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Drabble: This is how warriors live.
It's hard to come by jobs for fighter pilots and mercenaries in a peaceful world, so when they did show up, Star Fox jumped on board.
It was always something different--always something nobody else had the guts to do--and while the job wasn't always thrilling, it was always filled with hazards.
He would stomach the tedium for a long-awaited shot at the action. The thrill of danger was his favorite part of the job.
He had his hands full of it, now. Retreat wasn't usually in his vocabulary, but today it fueled his racing heart and pumped his weary legs.
The pirates got the upper hand the second his partner fell--one careless step, one sure shot--that's all it ever took. Were they always that fragile? That lucky?
It was all flight from there.
He was making backtracks, carrying his wounded partner, keeping ahead of the pursing battlefield and ignoring the shriek of his comm, begging his status. We're in trouble, ROB--we'll keep you posted.
His eyes shut fiercely against the rising pain, Fox was too absorbed in his own battle to offer commentary on how many wrong turns Falco was making, or even scream. He was kneading the hole blown into his gut, scratching up handfuls of blood that stained his silver flight jacket an interesting shade of rust. In his other hand, the blaster was useless now, but Fox wouldn't let go. His knuckles whitened around it as if the firepower could stop the bleeding or make his comrade's feet lighter--even though the opposite was the case. He would never stop fighting.
If Falco listened closely he'd hear his partner's breathing over the domino-clatter of machine guns, now creeping closer--it was unreal, a sound he'd never heard Fox make--a roiling, guttural /growl/, completely feral, that seethed between clenched teeth.
If Falco could have stopped to gather his thoughts, much less his breath, he would have fed him encouragement, something witless compared to the med-kit he really needed: "Keep fighting."
Always fighting, the best part of the job. This was how warriors died: in outlaw hovels with bullets in their heels and blood on their hands.
Of course, Falco didn't have time to pay attention to any of these things; he had a lot of running to do.