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Recruit

Summary:
What is it like, joining up in the Confederate Army? A look into the day that changed Jasper Whitlock's life.


Notes:


1. Chapter 1

Rating 5/5   Word Count 544   Review this Chapter

I walked into the large office, where many other men and boys stood waiting for their turn. Some were actually the legal age to join, but many, like me, were pretending to be older than they really were.

I walked up to one of the desks, where recruiting officers waited. The man sitting there looked about forty, with short grey hair and a short beard. He was wearing one of the grey uniforms of the confederate army.

Just seeing a soldier made me excited. Everyone had been talking about the war, and how it would bring honor to the south. It had made me excited, and I decided to join up.

“Name, please,” he drawled when I came up to the desk. He sounded extremely bored.

“Jasper Whitlock, sir,” I said politely and determinedly.

He nodded. “How old are you, Mister Whitlock?”

I drew my chest up proudly. “Just turned twenty, sir,” I lied. I was really just seventeen, but I wanted to be able to join the Confederate Army.

He looked me over. I was glad I was tall for my age. I could easily pass for being older than I really was.

“Alright,” he finally said. “Go over there and wait in line for the doctor to see you.” He pointed to an area boxed off with a thick screen. Many other men and boys were waiting in line already.

I walked over, feeling confident. The man had easily believed my lie. He actually seemed happy by my confidence. I guess my father had been right. I did have strong charisma.

I stood behind some of the other men, who were talking excitedly about the chance to fight.

“I hear the union’s gonna surrender right and quick,” the man in front me said. He looked maybe twenty three, and had a very strong accent.

The men around him all nodded. “Well sure they are, if they’re smart at all. I mean look at all these people! If this is how many join in one day, think how many people there will be in a few months!” Another man said.

I spoke up now too. “Yeah, those old softies from the north won’t even be able to tell how to load a gun! How they gonna fight us if they can’t shoot!”

The men all listened to me, and nodded. My fervor seemed to increase theirs. Many people went on to make jokes about how the Yankee boys from the north couldn’t do nothing us southern boy did.

Eventually, I got to the front of the line. The doctor simply had me undress, and show that I had full use of all my limbs. He looked into my mouth and my ears, and declared me in good health.

Then I went to the station next to the doctor’s area. There, I was handed two uniforms, a hat, boots, a belt and the rest of my outfits.

I put on one of the uniforms, and walked out feeling proud of myself. I was now a member of the army. I could protect my family and my friends from the idiots in the north now.

And maybe something good would come from me joining up.