Chapter 1

Just finishing up the second year of high school was bad enough. Having to now think about and decide what he wanted to do for the next 20-30 years of his life would drive most adults, let alone a kid, insane. Someone mentioned West Point and Mayhem was intrigued.

The United States Military Academy at West Point (also known as USMA, West Point, Army, The Academy or simply The Point) is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located in West Point, New York. The academy sits on scenic high ground overlooking the Hudson River, 50 miles (80 km) north of New York City. The entire central campus is a national landmark and home to scores of historic sites, buildings, and monuments. The majority of the campus's neogothic buildings are constructed from gray and black granite. The campus is a popular tourist destination complete with a large visitor center and the oldest museum in the United States Army.

Candidates for admission must both apply directly to the academy and receive a nomination, usually from a Senator or Representative. Students are officers-in-training and are referred to as cadets or collectively as the United States Corps of Cadets (USCC). Tuition for cadets is fully funded by the Army in exchange for an active duty service obligation upon graduation. Approximately 1,300 cadets enter the Academy each July with about 1,000 cadets graduating. The academic program grants a bachelor of science degree with a curriculum that grades cadets' performance upon a broad academic program, military leadership performance, and mandatory participation in competitive athletics. Cadets are required to adhere to the Cadet Honor Code, which states that "a cadet will not lie, cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do." The academy bases a cadet's leadership experience as a development of all three pillars of performance: academics, physical, and military.

Most graduates are commissioned as second lieutenants in the Army. Foreign cadets are commissioned into the armies of their home countries. Since 1959, cadets have also been eligible to "cross-commission," or request a commission in one of the other armed services, provided they meet that service's eligibility standards. Every year, a small number of cadets do this, usually in a one-for-one "trade" with a similarly inclined cadet or midshipman at one of the other service academies.

Because of the academy's age and unique mission, its traditions influenced other institutions. It was the first American college to have class rings, and its technical curriculum was a model for later engineering schools. West Point's student body has a unique rank structure and lexicon. All cadets reside on campus and dine together en masse on weekdays for breakfast and lunch.

The academy fields fifteen men's and nine women's National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) sports teams. Cadets compete in one sport every fall, winter, and spring season at the intramural, club, or intercollegiate level. Its football team was a national power in the early and mid-20th century, winning three national championships. Its alumni and students are collectively referred to as "The Long Gray Line," and its ranks include two Presidents of the United States, numerous famous generals, and seventy-four Medal of Honor recipients. Since 2017, the Air Force academy began accepting US, Russian and Japanese Cadets to staff the Air and Space Fleet. MIRS had been expanded in 2016 and the J-22 fighter had matured to the two new multi-mode JS-28 in 2018 and JS-30 in 2022.

By the Spring of 2026, only China, New Pakistan and South America, including part of Mexico, contested Air flights over their territory.

Daniel Mayhem; graduated West Point 2032 smack dab in the middle of his class; commissioned Second Lieutenant and selected for Ranger training; transferred to the UN Special Forces just before the war started in '36 and spent the next ten years in the America's Theater doing God only knows what.

Note: The 75th Ranger Regiment is a lethal, agile and flexible force, capable of conducting many complex, joint special operations missions. Today's Ranger Regiment is the Army's premier direct-action raid force. Each of the geographically dispersed Ranger battalions is always combat ready, mentally and physically tough, and prepared to fight our country's adversaries.

Their capabilities include conducting airborne and air assault operations, seizing key terrain such as airfields, destroying strategic facilities, and capturing or killing enemies of the nation. Rangers are capable of conducting squad through regimental size operations and are resourced to maintain exceptional proficiency, experience and readiness. The Regiment remains an all-volunteer force with an intensive screening and selection process followed by combat-focused training. The 75th Ranger Regiment is a proud unit and a team of teams – serving the nation.

Their locations are: lst Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Hunter Army Airfield, Ga. 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Lewis, Wash. 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Benning, Ga. Regimental Special Troops Battalion, Fort Benning, Ga. * Fort Hood Texas was added in 2121 as well as an assault group at Chico Texas in 2022

All Rangers volunteer to become members of the 75th Ranger Regiment and complete the rigorous Ranger Assessment and Selection Program, known as RASP, to join the ranks of this elite U.S. Army Special Operations Command unit.

Lower enlisted Soldiers and Sergeants attend RASP 1, an eight-week course that trains Soldiers in the basic skills and tactics required to operate in the 75th Ranger Regiment. Upon completion of this course, Rangers have the essential skills, training, and confidence to be members of the 75th Ranger Regiment.

Officers, Warrant Officers and senior noncommissioned officers (Staff Sgt. through Command Sgt. Maj.) must attend RASP 2, a three-week course focused on selecting the best leadership from across the Army. All sergeants and above in the 75th Ranger Regiment must be Ranger qualified, meaning that they have successfully completed the U.S. Army Ranger School at Fort Benning, Ga., the Army's premier leadership school. Newly assigned Rangers of the 75th Ranger Regiment typically attend Ranger School after multiple combat deployments and training cycles – before they become Sergeants.

Ranger School is one of the toughest training courses for which a Soldier can volunteer. Army Rangers are experts in leading Soldiers on difficult missions- and to do this they need rigorous training. For over two months, Ranger students train to exhaustion, pushing the limits of their minds and bodies. The purpose of the U.S. Army's Ranger Course is to prepare these Army volunteers — both officers and enlisted Soldiers — in combat arms related functional skills. The Rangers' primary mission is to engage in close combat and direct-fire battles.

There are three distinct phases of Ranger School that require Soldiers to make quick decisions in adverse situations these phases are called 'crawl, ' 'walk' and 'run.'

Schedule of Phases are:

Crawl Phase The Crawl Phase lasts 20 days. It's designed to assess and develop the necessary physical and mental skills to complete combat missions and the remainder of Ranger School successfully. If a student is not in top physical condition when he reports to the Ranger School, he will have extreme difficulty keeping up with the fast pace of Ranger training, especially the initial phase.

Walk Phase The Walk Phase takes place in the mountains and lasts 21 days. During this phase, students receive instruction on military mountaineering tasks as well as techniques for employing squads and platoons for continuous combat patrol operations in a mountainous environment. They further develop their ability to command and control a platoon-sized patrol through planning, preparing and executing a variety of combat patrol missions.

Run Phase The Run Phase of Ranger School continues to develop the Ranger students' combat arms functional skills. They must be capable of operating effectively under conditions of extreme mental and physical stress. This is accomplished through exercises in extended platoon-level patrol operations in a swamp environment. Run Phase training further develops the students' ability to lead small units on airborne, air assault, small boat, ship-to-shore, and dismounted combat patrol operations in a low intensity combat environment against a well-trained, sophisticated enemy.

Training at this school is not MOS dependent. It is a prerequisite for Soldiers to have completed Airborne School.(Still not sure why anybody would jump out of a perfectly good plane?)

The Ranger Creed is:

Recognizing that I volunteered as a Ranger, fully knowing the hazards of my chosen profession, I will always endeavor to uphold the prestige, honor, and high esprit-de-corps of my Ranger Regiment.

Acknowledging the fact that a Ranger is a more elite Soldier who arrives at the cutting edge of battle by land, sea, or air, I accept the fact that as a Ranger my country expects me to move further, faster and fight harder than any other Soldier.

Never shall I fail my comrades. I will always keep myself mentally alert, physically strong, and morally straight and I will shoulder more than my share of the task, whatever it may be, one hundred percent and then some. Gallantly will I show the world that I am a specially selected and well-trained Soldier. My courtesy to superior officers, neatness of dress, and care of equipment shall set the example for others to follow.

Energetically will I meet the enemies of my country. I shall defeat them on the field of battle for I am better trained and will fight with all my might. Surrender is not a Ranger word. I will never leave a fallen comrade to fall into the hands of the enemy and under no circumstances will I ever embarrass my country.

Readily will I display the intestinal fortitude required to fight on to the Ranger objective and complete the mission, though I be the lone survivor.

A great many had paid a high price to up-hold that creed.

By the time Daniel was assigned a team, he had chosen the name 'Lost Boys' from a book he had read in school. His sniper to be was a surprise, Mike was in actuality Michelle. The success of Israeli women had opened several combat roles to women in 2020. Men were dying faster than they could be replaced.

The 'Lost Boy Team' included:

Mike, Sergeant Michelle Darlington, was our long-shot sniper; Stanley's role was blowing things up; Marmaduke and Binky, a.k.a Sergeants Samuel(Sam had heavy weapons) and Stanly Kolbe(Gay, Explosives) are two other members of the 'Lost Boys'. They're fraternal twins.

Tootles or "Weird" (his discharge papers read Sergeant Nathan Willis handled Comm as well as some 'special' assignments.

Brian was our medic; Brian, or Cubby as we know him. The last of my Lost Boys, was Staff Sergeant Brian McNaught; and as NCO, Top or less frequently Master Sergeant William Marker, in addition to being my second in command, was intelligence and interrogation.

Mine of course was leadership, decision making and looking cool, calm and collected. Sure, always and I had some land in Florida to sell, land, at least when the tide was out.

For the rest of this story, you need to Log In or Register

Story tagged with:
Fiction / Slow / Violent / Military /