Free Fiction Thursday – The Forever Soldier

Happy Thursday, everyone!

Wow, next Thursday we’ll be into August.  I can’t believe how fast this year has flown by, much less how fast July has zipped right on past.  There’s less than a week to take advantage of the half-price sale of my short-story collections over at Smashwords.  This week’s story comes from my science-fiction collection THE FOREVER SOLDIER AND OTHER FUTURE TALES, on sale at Smashwords for 50% off the $3.99 cover price.  Enjoy!


Annie Reed

Published by Thunder Valley Press

Copyright 2011 by Annie Reed

Cover illustration Copyright Ralf Kraft at

Cover layout by Thunder Valley Press

“I decided what I want on my tombstone,” Roger Three said.

Roger Two looked down at Three’s inert body.  “What, ‘death by stupidity’?”

Three laughed, a hollow, empty sound intended to cover the sick pit-of-the-stomach feeling she always got whenever she had to look down at her own body, dead and discarded on the battlefield like so much forgotten trash.  “I was thinking more along the lines of ‘death by clumsy’.”

Two didn’t laugh.  Three didn’t think she’d ever seen him even smile.  Then again, facing the reality of your own dead body wasn’t a laughing matter for most Rogers.  Three just had a highly evolved sense of gallows humor born of long experience and a desire to stay sane.

A rocket arced overhead, one of the big numbers, the kind that blew out entire buildings without breaking a sweat.  The rocket’s trajectory pegged it as one of theirs.  With any luck it would punch a hole through enemy lines, giving soldiers like Three a chance to fight their way through without getting blown to bits.  Unless, of course, they’d blown themselves up from their own damn clumsiness.

(read the rest of the story here)

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