The Disabled

Dylan Wise

The Disabled

Vincent Delores sat on the outside of the third row of pews on the left side of the room in the Cathedral of the Holy Cross Church in Boston, Massachussetts. He was alone, as he had come here during the morning ceremony and stayed afterwards, enjoying the peace and quiet he was able to gain from the church when it cleared out following mass. Vincent did this every Sunday despite the numerous times that the priest had encouraged him to “come a little earlier one of these days” because he could “really benefit from being with his fellow man.” This annoyed Vincent more than you could possibly imagine. With what he went through, he felt that he had already given enough to his “fellow man” and that in return, he had received nothing for it. If anything, Vincent had lost things. He had lost friends. He had lost family members. He had also lost his legs.

As a veteran of the Vietnam war, Vincent had served his country for 5 years, having entered the war as a volunteer and serving as a Sergeant from 1965 to 1969. He was honorably discharged in 1969 after a mortar shell took both of his legs and nearly took his life. When he got back to the U.S., he returned to a country that didn’t care about him and didn’t agree with what he did. They would look at him like a murderer, with eyes of fear and dissent, as he rolled around in a wheelchair, unable to walk due to the fact that he had no legs. It angered Vincent that these people felt the way they did. They discredited everything that he and others like him went through, saying that the soldiers in Vietnam never should have been there in the first place. Now, not all people felt this way about the war, but there was a great number of them who did. Vincent hated every single one of them. How could they possibly say the things they said when they never had to go through what people like Vincent did? It was nothing but complete ignorance, as far as Vincent was concerned. For years, he had listened to all of the horrible things that these people would say about him and others like him. He would listen to their ignorant comments and snide remarks, remembering every single one. Now, as he sat beside the edge of the church pew in his wheelchair, the voices took form in his mind yet again. Today, something was going to change. Vincent decided that he could not take it anymore. He had to do something to make the voices go away.

As he wheeled his way out of the church, Vincent Delores now knew exactly what he was going to do. The plan had unfolded before him as he sat there, tormented by the voices in his head. He would solve this issue. Those who had no care for him would now be punished accordingly. With  the help of others like him, Vincent Delores was going to rid the world of those who were more fortunate than he was, people who he thought took life for granted. Anyone who did not have a disability was now a target, just as dangerous (in Vincent’s eyes) as the VietCong soldiers Vincent had killed years ago.

Vincent knew that his plan would require others to help him. After all, one man in a wheelchair could not kill the amount of people that Vincent wanted to kill and succeed. Vincent would find it difficult enough to kill one person by himself, let alone thousands. So, just like the army who had made him the man he was today, Vincent would have to recruit some followers. How he would do so would depend upon the effectiveness of his new group.

Vincent decided that the best way to recruit followers was to personally meet with them and talk to them about the job. He knew that only a certain type of person would join him in his quest. People who were simply disabled would not do. He needed people who were not only disabled, but angry about the circumstances of their disability, the type of people who felt sorry for themselves all of the time and had no problem letting others know about it. He knew where to go. He already had certain people in mind. Other followers would just appear, joining the group as Vincent drew closer to succeeding in his task.

The VFW was the perfect place to start. Vincent had a fair amount of friends there who he had a feeling would help him on his quest. He couldn’t enlist the World War 2 vets, that much he knew. For one, they could barely walk, let alone kill someone. Second, unlike Vincent, they had come home to a country who was proud of them. They had come home to a country that supported their efforts and understood why they did what they did. Some of the guys who fought in a war after World War 2 did not feel the same way about their time in the service.The minute he arrived, he had found his first follower: Craig Shelton. Craig was a veteran of the Iraq War and had become very unstable after his time in the service. He had been diagnosed with extreme PTSD and was a very unfortunate victim of the war. During his time in the service, Craig had been responsible for manning mounted machine guns, providing covering fire for soldiers during raids. On his second tour in Iraq, he had lost his leg after an rpg round slammed into the rear of the vehicle he was in, killing the two men sitting below him. He was lucky to be alive. Vincent knew Craig would be perfect for what he was trying to do. Craig wouldn’t care who he had to kill, he just wanted “some semblance of a family”. After the war, Craig had never felt like he was where he was supposed to be. He felt that he was out of place at home and that Iraq was where he was meant to be. Iraq was home. He barely talked to his family and, due to the fact that he preferred not to talk to anyone, didn’t really have any friends. A group like the one Vincent wanted to start would change that, giving Craig what he desperately needed.

Vincent walked over to Craig and sat down in a chair beside him. There were four people in the room: Vincent, Craig, a man wearing a hat that said Pearl Harbor on it, and a man still wearing his jacket that he wore when he served in Afghanistan. He looked toward them and then back at Craig.

“How are you holding up, son?”, Vincent asks.

“Oh, you know,” Craig says, “same shit different day.”

“I hear ya, I hear ya.”, Vincent says, nodding.

“I just feel like everywhere I go I am an outcast, like i’m not supposed to be here.”, Craig says. “People look at me like they can see what I did and that what I did scares them. Their mouths say ‘thank you for your service’, but their eyes say ‘you’ve done some awful things’. They’re right. I have. I remember this one time specifically. A group of our guys were moving through a village, raiding homes and looking for targets. In one of the houses, a young boy was standing near what seemed to resemble a kitchen counter (it was hardly anything at all, as far as I could tell). He was… he was holding something in his right hand, his arm sticking out across the room like he was reaching for something. Then, I saw what it was. It looked like a TV remote, short and black. Though, at that moment, I knew exactly what it was: a remote explosive device. If the child hit that red button, he would not only kill himself, but he would also kill the four Marines and two women (who had given him the explosive device in the first place) who were in the building with him. So, I did what I had to. I put a 5.56 round in the kid’s skull and watched pitifully as he fell to the ground like a ragdoll, never able to breathe again. Those were the kind of people we were supposed to save over there. But, because of the control that the terrorists had over some of the civilians (they sent little little kids out to kill Marines with AK-47s and remote explosive devices all the time), we killed them instead.”

“It’s not your fault, son.”, Vincent said, consoling Craig. “You did what you had to do over there. Just like all of us did. Just like me. I remember Mai Lai. I knew a guy who was there. He still, to this day, won’t tell me about it. The people who are doing wrong are the people who take their lives for granted and walk around on their two legs, ignorant to life’s cruelty. They will know pain, they will know punishment. I want them to see what we see everyday: blood and fire. Death. A true hell on earth. I can’t do it alone, though. To ensure the completion of this mission, I need your help. Together, we will rid the world of those who are far more fortunate than us, those who have their legs, have their arms. So, do we have an accord?”

Vincent holds out his hand for Craig to shake. Craig looks at Vincent for a few seconds, just staring at him for a minute and then proceeds to shake hands with Vincent.

Craig and Vincent decide that they need to recruit more members, people like them. Luckily, Craig knew a few guys who felt the same way he did about the issues that he and Vincent wanted to address: Jeff Conley, an ex-SEAL sniper who had racked up 87 kills during just one tour in Iraq (he was unable to serve any other tours after he lost an arm). Shawn Fredricks, an Army Ranger who had his hand blown off. Andrew Maddox, a Marine who was shot in the throat but managed to survive. He had a feeding tube down his throat and would for the rest of his life. He could not even talk. He was lucky to be alive.

Two days later, the “recruitment process”, as Vincent called it, was finally over. All that was left now was the execution of the plan. They made their way to South Boston, where a fair amount of the “fortunate” people lived. Within seconds, the plan was initiated. Andrew had transported himself and the rest of the group to South Boston in his 2011 Dodge Ram. The group had helped Vincent  get out of the trunk by picking up the wheelchair (with him in it) and putting it on the ground. All the while, people walked by and stared at the group, bewildered by what was happening. As Vincent wheeled himself on to the sidewalk, a tall young black-haired woman walked past him. She was carrying a purse that, for all Vincent knew, costed more than his truck. As she got to the crosswalk a few feet away, Vincent decided. She would be the first victim. He wheeled his way over to the crosswalk, a 12 gauge tactical shotgun on his lap, and just as the lady started to go across the road, he blew her head off with the shotgun. Panic instantly ensued. Thousands of people ran screaming. The two people closest to the dead woman had looked over at her as her head disappeared and then looked at one another just before they two had their lives taken and their headless bodies thrown across the sidewalk by a shotgun slug. The rest of the crowd ran away from Vincent only to find Craig standing in front of them with an M60. There was nothing they could do. At this point it was a choice, neither one being desirable and both of them being (for the most part) identical. The members of the crowd could either be blown apart by shotgun fire, one by one. Or they  could be mowed down by machine gun fire. They decide that they could try to survive the shotgun fire by taking it from Vincent, knowing that some of them would die in the process, but eventually he would run out of ammo. They ran for Vincent and within seconds, four of them die, cut down by shotgun fire. Though, then the moment they were waiting for occurred. Vincent ran out of ammo. The machine gun mowed down at least 40 of them, but all the while, the crowd went after the broken, old man in the wheelchair. They pulled him back, knocking him to the ground, his wheelchair leaning back against the sidewalk and his feet up in the air, and took his shotgun out of his hands. Then, as 20 more people died, one of the crowd members put the shotgun to Vincent’s face and blew his head off. Then the man who killed Vincent fell dead from a shot made at a distance of 2100 yards (a considerably long shot) by a member of Vincent’s group who had been told to stand by in a building and fire “when the shit hit the fan” (as Vincent had said). Though, now, the group had lost their leader, the man who had motivated them to do what they were doing. They were in a tough situation and now Vincent DeLores, the man who felt so passionate about what they had come here to do was dead. Their morale dropped in an instant. They felt significantly less motivated to accomplish their goal but there was no turning back now. They were in the heat of the mission and abandoning it was not an option.

The Police arrived to find over 200 people dead. It was a bloody, gory mess. They knew it was going to be a firefight, as they were going against people with obvious military experience who wanted to do as much damage as possible. So, the police, accompanied by SWAT officers were outfitted with tactical gear and automatic weapons and had been ordered to “shoot to kill”, knowing that the people they were going against would not stop until they died. The entire sidewalk was a trail of dead bodies. The officers had a hard time stepping over and around them while making their way toward the center of the scene. Then, they saw the barrel of a sniper rifle hanging out of a building. A man yelled “sniper” just before he was shot in the throat and the entire unit looked up to see the barrel of a Barrett M82 sticking out of the window. They opened fire, spraying machine gun fire at the window. Two more of them fell dead before they saw a spray of blood cover the window. Everyone held fire for a few seconds. Silence. The sniper was dead.

A second unit went to the building across from where Vincent’s sniper had just died. Sean, Jeff, and Andrew were there. They were contemplating giving up, being the only members of the group still alive. Their leader was dead, their sniper was dead, and they were heavily outnumbered. The SWAT team was knocking at their door now. They listened as one of the SWAT guys began to slam the butt of his rifle into the door, attempting to force it to fall down. They were going to die here. Finally, the door opened and both sides opened fire, a spray of bullets engulfing one room. Six SWAT guys vs. three military veterans. Both sides pulled the triggers on their weapons and, within seconds, all three of the military veterans were dead. Two of the SWAT officers were dead. Vincent DeLores and his cult of skilled vets had accomplished their goal. Mass chaos on an unprecedented scale. People who had once been honorable were turned into monsters with no care for the country they swore to defend just years ago.

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