Max Headroom - A Mind Out of Time


Bryce Lynch's glasses reflected the fires of war as he grimly hurled a grenade at the enemy soldiers, crouching low to avoid the returning gunfire.

He was just shy of twenty, lightly tanned, with warm eyes. His hair just reached his shoulders. It was medium brown in color with auburn highlights.

He'd been in the trenches for ten months now. All youthful notions of using logical arguments to solve the conflict were long gone. If he were asked when he'd grown up so quickly, he'd have told the questioner that it was on the day when he'd first been scarred. That cicatrix, which would one day fade, was dark with newness now. In the mornings, he spent several minutes staring at it. Reminding himself that he was no longer just a kid, or a young teen with sure prospects.

"McIntyre! Rogers! Go!" he called out to the men in his unit. "Clary! Thompson! Go! Go! Go! Anderson, cover McIntyre and Rogers! Andrews! Cover Thompson! I'll cover Clary!"

Acting on orders given earlier that day, Adam McIntyre and Jack Rogers kept low as they advanced toward the left; Nathan Thompson to the right. Roland Clary, who had been chosen for his speed and courage to plant the bombs in the enemy's munitions depot, advanced directly ahead, covered by the gunfire from Bryce's L1A1.

Ten months ago. That had been when Bryce, to the shock and horror of his dearest friends, had received the summons to go to war. It should never have come. He was a genius, one of the brightest minds in the country. And England, like many countries, had a clause dismissing those like Bryce from combat service.

But somehow that had been overlooked, and the summons had come in.

"You have every right to refuse," Theora had told him. "They have no business asking you to risk your life."

"Explain to them that it's a mistake," Murray had added. "Your ACS records should be more than enough to excuse you from combat."

Bryce had considered the matter very briefly. Then, to everyone's surprise, he shook his head. "This country's been good to me," he said. "I don't mind returning the favor."

"Bryce, are you sure?" Edison had asked the next day as they waited for Bryce's ride to arrive.

Bryce had looked Edison directly in the eye, making sure the reporter would have no doubt about the surety of his answer.


Now, nearly ten months and one scar later, Bryce had recently taken field command of a small fireteam when Lance Corporal Anderson had been severely wounded in combat.

Anderson, far from dead, planned the strategies from his bed while nurses gave daily treatments for his recently lost leg, which had been amputated by the shrapnel from a dirty bomb. The same bomb which had caught Bryce, though he had fortunately only suffered a shard of metal imbedded in his face, which left the long scar upon his cheek.

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