This is a story about a Republic Commando's final moments alive. Hope you enjoy, and sorry again about the format; I tried
By: James (that's me
His world exploded. ARC-1138, also known as â€œStretchâ€ by his superiors, was thrown from his speeder bike in a huge concussive blast. Hurling through the air, Stretch landed relatively softly on his bottom in a swampy pool. Staring down at his legs, Stretch sighed heavily and shook his head. He was covered head to toe in mud, mud that was drying quickly in patches of his armor that were still red-hot from the explosion. He smiled slightly behind the bone-white helmet he was wearing. That was the least of his worries. He slowly felt his torso and limbs to check for injuries; finding none he checked his armor for damage. Small pieces of shrapnel, both from the grenade responsible for the explosion, and from his now-destroyed bike, were embedded in various ablative plates attached to his chest and left leg. He removed the nastiest pieces gingerly from the plates, leaving the pieces to small to be worrisome alone. Cautiously he rose to his feet, scanning his surroundings. Seeing no immediate threat, he sat back down on dryer ground. For years he had trained to be a soldier in the Grand Army of the Republic, and now he had to put that training to good use. Like most other soldiers, he was barely twelve years old. The fact that he was technically â€œgrownâ€ in a cloning facility, and displayed the physical age and capabilities of an adult had little bearing on his maturity. Stretch was a mistake, and he knew that. He was â€œan accidental genetic deviationâ€ from the other clones, a variable bound to happen when batches of millions of these â€œunitsâ€ were created very rapidly. For one thing he was much taller than the others by nearly five inches. This warranted the nickname Stretch, a name he welcomed as much as his relative uniqueness from the other clones. All the others looked exactly alike to him, and any sense of individuality was stripped from them in his opinion. He also had a much more questioning personality, which had its advantages and drawbacks. Opinion and â€œdeep thinkingâ€ was frowned upon in their ranks. They were to carry out orders without question of the practicality, or morality, of the deed. Stretchâ€™s â€œgenetic mistakeâ€ of freer thinking had, however, led to the survival of his squad on many occasions. It also led him to ponder things considered dangerous to his mental state. Am I really unique? Do my actions have any real meaning? Does any of this, the war, really matter? Whatâ€™s the point? These were among the many things he thought, even at this very moment in the swamps of Kashyyyk, the last hurrah of the enemy: the Confederacy of Independent Systems, the CIS. Stretch was torn from his reverie with the sound of approaching footsteps. He cursed himself for being so careless. Whoever attacked him was bound to find the site where he crashed to the mercifully soft ground. Deadly silent, he removed a powerful blaster pistol from his utility belt. The pistol, along with a few ration bars, was all of his kit that survived his â€œshort flightâ€. Suddenly the sound he thought he was stalking disappeared. Somehow the enemy battle droid had gotten behind him. One report came, but not from his weapon. Stretch pondered the efficiency of these droids as he slumped to the ground. He pondered why he was feeling no pain as the light of life drained from his eyes. He laughed in his fading mind at the irony. It doesnâ€™t really matter after all now, does it?