Ideas More Powerful Than Guns

A reimagining of Cobra Commander's origin story, taking the Marvel/Devil's Due version and putting my own twist on it.


2. Veteran's Day

Daniel ran his hand across a ruby red Patriot. He didn't know the difference between a Ford Fusion and a Toyota Corolla, but he could appreciate a jeep. Even if it was a little more streamlined that he was used to back in 1985. Times had changed and he had accepted it, America had bounced from war to war like an explosive rubber ball. He was glad that he didn't have to be apart of it. Now he could focus on taking care of his brother. Of course, it wasn't that easy-since Daniel was the one who needed help getting places, and taking his medication. Even though he wasn't in it, the war was still affecting his life at age 48.

"Yo, bro!" Adam approached him, "I get off my shift in a couple of minutes, I just need to finish up with this family over here, and then we can get the heck out of dodge, alright?"

Adam walked off towards an elderly Chinese couple and their teenage son, leaving Daniel alone with the Patriot once more. Adam had been working as a used car salesman to help support the both of them, but it was never something he truly enjoyed doing. He knew that sometimes these cars would only run for a week, or were literally going to break down the second they parked in someone's garage. He was being cheated, too-The head manager would often skimp him on his paycheque. He walked over to Daniel, his navy blue coat in hand. 

"Let's head out, Dan" He motioned toward the door, as he put on his coat.


The rain hit the windshield like it had a thousand times before in two seconds flat. Daniel opened the passenger window, letting sprinkles from above and under the car inside, onto his face. It helped him remember the days he could be behind the wheel. Adam drove off of the highway and into a small pit-stop town with a waffle house and a unrecognizably branded gas station. They parked the car.

"I know you prefer IHOP, but these guys are closer and I don't have enough money to pay for our lunch and extra gas" Adam explained.

"I have nothing against Waffle House, Adam." Daniel replied, "I've eaten in dirtier places."

As Daniel sat down the air in the pleather coated benches flew out of a hole that a small child had ripped months prior, and the seat compressed. The waitress, her hair held up by seven multicolored pins but didn't prevent particles of her scalp from falling onto her shoulders, handed them the menu. There is no sentence that can correctly encompass how quickly Daniel's feeling of disappointment changed from slight to incredibly pronounced

"Happy Veteran's Day, Dan." Adam said, breaking the negative silence.

"Thanks," Daniel nodded, "I wanted to tell you something."

A moment passes.

"Okay, aaaand..?" Adam prodded.

"You know I've been saving money for a while".


"I've been saving to build...This".

Daniel took a crumbled piece of paper out of his shirt pocket, and after pressing his thumb against the crinkles, handed the page to Adam. It was the blueprint for a small Hospital.

"I want to do something for the others like me. A veteran's hospital run by veterans, people who actually understand what their patients went through, and will do everything in their way to help them. It'll start out small, It'll only be me and a couple of my war buddies as the staff, but I think it will get bigger. What do you think?" Daniel asked.

"This looks awesome, Dan...Are your friends old medical officers?" 

"Well, no. None of us have actual medical training. but we can take one of those online degrees or something. Easy."

"...How are you going to help these people if you don't know how to administer medical stuff? Are you just gonna let them smoke pot for an hour? What if someone comes in with a broken leg or something?"

"It'll just be a safe place, where people with similar conditions can talk with each other. Smoking might be involved, I don't condone it, but we're not going to give out free drugs. And I don't know. I'll ask around, get an actual doctor on board."

"So it's a club for people with PTSD."

"Yeah. Sure."

"Well, I'm glad you're doing something that you really want to do, Daniel. You have enough money for this?"


"Have you been lying about how much you could put forward for the rent because you were saving for this?"

"Are you two ready to order?" The waitress asked.

"Another minute or two, please," Daniel said, still looking at Adam, "A little, but it's not like I'm not going to pay more than what I normally do with extra income once the hospital is set up."

"Right," Adam rolled his eyes, "and I'll be so grateful once you're done building this thing, because the construction will take what you've saved up, plus whatever pension the government sends. So I'll just be paying for all of the rent. Thanks for the warning, I guess. I'll crack open the piggy bank for next week's groceries."

"I swear by god," Daniel motion upward, "I will pay you fifty percent of the profits that the hospital makes."

"Uh-huh. Okay. Are we ordering something here, or should I save my money?"

Daniel looked down at the menu again, glancing over the food prices, then over at the cluttered kitchen. Dried grease and syrup stained the counters, burnt crumbs littered the floor of the cooking area, and fruit flies zoomed around the cooking counter-mourning their fallen brethren that had flown too close when the fry cook was lighting the stove. Daniel turned his head back to his brother.

"You know what, let's just go."

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