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The Long Walk

by Edd Vick

Captain Awamura emerges dripping from the Pacific waves onto the southern California shore. At first, no one looks closely enough at his tattered khaki uniform, the flesh sloughing off his spare frame, the seaweed poorly concealing the hole where half his head had been.

At first.

The screaming begins. As more of his fellow soldiers wade from the waves, Awamura pulls his corroded bayonet from his belt and shambles after the retreating sunbathers. He comes upon a sandy mound that proves to be a half-buried man not yet awakened by the hubbub. Awamura kneels and draws his knife across the throat, opening a second mouth that bleeds into the thirsty sand. The man's eyes open, then film.

Captain Awamura Jiro of the Imperial Japanese Army, in service to his Emperor, stands and turns toward his goal, this nation's capitol. Its throat. Hand gripping his weapon, he orders his legions on to victory.

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