Chapter 053

Home 2 Chapter 053

Copyright 2013 Banzai Ben and Amazing Anastasia

 

Present - Ben and Destiny - At the cabin in the bunker

 

With the fucking drone eliminated by my GPS jammer, I knew we had all of today to work on my guerilla tactics without having to worry about the drone giving us shit. The first thing I need to do is to implement spectrum warfare and jam the hell out of the greenies communications. I connect my electronic warfare module using the same perimeter wires as an antenna, turn the unit on and wait for the boot up procedure.

 

Destiny is watching and comments, "Ben, it seems to take about as long as a computer to start."

 

I realize how astute she is and answer, "That's because it is a computer. It's actually a communications computer which will constantly scan for signals and then block them." I look at her and remark, "Let's see if I got my money's worth."

 

I flip the switch to activate the electronic warfare module, the light switches to green and the communications channels we were listening to go totally dead.

 

I pull out my burner cell phone, look at it and verify I have no signal. I ask Destiny, "Do you have a mobile phone?"

 

She appears to enter one of her trances, returns to our bunker reality and answers, "Ben, I do not need to check my mobile phone and all communications are disabled, even satellite."

 

Hell, she's more of an asset than I ever dreamed she would be. I look at her and say, "Well, now that they can't communicate, it's time for us to 'cry havoc and slip the dogs of war.'"

 

Destiny laughs and replies…

 

Ben uses one of my favorite quotes. I wonder where he heard it so I ask him, "Do you know that quote from Shakespeare or Star Trek?"

 

Ben smiles at me and answers, "Both of course: Marc Anthony uttered it in Shakespeare's play Julius Caesar, act three - scene one to encourage revenge on the assassins of Caesar when he said:

Cry 'Havoc,' and let slip the dogs of war;
That this foul deed shall smell above the earth
With carrion men, groaning for burial."

 

I can tell he's not finished so I wait and he continues, "And it was used in Star Trek VI when General Chang said, 'Cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war'."

 

I am surprised since I assumed he recognized it from Star Trek so I comment, "I did not know Marines were so well read."

 

He smiles at me and replies, "There are many things about the Marines most people do not understand."

 

I smile and use another of my favorites, "Understanding is the beginning of wisdom."

 

Ben glares at me and corrects my usage. "If you are going to use quotes, especially from the Bible, use them correctly. You should have said, 'the fear of the Lord is where wisdom begins'. This is from Proverbs 9:10."

 

I am shocked at his level of knowledge and he is certainly not the 'jarhead' I believed him to be. I stand corrected and confess, "Sorry Ben, next time I will not use an incorrect quote. So what's on the agenda for today?"

 

He continues working on something with our little tabasco bottles from last night and this morning then he answers. Once he described his plans I wished I had not asked…


Present - Mike - At the cabin

 

I get my two new wheelchairs set up to my liking (however not perfectly) and head to Ben's cabin site. I was pissed as hell because last night's operation ended up being a huge Mongolian Cluster Fuck. The fucking drone didn't track Ben and his mystery accomplice leaving the area, it tracked Stacy Summers and Samantha Stevens. I guess one of them decided it wasn't safe to sleep in their tents in the compound so they decided to spend the night under the stars - this smacked of Ben's training so I was sure it was Stacy’s decision. I planned on interviewing the hell out of her today.

 

The Chinook approaches the cabin and the pilot complains, "Shit! We've lost the GPS signal!"

 

Like that's any big fucking deal so I state the obvious, "Well you sure the fuck don't need that to land do you?"

 

He replies, "Of course not since I can still use compass headings to guide us to the LZ."

 

I get a phone call, look at the number and note it's the commander from Creech. I answer, "Commander, please tell me you have some good news."

 

He complains like a little girl, "Fuck no it's not good news! We lost the GPS signal and because of that the drone crashed!"

 

I am angry as hell and yell, "What the fuck! You're telling me your drone needs a GPS signal to be able to fly and that something disrupted that signal and caused your drone to crash? What sort of piece of shit equipment is it that needs a GSP signal to survive?"

 

The commander pulls some security bullshit on me and says, "Sir, this technology cannot be discussed over the phone lines. Perhaps you would like to setup a secure communications channel with us. However unless the GPS signal is restored to the area, we will not be able to provide drone support of your mission."

 

The pilot heard my half of the conversation and was able to interpolate what transpired with the drone. He derisively laughs and remarks, "Hell those fucking PFYs running the drones keep telling us real pilots how they are going to replace us. There's no way in hell that will ever happen. Just think Sir, if you were in a drone helicopter it would have crashed with you onboard."

 

I agree with him, drones will never totally replace pilots but he used a term I didn't recognize so I comment and then ask a question, "I agree with you, there will always be a need for real pilots. But what the hell is a PFY?"

 

The Chinook pilot laughs and replies, "Hell I guess you've never been in the Creech 'pilot' (and I use the term pilot very loosely) room. They have a bunch of wet behind the ears PFYs - Pimply Faced Youths 'flying' and again I use the term flying very loosely. Hell to them it's a big fucking government video game and to be truthful with you the resolution is so poor on the drone's cameras they can't really see shit on them. Hell more than half the time when they take out a target they really aren't sure it's the right damn target."

 

The sarcasm when he called them pilots and talked about them flying is more than obvious, it is blatant. Hell I guess I don't blame him, I'm sure the PFY's, as he called them, made sure to tell him how they were going to replace him someday. However the information about the quality of the video on the drones was news to me, especially since our president has been using them in his own private wars. It made me wonder if all the reports I'd heard about collateral damage from the drones were more accurate than the government lead us to believe.

 

Because we have a real pilot and don't need GPS to fly, we safely land. The next thing I know my cell phone goes dead. I look at it and see no signal. The Chinook pilot further complains, "Some fucker has jammed all the communications in this entire AO."

 

So far this pilot has been a wealth of information so I order, "Please elaborate."

 

The pilot replies, "Well sir, we have lost all GPS, all radio communications and probably even all satellite communications. Excuse me Sir, I don't know much about the tangos you are looking for but is one of them an EW expert?"

 

Shit Ben is resourceful but I hadn’t thought he was an expert on Electronic Warfare so I further question, "Is there any way to override the jamming and get intel on this area?"

 

The pilot laughs and states, "Hey, I'm just a pilot so this is way beyond my pay grade. You really need to talk to your communications specialists and see if they have any ideas. All that I know is that any mission will be seriously hampered without the comms or GPS."

 

I was pissed as hell when I left the chopper. How in the hell did Ben plan for his reprieve from the drone and then how did he accomplish the jamming of the communications systems?

 

I note the captain already has the enemy combatants (Marines) out of the prison tent this morning. However things don't even look right with them so I roll toward the captain.

 

As I approach I realize what the problem is: The enemy combatants are moving as slow as hell. I roll up to the captain to inquire, however I am not prepared for what happens next…

 

Present - Jack - At the cabin

 

I see the bastard Mike get out of the Chinook as it lands. I wish to hell it had crashed like the fucking drone. How Banzai pulled off that piece of magic, I sure as hell don't know but if I survive this cluster fuck I plan on asking him about it. Killing a drone in such a spectacular manner is a real piece of work.

 

Masha seriously cautions me as I watch Mike taking too much of an interest in us. She says, "Jack my love, use your brain and remember the passive-aggressive techniques we mentioned."

 

I smile at Masha, hold her hand and promise, "Don't worry my love, I can bullshit with the best of them."

 

Mike begins to roll toward the captain. I strategically move to intercept the wheelchair and then Mike asks, "Captain, what the hell is wrong with the enemy combatants today?"

 

I make up a hell of a lie and reply, "Mike, all of us are stiff as hell. Shit what did you expect? We're old and the fucking tent was cold as hell last night." Then I added some more fuel to my lie, "Plus all we got to eat was cold MREs - you're fucking lucky no one died last night."

 

I want to throttle Mike when the bastard laughs his answer, "Too bad you all didn't die last night, you are just collateral damage as far as I'm concerned."

 

I make a move toward Mike but Masha restrains me and whispers in my ear, "Jack, I have a vocal recorder and captured his foolish statement. Please restrain yourself for our daughter."

 

Masha decides to deflect his question, "Mike, do you have any news about Ivan our son?"

 

Mike continues his retched abuse and states, "Hell, as far as I'm concerned he's collateral damage too and the sooner he dies the better."

 

It's my turn to restrain Masha then some 'friends' of ours run up…

 

Present - Stacy and Samantha - At the cabin

 

This has been a busy as hell morning and we haven't even had breakfast. We start by checking on the progress of getting access into the tunnels. The engineer assures us we should have access by sometime mid-morning. Then the damn drone that gave us shit last night loses control and crashes (thank God), next a Chinook helicopter lands. We see Mike exit it and head toward the prisoner Marines. I look at Samantha and state, "We need to get our asses over to the Marines ASAP."

 

We hightail it over there with our two security guards, get there and I can tell that both Jack and Masha have had a hell of a bad time - my assumption is from Mike.

 

I make sure my video glasses are operating, run up and announce, "Good news Jack and Masha, the engineer thinks we will have access into the tunnels by mid-morning."

 

Jack smiles and says, "Thanks Stacy I owe you one."

 

Masha adds, "Yes Stacy that's the best news I've heard this morning. With my pregnancy I had a terrible night last night and I couldn't get warm enough in our tent."

 

Samantha takes the opening and questions, "Masha, we didn't know you are pregnant." She turns toward Mike and questions, "Mike, what are you doing about this."

 

Mike dismissively waves his hand and states, "Masha is an enemy combatant so even though she's pregnant she will not get special treatment."

 

Then he gleefully rubs his hands together and continues, "So, you will have access to the tunnels soon. That's great news because we will take everyone in the tunnels into custody, especially Jennifer Donaldson because she is the ringleader of this band of terrorists."

 

Shit, this isn't what I planned for when I decided to rescue Jennifer from the tunnels. This really messes up my plan of becoming her 'friend' in hopes of getting close to Ben again. I am pissed as hell as I counter, "Mike, you know that the Marines and especially Jennifer Donaldson are not terrorists, so why do you continue to perpetrate this lie."

 

Mike ignores my question and then shocks me when he asks, "So just what were you and Samantha doing outside your compound last night?"

 

Samantha bails me out when she says…

 

I can't believe this son of a bitch is not doing something for Masha - he really is an evil bastard. He gives Stacy shit about not staying in our tents last night so I use one of my best reporter tools and I lie to him, "Mike, Stacy and I wanted to look at the stars last night."

 

Mike looks at me, looks back at Stacy and comments, "Well sleeping somewhere that you aren't expected to sleep sure the hell sounds like something Ben Blaine would have taught you."

 

Stacy smiles at him and answers, "Mike, I have no idea what you're talking about."

 

The captain really messes things up when he adds, "Sir, I questioned them last night on the way back to the tent to see if they would help us find Ben and Stacy told me to go fuck myself."

 

Mike continues to focus on Stacy and says, "You know that borders on aiding and abetting the enemy. I could throw you in with the rest of the prisoners."

 

Stacy squats so she can look him in the eyes and threatens, "Mike, if you did that the first phone call going out would be to the white house."

 

Mike laughs and informs me, "I guess you haven't checked your phones, your boyfriend, Ben Blaine has disabled all communications in the area."

 

He turns toward the captain and orders, "Captain, Ms. Summers needs to be added to the ranks of the enemy combatants."

 

The Captain has an amazed look on his face and questions, "Sir, are you sure?"

 

Mike glares at him and threatens, "Captain, the next time you question one of my orders, you will also be added to the ranks of the enemy combatants. Now get Ms. Summers into shackles like the rest of them."

 

Stacy threatens retaliation, "Mike, you will pay for this."

 

He laughs at her and says, "I doubt that. Now Ms. Stevens do you wish to join your friend Ms. Summers?"

 

Stacy shakes her head, I understand what she wants me to do so I answer, "No Sir and I don't know anything about Ben Blaine."

 

Mike waves his hand and says, "Ms. Stevens, if I knew otherwise you would be shackled with Ms. Summers. Now I need to get some of my men to the tunnel rescue site so we can make sure to apprehend Jennifer Donaldson and all the other enemy combatants in the tunnels."

 

I take off to tell Bill what has happened to Stacy, then I want to make another stop by the medical tent.

 

Present - Jens - In the equipment room

 

I just swore up a blue storm about getting shot in the foot. Maria starts to answer me when we hear Ivan interrupt and complain, "Ms. Donaldduckson use so many bad words my ears feel like fire. After all I hear I not sure you good woman enough for Unca Ben."

 

I remember when there was a time I didn't swear so much - a much happier time and I feel really bad about the words I used in front of Ivan. I look at Ivan and apologize, "Ivan, I'm very sorry I lost control and used all those bad words. There was a time when I was like you and never used bad words." Then I remember something, "But doesn't your papa occasionally use bad words?"

 

Ivan appears to think for several seconds and admits, "Yes Donaldduckson lady, when he hit big finger with hammer he use very many bad words - some worse than yours. I think you may be right and correct, I will pray for you like I pray for Papa."

 

Maria commands, "Bernie, get Ivan away from here so we can clean up Jennifer and change her clothes."

 

I knew she really wanted him out of her hair but it was fine with me because I didn't want to deal with her and Ivan right now. Maria is poking and prodding my foot and I want to swear up a blue storm again because it hurts like hell. But I bite my tongue and simply ask Maria, "How bad is my foot?"

 

Maria smiles at me and assures, "Jennifer you must be the luckiest person I know because the 5.56 bullet passed between your metatarsals without breaking them. So all you have are soft tissue and ligament injuries. However I will need to irrigate the hell out of the wound to remove any of your boot material. If I skip this step you could get an infection."

 

I bite my lip and ask, "I bet it's going to hurt?"

 

Liz looks at Maria and asks…

 

Present - Liz - In the equipment room

 

Maria is a damn good medic. Hell, she's almost a field surgeon, but her patient skills are lacking - no that's not right, they are basically non-existent. It's very obvious to me that Jens is in extreme pain, both physical and mental (why the hell isn't Ben fucking connecting with her now when she needs him the most? I'm going to kick his ass when Jens catches him!), I diplomatically ask, "Maria, it's going to hurt when we change Jen's clothes and also when you irrigate her foot. Perhaps it might be a good idea to give her something strong for pain first?"

 

I know I asked the correct way this time when Maria thinks for a moment, looks at Jens and questions, "On a scale of one to ten what is your level of pain?"

 

Jens wisely asks, "That depends on the range of the scale, so define it for me and I will tell you."

 

I can tell Maria is annoyed as she sighs, "One is no pain at all and ten would be your whole body engulfed in flames."

 

Jens replies, "Thank you for the definition, I never know what to tell doctors when they ask that question because they have so many different descriptors. I am a solid seven and possibly an eight."

 

Maria glares at Jens showing her obvious annoyance (one more example of her poor 'bedside manner') and complains, "Jens, you need to tell me things like this."

 

Jens being her normal goofy-self sasses, "Hey Maria, I have a pain level of at least seven and possibly eight. Now are you happy?"

 

Maria continues with her nasty attitude and says, "Yes Princess Boss, I am happy you finally decided to tell me that you're in extreme pain. Now would you like to continue to suffer or would you like a shot of morphine?"

 

Jens answers much too quickly and I wonder why…

 

Present - Jens - In the equipment room

 

Maria with Liz's help finally realizes that I'm in extreme pain. She offers me a shot of morphine and it reminds me of my shots when I got the burns so I quickly answer, "Yes please give me as large of a dose of morphine as you can."

 

Yes, I remember those times when the morphine helped me - not only with the pain from the burns, it helped me with my ballet practices and even the terrible time I had with Evelyn. Yes, though I am ashamed to admit it, I became addicted to it - but I really need it now because I'm in pain and I long for the warm embrace of morphine which removes the pain.

 

Maria gives me a quizzical look and asks, "Jens have you ever been on morphine before?"

 

Shit, if I tell her she probably won't give me any, however with all the injuries I've had I'm not sure she will believe me if I tell her no. I go with a partial truth, "Yes, I was on it when I was in Germany."

 

Maria continues to annoy me with her questions, "Tell me, did you get addicted to it?"

 

I decide to counter-attack, "Maria what the he…" I remember Ivan and change my words, "What the heck do you think I am? Some sort of junkie?"

 

Maria looks me in the eyes and responds, "No, but I've seen many very strong soldiers get addicted to morphine after a combat injury. I don't want to fix these problems for you and start new or renew old ones."

 

I decide to stand my ground and say, "Well, I'm not going to let you clean me up and change my clothes or irrigate my foot unless I'm given something for pain first."

 

Maria finally relents and gives me a large injection. I start feeling it wash over my body when - OH HELL NO NOT NOW!!!

 

Present - Mira - At the cash

 

I am occulating the Marines which are still being held captive by Mike. I am shocked as Stacy Summers is additionally taken into custody and placed in shackles with the rest of the Marines, I mentally question what she did to elicit the ire of Mike. Unfortunately, Samantha Stevens does not accompany her into custody. In fact she leaves for a short time, heads to the tunnel rescue area and then I can not believe it as she locomotivates toward the CASH tent. The absolute final action I would wish is a discourse with her, especially after she insulted me by obviously flirting with my brother! My brother is much too good for the likes of her.

 

She approaches and I caution, "Please terminate action of the video glasses."

 

I affirm that she taps the right side of the video glasses disabling the recording. I stand and confront her, "Alexi stood watch last night and is unavailable for your continued flirting distractions." Then I add with the greatest sarcasm I can muster, "So you may depart because your presence here is not desired."

 

Samantha amazingly answers...

 

Present - Samantha - At the CASH

 

Wow! Stacy was right that I inadvertently seriously annoyed Mira and now I need to try to rectify my mistake. Mira stands defiant, every muscle in her body is tense and reminds me of a snake prepared to strike. I apologize, "Mira, I am very sorry that my flirting with Alexi annoyed you to such a great extent. It is a bad habit of mine which I hope you can forgive and forget."

 

I watch Mira's body language and note that she relaxes slightly as she replies, "Your apology is accepted but what is the purpose of your continued presence here?"

 

I proceed with my question, "Mira, have you considered why there are no others in this hospital besides the four of you?"

 

Then Mira gives me a wonderful revelation, "There is nothing to consider since the other Marines that were wounded were transported out of the area. This CASH is specifically for the Special Forces."

 

This makes me wonder why Alexi didn't know or provide me with this information - I will need to question him about this later.

 

I breath and audible sigh of relief and state, "That's great news, I was concerned that Mike had let them die."

 

She surprises me with her next question, "Samantha, what did Stacy do to annoy Mike which caused her be added to the ranks of the enemy combatants?"

 

Shit, I need a good lie because I can't tell Mira the real reason because then she would know about Stacy's and Ben's time together.

 

I lie, "She confronted Mike about the poor treatment of Masha last night, especially since Masha is pregnant."

 

I detect an interesting change in Mira's face when I provide that information and was going to ask her why when we heard some gunfire. I declared, "I need to go and see what is happening."

 

Present - Zarika and Yasmeen - Escape

 

I am driving in the right lane of a huge road while cars are flying past me at a great rate of speed. Each one that passes me scares me and I wiggle the wheel a little. My action further irritates the other drivers and they honk as the pass me. I quickly glance at Yasmeen and she looks white like a sheet. I question, "Yasmeen do you think you could drive any better than I?"

 

She shakes her head and answers, "No way Zarika! You are doing an excellent job because I did not know cars could go this fast."

 

I slowly become accustomed to the traffic and I am able to increase my speed and ignore the cars as they pass me."

 

Then something unexpected happens...

 

Present - Thom, Inga and Byron - It's raining hell on the drug lord

 

Thank God I finally find Inga! She's unconscious and lying face down in the water. I flip her over, put my arm under her neck and swim toward the shore. Once it's shallow enough for me to stand, I throw her over my shoulder and haul ass for dry land. I get to the shoreline, put her on her back and begin to check for a pulse (which she has) but discover she's not breathing. I roll her on her side, slap the hell out of her back which forces her to cough like crazy spraying water out of her mouth and nose.

 

She looks up at me and weakly gasps, "Thom, you saved my life."

 

I reply, "Yeah, this makes us even."

 

The celebration is short lived because someone starts firing at us. I swear, "Shit, all I have is my pistol."

 

Inga says, "And I lost my rifle in the water."

 

I pull my pistol, begin returning fire when Byron's fifty begins to bark...

 

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