Forty Years in Service

Suwo snapped to attention as the officer entered the the interview room, all concrete and bolted steel and wide, shadowed one-way mirror. Her uniform marked her as a major, but conspicuously lacked her name. She nodded and said, "Take your seat."

"Yes, Sir." Despite the major's easy manner, Suwo maintained her posture.

Sitting, the major slapped a thick file on the metal table and flipped through it. "Trained, conditioned in '43. Saw action in '44, '45 and '47. Reconditioning  in '49, back in the field in '51. Since then, stationed for rapid deployment in Libya, the Ukraine, Guatemala, and Phoenix. In the service... almost forty years." She paused for reaction, but Suwo had none.

"And now you get to retire. Normal." The major set a large, metal syringe on the table, filled with a metallic liquid. "This will deactivate your enhancements."

Suwo picked up the needle, looked at it. "The lab coats always told us these enhancements were permanent."

The major shrugged. "Science, am I right?"

Suwo dropped it; it shattered. "Oops." The major's easy manner vanished. She straightened, her hand conspicuously under the table.

"You know we have to decommission you, soldier."

"I know you're going to try. Sir."