The Long Road to Heaven
Captain Terrance Thatcher
Captain Terrance Thatcher of the U.S. Army. Scion of Aries - God of War.
His eyes are of the deepest, true American blue, they elude the cunning mind that lies behind the handsome American mans face. His chiseled jaw line is bare of any stubble, shadow or non-regulation facial hair. Upon his head the dazzling blond hair is only one half of an inch tall, both to meet military standards, but also to allow no hand hold for an enemy to use. His face gives him the appearance of a serious man, though it is no rare event when a genuine smile comes to his heroic visage.
The many hours of training in the gym and on the combat field show in his massive body. Standing over six feet tall his arms are giant cannons of strength. Tufts of Golden hair stand out beyond the border of his olive green A-shirt that clings tightly to his huge frame, which itself is often drenched in sweat from his exertions, his dog tags rest themselves on his broad chest. A shield similar to the one he carries on his right arm is tattooed upon the same bicep, proudly proclaiming his pride for his nation. The upper portion of his left arm is sleeved with black ink with names like “Pug” and “Larry” each with some symbol or representation of what the name means to him. His standard issue camouflage pants fit tightly on his massive legs and emphasis his pronounced bubble butt. On his hip, holstered is a hand gun appropriately sized for such a large man. Along side that he has all the general standardized equipment of any Captain in the United States Army.
Name: Terrance Thatcher
Rank: Captain (United States Army)
Call Sign: Peacekeeper 6
Birthplace: Camp Dodge, Johnston IA (northwest of Des Moines, Iowa)
Date of Birth: March 23rd 1983
Terrance Thatcher was born to the widow Eliza Thatcher, never having met his father [classified], who went MIA during the Gulf War and was presumed dead after his dog tags were located in a recently abandoned War Prison, near a large number of bodies that were burned beyond recognition. The only thing he knew of his father was that his father was passionate about serving his country, and a vague memory of a photograph of his mother and a tall black haired, well built man holding onto her with an intense look upon his face, and a musket in one hand. No such photograph has been proven to exist.
At the age of 12, his mother enlisted him in Military school. Not as a form of punishment, not because she deemed it necessary to do so. But because the boy requested it. His skills at learning the art of War was one not often seen by those of Captain Thatchers disposition. He excelled at group tactics and the basics behind strategies dealing with putting an enemy at the disadvantage while keeping as many of his squad members out of harms way as possible. His physical prowess was also off the charts from an early age, he could lift more than many of the others and do so for longer stretches of time. However, he did not excede at any schools of thought outside of war, academically speaking.
Well liked by most, he only had one ‘rivalry’ during his education, that being with the now Captain Salvador Santiago. Grade averages for the boys ranked almost even. Santiago exceeding Thatcher in bureaucratic methods and keen-ness of sight. Thatchers guardian style differed from his rivals fiercer tactics.
Thatcher graduated with Honors and rose steadily through the ranks after he was deployed to [Classified] in Iraq. Due to an ambush by enemy forces, Thatcher lost a third of his squad, saving the rest by nearly sacrificing his own life multiple times. He will be redeployed to a less combat heavy military base state side until further notice.
Private Journal Entry of Captain Terrance Thatcher: May 20th, 2010; 01:15 hours
Today was… I don’t know exactly how to put it. It was a day unlike any other, a day that turned into a nightmare but was also my greatest wish come true. My Squad was sent out to in conjunction with another squadron to investigate a potential threat of a weapons cache and to investigate the local area for enemy operatives. As you know, things have been pretty quiet for us as of late. The men were of the opinion that things were going to be another day of just the same. I pulled Larry aside, told him I had a bad feeling about this one, that he needed to keep sharp and to make sure the others followed suite. From the second the orders were placed in my hand I knew it, just knew that something was off. Damned if I was going to let my guys be caught off guard.
We drove to the edge of town, into the abandoned industrial sector. Patrols sweep through the area at least twice a day. I haven’t been here since I was first deployed. The sector is shot to hell and back, all but a handful of the larger factories and warehouses are still standing, and even those are half blown to bits. The two squads were to investigate two of the remaining ones. Major Alala Luo and her squad were to take the easier target, a warehouse that had been blown wide open, multiple points of entry, low cover from the inside. While we were to take the former factory, multiple levels, at least one underground, building still fully intact. As we we covering strategies Major Luo pulled me aside.
“Captain Thatcher,” she said, her eyes dating between the two target buildings, separated by a football fields length. “Change of plans. My squads taking the factory.” with a matter of fact tone.
“With all due respect Ma’am, orders say otherwise.” I told her. “They also say that the squad that clears their building first is to back up the other.” Something must have struck her as funny, I don’t know what, all I know is she smiled amusedly.
“Exactly. That’s why I need your squad to check out that,” she motioned with her gun towards the warehouse “so that I know you and your squad is right behind me when things get bad.” Something in her voice almost convinced me. Almost.
“Ma’am, I won’t be going against orders today an-”
“Terrance.” she said, a fierce looking across her face, her voice steel cold and suddenly I’m 4 years old again, looking up at that picture of mom and dad, his face and Luo’s almost exactly the same. But I look at her again as she snaps me from that thought “Trust me. That’s the building you want. Understood Soldier?”
Regaining my composure I nod, salute and am on my way back to my men. Pug and Wabbit are giggling to each other like school girls as approach them.
“Hey Cap,” Pug says “Looks like Girlfriend over there has got your,” he grabed his crotch “in a vice huh?”
“Ay, don’t give the Cap’n shit,” Wabbit hit Pug on the back of the head. “Man of Steel here can’t be taken down like that!” motioning to bang on his own crotch and making a loud clanging noise.
“I’m more of a Captain America guy, than a Superman fan.” I said as I walked past, giving them the sign to follow. They laughed. Last time Pug would ever laugh.
With the Squad updated, and ready to move after more than one objection to the change in plans we were on the move. Mobster, Pug and Wabbit taking the Eastern wall towards the large hole in the rear of the building as a primary form of enterance. Larry, Snowball, Johnny-boy and myself took the west side towards a side entrance, the primary doors being barricaded by debris. I now have to wonder if it was deliberate? At the time, the thought of the massive stone blocks having been placed there would have seemed insane.
There were still a lot of crates and various packages strewn around the dark interior of the building. I could make out the blast hole from our side of the room and could see the others entering, but lost them due to obstructions.
“Cap’n?” Larry said from my side. I gave him a signal to take Snowball and move along the sides towards the northern wall. He nodded, unquestioningly. He was always a good… great soldier and second in command. Off they went.
Gun shots. Screams. All a blur over the next few minutes. I got to Larry and Snowball first, what I saw is something I’ll never forget. A woman, maybe in her late teens, holding Larry’s gun arm in one hand, another plunged deep in his chest. Snowball, frozen with terror, back against a crate. I fired without thinking, shot her in the chest once. She looked at me, and began running at Johnny-Boy and me. I fired another shot, aiming to graze the side of her face. Then ran off, she followed liked I’d hoped. As I ran, something flew past my head, droplets of blood splattering my face, I only registered a second too late that it was Larry’s arm. I tripped over it, and she was on me. She… IT was on me in a second.
I managed to turn, and this time fired right into her face. I was still vaguely aware of the sounds of screams and gunshots off in the distance. I was staring at the hole in the things face… it’s body reached for me. I gave it a great push with my legs throwing it off behind me. Got up and fired another shot into her. She stopped moving, and I was on the move. “Situation Report,” I called into my comm.
“Fucking crazy woman! She-she fucking! Oh God she’s coming!”
I ran, faster than I had run in a long time, then I jumped. Not something I normally do, but I got an amazing amount of air time. I jumped another time and went soaring over a set of crates at least 10 feet high. I would have been shocked, if I could have had the time to think of it.
Another woman, covered in blood. I could see Pug on the floor, his chest ripped wide open. The men were firing wildly at her. She was heading straight for Pug. I fired at her. She turned, and was coming towards me again. I fired another two rounds into her. She seemed tougher. Looked older now that I think about it.
“BITCH!” I screamed at her. “IF YOU WANT A FIGHT, THIS IS WHERE YOU’LL FIND IT!” I ran at her, and hoping to God it worked again, jumped, and flew right over her head. She turned on the spot. The look on her face was good. The look on my mens faces weren’t. I landed on a crate and fired another shot at her, then dropped behind it. Figuring something was happening with my leg strength, when I reached ground level, I dropped into a crouch and counted to five and threw all my weight into my doing a reverse kick with both legs. And I’ll be damned, the Crate FLEW away from me! I could hear it connect with something. The men screamed in shock. She screamed in rage. The boxes above me came tumbling down. Physics… should remember that.
I’m next aware of the thing standing over me, I raise my gun. She reaches down and crushes the barel, and I can hear some of the internals bustin. She snarls at me and leans in close. Well, I did what came natural and grabbed her by the throat before she could say whatever hellish words were on her lips and choked the life out of it.
I pulled myself out of the pile of crates, had to climb over her. The smell was horrible. I was afraid she was going to get back up. Horror movie style. The whole thing had been a horror movie. If only I could turn it off and be with the boys again…
Next an even stranger thing happened. The ground beneath me, it began dissolving into sand. Purest, whitest sand I’ve ever seen. Everything begins to turn to sand, I start to run, but there’s no where to run. Sand raining down on me. And soon, I find myself in the middle of a desert. I turn around, I see Larry and Pug. Their bodies laying close to one another. I move towards them and start to cry.
“The way you took down those Maenads boy, I wouldn’t have expected you to be such a big pussy.” A strong and grizzled voice says from behind me, another impossibility, there was no one behind me a moment ago.
“I’m sorry, what did you jus-” all words disappear from my mouth, my mind. I was blank as I stood there and saw my Father. Just as he had been in the picture. Standing well over my height, wearing his uniform, tattered and an impossibly huge gun at his side. Something of a mix between Sniper Rifle and a Rocket launcher.
“I called you a pussy. Crying like a little girl, fresh in his diapers.” he smirked. “But I know you, and you’re better than that. You’re a man. Killing machine from what I’ve heard.”
“How are you here? Am I dead?” I took a few steps towards him.
“Nah kid. You’re alive. I’m just taking a little time ta finally get to meet you. Looks like you’re doin’ alright for yourself. Killed Two Maenads. Not a bad start. Could have been a little faster about it though.”
I cringed. He was right. I could have been.
“There’s so much I want to ask you Dad… maybe you should explain what’s going on though first.”
“Heh. Was getting’ to that. Y’see, I visited your mom all those years ago, spent some time with her. But I told her I could never stay. The God of War does not stay put for very long outsida’ combat.”
Something inside me resonated with that. God of War.
“I can tell ya feel it now kid.” He pulled a cigar from one of his pockets and stuck it in his mouth, lighting it with a flick of his fingers. “My name is Ares and you are my son.”
All these years. It was like I’d known it… felt it deep inside me, pushing me forward to this moment. The reality of it though was a bit much.
“An’ I know ya gotta lot of questions kid. But there ain’t time for that that. You gotta get to Vegas.”
“Why, what’s in Vegas?”
“The other Gods are having a meeting there. I came to get ya, I need a representative with their Scions. Someone I can trust. An’ thats you kid.” He grinned wickedly “None of them panty-waists are gonna be able to do half a damn without you.”
“Look. I can’t just leave. I’m in the middle of a tour right now. The Army needs me too.”
“Ha! This war? Not worth your time kid. ‘Sides I already got Alala doin’ what she’s gotta do. No more arguin’ kid. Your transfers already in the works.” He looked down at the two fallen bodies behind me.
“They won’t have died for you in-vain.” He raised a hand over them, and something poured out of them energy, not their souls… it didn’t seem like that. Their Strength, their passions maybe? He then motioned towards me and the two energies shot towards my left arm. Swirling around until it formed into a round shield, patterned with an American Eagle at the middle, and stars and stripes shooting forth from there. The Eagle glowed with a bright white light and the next thing I knew there was an Eagle flying right towards us.
“That’s your protection from the Spawn of my enemies. Avengers Shield, and that.” he pointed at the bird. “Is Avenger.” The Eagle let loose a mighty call. In it I felt the strength of my two fallen comrades.
“And your weapon…” He looked at his feet and kicked aside some dirt. There was my broken side arm, he stomped the ground and it flew through the air spiraling to his hands. “This won’t do.” He drew a dagger from his side, and stabbed it into the gun. A soft blue light enveloped the two, and soon they became one as I stared mystified.
The gun had changed from a standard side arm into a Desert Eagle. He tossed it to me, and I easily caught it. Much lighter than a weapon its size should have been. “Your new weapon. As you get stronger, so will it.”
My mouth was left hanging open. I felt… awed. “I’ll do my best to Serve you and my country, Father.”
He laughed, “I know.”
And with that he disappeared. I awoke in the med center at base. Was there for two days… my transfer notice came a few hours ago. Things will never be the same.
Physical Social Mental
Strength: 4 (3) Charisma: 4(1) Perception: 2 (1)
Dexterity: 3 (2) Manipulation: 2 Intelligence: 2
Stamina: 4 (2) Appearance: 3 Wits: 3 (1)
Animal Ken: 2
Arête Marksmanship: 2
Avengers Shield: 2
The Desert Eagle: 2
Horizon to Horizon Throwing
Solipsistic Well Being
Benefit of the Doubt
Legend Rating: 3 (9 temp points)
(#) denotes Epic Attribute Rating
- denotes favored Ability