Chapter 076

Home 2 Chapter 076

Copyright 2014 Banzai Ben and Amazing Anastasia


Flashback – Ben – Leaving Moscow


My meal began to bubble, I was almost ready to eat when I got a surprise visitor. A Russian Grey wolf began to approach the back of my козел where I setup the stove and started cooking my breakfast - I assumed she was attracted by the smell of my food cooking. I knew the food cooking had my attention because my stomach growled like crazy. The wolf sat down, about 15 meters from me, cocked her head and gave me a comical as hell look. I could only assume she was confused by the noise my stomach was making. I looked at all the damn food in my ration for the day and knew that I wouldn't eat all of it so I figured what the hell. First I opened the nasty salted dried fish sticks (I never could acquire a taste for them not even after I had many beers) which the Russians ate like fucking candy canes. I tossed one at her, she snapped it out of the air and swallowed it with one gulp. This was entertaining as hell so I tossed more of them, this time making sure not to throw them right at her. She caught all of them like an expert. There weren't many of them so it didn't last for long and she still looked hungry.


I looked at my rations and decided I didn't want the goulash with potatoes because potatoes weren't my favorite food unless they were French fries. I loosened one corner of the tin, tossed it to her and she easily caught it. She demolished the damn tin as she got to the goulash. I was concerned she might eat the tin but she finally spit it out then nosed it around.  I knew there was no way in hell I was going to eat the gloopy mess they called gelled pork, hell I even hated the кхолодэ'ц (kholodets - Russian gelled meat made using gelatin). So again I loosened the corner on it and tossed it to her. She caught it and I was surprised as hell when she spit it out. I laughed like hell and said aloud, "I guess I'm not the only one that doesn't like gelled pork." She whined in response and I continued laughing.


My chicken and rice was ready and I closed up the melted cheese because I planned to save the rest of it for later. And of course ran into the one big problem with the Russian officer rations: There were no good ways to close things up and save them for later. It wasn't bad living out of the back of my Козел but the rations had a bad tendency to open up or leak and make a hell of a mess in a pack. The only way to fix it was to eat all of whatever you opened. Hell if they had included some plastic bags it would have helped. I set it back in the tray with the rest of the food, put my canteen cup on the stove to heat the water for my drink mix and began to eat my chicken and rice. It wasn't half bad but it sure could have used a bit of wine and butter. Yuri knew I used those ingredients to make the meals better so I would need to search the back of the козел later to see if he remembered to include those.


The whole time the wolf continued to watch me, it was fucking strange like she was trying to tell me something. I was finished with my chicken and rice, tossed her the empty tin which she caught then began to lick the hell out of it. I complained, "Well if you don't want the gelled pork you can't be that hungry.


The water was boiling in my canteen cup, I added the drink mix to it, blew on it some to cool it down and slowly drank it as I continued to watch the wolf. It was the closest I had ever been to a wolf because we didn't have them in the Rocky Mountains anymore. I took a couple steps toward her to see what she would do - she stood up and began to back away from me while still watching me. I finished my drink mix, stood up stretched and yawned and I swear the damn wolf yawned with me. I decided to take a nap before I took care of what I came here to do. I slid the meal tray back into the Mylar bag, set the stove on the ground at the back of my козел to cool, closed and locked the back of my козел, crawled into the driver's seat, reclined it as much as I could and drifted off...


Flashback – Major M – at the Moscow hospital


Before I left the hospital, I decided to check on Sergeant Blaine's records because I wouldn't put it past him and Sergeant Reynolds to try to pull a fast one on me. So I hauled my ass and my bags to the hospital records department and ran into a problem since no one there spoke enough English to understand me and I still didn't speak enough Russian to make them understand what I wanted. I gave up on the effort and decided it would be better if I went to my hotel, dropped off my bags and asked them if they knew of an interpreter I could hire.


I hauled my ass and my bags out the front of the hospital, hailed a cab, tossed my big bag in the trunk and gave the driver a card with the hotel's address on it. We started toward my hotel and once again ran into another fucking Moscow traffic jam. I was tired as hell and wanted to get to my hotel so I pulled out some money waved it in the air so the driver could see it in the mirror and ordered, "Hotel as fast as you can."


I guess he understood what I meant by my actions and words, but I was shocked when the fucking cab driver jumped the cab onto the fucking sidewalk and floored it. The cab leapt ahead like a rocket taking off, the ever present pedestrians on the sidewalk dodged for their lives and shouted what I could only assume were vulgarities at us. I tried to yell at him to stop but I guess he didn't understand and drove in an even more extreme and haphazard manner. I felt sorry for one old woman who dropped her bags because he ran the bags the fuck over.


I had enough, closed my eyes and hoped like hell he didn't kill someone because I was sure I would somehow be blamed for it. After about fifteen minutes of sheer terror, the cab stopped, the driver said something, I opened my eyes and we were at the hotel, albeit on the sidewalk in front of the hotel. I tossed the crazy assed driver the money I waved, we both exited the taxi, he opened the trunk and a young man came and took my bag. I was glad I didn't have to carry the fucking big bag anymore until the fucker took off running down the sidewalk with my big bag. I yelled, "Hey, I thought you were with the hotel!" It was too late since the young thief and my big bag were gone. Thank God I still had my carry-on bag with my computer; if I had lost that I was sure the Old Man would have shipped my ass back to the boney bitch and Thule.


Another man come out of the hotel, looked at me and said something in Russian. I stared at him and complained, "Doesn't anyone in the fucking country speak English?"


He beat himself on the chest like a fucking gorilla and proudly announced, "I speak fucking good English, where is your bag?"


I pointed down the sidewalk and answered, "Some fucking hoodlum took it."


He proudly beat his chest again and announced, "Yes fucking hoodlums very bad around here, however for enough dollars I might get bag back."


I nodded my head and answered, "That would be very good, but first I want to get to my room and then I was wondering if you know of an interpreter for hire."


I couldn't believe it when he beat his chest again like a fucking gorilla (I assumed it must have been some sort of fucking Russian tradition I didn't know about) and answered, "Yes, I take you to your room so you rest then I look for bag and interpreter."


Thank god there wasn't a problem with the check-in, I figured this being Russia it would be some sort of Mongolian Cluster Fuck but instead it went smoothly. The bellhop took me up to my room, opened the door, turned to me, beat on his fucking chest again and questioned, "Da! Room is nice?"


I had seen better, but compared to the hell hole in Thule I'd just escaped from, this was paradise. I mimicked the bellhop, beat on my chest and said, "Da, room is nice."


He laughed and said, "Da, we teach to speak Russian soon." Then he held out his hand, I knew what he wanted so I gave him a couple bucks. For once he didn't beat on his chest, he smiled and said, "I go to find bag and interpreter."


Once I was sure he left, I double locked the door, opened my computer bag, pulled out my TSCM1 scanner and swept the room for bugs. Just as I assumed, it vibrated in my hand so much it reminded me of the buzz of the boney bitch's vibrator - this room had the hell bugged out of it! I looked closer, figured out where the cameras were and strategically moved the clothes tree to block the video.


1 TSCM – Technical Surveillance Counter Measures – a scanner to detect audio or video bugs in a room. It vibrates when it locates a bug so it doesn't alert the persons who planted the bugs.


I sat down the chair to rest and to figure out what the hell I was going to tell the Old Man about fucking Sergeant Blaine going AWOL. I must have fallen asleep because the next thing I knew a knock on the door woke me up. I rose out of my chair, walked to the door and demanded, "Who the hell is there."


The answer came from a woman's voice, "You needed an interpreter?"


I opened the door and was shocked! There stood one of the most beautiful women I had ever seen. I needed to give the fucking bellhop a hell of a tip! I sure hoped like hell she could speak English so I invited her in. She sat at the table across from me, twirled her hair and we began to talk…


Flashback – Masha – In Moscow


I secretly followed the Major to the hospital records department where because of his lack of skill in the Russian language he was stymied. However, it did give me a great idea. I called the office and put my plan in motion.


Then I tried to call my Jack but unlike him, he didn't answer. I pondered what could cause his lack of response but couldn't discern the reason. I stopped by Ben's room, found Tatiana was still there and still in a state of extreme depression. I decided I would tell her about my plan with the Major in hopes it would ameliorate her depression. I said, "Tatiana, would you like to know our plans for the Major?"


When she turned to me, I could tell she had cried more and she sadly questioned, "Will your plans keep Ben from going to a Siberian Gulag?"


I smiled and tried my best to paint a rose colored picture, "That is my plan because we both know if Ben goes to a Siberian Gulag, Jack will accompany him. The Major has less skill in the Russian language than Jack so I decided we would use Victoria as an interpreter for him."


Tatiana shuddered but then smiled and answered, "I am glad I did not get that assignment - the thought of working under the Major is revolting."


I continued, "Yes, I am sure the Major probably has her clothes off by now and is 'interviewing' her. But she is good at her job and will get every bit of information from the Major without him realizing it. With that information we can assure that neither of our men ends up in a Siberian Gulag."


Tatiana finally smiled and suggested, "Perhaps we could contrive a way for the Major to be sent to a Siberian Gulag."


I laughed and then informed Tatiana about how General Donaldson had assigned the Major to the same room in Thule as Colonel Maggie and even relayed some of the stories we had received. She looked much happier so I finished with, "If we are very good and extremely lucky, General Donaldson will assign the Major to Thule again with Colonel Maggie. Now I need to head to my apartment and pick up some food to make Jack's salad for tonight."


Tatiana looked at me and I was surprised when she questioned, "I wager you called Jack today and he didn't answer?"


I gave her a confused look, wondered if she had become a mind reader and answered, "Yes I did, but how did you know that?"


Tatiana answered, "Masha, I tried to make you understand and I failed. If Jack is taking Ben's place in training today, he is in for nothing short of hades. Ben told me about what they did to him before we met and before he was wounded; it bordered on outright abuse. Jack will need much more than a salad to eat for dinner tonight: He will need a full meal with soup, meat and potatoes."


I shook my head and questioned, "Tatiana are you certain of this?"


Tatiana crossed her heart and answered, "Yes Masha, he will be very sore tonight and even worse tomorrow. Take this and give it to him tonight and another dose in the morning."


I looked at the pills, realized they were Vicodin and questioned again, "You are certain of this?"


Tatiana nodded her head closed my hands over the Vicodin and answered, "Yes Masha, Jack will have travelled through a crucible today."


I took the pills, left the hospital and decided this time I needed to listen to Tatiana. So I stopped by the local market on the way home, purchased more food than I had ever before purchased and rushed home to prepare dinner before Jack arrived…


Flashback – Jack – In Moscow


Son of a fucking bitch! My ass was dragging nine ways to Sunday. I assumed that I would be training with my fucking Spetsnaz team like I had when Banzai was here and I certainly made an ass out of me. Hell when Banzai was here it was virtually a walk in the park compared to today. I complained to Yuri, "You mother fuckers almost killed me today with the training."


He laughed and answered, "Jack, I warned you that you were taking Ben's place in the training. We didn't do anything to you that Ben had not already endured."


I continued my complaints, "I never saw you do any of this to Banzai when I trained with you before."


He continued his laughter and replied, "Jack my friend, when you trained with us we took it easy on you because Ben told us he would kick our asses again if we did not. However as you would say when the кошка (koshka – cat) is away the мышь (mish' – mouse) will play."


I took me a second to figure out the Russian then I empirically stated, "I am going to kick Banzai's ass when he comes back. By the way do you have any idea how he left the hospital and where the hell he went?"


Yuri translated what I said to the rest of the men and they all laughed, I complained, "What the hell is so damn funny!"


Yuri continued his annoying as hell fucking laughter and answered, "Jack, none of us can 'kick Ben's ass' so how do you propose to do what we cannot?"


I grinned at him and replied, "Because I'm an older and a sneakier than hell fucker."


Yuri translated that to the other men and they had another round of laughter at my expense. Then one of the men interrupted the joke when he said something to Yuri. Yuri replied, " Да, Да." Then he looked at me and said, "Jack, you wanting to kick Ben's ass has given us an idea. If you have any hope of performing such a mission then we need to practice full contact martial arts immediately and daily."


I groaned and asked, "What if I refuse?"


Yuri looked at me and answered, "Then your ass will be kicked many times over."


I got a slight reprieve because it took some time to get into the protective gear for the full contact martial arts, but the delay was too short. The training started and the next thing I knew I was waking up with Yuri laughing at me.


I questioned, "What the hell happened?"


Yuri checked my eyes and stated, "Jack, your ass was kicked and you passed out." Then he said something in Russian. The medic came over, checked me over and talked with Yuri. I asked, "Well what the fuck did he say?"


Yuri answered, "Jack, you did a good job today but you need to go to home your future wife, have a great dinner and rest up for tomorrow."


I had a great idea and answered, "Well Yuri I hate to spoil your day, but I will need to meet with Major Mike tomorrow."


Yuri annoyed the hell out of me when he laughed and shot down my plan, "Jack, do not worry about the Major, he has many meetings scheduled tomorrow with our officers. They want to know what he did to cause Ben to leave without permission."


That reminded me so I asked again, "You never did tell me what you know about Banzai leaving."


Yuri looked serious as he said, "Jack, all we know is what the hospital told us. Ben left over his concerns of your Major returning. We have no idea how he left the hospital because the last information we received was that he could not walk."


I wasn't so sure that Yuri didn't lie to me but I was glad as hell to be done with the torture for today. I asked, "So how the hell am I getting back to Masha's apartment?"


Yuri gave me and evil grin and answered, "Jack, that is an excellent question. Because of the terrible traffic in Moscow we are running back to our barracks and will drop you at your future wife's apartment on the way."


I couldn't fucking believe it, more running after all the shit we did today. I knew better than to complain anymore because I didn't want Yuri to make us double-time it (like he did earlier when I complained about the running). Thank God this time it was an easy trot.


I noticed the traffic jams on the streets we ran along and realized Yuri was right, if I had taken a taxi I would have never gotten home. However the most surprising part of the run, was how the Moscow residents reacted to us: When they heard us coming, they lined both sides of the sidewalk and clapped and cheered as we ran between them. It was nice to be treated like the heroes we were unlike how I was used to being treated in America. One woman even handed a bottle of vodka to Yuri who unscrewed the top, took a big drink and passed it back. I was thankful for it when it hit my hand and took such a big swig it made me cough. The man behind me clapped me on the back and I passed the bottle to him.


I recognized the street that Masha's apartment was on then Yuri said something in Russian. I figured out it was double-time when the others ran past me and somehow I found the energy to keep up with the younger farts. We finally stopped in front of the entrance to Masha's apartment where a full bottle of vodka appeared as if by magic. Yuri handed it to me and said, "Jack, we are satisfied with your work today. Take this bottle of vodka and finish it all tonight, it will help you be prepared for more of the same tomorrow. Now give us your weapon and your pack."


I was glad to be through carrying the AK and the pack and gave them to one of the men. I barely made it up the stairs to Masha's apartment without crawling but had to stop several times to fortify myself with swigs from the vodka. I rang the buzzer, Masha opened the door and…


Flashback – Tatiana – In Moscow


Masha's talk earlier did help me to feel better, especially when she told me about the terrible time the Major had in Thule. I finished cleaning Ben's empty room, gathered the scrubs he wore in the hospital (he refused to wear a gown because it let his 'ass hang out for all to see') and decided to take them home with me because they smelled like Ben and I really missed him. Even though Masha tried to convince me that Ben’s leaving wasn't my fault, I still felt that if I had not lied to him, he would not have left.


It was a long, slow and lonely trip home for me tonight; the lights of Moscow seemed so much dimmer than yesterday and then a slight snow began to fall. I sure hoped that wherever Ben was he was warm…


Flashback – Jennifer – At the military hospital


I tried to sleep but I couldn't because my burns hurt really bad. Then I realized that with all that happened I hadn't had any pain medication in a very long time. DOH no wonder I hurt!


I pushed the call button, my night nurse came in and I asked, "My burns hurt very badly, could I get something for pain?"


She smiled at me and answered, "Let me check your chart for the last time you were medicated and I will see if I can bring you something."


I anxiously waited until she came back and informed me, "Sorry Jennifer, but it says you received your pain medication two hours ago so we need to wait for another two hours before we can give you more."


I looked at my watch then determined something wasn't right since I knew it had been a lot more than two hours since my last pain medication. I wanted to complain, but decided to first consider what happened. So instead I smiled and answered, "Sorry, it must be my fault. I must have gotten the time confused."


She answered, "Don't worry that happens all the time. I will bring you your medication in two hours."


She left but I knew something wasn't right…


Flashback – Glen – Going home from the military hospital


What a hell of a day! It wasn't often that I got outplayed but I sure felt that that happened today. That fucking nurse of Jennifer's was a RPITA! I knew I couldn't do anything to her right now, but someday and someway she would pay for all that she did to my family. The final straw was when she still wanted Jennifer to stay with her for two months - the only redeeming part of that was knowing how Jennifer was going to make her life hell. I grinned, stopped by the BX and picked up the item that Jennifer requested. I never in my life dreamed I would ever purchase one of these for Jennifer. Then I wondered if she would understand how it fit? Oh well, tomorrow I would find out…


Flashback – Alexi – At home


I was bored because 'father' had not discovered my new ruse of burying things around the house. Instead he was in 'their' room hiding while Chowmein still hid under the television stand. I considered what I could do next to irritate my parents and came up with a wonderful idea.


I sat up on my haunches like the dog I was portraying, tipped my head back and started off with a low guttural howl, then gradually increased the volume. Once I finished I repeated it until 'father' once again came out of 'their' room and yelled, "Alexi, stop that infernal racket!"


I stopped, whimpered again like the dog I was emulating and lay back down on the rug. With the door being opened to 'their' room, Chowmein took the opportunity to leave her hidey hole. She tried to stealthily slip past me but I saw her, jumped up on all fours and bounded after her. She hissed and spat at me but didn't run which was a mistake. I got up to her, reached out and grabbed her by the tail. She let out a yowl which actually frightened me and then tried her best to reach and scratch me. But I knew better and kept a tight hold on her tail. She continued to yowl like a banshee and tried to reach around and scratch and bite me, but I kept tight hold on her tail and pulled so she couldn't harm me.


Then next thing I knew, I felt a sharp whack on the top of my head! I was so shocked I let loose of Chowmein's tail and she dashed into my 'parents' room. I looked and saw 'mother' with a rolled up magazine in her hand, she… she… she had actually struck me! She drew back her arm again but I knew what was coming so I ran into my room with her in pursuit as she yelled, "Alexi, if you want to act like a dog get back here so I can punish you like a dog." I beat her into my room, crawled under my bed and growled at her.


'Mother' kneeled down looked under the bed, shook the rolled up magazine at me and demanded, "Alexi get out here and take your punishment for hurting Chowmein."


I growled and snapped at her, then I came up with an even better idea and…


Flashback – Mira and Ira – in Israel


After Akhmed the Obese posed his solution to the conundrum of our Primary Baker Street Irregular assaulting us with the bb-gun of retribution, I looked at Dr. Watson and questioned, "Dr. Watson could my assumption of our Primary Baker Street Irregular's hormonal balance again becoming unbalanced be flawed?"


Dr. Watson infuriated me when she replied, "Sherlock, your deduction is most certainly seriously flawed because you have concentrated your analysis on the one act of using the bb-gun of retribution against our corporeal selves and have ignored our Primary Baker Street Irregular's lack of medically attributable symptoms. We cannot afford any further failed deductions. Therefore I am relieving you of your role as Sherlock Holmes."


I had grown incessantly tired of Ira's continued desire to steal my role as Sherlock, so I decided to act on it and replied, "Ira, I no longer wish to play this incipient, irritating and irascible game. I am going to leave and I am going to ruminate over this debacle and for sustenance I will consume Amynthas…"


My continued insistence to annex the role of Sherlock Holmes from Mira has caused a kerfuffle and dumped the pomaceous fruit barrow. My sister Mira left in a fit of pique and claimed she would consume Amynthas. I called after her, "Mira, please do not leave." She placed her digits into her auditory canals and continued her departure.


Akhmed the Obese cheers, "Thank God! It is about time that the foolishness of Sherlock Holmes has departed my house."


I train my ocular units on him and I am suddenly encapsulated by an excellent idea…


Flashback – Todd – On the island


Liu came back with some chickens. I could only guess that some were brought to the island in the past, had escaped and were now breeding in the wild. I knew how to clean chickens, so I took them from her and began to clean and pluck them. I still wasn't sure that Liu was comfortable with what transpired between Lin and me so I closely watched the women as I continued to clean the chickens. I finished cleaning them, washed them and put then on a couple sticks over the fire.


Lin came over smiled at me and said, "Thank you for taking care of the chickens so Liu and I could talk. We are going to the lake to wash while they cook and would like for you to accompany us."


We headed to the lake, the women stripped off their clothes and dove in. Without a single bit of reluctance I did the same. Liu swam over to me, embraced me and said something to me - Lin translated, "Liu says that I had my fun now it is her turn."


Any concern about bad feelings between Liu and Lin was put to rest as Liu and I…