Goo M A Short Story: Recruit Guaman
Recruit Guaman’s arms shake in the front leaning rest position over a puddle of his sweat on the quarterdeck.
There’s nothing restful about that position.
“Mountain climbers,” screams the drill instructor as his fists rest on his green duty belt, “in cadence, exercise: one-two-three.”
Guaman limply lifts his left foot from the floor.
The muscles in Staff Sergeant Baker’s square jaw flex as he grits his teeth. He kneels, jabbing his index finger with laser precision at the air near Guaman’s face, “What do you think, Goo Man?”
The Drill Instructor turns and barks to the platoon, “Did they make some kind of fucking mistake …show more content…
I’m going to murder you, if you can’t conduct one friggin’ daggone stinkin’, one friggin’ ex-er-cise, Goo Man, give me one stinkin’ goddamn exercise.”
Recruit Guaman’s heels fall to the floor.
“Get your heels off the friggin’ deck, Goo Man. Get your heels off my deck,” Staff Sergeant Baker’s face turns purple as he descends on Guaman. His finger jabs assault Guaman’s face, “Don’t you ever let me see you in the Fleet, Goo Man, I’ll fucking jump on you like a fucking grenade. Do you fucking understand me, Goo Man?”
I stare straight ahead, I don’t dare let my eyes wander to the left or to the right.
Inside my foot locker to my left is everything that I now own in this world: six pairs of black boot socks, six green skivvy shirts with my name stamped on the back collar, six tighty-whitey pairs of underwear with my name stamped on the front, three sets of tri-color camouflage utilities. We do not have a flashlight, we have a moonbeam. We do not have pens, we have ink sticks. I stand on a deck, not a floor. My cover goes atop my brain housing group. In the field, I wear a brain bucket. No cover is worn unless on duty or outside: a cover is always worn outside or this recruit would be in a shit storm of incentive training (IT) as is Guaman …show more content…
The platoon echoes each staccato grunt back, our boots shuffle synchronously on the pavement: left-right-left-right.
“Kilo Comp’ny gon’a take a little trip,”
The recruits of Platoon 3026 all sit Indian-style on the foam mats of the floor as an impatient Navy corpsman paces back and forth on at the front of the small classroom. A large white screen shows an gaping chest wound with exposed muscle tissue, bone and organs.
“This is your class on treating a sucking chest wound, ladies,” the corpsman announces, “You will not fall asleep in my class. If you feel tired, you will get up and go stand in the back of the classroom. You will not talk. You will not eye-fuck my classroom. You will pay attention to every word.”
Next to me, Anderson is rocking back and forth from one knee to the other as he sits cross-legged on the mat, “”I can’t go back, I can’t go back, I can’t, I can’t,” he repeats over and over under his breath.
I want to ask what the fuck is wrong with him as he begins to shiver uncontrollably, but I simply turn away to face the Corpsman as he flips through slides of gaping chest wounds and instructs the classroom on the proper application of the bandage and plastic to allow blood to seep out of the