The shot in his left leg didn't prevent Jackson from running through the trees, despite the wound causing pain to shoot up the appendage. Behind him, he could hear the sounds of the enemy giving chase, laughing and jeering in both Vietnamese and broken English. He heard shots ring out, damn near felt bullets whiz by him. If he didn't find a place to lay low and patch up his leg, he was certain that these lunatics would consider shooting him to be a mercy.
It had all gone wrong. He and two of his friends had been asked to go on a scouting assignment, just to make sure none of the VC were camped out here. They were, but they had been spotted too late. They shot George first, and then Billy just told him to run before he was gunned down as well. And so Jackson had done just that, the panic of the botched mission outweighing the agony of his wound. Before taking the bullet, though, he had shot three of the guerrillas in a fit of rage and grief. It was this that caused him to stand still, even for a moment, and that moment was all it took for the bullet to make its mark.
Jackson collapsed, adrenaline releasing its hold on him and his pain. He clutched at the leg in abject pain only to realize something. The wound was dry. Looking at his hand, he saw no blood on the wrinkled skin. Wait. No, the wound…There wasn’t a wound at all. His knee just ached terribly, as did other bones, now that he noticed it. Confusion and bewilderment overwhelmed him, blinding him to the enemies approaching. Once he had turned to gaze his foes in the eyes, he was instead met by men clad in blue uniforms, holding handguns and flashlights. Upon further inspection, he saw that his surroundings didn't match that of the Vietnamese jungle at all. It was a forest.
As he turned to look at the men, one of them said, “Jackson Clarke, you’re under arrest for the murders of three officers of the law and the attempted murder of Travis Clarke.” At the mention of his boy’s name, the old man understood. The weapon he had been grasping as if his life depended on it slipped from his aching, wrinkled fingers. His memories slowly began to piece themselves back together, and he slumped down, his head lowered in contrition as bitter, quiet sobs began to escape him.
submitted by /u/mR-gray42