United States

est. 2018
she/her | poeian/pathian
obsessed classics enthusiast & linguist.
humanism + romanticism = writing inspiration

Message to Readers

dedication: this one's for you dad & our neighbor on the left side of the old house (yeah, i know, you guys were in the navy but hey, let's just laugh about this later, okay?) & you Mr. Will, the best neighbor of them all, the kind of neighbor who becomes family. I would've thought you'd live forever, now it's the memories of you that do. I love you guys, I really do.

Semper Fi, Marine.

October 24, 2020


Andrew was 18.
Pride runs in the family, honor ripples the blood, the military's burned into their veins. So once the teachers started quietly demanding their student's plans for the future, there was only one right answer. That's what his Father said. His Mother simply nodded her head with the same look she's had in her eyes for his entire life, it'd make your Father happy honey.

When the recruiter comes, there's no need for persuasion, his fate was decided years before he was even conceived. Besides, he already tasted it once and blinded perception made his Father believed his son loved those four years of military school.

"Listen here son," The recruiter starts, hand clapping down on his shoulder. Andrew cringes, only his Father calls him that when he's talking about his preplanned future. Son. "The military is serious business, defending this country is an honor."
Honor. A worded branded to his childhood, his Mother only heating the fire.

Andrew nods in response, slamming the paperwork down onto the table. The last words he hears are blurred as his eyes wander across the hall. Nonetheless, they're the words he's only ever heard said to his Father. 

"Semper fi, Marine." 

Trying on shadows for the first time, they never fit. It takes time for them to settle in.

Clara just turned 18.
"I don't know, Clara." The words never change, it's as though they're copied and pasted to all the tongues that learn of her plans. So when they present themselves from Ruth's mouth, she isn't fazed. No, instead she just shrugs her shoulders as she pushes past two boys in the hall.

"You'd make an amazing teacher," Ruth continued, her right hand fiddling with the cross hanging from her neck. "Just think, you're stupid smart and great with kids. Think of the lives you'd be changing."

"Think of the lives I'd be saving," Clara states, scanning the numbers of beside the classroom. "My Uncle died protecting this country Ruth, and all I have left of him are the stories he'd told me." And the dreams he gave me.

Even unsaid, Ruth heard the words, they ran in her ears. But the thought of her best friend dying on the battlefield gave her nightmares she'd never share.

"I'll pray for you," Ruth whispered, glancing at Clara.

"I know you will," She smiled. Ruth grew up with the Bible shoved into her hands the very second she could speak, but she loved it anyway. Even if Clara stopped believing years ago, Ruth's faith only strengthened. It was as if she had to believe for the both of them.

Stopping in the middle of the hall, Clara tilted her head as she watched a recruiter speaking to Andrew Connor's, her neighbor. She watched as the man's almond-colored hand rested on Andrew's shoulder, and how he shivered. Suddenly, he's eyes flashed up and met her's.

His eyes were the very green of his Father's, who'd she see every Sunday with his retiree buddies. Only, Andrew's were emptier, even from there she could see the sorrow. And when she heard the words, she knew that the fire that lit inside had dimmed long ago with Andrew.

"Semper fi, Marine." 

In the end, your future's only yours, and your heart only survives it if you love it.

Lawerence was barely 17.
Indifference. That was his Grandparent's reaction when he asked them to sign the papers. Since legally, just because a 17-year-old should have their life thought out and perfected, doesn't mean they can do it officially without permission. It's not like it's their life, yet.

If it was for Clara, he would've never thought to join. They dated for two years before breaking up, two months after her Uncle died junior year. She cried him the night he died, repeating herself, over and over again: I'm gonna join for him, I'm gonna join the marines Letty. Letty. The nickname she gave him after they first kissed when he told her his middle name as they leaned against his toolbox in the bed of his truck. He remembers as though it was yesterday.

"Elliot?" She laughed softly, crinkling her nose. "I knew a girl named Elly. You know, if you took the 'L' from your first name..." And he didn't hear the rest 'cause he'd pushed a strand of hair from his face and leaned in.

Shaking his head, Lawerence leaned against the desk behind him, waiting for Andrew to finish up with the recruiter. Rolling his eyes, Lawerence glanced at the door. His papers fell from his hands.

Clara stood frozen, watching Andrew and the recruiter, wearing that same damn green survival cord bracelet she got from her uncle three years ago. She didn't have consent papers, but he knew she was here to join, even without her parent's permission.

That's when he remembered: her birthday was three days ago. She didn't need consent, unlike him. And as he stood back up, he heard the words written on Clara's Uncle's grave.

"Semper fi, Marine." 

Somebody always changes somebody. We're all dominoes in human form, waiting for somebody to fall on us, change our view.

Andrew retired after thirty years, unmarried and without a child. He never had time to pass down an unalterable legacy, not when he was busy serving for the military.

Clara never got a chance to make amends with her family about joining the military (the very thing that took her Father's brother away). No, after training and a year overseas, she fell victim to an unforeseen bombing.

Lawerence left after eight years, putting himself through college during the latter four. Found himself a wife, but always wondered what happen to the girl that changed his life.
Word count: 955 (rip)
6/10 Pride Level--definitely a rough draft, quickly written. Not my best piece, but an important one nonetheless. 
Dedication in the msg box.
Likers---Please comment!
Commenters---Thoughts? Favorite lines? Feelings/emotions?
Reviewers---I need help with the grammar, omitting unneeded parts, and what/where to extend. Many thanks.


See History

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  • JustAnotherDarling

    review submitted! hopefully it gets to you soon :)

    4 months ago
  • Paisley Blue

    beautiful <3333

    4 months ago
  • Cosmogyral

    Re: I feel like I remember that line! And it's such a beautiful one, too. I hope you let me incorporate it into one of my poems later on. Thanks for the comment, I really appreciated it. :)

    5 months ago
  • em wilder

    Mindblown. Let me gather my thoughts... Okay, first off this is beautifully written and made me choke up. I love how they are all connected by the phrase "Semper, Fi". I can't tell if this is told to each of them separately or just to once person and overheard by the others. I love how the 3 characters each have a motive (or not in the case of Andrew) for joining the Marines. This is just so well written and thought out... brilliant and stunning. The lines that stood out to me were these:
    1. "Trying on shadows for the first time, they never fit. It takes time for them to settle in."
    2. "In the end, your future's only yours, and your heart only survives it if you love it."
    3. "Somebody always changes somebody. We're all dominoes in human form, waiting for somebody to fall on us, change our view."
    These lines were the character's inner mottos, right? Another question: Who is Ruth. Probably non-important to the story, but was just wondering.
    The ending was perfect, too. Sad, but wrapped everything up. I'm still thinking about this wonderful story....
    Overall, this is magical. Keep up the good work and I can't wait to see a revised version. Have a good rest of your day! <3 <3 <3

    5 months ago
  • JustAnotherDarling

    Currently crying because all the feels are hitting me all at once. My favorite line from this has got to be "Trying on shadows for the first time, they never fit. It takes time for them to settle in." It's tragically beautiful. And Lawrence/Letty's story just broke my heart. I know all three had that sort of what-never-happenedness to them, but his story hit hardest ;(
    I'll try to review this tomorrow!

    5 months ago