small island of the Philippines called Gabra island. He had ended up there after fleeing an ambush fromthe Axis on the Lubang islands. The mission was to take back the island and free the Allies that had been captured. The ambush came as if they were expecting Joseph’s battalion to come there, there had to be a spy on his side. But now, spy or ally, they were all dead.
All Joseph could think of was his family who were waiting for him to come home.
“Emily...” he said as he thought of his newlywed bride, “I’ll come home right after I win this war.”
Joseph clenched his fists with all his anger inside him.
“I’ll make all of you pay!”
It had been a while since the sounds of thefootsteps coming from the Nazis and the Japanese disappeared, the only sound that remained was the sound of the leaves rustling against the wind and the river flowing right next to him. He stood up cautiously looking around for enemies he might not have seen. He crawled towards his comrades one by one and pulled them into the ditch laying them onto the walls of dirt.
They were his friends, his family, but now they were dead. He wanted nothing but revenge for his fallen comrades. He made the decision; he would stay there and kill anyone who walked in. It would be his outpost, his defense line, and no one would be able to cross it.
First, he buried his comrades and saluted. 1 minute, 3 minutes, 10... He stood still; he couldn’t understand the moment. He stood before them, all 11 comrades, yet nothing came into mind. Then suddenly, like he had been holding it in for a long time, tears poured outlike a waterfall crashing down.
After a long while, Joseph’s tears stopped and as he looked up a flower caught his glance. It’s a Narra, Joseph thought. It was a flower that Emily loved most, a pink flower almost as beautiful as Emily herself. He pulled its roots out from the ground and layed them next to his comrade’s bodies,
“Go there where there are flowers as beautiful as this. Although it will never be as beautiful as these before you all.”, he said before leaving to start building the outpost.
Now it was time.
Time for revenge.
He cut down trees and started building the base, and then the walls. He cut down twenty more trees and built the main building. The outpost was finished. It was about half the size of the Quonset hut that he and his comrades would sleep in and as tall as two light M3 tanks stacked on top of each other.
The outpost had open windows on each wall, a wooden ladder to climb up, and a muddy bed of leaves. The outpost was built on the southernmost side of the island, which was the only entrance. The northern part of the island had shallow water which made it impossible to take a ship and sail to, and the eastern part of the island had a landslide of rocks and mud making it hard to get through. On the western part of the island was a cliff. Joseph had thought the southernmost side of the island, which had a beach full of sand and open sea, would be the best place to build the outpost.
He grabbed his comrades’ ammos and weapons that he took out before engraving them. He leaned them onto the walls of the outpost and started looking out and protecting his land.
Days passed by as no one came. Joseph could not know how long it had been since he had come here. However, he didn’t care. He only wanted to win this war for his country, his comrades and Emily.
A new routine had been made, Joseph went to hunt and get food in the morning and stand guard all night. It was safer to leave his post in the morning, it was easier to see, and he would be close by. If he heard the sound of an engine he could come running back.
One night, Joseph was startled by a loud abrupt sound.
Engine? Joseph thought as he looked out. He spotted a long ship with a flag attached to it. The flag had a bright red sun in the middle.
“Japanese.”, Joseph said as he grabbed his gun.
Joseph ran towards the seashore and hid behind some rocks. The rocks were big enough to cover his whole body, and once he saw that the ship was only about a mile away Joseph grabbed his Lee-Enfield leaned it against the top of the rock.
Joseph aimed his gun to one of the men and started firing all the enemies one by one.
All the men started ducking, but for some reason no one fired back. One of the men stood up and started screaming,
“Yameru! Senso waowatta!”, All the others started repeating the same sentence.
They must be ordering to attack now Joseph thought as he turned to reload his gun. Without caring about what they were saying Joseph kept firing shots at them. Then the ship started leaving, Joseph had protected his outpost against a whole ship. It was an accomplishment rewarded by nothing but a feeling of relief.
Joseph could not tell how much time had passed. All he knew was that he could no longer hear any gun shots nor any bombs. Must be a trick Joseph thought. They're trying to lure me out.
The next day, a boat passed by. Joseph quickly grabbed his gun. The boat was... small. As small as his outpost. It was wide open with 2 people on board, going at speeds Joseph had never seen before. Joseph cautiously crept towards it. Never had he seen a boat that fast, it was a genius invention. Although it was amazing, Joseph had no choice but to shoot. They were enemies, not allies.
He shot at the ship, barely missing the man’s head, shattering the glass instead. The men ducked down and fled. Joseph had protected his outpost for another day.
The very next day started with a weird sensation. The night was colder than usual, no animals appeared before him, and no fish were caught. Then Joseph heard another boat from a distance. This one was louder than the boat that had come yesterday.
“Cease fire!”, the man had a mid-size object in his hands and his voice was as loud as the ship as he spoke with the object in front of his mouth. Joseph, curious decided to wait until they came, since the man could speak English.
The ship arrived on shore, and the man and some soldiers stepped down. The soldiers had uniforms that looked formal, tight, way better than the ones he had on now. One of the six men stepped forward.
“Hello, my name is Randoph, I am captain of the Philippines national police.We are here because of reports of some man with a gun shooting at a boat. Would that be you?”
“Yes, my name is Joseph, soldier of the 2nd commando brigade, now taking part in the commando operations!”
Shocked, the captain said,
“Well Joseph... hate to tell you this now but, the war ended 30 years ago.”