To get the soldiers acclimated to their new environment, the regiment was ordered to march to a canyon nearby with full kit. They would then make their way up the canyon where a few exercises would take place. Evans looked longingly at the single cloud in the sky, hanging uselessly over some hill in the distance. McGilligan and Gibson both looked a bit worried, but said nothing about it when questioned. Not that Evans had much energy to question. The march to the canyon was a slog through harsh terrain. The sun beat down mercilessly, and Evans felt more sweat than man.

As the regiment got closer to the canyon, a few trees started to pop up, too gnarled to provide much shade. It wasn’t until they entered the canyon that he was able to keep himself in the shade. The canon itself was quite nice compared to the rest of the desert. It’s steep slopes blocked some of the sun, the narrowness of the canyon cut marching speed down a lot giving everyone time to rest, especially because of the third nice thing, there was a stream flowing through the canyon, which made it possible to refill canteens.

All this made the march only the worst march he had ever been on. Why in the hell would anyone ever willingly subject themselves to the desert? Yet Gibson and McGilligan both seemed perfectly fine. There were a few soldiers in other sections who looked to be from the Desert as well. And there was some Lieutenant who kept running along to the rock walls, putting a borrowed rifle against it, and taking notes. Officers are weird.

Evans walked up next to Tiscornia and grunted a few exhausted emotions at him. Tiscornia grunted back before taking off his helmet to use as a massive, heavy fan. Tiscornia composed himself long enough to give a real comment, “Why… Why did they make us wear helmets. Fucking heavy. Fucking steel.”

Evans gestured at the strange Lieutenant, “She’s fine with it.”

“What is she doing?” Tiscornia asked before putting his helmet back on and taking a swig from his canteen, “I think she’s from Apple Company.”

Evans paused to fill his canteen then take a drink, “You know anyone from Apple?”

Before Tiscornia could respond, an incredibly cheery voice spoke up from behind them, “I’m from Apple, soldiers. You have a question?”

Evans spun around in shock, staring directly into the eyes of the strange Lieutenant. He opened his eyes wide and stared for a moment before coming to attention and saluting, “Ma’am.”

The Lieutenant giggled before waving his hand down. Evans asked his question, “You… Ma’am seem to be doing something with the sides of the canyon and your notebook, Ma’am?”

“Ah,” A smile grew across her face. She waved Tiscornia and Evans to follow her and ran to the side of the canyon. The two stumbled over, where the Lieutenant was pointing at the stone, “See, this is a sedimentary rock.”

Evans sighed and started pretending to listen.


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