The smell of sulfur is in the air, as clouds of smoke slowly dissipate in the stale wind.  The debris of war is strewn across the battlefield; crumpled metal canisters, oil stained boxes and the melted remains left by soldiers long gone; nothing left standing.  The scene tells a tale of wanton destruction and carnal hunger.  It is the aftermath of madness, an explosion of chaos heaped over the deep strata of the never ending struggle for dominance.  Such is the void left by the wake of infantry, the haggard few gathered briefly at nightfall, engaging each other in banter, tales of brave deeds undertaken and battles still to come.  Woe is the one that must come nigh to bury the all that is left behind, for the place is in shambles, as is always the case, after another team dinner has come to an end.

 

Back at their posts, renewed, refreshed, the developers operate the machinery by which one day they hope to win the war; eyes plastered on read-outs, fingers locked on controls, tuning and refining, searching for the signals, the patterns that will eventually decipher the code.  Reports on the enemy have been mounting, intercepts of communications, encrypted, trails of breadcrumbs scattered on the wind. One by one they are pieced back together; analyzed and scored, sorted and filed into the vast growing piles. Only through dedication and craftiness shall the crew succeed at winnowing them down to just those that impart significance, enough to tip the scales, as the war inches forward to its final end game. 

 

A solitary soldier stands upon a great green hill, his rifle poised to fire its round, a packet of instructions, a coded epitaph of victory, aimed into the heart of the beast.  Below, a line of soldiers snakes off into the distance, each standing at attention, rifle at the ready, waiting in turn for the chance to be the next to strike, praying to be the one that finally slays the beast.

 

Withered and weak, the creature lumbers nearer, its footsteps shaking the ground; its hide pock-marked with bullet holes.  It gasps and wheezes, shuddering, as it lunges forward in one last futile swipe.  Its legs buckle and it tumbles to the ground, bouncing lethargically against the hard surface and thundering to a stop.

 

ZBB

 

Matt