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This is an OC. Thank you for your time.

[Recording Starts]

It’s nothing to worry about sir. We are just going to ask a few questions to determine your mental condition, is that okay? So you claim you are Sergeant Raymond, are you not?

Yes I am.

I’m sorry. It’s just you look fresh out of the draft. Anyway, you were listed as MIA during the war, what happened?

(Sergeant Raymond sighs) I’m not sure. I’m just glad the government pushed those damn Japs out of Manila. Ugh. Okay, promise me you won’t think this to be some kind of joke, okay? I didn’t go AWOL or anything like that.

I’m only here to judge your mental condition, not whether you ran out of combat. That will be for the tribunal to decide but even then I don’t think you’ll be court-martialed. Continue.

Good. And Doc, I’m not insane. Yesterday was insane, not me. The Japanese attack on Corregidor was brutal.

From the records, you went MIA during one of the Japanese assaults on Corregidor, can you tell me about that?

Oh, that. We were overwhelmed and our platoon had to flee into the mountains. Can’t blame us for that, we had lost Corregidor. We ran out into the hills but we somehow got lost in the forest.

Yes, go on.

Have you ever felt trapped? Not just claustrophobic trapped but mouse in a mousetrap trapped. As in you knew in your bones that you’d probably die there? That’s what we felt when we entered the forest. We’d pass the same trees and the same road and each time we’d pass this house, a little shack really. We never really saw anyone inside but it did have signs of life. No one really wanted to go there cause, well, it stank of death. We were tired and weren’t in our right minds but I’m sure that we all agreed that something weird was going on. Some guy, Private Ricks I think, had the bright idea to tear off pieces of his uniform to prevent us from going in circles. We’d tie one of those strips around some tree branches and would use those as guides to prevent us from going in circles. (Sergeant Raymond stops)

Is something wrong?

We kept seeing the markers.

What?

No matter which way we go, we’d see the markers. We’d turn left and see one strip. We’d turn right and see another. We’d go backwards and find the strips behind us even if there were none there before. We were trapped. Something was keeping us in this forest and it wasn’t letting us out. We hiked for hours looking for a way out. Every time we thought we found a new way out, we’d see a marker. Everyone knew something was screwed up in that forest but we didn’t know how screwed up until we planted those markers. It felt like we were stuck in this gigantic maze for some reason. (Sergeant Raymond takes a deep breath) Buddy, I wanna ask you something.

Yes?

How’re my family? You probably know I had a baby girl coming last June.

They’re in… good hands.

(Sergeant Raymond takes a sigh of relief) Okay, thanks. Anyway, it got worse during that night. You know forests right? Full of life, the trees, the animals, the dirt. Have you ever heard of a completely silent forest? I’ll answer that for you, no you haven’t. We did and it was creepy as shit. When night came, we tried looking for sounds of life but it was dead silent. It was as if the forest had absorbed all the life of the animals in it. That was when the platoon started breaking down. Some guy’d said he saw a pair of red glowing eyes in one of the bushes while another said he saw his beau in the forest. We knew he was going home once as soon as we found others. His sweetheart died a few weeks before the assault on Corregidor. (Sergeant Raymond takes a deep breath and makes an almost imperceptible sob) But none of that shit was as creepy as the sound of a silent forest. (Sergeant Raymond stops)

Go on, continue.

He was the first one to go into that shack. Said he saw his beau calling him into that house. Another guy came with him, to drag him out of his delusion when it ended and to ask for directions from anyone inside. Most of the platoon then found some reason or another to accompany the two. We agreed that most would stay in that shack while a small group would search for the way out. In the end, it was only me and my buddy, Allen, left wandering the forest. I’ll tell you this, the only thing holding back the terror we felt from everything around us seemed to have been divided between us, sorta like strength in numbers. With just the two of us, everything seemed more…eerie. We thought we heard a scream, I’m not sure, but we just suddenly began bolting through the forest. (Sergeant Raymond stops again)

And?

I’m the only guy that got out, okay? … I’m not sure what happened to my buddy. He went back to check up on the others. I’m not sure how I got out, really. I remembered an old friend of mine talking about the Filipino culture; said that this place was steeped in mystery and folklore. I don’t know. I just want to go back home and never go into any form of forest.

Okay, well that was interesting. I have just one follow up question, are you really Sergeant Raymond?

Didn’t you hear my story? Are you some kind of idiot?

Okay, okay. I believe you. You seem like an honest guy. Take some rest and good night.

Thanks, doc. (Footsteps) Oh yeah doc, was there any word on the shack so far?

None that I know of, no. Thank you for your time.


[Recording Ends]


Conclusion: Sergeant Raymond appears mentally stable and completely sane. He was able to answer coherently whenever asked and all data he has given has been found to be true despite the ludicrous story he has given me. Furthermore, fingerprint analysis from the higher ups verifies his identity. I suggest referring him to the medical board after one more session with Sergeant Raymond. He has to learn at some point that the war ended more than fifty years ago.

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