We’re completely exhausted, our bodies are still intertwined, drenched in each other's sweat. This man made love to me like none other before him. The tenderness of his caresses expressed what was in his heart. With my head on his heaving chest, I listen to his powerful heart beating. We quickly end up falling asleep in each other's arms.
Soon, I feel myself drifting away into a beautiful dream feeling completely immersed in blissful satisfaction. But that doesn’t last long because I soon hear the sounds of battle flooding into my potential beautiful dream, turning it into more of a nightmare.
Flashes of a fiery ball of wreckage spiraling out of control hurdles over me. It was all that was left of one of our choppers. It crashes and explodes not far from me. Then I witness Marines going down in a hail of bullets. I soon find myself dragging a platoon member’s dying body across the rocky terrain, his legs nothing more than bloody stumps.
“Captain!” someone screams.
I wake up sitting on a huge boulder. My head down by my knees. Thank God I’m out of that. But where am I now?
I look up to a Marine Lieutenant hollering to his troops. “Everyone take ten,” he looks over at me, “Captain, you alright?”
Why is he calling me Captain? When did I get a demotion? Somehow he looks a little familiar to me. I’m still in some sort of hypnotic gaze watching a patrol break, troops sit on nearby boulders. Several of the platoon members are breathing pretty heavy after climbing that steep slope. I look about the terrain with the feeling like I’ve been here before. Everything just looks so familiar.
“Captain!” he shakes my arm.
I suddenly I snap out of it. “Yes, Lieutenant Abrams?” How did I know his name?
“Sir, we just have one large cave left to check. So far no sign of the missing special forces unit we were ordered to locate. Our interpreter talked to the locals in the nearby village. They said that the unit did come through here. They said they warned them like they’re warning us.”
I get to my feet,“Warning us about what?”
"Something very big – something very evil as they describe it, that’s why they stay away from this area. At night, they hear strange howls and growls. They say many villagers have disappeared from here sir. Nobody will get within several miles of this place. They said our enemy will not even use any of these caves to store supplies and ammo. That explains why we’ve found nothing so far. "
“Are there any tigers or other large predators indigenous to the area?” I ask.
“The interpreter said that the locals spoke of the Caspian Tigers, a very large tiger subspecies was found to live in this area, well up until the latter end of the twentieth century, but they’re believed to have all gone extinct.”
“We apparently seem to have one that doesn’t know it’s extinct,” picking up my rifle. The Lieutenant looks over his shoulder to a path, "I sent a recon team up ahead towards that big cave on that high mountain ledge. They should be back any-"
Suddenly the team returns in a big hurry. The Lieutenant and I head up the trail to meet them. A Corporal has what looks like a boot in his hand, he seems quite shaken. “Report Corporal!” I demand.
“Sir we found a pile of bones up there, and some skulls, they-they were human sir! Then-then we discovered this boot nearby. It’s special forces issue just like ours.”
“Anything else?” I ask.
“Yes sir, there is -”
“Spit it out Corporal!”
“There’s a foot still in it,” he turns the open side up and I can see bone and flesh that looked as if it had bee chewed off. Even part of the boot was ragged like very large teeth had bit right through it.
My throat tightens as a chill runs up my back. I realize something horrifying has happened to the missing special forces unit. I fear the unit may have fallen victim to this large tiger.
“Lieutenant, send the platoon up to recon the area, locked and loaded!”
“Yes sir,” the Lieutenant alerts his squad leaders to single file their squads up the trail, eyes peeled.
As we carefully move up the twisting trail, we come across more bones, some animal, some definitely human. My eyes start to tear up as some of the human skulls were small, obviously children. My finger rides the trigger because something is going to happen, something beyond what anyone is prepared for.
My men stop at some large rocks piled on top of each other. About twenty feet from the mouth of the large cave. It looks like a warning sign of death to who ever enters the area. All of our weapons are pointed at the cave opening as we surround the perimeter.
It’s completely pitch black in there, and the smell is horrendous, I recognized it as the smell of death. Flies swarm the entrance and more bones litter the ledge. I pick up one the bones to examine it closely. It has the same large gouges on it like the others, like from sharp teeth gnawing on it.
To my right my senses are jolted at the sight of a severed human hand, the other end is ragged and chewed up, partially submerged in a pool of blood. All very fresh, maybe only hours old. Then we hear very heavy breathing coming from within the cave, it seems to be getting louder and louder echoing withing the cave.
Whatever it is, it’s big, and it’s coming out! I signal the Lieutenant for a flare to be thrown in. He relays it to the squad leader who tosses one in illuminating the interior of the cave. The silhouette of something massive, a giant man or thing is standing there near the entrance. It’s so large that we barely come up to its knees!
What happens next is absolutely frightening! This giant with long reddish hair charges from the cave at an incredible speed! It’s wielding a spear like weapon made of some kind of carved hard wood! This thing is on us before a shot can even be fired!
The squad leader who had tossed the flare in is immediately impaled by the giant’s weapon, his body is tossed aside like it was nothing! It then grabs another soldier by the head with its extremely large hand, squeezing it like a grape, helmet and all! It all happened so fast, that the soldier didn’t even have time to scream!
How could something so massive move so fast? It was like this thing had the power to slow time down for us, while at the same time giving itself complete supremacy in speed. Its movement was a flash before our eyes. It was like I’m moving underwater, I can barely raise my rifle. By the time we were able to respond with any kind of fire power it had already killed 8 of my men!
Finally, we manage to erupt a burst of fire opening up numerous bullet holes on the giant’s huge body. Several rounds rip a large gaping wound in the mouth, deep red blood sprays across us! It howls in pain!
A continuous hail of bullets blow apart the upper portion of the skull, seemingly slowing it down a bit! Eventually it staggers and falls forward crushing a few more men along the way! What's left of us empty our clips!
“Cease fire! Cease fire!” I command.
The bullet riddled body of the creature is no longer moving. “I think it’s dead!” screams Lieutenant Abrams, “It’s not breathing anymore!” he moves closer with his rifle pointed at the head. A few more of my men close in prodding the lifeless mountain of flesh with their hot rifle barrels.