Early morning fog was being blown about as rising
winds announced the
arrival of a rain storm. Bravo Company, tired, filthy
and fed up with
feeling like they'd prowled around the jungle for a
whole bloody week
for nothing, were struggling weakly up the side of a
hill. It sat between them and the LZ. Choppers would
be there to
extract them at exactly 0600 hrs. There was an
underlying fear in all
the men that they would miss the rendezvous time. The
Lt and Sergeant
Anderson barked out orders to keep the exhausted men
their goal in some sort of formation.
"Sargent, keep them moving, I'm to radio the birds and
notify them of
our e.t.a.," yelled Lieutenant Goldman waving Anderson
on and turning to
his radio man, "Horn, radio."
The two men squatted together, Horn pulled the
receiver from his back
pack, the LT glanced down at his watch. Thick banks of
obliterated their view of the departing troops. Horn
to observe the progress of his mates, but to no avail.
The two of them
were engulfed in white.
"Sir, I can't see the guys anymore." He said
nervously as he repacked
the radio phone receiver.
"We can't loose them if we just keep climbing. Come
on." reassured the
As the two rose to their feet they both froze. The
sound of half a
dozen rifles being cocked around them was loud in the
"Lt?!" whispered Horn hoarsely.
"Don't move." instructs the Lt.
The Viet Cong troops drifted silently into their view.
lunged for his rifle.
"Nnoo . . .!" the lieutenant began.
In a split second, Goldman was down on his knees with
from a mangle lip, split open by the handle of a
pistol. Horn layed
sprawled awkwardly on his back, unconscious, a
bleeding gash across the
temple received from the butt of a rifle.
down the hill, hesitating a moment.
"What's up Ruis?" asked Anderson, seeming to see
everything at once.
"Thought I heard the Lt. and Horn."
"They'll be along directly, Ruis, don't you worry
none." he reassured
his man in his comfortable Southern drawl.
Back pack yanked from his back, Lt was hauled roughly
to his feet, the
muzzle of the pistol digging painfully into his
temple, as a gag was
forced into his mouth and his arms were bound securely
around a length
of bamboo. He stood by helplessly as the Viet Cong
through Horn's clothing and dragged his pack from him.
their looting rewards, the band of VC soldiers dragged
the struggling Lt
"I still don't see any sign of the Lt or Horn. What
do you think's
keepin' them, Sarg?" Ruis commented.
"You're right, even mother nature doesn't make this
long a call."
"Are we gonna go back and check it out?" asked Baker
as he squatted
beside the Sarg.
"Ruis, Baker. Come with me. We'll do a sweep, they
may have gotten
themselves turned around in this fog."
The Lt knew he had to do something to try and escape.
They would kill
him, he would never come out of this jungle alive or
end up in a
prisoner of war camp and never be seen again. He had
statistics on p.o.w.'s. He was scared and not paying
attention to where
he was going, stumbled, falling head long over a rock.
barked at his men and Goldman was once again hauled to
his feet, slapped
repeatedly across the face as the little leader
screeched at him. The
party moved off deeper into the jungle putting
themselves and the Lieutenant's men.
Baker nearly missed Horn in the fog until the man
moaned as he regained
"Sarg!" Yelled Baker as he dropped to his knees beside
"Horn? Horn, it's me man, Baker. Are you okay, man?"
Horn's head onto his thigh as the Sarg and Ruis rushed
to his side.
"Horn! Where's the Lt?" asked Anderson squinting into
A groggy Horn managed to sit up, looking around
"Sarg! The Viet Cong. They just came out of the fog.
Outta nowhere. We
didn't hear them until it was too late." he managed,
into a state realizing that the Lieutenant was not
there with them.
"We've gotta find him Sarg." insisted Ruis looking up
The blow came unexpectedly and Goldman pitched forward
with a yelp.
With arms bound, he was unable to break his fall and
he landed head long
with the wind is knocked out of him. The high pitched
twanged and chipped above him as he lay there gasping
for breath, scared
Cold, fat drops of rain slowly began hitting the dusty
ground at first
then, in seconds the ground was turning into a sea of
mud. The Lt was
soaked to the skin in minutes. He watched as his
captors donned ponchos
above him. He looked around at the ground and realized
that any tracks
they may have been leaving were being washed away in
the downpour. He
paled at the thought.
He was pulled to his feet and shoved into motion. He
walked in the
middle of the group, the barrel of a machine gun
jabbed painfully into
his ribs from time to time keeping him from slowing
down. He was
breathing hard around the gag when the leader signaled
for the party to
stop. A pair of hands grabbed Lt's collar and yanked
him down into a
squat. A pistol was leveled at his face and the
message behind it was
loud and clear. One sound and he would be dead.
The Sargent, Baker and Ruis crept their way down the
trail they'd just
come up. The pouring rain was frustrating them and
soaking them to the
skin. Anderson rose a fist and the three squatted
where they were. The
other two looking into the direction the Sarg was. A
clump of bamboo
rustled briefly and stopped. Anderson signals to the
two men to stay
put as he advanced on the bush. He came out
grim-faced carrying a huge
rodent by the tail.
The Viet Cong around the Lt. moved in unison and they
were on the move
again, moving deeper into the jungle, reducing the
Lt's hopes of being
found. Realizing this, he knew he had to make a move,
He swung around pivoting on one foot and booted the
man behind him in
the belly, sending the him and the men behind him
like dominos. He spun back around to clip the man
ahead of him with the
end of the pole his arms were strapped to. The man
doubled over with a
grunt as the pole dug into his stomach. The Lt.
turned and began to
sprint into the tall grass trying to cover some
distance when the butt
of a rifle cracked
against the side of his head. His legs gave out and
he fell in a dazed
heap not five feet from where he started. He rolled
onto his back trying
to get unsuccessfully to his feet when a second blow,
across the bridge
of the nose sent him crashing into blackness.
The Sargent glanced down at his watch. They were
running out of time to
meet up with their air-lift. He had decided that he
would stay behind
and look for the Lt. on his own. He could not ask the
men to do the
same. They needed and deserved their R&R. He was
used to being dog
tired and asked to do 'just that much more'. This Lt.
was worth doing
it for. The man had become a friend as well as a good
they had their differences about 'protocol' but they
always saw things
the same way when it came to their men. Myron was a
man Zeke knew he
could and would die for. He was going to do what he
could to find his
"Okay, you two. You've got to dee-dee outta here if
you're going to
make the rendezvous. I want you on that bird, do you
"Sarg? You're not coming?" Asked Ruis looking at
Baker to see if he'd
"I'm bringing the Lt out with me."
"I'm going with you, Sarg." announced Baker.
"No, Baker, you're getting on the chopper. You've
earned this down
time. You're getting on that bird." argued
"You're going to need our help, Sarg." Added Ruis.
"I can't ask you to do that, Ruis."
"You didn't ask. Don't make us disobey an order."
"Well, y'know, I've trained him to just the way I like
him, it would be
a waste to loose him now." joked Anderson making light
of his real
concerns for his commanding officer, and friend.
"The Lt. would do it for us . . . " confirmed
"Okay. Let's go find him then." Anderson smiled
proudly at his men. He
hoped that the others would get on the bird and not
miss their chance to
get out of the jungle.
It had stopped raining and the jungle was filling with
shadows. Lt. woke
himself up moaning. His head was killing him and it
took a panicked
moment to open blood caked eyes. Evening was setting
in and the VC were
setting up their camp for the night. He lay curled up
on his right
side, the arm having gone to sleep under his own
weight. He discovered
that his ankles were
lashed together. Trying his other bindings he was
alarmed to find that
the ropes securing his ankles together was strung
neck and any movement he made tightened the noose. He
helpless and scared watching the soldiers go about
their business. Not
knowing what his fate might be, he fought to keep his
the worse scenarios. The VC more or less totally
ignored their trussed
Myron wondered if they knew that they had an officer
as prisoner. Were
they taking him somewhere where he would be
interrogated? Would he be
just thrown into a p.o.w. camp and sit out the
remainder of the war.
Would they torture him to death. Don't go there he
warned himself. He
must have drifted off because he was shocked awake
when one soldier came
over and kicked him sharply in the thigh sending the
other soldiers into
fits of laughter. Lt growled in pain around the blood
and saliva soaked
gag. A second soldier came quickly up behind him and
landed a solid
blow to his lower back. Lt arched away from the boot,
crying out to the
delight of the cluster of men that now stood around
him. They'd found
themselves some evening entertainment it seemed.
The three men dropped to a squat the second they heard
the scream. They
exchanged looks of speculation. Was that the Lt?
"I don't know." answered Anderson knowing what they
"We're gonna go nice and slow. I think we may have
the element of
surprise on our side. Move out. Nice and slow now.
And not a sound."
They all checked their rifles and grenades as they
moved silently in the
direction of the cries.
Lt. writhed in pain as the band of VC whipped, kicked
and punched at
him. Blood ran freely from cuts. Blood from lashes
across his arm and
back soaked into his shirt. The steady pain was no
longer bearable and
he slipped into unconsciousness. With their prisoner
struggling and squirming under their assault the VC
grew bored and turned to their dinners and chowed down
on rice. Talking
quietly among themselves, totally ignoring the
prisoner, for the time
The three men lay motionless in the tall grass
watching the party's
'guards'. The men they watched were very relaxed and
that they were in no danger of any attacks. Zeke,
Ruis and Baker lay
there in the cold mud like statues waiting for the
shadows to lengthen
into total darkness
before they made their move. It took Zeke all his
self control not to
storm into the camp with guns blasting when he heard
the last scream cut
He thought the worst of course. That they'd killed
the Lt. Tortured
him to death. Well, he would at least make sure that
the man's body got
home in one piece. It was the least he could do if
that was what
happened. Ruis and Baker had similar ideas nagging at
them since they
heard that last weak scream come from the little
clearing less than 30
yards away. Ruis patiently passed the time waiting
thinking of how many
of these animals he was personally going to blow
Myron came to in a daze, he was having trouble
breathing. He's pulled
the noose tighter around his neck in his struggles and
the lack of
oxygen was making him a little light headed and too
weak to move. He
shut his eyes feigning unconsciousness as footsteps
gagged and moaned involuntarily as he realized that
one of the VC had
come over to him and was urinating on him. The VC
giggled at this and
took better aim. Lt heaved weakly at his restraints
sending his offender
into a fit of laughter.
"Sounds like we've just got ourselves a distraction we
should be taking
advantage of." whispered the Sarg. "I want you two to
Get into position and wait for my move. Go."
Ruis and Baker slipped away into the dark. Zeke moved
until he had only a tangle of vines separating him and
his target. His
stomach clenched on him as his eyes fell on the prone
body of Lt.
Goldman at the feet of a urinating VC soldier. He had
to blink back
sudden tears of anger. He was going to kill these
Baker lay behind a tree in direct eye line with the
Lt. He had no way
of letting him know that he was there. He agonized
for his leader
looking at the bruises and the amount of blood that
covered him. He
doubted at first if the Lt was still alive until he
saw the man still
trying to work his ropes free despite the pain he was
Ruis lay with his gattling gun perched before him
trained on the cluster
of VC stretching out for the night. It wouldn't be
long now. He'd
gladly fire at this bunch with no regrets.
Zeke waited for another hour after he was sure the
last of the soldiers
had drifted off before he moved. The sentries were
and he knew that he would be able to extract the Lt.
Raising silently to one knee, Anderson took aim and
picked off the guard
closest to him. Baker jumped up and took care of the
against the tree behind Goldman. Ruis emptied his gun
in the group of
sudden explosive horror lasted for less than 30
seconds and the jungle
Myron lay gasping in fright and pain. Ruis made a
thorough sweep of the
area to make sure they would not encounter any
surprises as Zeke rushed
across the clearing and dropped to his knees beside
Baker slipped from his hiding place mere feet away and
The Sarg pulled his knife out and cut the ropes from
Lt's ankles and
throat. He pulled the noose from around his neck. The
skin there was
raw and bleeding. He ran his hands carefully along his
body feeling for
"Lt. Lt . . . Lt. Myron. It's me Zeke. You're going
to be okay. Baker
and Ruis are here too. You're okay." Sarg spoke
gently to his fallen
"Baker, help me with the rest of these ropes." Ordered
about Lt. He probed his stomach gentley causing the
Lt. to twist away in
pain. Zeke worked the gag carefully from Myron's mouth
just in time. The
Lt. suddenly gagged and with a pained moan threw up.
He slumped weakly
in Zeke's arms as uncontrollable shaking hit him, a
"He's going into shock." stated Anderson as he pulled
with renewed gusto
at the ropes with one hand, hugging the Lt. close to
him with the
"We gotta get outta here soon, Sarg. Those shots were
for miles." Suggested Ruis.
"We shouldn't move him." cautioned Baker.
"We don't have a choice, Baker. That noise will act
like an invitation
to a party."
"I'll be okay." piped up a weak scratchy voice in
The three looked down at the Lt. and saw him trying to
smile around his
"Can you walk?" asked Anderson as Baker pulled the
"Not without some help."
"Okay, let's go. Ruis, take the point, Baker, help me
with the Lt."
"Water?" asked Myron hoarsely.
Anderson and Baker slowly helped Lieutenant Goldman to
his feet. Once
on them though, he immediately lurched forward and
vomited up the water
he'd just drank.
"Sorry." he apologized leaning heavily against Baker
"S'kay Lt, you missed my boots." joked Baker. He was
rewarded with a
bloodied eye peering at him.
"Does anything feel broken?" asked Anderson.
"At least they didn't break your sense of humour."
Limping along with support from Baker, Lt. Goldman and
his men left the
camp sight under the cover of dark. The going was
slow but they knew
that they needed to get a lot of distance between the
themselves by day light. They had been moving steadily
uphill for nearly
two hours before the Lt. fainted. He slid to the
ground quietly and
couldn't be roused.
"What's wrong with him, Sarg?" asked Ruis, worry
creasing his brow.
"The man's exhausted. We'll take turns carrying him.
Come on, keep
moving." He said before hoisting the inert body over
The sun was over the horizon when they finally took a
eased the Lt. to the ground propping him against his
Zeke was concerned with the Lt's colour under the
bruises and dirt. The
man was in a whole lot of hurt. It was a good thing
that he was out of
it. He hoped that there wasn't anything wrong
internally. The Lt. moaned
and came to, still in a slight daze.
"I'm sorry. I must have nodded off," He apologized
trying to rise, "We
should get out of here right away." He commented a
"We've been on the move for about five hours, Lt."
The Lt. looked at the three men in stunned silence.
This was greeted by
a ring of grimy grins.
"Are we rendezvousing with the chopper?"
"No sir, we're walking out of here."
"Won't make it. You guys can't risk your butts for
me." he croaked
"Too late, Lt. The bird picked everybody else up
"Damn it!" mumbled Myron.
He took Ruis's offered canteen and painfully swallowed
a mouthful of
water. He leaned back against Baker's pack and closed
Forcing himself to
no feel the aches and pains that seemed to covered his
"I think we should put in another couple of hours then
hunker down till
"I don't think I can walk . . . " confessed Goldman
"Then we'll do what we've been doing and carry you
Myron suddenly doubled over in pain, vomitting up the
water he just
drank. Baker pulled him into his arms when he was
finished and held him
against him as Myron began shaking in shock. They were
getting even more
"You're gonna be fine Lt. We're here for you." He
said as he hugged
his superior closer still.
"I. . I, . . I d.ddon't know wh, what's wrong."
"It's shock Lt. You're going into shock. We gotta
get you out of
Baker worked the weakly protesting lieutenant over his
shoulder and the
four men moved on. Ruis waited for the others to
catch up to him and
pointed into a shallow cave that he figured they could
hunker down in
for the day until it got dark enough to keep moving.
The cave was dry
and hidden behind a natural screen of a bamboo bush.
Baker settled a
now unresponsive Myron on the ground and tried
water. It just ran off his lips and down his chin.
"Sarg, I don't like this. He hasn't had anything to
"Let him rest Baker. I think he needs that more now
They took turns dozing throughout the day. They ate
their K rations in
silence. Goldman lay by them struggling with
Mumbling to himself ocassionally then slipping deeper
An hour after full night was upon them they gathered
up their packs,
Anderson took Goldman on his back and they headed out.
The night air
was cold and the night sky was heavy with rain clouds.
Before too long,
a cold night rain was coming down on the American
soldiers. They were
soaked to the skin before they pulled out their
draped his over the Lt instead of wearing his himself.
Ruis signalled to
stop and the men froze. They crouched silently and
watched a Vietnamese
farmer lead a wayward goat back to his farm all the
way chastizing the
dumb animal for having
wandered away on such a horrible night.
"Think they're VC, Sarg?" ventured Baker.
"I don't feel like finding out do you?"
The Lt. began groaning and struggle in Anderson's hold
and he laid him
down on the ground.
"Lt? Are you okay?"
"Sargent?" He came to in a fog, not sure where he
"Right here, Lt."
"Where are we?!" He looked up at his men not aware of
how awful he
The bridge of his nose and jaw were deep purple. His
swollen and crusted with blood and vomit. The rest of
his injuries were
covered in mud and God knows what.
"Anderson. The men need to rest. Bunker down for the
"All do respect Lt, we've been sleeping during the day
under the cover of dark."
"Oh, good. That's good. Carry on." He smiled weakly
and drifted into
"Gotta keep moving Sarg. If this guy's VC we don't
wanna be anywhere
around here in case he gets some company." warned
"Yeah, we gotta boogie. We've got another two full
days ahead of us
before we see friendly faces again." agreed
The three moved out making a wide birth around the
farm, Baker fireman
carrying the Lt. over his back. They were dead tired
when first light
started to brighten the sky and they found a hole to
bug down in for the
"We're getting low on food, Sarg." observed Baker as
he dug through his
"Take mine. I'm not hungry." Anderson tossed the man
his own ration
can, not having much of an appetite.
"Shouldn't the Lt. be drinking or something?" asked
concerned at the motionless Goldman.
"You're right. Get him up. I'll try and get some water
"Lt. Come on, man. You gotta wake up." Encouraged
Ruis, pulling the
Myron protested weakly but eventually accepted the
water. They waited to
see if he would throw it up as before. Happily this
down. Reassured they let him go back to sleep. The
three others slept
in shifts themselves until the jungle was in total
darkness and they
were once again free to move on under the cover of
"Pack up guys. Time to head out."
"Zeke. Some water, please." Asked a slightly more
"Lt!" He dropped to his knees beside him.
"I'm dying of thirst." He reached out for the offered
"Don't drink too much or too fast."
Myron swallowed deeply from the canteen and gave it
The other three watched him tentatively, waiting to
have to jump out of
the way if it all came back up.
"What's wrong?" asked Goldman noticing their
"How you feeling Lt?" asked Ruis.
"Like hell, but better."
"Think you can walk?"
"I think so." He clutched at his stomach as he tried
to rise and the
three lept back like they were on springs. Goldman
looked up at them
"I need a hand up." he admitted painfully.
Smiling, Anderson leaned over and helped Myron to his
feet. He was a
little shakey and swayed a bit but he was able to
"Let's get the hell outta here." he said accepting
Baker's arm for
They walked all night, making good progress. By first
light, Goldman was
pale, shaking and weak and was glad to stop and
"We'll camp here for the day. We should be able to
make it out of the
jungle by the end of tomorrow night." said Anderson
sholdering out of
Myron almost immediately fell into a light, dream
disturbed sleep. He
into a heavy sweat, mumbling himself awake with a
start. A reassuring
hand on his arm or shoulder from one of the guys eased
him back down
By the time the four of them got on their way, the Lt.
had taken in and
kept down more water and 3 of the crackers they shared
that Ruis found
in the bottom of his pack. The men could feel the
excitement building in
them as they drew nearer and nearer to their own
territory. The Sargent
had to keep reminding them that they were still not
out of danger. That
there was still the chance that they could still be
blown to kingdom
come and that might be by their own men. For some
strange reason this
set them all off on a laughing jag, the stress of the
last 3 days out in
enemy territory taking its toll. Ruis took point again
in the last
stretch of their trek making sure his guard didn't
waver just because
they were almost home. He heard the twigs snap before
he saw them. His
fist came up to signal the others as a bullet zipped
inches from his
head. He dove for cover as an unseen shooter fanned
the area with
"Cease fire!!!" screamed the Sarg recognizing the
sound of an American
"We're friendlies. G.I. Bravo Company."
They waited in breath-holding silence.
"Anderson?" Came a call through the dark.
"That you Marshall?"
"Roger that. What the hell are you boys doing out
"Just out for a walk." wisecracked Zeke.
"Come on in."
Ruis climbed over the barricade into welcome arms with
Anderson carried the Lt. over with him and supervised
as the boys
hussled him off on a gurny to the dispensary.
"We heard that three of Bravo Company had missed the
extract 3 days ago.
What happened out there?" Asked Marshall, Anderson's
"There were 4 of us that didn't make the rendezvous
actually. We went
back to find our Lt. when he and the radio man didn't
"Well from what I hear, those boys of yours nearly had
to be locked up
to keep them from going back out there themselves for
you all. Sounds
like you've got a great bunch of men working with you,
"You can say that again Marshall, You can say that
again. Now if you'll
excuse me, I'm gonna see how the Lt. is doing."
He stepped into the medical tent to find Ruis and
Baker already there,
both staring down at a cot. They watched silently as
a doctor worked on
the man lying there. Anderson shouldered his way
between his two men.
The state the lieutenant was in had not been so
noticable while they
were in the jungle but here lying on a clean, crisp
stripped down to his skivies, the damage was hard to
fathom. There were
huge deep purple and black bruises all over he body.
Cuts, scrapes and
scratches, puffy and red rimmed looking infected criss
crossed his upper
body. Anderson glanced at Ruis who stared in
disbelief at what he now
saw the Lt. had been able coping with, without
complaining once. A look
at Baker showed squeamish awe as he took in just how
much suffering the
"Hey, you two. Go get yourself some grub and a couple
of long hot
showers. Your starting to stink up the place."
Anderson gently shoved
the two stunned g.i.'s out of the tent and returned to
"How's he doing, Doc?" asked Anderson as he moved to
squat by the head
of the bed.
"It's a miracle that nothing's broken. He's banged up
What the hell happened?"
"He was taken by the VC . . . "
Zeke watched the doctor work in silence. The doctor
Myron on his side to examine and clean the wounds on
his back. Without
being asked, Zeke held the Lt. that way for the doctor
as he worked.
Myron cried out in pain and jerked away as the doctor
pressed against a
livid bruise over his kidney.
"Sorry about that, soldier. You're going to be okay.
Just relax. I've
got to check out the damage, I'll be as careful as I
Goldman groped for and found Anderson's hand and
"Go ahead, Doc." assured Anderson, squeezing back.
Baker and Ruis came to their feet as Anderson, freshly
drags himself listlessly into the tent they were
"How's he doing, Sarg?!" asked Baker, worried, the
sight of the Lt.
still in his mind.
"He's hurt bad. But he'll live." answered the sargent
what that might mean. He liked working with the young
man was fair and actually getting very good at what he
did. Selfishly he
hoped that Goldman wasn't sent home, too injured to
recover here and see
"We better get some shut eye. We're getting a ride
back to LadyBird
base at first light." He crossed to a free bunk and
sank down wearily
"Is the Lt. coming with us, Sarg?" asked Ruis.
"Don't think so, Ruis. I think they're going to air
lift him to
"Man, that means it's really bad doesn't it, Sarg?"
"I don't know, Baker. Now get to bed. That's an
"Yes sir." mumbled the private.
In the morning the Sargent left the two privates
sleeping and slipped
into the medical tent to check in on the lieutenant.
sleeping on his side. An I.V. of fluids feeding into
his arm. Bandages
covered his back and shoulder where the deepest gashes
plasters held stitches in place over his eyebrow and
on his lip. Zeke
sat on an empty bunk across from Myron's and just
watched the man
sleep. Almost as if feeling the gaze upon him, Myron
stirred and woke
to meet Zeke's tired smile. He tried to smile back
but the lip only
allowed a lopsided smirk.
"Good morning, Sir." saluted Anderson.
"Good morning, Sargent." He croaked sleepily, looking
at the I.V.
feeding into his arm and back at Zeke.
"So, are you going to live?"
"Much to my chagrin, I'm afraid. Did Horn make the
pick up?" Zeke
helped him sit when he couldn't do it alone.
"We found him and got him up the hill in time."
"Good," The two were silent for a moment.
"So . . . they sending you home?" asked Zeke
Myron looked into the seasoned soldier's eyes for a
long moment, seeing
the admiration and devotion in their depths. He was
taken aback by the
older man's exposing his dedication to him like that.
That look said he
a difference for some of the men under him. He was
needed out there.
They respected what he was doing. The look the
sargent was giving him
said it all.
He cleared his throat and looked away moved by the
emotions that were
threatening to overwhelm him.
"And let you manipulate some newbie lieutenant that
they send in to
replace me? Hell, not on your life!"
"That's good, cause I'm just about done molding
Goldman smiled, as best he could at the remark. The
two looked away
self consciously. An unspoken bond strengthening
between them. The Lt.
cleared his throat awkwardly.
"I'm starving. What's for breakfast?" asks Goldman
"Anything you want, Lt. Anything you want."
The noon bird was revving up and the men were getting
ready to dee-dee
out, back to Ladybird Base. The three took a quick
detour into the med
tent before hopping onto the chopper. Myron was
propped up against a
pile of pillows dozing when they came in.
"Up to receiving a couple of visitors, Lt?"
"Ruis, Baker. Good to see you guys." He said wincing
as the two shook
his hand vigorously.
"You too, Lt. How are you feeling?" asked Baker.
"Sore but better. I . . . uh, . . listen, I, uh . .
.don't know how to
. . ." He stumbled awkwardly.
"Don't have to Lt. We know you would have done the
same thing for any
of us guys." Ruis waved off his attempt at thanking
"We'll tell the rest of the guys that you'll be back
with us ...
"If I get the green light from the doc, I'm thinking I
should be back in
about a week." reassured Goldman, seeing the same sort
of look he saw in
Anderson's eyes reflected in the looks of the two men
"Okay. Ruis, Baker - our chariot awaits. Let's go
give the good news to
the rest of the men." ordered Anderson ushering his
two men towards the
"Zeke . . ." called Goldman. Zeke turned to face him,
two look at each other for a long moment in
"You'd have done it for me." said Zeke to the unspoken
He turned and heads out to the chopper.