22 Wounded

Wounded Chapter 22

 

Wednesday 14 December

 

Present – Ben – WRAMC

 

Hell Yes! I can feel Jens has been hurt! I start thrashing around on the bed and yell, "Jens is hurt I need to get to her!"

 

Frankie freaks out and starts pressing the hell out of the nurse call button as she says to me, "Ben, calm down. You're going to hurt yourself."

 

Somehow I rip my good arm out of the restraints and start trying to release my other arm. Frankie starts crying and Jim runs into the room from the hallway and yells, "What the fuck is going on?"

 

I yell back, "Jens is hurt and I need to get to her!"

 

Jim emphatically states, "Like hell you are!", and jumps towards my loose arm. I see what he's trying to do and palm him as hard as I can in the forehead. His head sounds like me slapping and watermelon and he falls to the floor.

 

Frankie cries, "Ben stop it you're hurting yourself."

 

I almost get my other arm loose when the doctor runs into the room. He takes one look at me, sticks his head back out in the hallway and yells, "Get your asses in here right now!"

 

I watch as the doctor and two Marines come into my room. The doctor orders, "SM. Blaine, stand down!"

 

I argue with him, "Jens, my fiancée, has been hurt and I need to get to her." And I keep working on the restraint.

 

The doctor looks at the Marines and gives the order, "Do whatever it takes to restrain him and keep him in bed. Just be careful of his right arm."

 

I threaten, "I'll kick all your asses if you get any closer."

 

The Marines aren't concerned with my threat and jump right on top of me. I yell, "You sons of bitches get off me!" We continue to fight but I don't notice until it is too late: The doctor is injecting something in my IV. I feel the drug start to affect me and I say to the doctor, "This isn't over. When I come out of this I'm going to kick your ass."

 

I watch his face slowly slip out of focus and it changes to the evil face of my father as he says, "I've got you now!"

 

Present – Liz – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

I hear Jens yell as she falls to the floor. I know she's hurt and try to head over to her, but Mira is lying on top of me and holding me down. Somehow she works her pistol out of her holster and she fires so fast I think it's a machine gun.

 

After what seems like an eternity Mira stops firing and says, "Ms. Morgan, you will stay here on the floor and do not move."

 

I complain, "But Jens has been hurt."

 

I can tell I argued too much, Mira starts massaging my vagus nerve, and I feel my heart rate slow as I slowly slip off to sleep.

 

Present – Matt – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

Son of a bitch! Jens has been hit. I want to run beside her, but my Marine training kicks in first and I help Mira send the bastards that shot her to hell. Banzai is going to fucking kill me if I've let anything happen to her. I know he sent me instead of Jim because he trusts me more than Jim and now I feel like I've let him down.

 

I get up to go by Jens but Mira orders, "Matt, stand guard and make sure this does not happen again." I jack a new mag in my M4, stand up, go over and make sure the bastards are dead.

 

When I get close to them, others are hiding out in the hallway and start to fire. I yell, "Mira, this isn't over yet," and slip behind the door and return fire. Quick as a flash Mira is up beside me with another M4 and we start firing down the hallway.

 

Mira gives our next moves. "Matt, we need to work our way down the hallway and remove this rubbish. Please cover me and I will move first. Then you will follow." I lay down covering fire as she slips out into the hallway and presses herself into a doorway.

 

I do a tactical reload and wait for her signal. Mira nods, slips her rifle around the corner and starts firing. I head into the hallway but Mira's doing such a good job there isn't even any return fire. I move up into the doorway opposite her, press myself up against the wall and then I start firing and Mira moves further down the hallway. We continue to leapfrog like this for the length of the whole hallway.

 

Finally Mira yells, "Matt, the terrorists have left. We need to go back and see how Ms. Donaldson is. I will check on her and you will stand watch by the door to the hallway."

 

We carefully move back towards the room with Jens and Liz. We get about halfway and we hear a scream.

 

Present – Mira – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

I hear Ms. Morgan scream and curse myself for leaving her and Ms. Donaldson unprotected and unconscious. I run back into the room and see two terrorists: One has Ms. Morgan by the throat and the other is messing with Ms. Donaldson. Two quick shots later and they are dead.

 

I run over, help Ms. Morgan stand up and say, "Ms. Morgan, I am sorry I wasn't here to keep you safe."

 

She slaps the hell out of me and yells at me, "Mira, you ever pull that nerve shit on me again I'll order Ira to kick your butt. Now let's go over and check on Jens."

 

I stand there stunned as Ms. Morgan heads over to Ms. Donaldson. Matt comes running in and heads over to both of them. Ms. Morgan orders, "Mira, get your ass over here and help me look at Jens' arm, something isn't right with it."

 

I run over beside them and I can see right away what is wrong.

 

Present – Jens – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

Shit! Shit and triple Shit! I'm waking up, my left arm doesn't feel right and it hurts like hell. I remember now - I was shot, fell to the floor, felt excruciating pain and then everything went black. Liz, Matt and Mira are all here beside me. I notice a dead terrorist on the floor beside me and I ask, "What the fuck is he doing here?"

 

Liz says, "You passed out and he was messing with you. Mira ran into the room and shot him."

 

I notice my body armor has been half removed and my slinky black suit is unzipped all the way and realize what he was going to do. I'm thankful as hell Mira was here. I start to say something but Liz says, "Jens, are you okay?"

 

I answer, "My left arm hurts like hell and doesn't move right."

 

Mira directs, "Matt, please stand guard and make sure we are not surprised. I will look at Ms. Donaldson's arm." Matt looks at me and says, "Sorry Jens, I hope you're not hurt too bad." Then he heads off towards the door.

 

Mira squats down beside me and starts checking my arm, she says, "Ms. Donaldson, you are very lucky." She touches my body armor, I look down and see what she is pointing to - it's a fricken bullet! Mira continues, "The body armor stopped the bullet, but it looks like you dislocated your shoulder when you fell to the floor."

 

She raises my arm just a little and it hurts like hell. I snap, "Son of a bitch that hurts. If you do that again, I'm going to kick your butt."

 

Mira smiles at me and says, "Sorry Ms. Donaldson, but we need to relocate your shoulder and it is going to hurt very much. Ms. Morgan, please give me your backpack."

 

Liz hands Mira her backpack, Mira pulls out four pills, some water and says, "Ms. Donaldson, you need to take these pills."

 

I glare at her and say, "I'm not taking any fricken pills if they are going to keep me from getting to Daddy and Mom."

 

Mira answers, "They are muscle relaxants and medium strength pain pills. It will help when I need to relocate your shoulder and they should not interfere with us continuing our mission. But you fighting with me over the taking the pills is delaying our mission, so take the pills."

 

I don't like being bossed around, but she's right. So I take the pills and say, "Let's get this over with."

 

Mira smiles and replies, "We will give the pills another thirty minutes to work and then I will relocate your shoulder. Until then just try to relax."

 

They help move me over against the wall, I lean up against it and just start relaxing when Matt starts firing and yells, "Looks like we've got company!"

 

Present – Samantha – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

Frank takes off to find his children and I am getting ready to leave and find Evelyn Donaldson when I notice Bernie following me from the triage area and I look towards him. He has the camera rolling, so I walk over and pick up the microphone.

 

"Greetings America and the rest of the world, this is Samantha Stevens back reporting for the Truth Network. Yes, after a harrowing run, we are back once again inside the safety of the hospital." (Yes I know I am lying my ass off, but I need to keep the terrorists in the dark).

 

"It will still be a very long time before General Donaldson can be moved into the hospital." (Yes an even bigger lie). "Until then the Marines are aggressively defending his position. Please give me a minute to turn on my tactical radio to see if I can figure out what the terrorists are doing."

 

I flip on the radio and get nothing this time but white noise. I double-check the frequency and everything looks right. "Well, it looks like for some reason my radio isn't working so I can't give you any updates on the terrorists right now." We are here because General Donaldson has requested we check on the safety of his wife Evelyn. Even though he has just had major surgery, his thoughts are still with his wife of many years. This just shows you the excellent character of one of the heroes of Ramstein."

 

"So follow me as I travel through the halls to accomplish the General's request." I start walking down the hallway and Bernie follows with the camera,

 

Present – Sgt. Anderson - 1st Battalion 9th Marines – The Walking Dead - Alpha Company, Zulu Squad - Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

Normally Recons are known for being sneaky-assed sons of bitches. Even Murphy, the fuck-up, could still sneak into Mother Superior's shower in a monastery, steal a kiss and be gone before she even knew what happened. This however is not one of those times. I know our best hope - our only hope - is to catch the bastards napping and get some men through the door. The squad hits the door and we all scream out the immortal words of the Marine Raiders, "GUNG HO!"

 

All the screaming works and we surprise the terrorist bastards. Four of the squad make it through the doorway before a shot is even fired. And the good Lord is smiling on us today because there are vehicles for our men to hide behind. I pull up and stop the rest of the squad. The firing starts, finally giving us eyes on our targets. We poke around the door and lay down fierce covering fire while the outside four move into position.

 

They are finally in position to cover us and I give them hand signals to tell them to get ready. I know my men are ready but I dread the letters I will have to write home later for my men that won't make it today. I say the often remembered words of Gunnery Sergeant Dan Daly, knowing it will fire my men up. "Come on you sons of bitches! Do you want to live forever?"

 

The outside four take up the cover fire and we swarm out of the door like blood crazed devil dogs breaking through the gates of hell. We unleash a shitstorm of fire on the bastards as we run for cover. Murphy is beside me and takes a hit. I grab him by his vest and drag him behind a car.

 

He looks in my eyes and says, "Sorry Sarge, I tried my best."

 

I smile and say, "Murphy, I'm as proud of you today as I have ever been. You're going to be fine."

 

He smiles, blood trickles out of his mouth and he says, "Sarge, we both know this is it for me. At least I'll get to die in combat." I watch as he struggles to get up, I help him. He smiles at me, hands me a letter and says, "Sarge, make sure my mom gets this." Then before I can stop him the damn fool takes off and charges the fucking terrorists. He surprises them again and is tearing the hell out of them.

 

The rest of the squad watches his death charge and we do our best to cover him. He makes it to the edge of the parking lot before he collapses behind a car. We're giving the bastards hell and doing a great job and then we hear a lovely sound. The cavalry has finally arrived.

 

Present – CW4 Sam Smith – Ramstein Hospital Germany

 

Tower calls me and says it's imperative for us to first clear out the area behind the hospital as an evacuation route. On the way I notice what looks to be the C&C1 truck of the terrorists. I order, "Jones that looks like the terrorist's C&C truck. Take it out but don't waste any weapons."

 

1Command and Communications.

 

He answers, "Shit, we've already flown over a million targets. Finally I get to destroy something!"

 

One hydra missile later the C&C truck is a smoking mess.

 

I call the tower, "This is foxtrot reporting. We are almost at the designated target and are requesting another two gunships. There are more targets here than we have weapons."

 

The tower responds, "Sorry foxtrot, we have our hands full here. You two will have to make do with what you have, God speed and good shooting."

 

I call Jones and my wing. "Well guys looks like we are the only ones coming to this party. Jones, you've always told me how fucking good you are, now let's see how you can rock and roll."

 

We come in fast and low right over the front of the hospital, pop up and see a squad of Marines giving the terrorists a hell of a fight. Jones and my wing let go with a fusillade of fire and in minutes the fucking terrorists and most of the area behind the hospital is smoking ruins.

 

"God damn Jones! That was fine shooting!"

 

He replies, "I told you! I am the fucking ayatollah of rock a rolla! Sam, you think these Marines can clean up while we go and find some more targets?"

 

I watch and the Marines are kicking ass and taking names. I reply, "Yeah they aren't having any problems. Now, let's go see if we can find you anything else to destroy." I noticed when we came in a large group of the fuckers attacking the Marines at the front of the hospital and figure they could use some help. We flip around and head back towards the front of the hospital.

 

Jones and my wingman open up a can of whoop ass on the bastards, in minutes the battle is all but done. Jones asks, "Hey Sam. How about if we head back towards the airfield? There were a bunch of targets there."

 

We still have lots of fuel and some weapons. It sounds good to me so we head back towards the airfield.

 

Present – Liz – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

I recognize by the sound of the battle that Mira and Matt have their hands full. Jens also notices, pulls her pistol and says, "I can tell those two need help."

 

I look her in the eyes and reply, "Jens, you're in no shape to fight right now. You stay here and cover our backs and I will go and help."

 

She answers, "Liz, I can still fight." She starts to move, grimaces and then says, "Well, perhaps you're right. I think I will stay here and cover your backs."

 

I say, "I'm not leaving this room. I’m just going to wait at the doorway. You call if you need anything."

 

She says, "Liz you're a great friend, you take care of yourself and don't get hurt."

 

I grab my rifle and head towards the hallway door, as I pass the outside door, it swings open. Son of a bitch! It's three more terrorists! I duck, roll and come up firing. I nail two of them and realize the last one has his rifle pointing right at my head. I wait for the bullet and death to come when I hear Jens's pistol fire off to my right. The terrorist's head explodes and he falls backwards to the ground.

 

I turn, Jens smiles at me and says, "It's amazing what forty-five caliber golden sabers do to a head!" She giggles and continues, "Mess with the best, die like the rest."

 

She starts trying to get up, so I head over to her and say, "Jens, you need to stay here and rest."

 

Present – Mira – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

I am very concerned because I hear three shots from behind us: Two are from a rifle and one from a pistol. I comment to Matt, "Something is going on with Ms. Morgan and Ms. Donaldson. Can you hold this position while I go and check on them?"

 

He fires several more shots and replies, "Mira, I'm in deep shit already with Ben because Jens is hurt. If anything serious happens to her he's going to fucking kill me. You go make sure they're okay and I'll keep these SOBs busy."

 

I answer, "Matt, I owe you for this." And wonder as I head back to Ms. Morgan what it would feel like if Matt trained me. Would I like it or would it be just like the others?

 

I'm almost to the doorway when I see Ms. Morgan peek around the door. I yell, "Ms. Morgan, it is Mira do not shoot me." I run past Ms. Morgan, into the room and see three dead terrorists. I go over in front of Ms. Morgan, kneel and say, "I have let you down and I am ready for my punishment."

 

Present – Jens – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

I can't believe what I'm seeing and I wonder if it's for real or the drugs Mira gave me. Mira kneels in front of Liz and asks to be punished for failing her. What the hell sort of mistake did Mira make, and what sort of strange fricken relationship do those two have.

 

I watch and I'm sure my mouth drops open because Liz reacts totally different from the hard and tough Liz I've come to know. She gently brings Mira to her feet and hugs her like a sister - well that's not quite right - it's bit more than just a sisterly hug. I'm startled because I feel a twinge of jealousy! It must be from the drugs.

 

They are quietly talking to each other but I can't hear them. However I do hear the outside door open again and I start firing as soon as I see the first terrorist come through the doorway.

 

Out of the corner of my eye I see Mira throw Liz to the ground and cover her with her body. With the same movement she brings her rifle up and starts firing through the doorway.

 

Mira yells, "Cover me! I need to reload."

 

The slide of my pistol locks back because the mag is empty, I yell, "Son-of-a-bitch, I'm out!" One terrorist walks through the doorway and turns towards me so I throw the empty pistol at him. I watch. It seems like it's in slow motion as the pistol twirls through the air, it nails him right in the middle of his forehead and he slowly crumples to the floor. As he falls I see a flash from his AK. The pain medicine must be working really well, because I don't feel any pain. All I feel is pressure as the bullet rips into me. Then I hear a buzzing sound like a million angry hornets. It finally stops and everything is deathly still. I look down at the blood flowing out of me and giggle, "Ben digs chicks with…"

 

Present – Liz – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

Dammit! Mira throws me to the ground again and is on top of me firing her rifle. I swear she spends more time on top of me than most men do.

 

Then all hell breaks loose, Mira needs to reload and tells Jens to cover her, Jens' pistol runs out but the terrorists are still coming through the door. I fight trying to get out from under Mira when the sound of gunfire becomes deafening, bullets are flying through the door like a swarm of angry hornets, it becomes quiet and then… there are no more terrorists.

 

I look into Mira's eyes and ask, "What the hell just happened?"

 

She smiles and replies, "Ms. Morgan that was a minigun. I think help is finally here."

 

I hear Jens giggle, "Ben digs chicks with…" and the sentence stops. I yell, "Hey Jens! Are you okay." There isn't a reply.

 

"Mira, get the fuck off me. Something's happened to Jens."

 

Present – Sgt. Anderson - 1st Battalion 9th Marines – The Walking Dead - Alpha Company, Zulu Squad - Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

God dammit! The Old Man, General Donaldson really came through for us. When all this bullshit is over I'm buying him and the crew of those two super cobra gunships a round of drinks. We were kicking butts and taking names, but it was going to cost me too many men. Shit as it is I have two letters to write home but it could have been much worse.

 

Then the gunships come in and rip the fucking terrorists a new asshole and just leave a few stragglers for us to clean up. I send one of my men back to the hospital to start the evacuation and I smile as the first people exit the hospital. Then I almost laugh because the evacuees look as confused as hell. First we get them into the hospital and then we're taking them back out of the hospital. I instruct my men to move them as far away as possible from the hospital. When I head back towards the hospital, I see a familiar person heading out. I need to have a talk with him. 

 

Present – Cpl. Cohen – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

After the Recon Marines fly out of the hospital, I go to find my two children. The children the מלאך המוות (Angels of Death) gave me to take care of. I find them in a room and the nurse is taking excellent care of them, they are both still unconscious.

 

I roll up to the nurse and say, "These are my children and I need to take them out of the hospital."

 

She gives me a dirty look and caustically replies, "Like hell you are. They need to stay here where they will get proper medical care until we find their real parents."

 

I feel my blood boil, I smile at her and then I launch my wheelchair into her - knocking her fat ass to the floor. I fly out of my chair, land on top of her, put my hand over her mouth and hiss into her ear, "Listen bitch! I saw what the terrorists left of my children's real parents and it wasn't a pretty sight. Until their relatives, if they have any relatives are found I am going to be taking care of them. I'm going to tell you something that I shouldn't, and so help me God if you breathe one word of this to anyone I will shoot you like the bitch you are. Nod your head if you understand."

 

She nods affirmative and I continue, "The fucking terrorists have a big fucking bomb in the basement of this hospital and are just waiting for the General to come in here so they can detonate it. We need to evacuate this hospital before that happens and I'm taking my children now. Do you understand?"

 

She nods again, I let go of her mouth and pull myself back up into my wheelchair. She looks at me and asks, "You aren't lying to me about the new danger are you?"

 

I answer, "With God as my witness, I told you the truth. Now will you help me move my children to safety?"

 

She bites her lip and says, "I should really tell everyone about this."

 

I pull my pistol out, point it at her and say, "If you do it will cause mass chaos and a riot. Besides, I will kill you like I said I would. I have no more taste for blood today so please just help me move my children and then you are free to do whatever you want to do."

 

She looks at me and looks at the pistol and then at my children and says, "I believe you and I will help you. But when these children are safe, I'm coming back to tell everyone."

 

She moves my little girl on the same gurney as my boy and we roll towards the back door I saw the Marines breech a few minutes ago.

 

We round a corner and I almost bump into Samantha pushing a gurney with the General's wife on it. She smiles and says, "Fancy meeting you here - I guess great minds think alike. Who's your friend that's helping you?"

 

The nurse huffs and says, "I'm not his friend, I'm his captive. He is stealing these children and is making me help him."

 

Samantha stops, gets in the nurses face and says, "If we didn't need your fat ass to help push this gurney, I'd personally kick it so hard you'd be shitting out your nose. Just so you know, this wonderful man who you insulted is none other than Frank the Tank and is probably responsible for saving your life earlier today. So shut the fuck up and push that gurney."

 

The nurse goes to sass her and Samantha backhands her across the face and says, "Tell me, which part of shut the fuck up do you not understand!"

 

The nurse starts crying, Samantha takes one look at her and says, "Sorry Frank, but she's useless. Let's see if we can put both your children onto Evelyn's gurney and I can push it."

 

I look at Samantha and answer, "I told her about the basement to get her to help me and if we don't bring her with us she's going to tell everyone."

 

I can see the fire in Samantha's eyes and figure she's going to take her out. Then a Marine comes up and says, "I hate to tell you this, but we need to have you all exit the hospital in an orderly fashion through the back door."

 

The nurse sasses him and says, "The hell I do, I need to tell everyone about the bomb in the basement."

 

I watch as Samantha unloads a roundhouse that catches the nurse square on the chin and the nurse crumples to the floor. She shakes her hand and says, "Dammit! I think I broke a nail and a bone."

 

The Marine says, "Thank you miss for taking care of that for me. I'll take her out of the hospital to a safe place."

 

I marvel at how gently Samantha places my two children on Evelyn's gurney, she looks over, smiles at me and says, "Lead the way Frank the tank."

 

We get to the back door and I can see others are already leaving. As we roll outside and I see a Marine walking towards me.

 

Present – Sgt. Anderson - 1st Battalion 9th Marines – The Walking Dead - Alpha Company, Zulu Squad - Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

I walk up to Frank the Tank, squat so we're on the same level, look him in the eyes and say, "Cpl. Cohen, my name is Sgt. Anderson and I haven't had a chance to personally thank you for your extreme acts of bravery today."

 

He looks down and says, "I just did what I needed to do."

 

I wait until he looks up again and I reply, "Like hell you did! I know a real hero when I see one. Let me shake your hand!"

 

We shake hands, I reach up and pull my unit patch off my sleeve and hand it to him. He looks at it and I say, "Shit as far as I'm concerned your part of my unit. It'll be an honor to fight beside you any day of the fucking week."

 

He smiles at me, "You unit is called 'The Walking Dead?'"

 

I nod my head, and reply, "The first battalion of the ninth Marines, we are The Walking Dead."

 

He grins and then shocks me when he says, "Sgt. Anderson, I too am The Walking…" then he looks down where his legs used to be and says, "Well at least the rolling dead. Twice death has visited me. Once when the fucking terrorist bomb took my legs and my fiancée and once when I met her in the hallway. I was ready for death both times. Shit I wanted to die because after losing my fiancée I had no reason to live. But then the angel of death gave me my two children and a reason to live."

 

He continues, "We are brothers and I would be honored to fight with you anytime."  Then he turns and looks at the children on the gurney and says, "But I have two lives besides my own to take care of now. I think I have given enough in this fight and it's time for others to take my place."

 

I don't know what to say so I nod my head and watch as the hero and his entourage roll away.

 

Present – Samantha – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

Bernie has been shooting video in the hallway of the hospital, documenting how they are already working to clean it up. We wanted to make sure we didn't show any of the evacuation because if the terrorists were watching, then they would detonate the bomb in the basement and destroy the hospital.

 

After we get Evelyn and Frank’s two adopted children safe, I walk over to Frank, sit in his lap, grab him by the back of the neck and give him my absolute best kiss! Several minutes later I let him up for air and I say, "That's my way of saying thanks for everything you've done today. You're one hell of a man and I'll have more for you later!"

 

I can tell I have his interest when I feel something poking me in the butt, so I wiggle just enough to let him know I feel it, then I stand up and say, "Please take care of Evelyn for me. I need to get back to the hospital. A reporter's job is never done."

 

Present – Cpl. Cohen – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

To say I am confused is an understatement. First a kick ass Marine comes over, shakes my hand, tells me I am part of his unit, The Walking Dead, and then he calls me a fucking hero! Then Samantha gives me the best lap dance I have ever had and implies she wants to do even more with me. I wasn't sure that I could still function as a man until she did that to me, but I no longer have any doubts.

 

I'm trying to sort things out in my mind when I hear a big noise from the gurney and I roll over to see what's going on.

 

Present – Evelyn Donaldson – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

Somehow, even though I'm in a deep dark pit, I can feel my only daughter Jennifer needs me because she's been seriously hurt and might die. There's always been something unusual with the women on my side of the family as we all seem to have a way to connect and sense the feelings of the other women in the family. We've also had the ability to block that from each other. With what I've done to Jennifer throughout the years, I have never and will never let her sense my feelings. The funny thing is Jennifer says she can do this with Ben. This has never happened in our family before and I’m still not sure I really believe her.

 

I slowly start coming out of the pit and back into reality, and the guilt from my actions almost overwhelms me again. But I fight it because Jennifer really needs me this time. I'm confused because I hear birds singing and feel a breeze on my face. I thought I was in the hospital.

 

I'm also extremely uncomfortable! Oh, I remember now, my legs don't work. But there are also two heavy weights pushing down on me. I try to move and let out a loud moan, the two weights start to wiggle. I open my eyes and see two children lying beside me, one is a cute little boy the other an even cuter little girl. Who the hell are they?

 

I hear a voice beside me, "Mrs. Donaldson, it's good to see that you are awake."

 

I turn my head and see Frank the Tank and say, "Frank, what am I doing outside and what are these two children doing lying on me?"

 

He answers, "Mrs. Donaldson, those two children are my adopted children. We had to put them on the same gurney as you so we could move you all out of the hospital."

 

"Frank, I need to find out what is going on with my daughter Jennifer. I think she's been hurt."

 

He answers, "Sorry Mrs. Donaldson, I don't know anything about your daughter. But I think I might know someone who does."

 

I start slip into my old self and get angry at him and command him to find out right away. Then I catch myself and nicely ask, "It would mean so much to me if you could find out any information for me."

 

He smiles and replies, "I will gladly do that for you, but first let's get my children off your gurney." He rolls away and I look at the two little children on my gurney, then I realize neither of them have legs. They are waking up and are very afraid, so I do what any mother would do, I hug them close to me and comfort them saying, "There, there little ones, the big bad men are all gone."

 

The little boy yells, "My legs hurt really bad!" The little girl starts to cry. I hug them close to me and say, "Look over there, it's the nice man that helped us out of the hospital. He has a nurse with him and I bet the nurse can give you something that will help with the pain in your legs."

 

They watch as Frank rolls up in his wheelchair and there's a nurse behind him pushing a gurney. He smiles at them and says, "Hello you two. My name is Frank the Tank."

 

The little boy says, "My legs hurt very bad." The girl adds, "My legs hurt too."

 

The nurse says, "Don't worry, we will give you something that will take the pain away." She pulls out a syringe, the little boy says, "We don't like shots! They hurt!"

 

The nurse gently answers, "Don't worry. See that tube in your arm. I'm going to put this into the tube and you won't feel a thing." She injects the pain medicine into each of the children's IV and they slowly become more relaxed and finally drift off to sleep. Then the nurse moves them into their own gurney.

 

Frank says, "Thank you Mrs. Donaldson for being so patient, let me make a phone call for you."

 

Present – Samantha Stevens– Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

I'm back in the hospital doing reports with Bernie showing how well the hospital has already been cleaned up and it's been hell to avoid showing the evacuation. But with Bernie's excellent camera work we've been able to do it. We just finish a report and my mobile phone rings, so I pull it out of my pocket and Oh Boy! It's Frank calling me! I answer in my sexiest voice, "What's wrong Mr. Handsome? Are you missing me already?"

 

He answers, "Uh, uh, uh, Hello Samantha, yes I do sort of miss you. But I need a favor from you. Mrs. Donaldson is awake and is worried about her daughter. Do you know anything about her?"

 

Shit, I hope I didn't say the wrong thing and scare him off. "Frank, I haven't heard anything about her. I do know she was flying in and Liz was going to meet her. Let me call Liz and I'll get right back with you."

 

I hang up and hit the speed dial for Liz's number. It rings several times and finally a very tired and old sounding Liz comes on the phone, "Hello Samantha, thanks for doing such a great job reporting."

 

I know I need to try to cheer her up so I say, "Liz, I have good news. Mrs. Donaldson is awake and is asking about her daughter. Didn't you and Mira pick her up?"

 

I hear Liz start to sniffle a little bit and she answers, "Samantha, that's great news. And yes we did pick her up. We were at the airport when it was attacked and Jens was shot. She's in surgery right now and – well we don't know if she's going to make it or not."

 

I ask, "What do you think I should tell Mrs. Donaldson?"

 

Liz replies, "Well that fucking bitch has played a major role in causing Jens to be hurt! And I'm still mad as hell at her. But for Jens' sake I think you should tell Mrs. Donaldson a partial truth. Let her know that Jens is injured, but will be fine."

 

I answer, "You're the boss." I hang up the phone and call Frank. Oh boy!  This time he does sound happy to hear my voice and explains himself, "Sorry about ignoring you on your last phone call Samantha, our children just woke up in a lot of pain and I was pretty upset about it. So did you learn anything?"

 

Did he just say OUR children??? I stumble a bit as I answer, "Frank, I talked to Liz and Jennifer was wounded and is in surgery. Liz said they aren't sure yet if she will make it, but suggested we do not tell that to Mrs. Donaldson."

 

He enthusiastically answers, "Thanks Samantha, I can't wait to see you again."

 

The phone goes dead and I stand there looking at it. I'm sure I heard OUR children and HE can't wait to see me again. Oh Boy!

 

Present – Cpl. Cohen – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

I can see how anxious Mrs. Donaldson is when I hang up the mobile phone. I roll over to her and say, "Sorry for making you wait Mrs. Donaldson but I needed to take care of my children first. I talked to Samantha, a reporter for Elizabeth Morgan of the truth network. She called Liz and said that Jennifer was wounded and is in surgery but should make a full recovery.

 

She looks at me and I feel like my whole life is under a microscope, her microscope. Then she says, "Frank, you're lying to me about something. So you'd better tell me the truth."

 

I've never been a good liar - my Ziva could somehow tell and I guess I'm not any better now. I look down at the ground and answer, "Mrs. Donaldson, I guess her condition is a little worse than I told you."

 

I look back up and I can see true concern and worry in her face. She says, "Frank, somehow I need to get to wherever they are doing surgery on Jennifer."

 

I roll very close to her so no one else can hear and start to argue with her, "Mrs. Donaldson, they have to be doing  the surgery in the triage area in front of the hospital because the terrorists still have plans to destroy the whole hospital."

 

I see the love of a mother for a daughter in her eyes as she pleads, "Frank, if there is any way possible for me to get to Jennifer I would greatly appreciate it."

 

With such a look I can't resist and reply, "Mrs. Donaldson, I would take you if I could, but I really need to be with my adopted children."

 

She smiles, "Yes Frank, I understand. But is there anyone else who can take me? How about seeing if you can talk a Marine into helping me?"

 

I remember Sgt. Anderson and wonder if he could possibly help. I answer, "Mrs. Donaldson, I will go and talk to a Sgt. for you and see if it can be done. Please have the nurse contact me right away if my children wake up."

 

She replies, "Thank you Frank, I will make sure I do that for you."

 

I roll away and think to myself Mrs. Donaldson sure seems different from the reports I had heard about her. I'd heard she was a real ball busting bitch but she sure doesn't seem that way to me.

 

Present – Sgt. Anderson - 1st Battalion 9th Marines – The Walking Dead - Alpha Company, Zulu Squad - Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

I was taking a smoke break and I sure didn't think I would see Cpl. Cohen this quickly after we parted earlier. I haven't been very busy because I've delegated everything to my men and I'm letting them do the evacuation work.

 

He rolls right up to me and I say, "Damn, it's good to see you again Cpl. Cohen. Did you change your mind and decide to come and kill some more of these fuckers with us?"

 

He replies, "No Sgt. Anderson, I am here delivering a request from Mrs. Donaldson. She knows her daughter Jennifer has been injured and is in surgery. She is requesting someone to take her to the triage area in front of the hospital to be with her during her surgery."

 

Son of a fucking bitch! I was hoping to never deal with the General's fucking wife, she's a royal pain the ass and has talked the General into sending more than one good man to the nastiest assignments possible when she didn't get her way. Plus rumor has it she is responsible for the Old Man leaving Banzai Ben to rot and be tortured in Afghanistan and for getting her daughter dishonorably discharged from the Corps and having her thrown in prison.

 

I look at Frank and reply, "Shit I wish you would have never found me with this request."

 

He grins and then laughs a little, "So the rumors are true what I've heard about her?"

 

I reply, "I think actuality is even worse than the rumors."

 

He motions me closer to him and says, "Sgt. Anderson, she sure doesn't seem to be as terrible as I have heard. In fact she politely waited for me to take care of my adopted children before I called Samantha to find out about her daughter. Then she caught me lying to her about how serious the injury is and she didn't even rip me a new asshole for it."

 

I look at him and say, "You've got to be shitting me!"

 

Cpl. Cohen replies, "Sgt. Anderson, there's no reason for me to lie to you."

 

I throw my smoke on the ground, stomp it out and say, "Well shit I guess I have to go see this for myself. Lead the way Cpl. Cohen." As we head over under the trees I can't help but feel this is going to be the hardest mission of my career.

 

Present – Evelyn Donaldson – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

I anxiously watch for Frank to return and I keep reminding myself that I made a deal with God and a promise to myself to change my attitude. It's hard as hell for me to do, because for so many years I've been such a conniving and controlling bitch that it's become my second nature. But a deal is a deal and a promise is a promise.

 

Finally I see him rolling my way with a very unhappy looking Marine following him. Shit, I guess my old attitude will still follow me, possibly forever. I need to make sure this is a request and not an order.

 

They reach me and the Marine stands straight, tall and proud. "Ma'am, Cpl. Cohen says you wished to see me?"

 

I look at his rank and name and answer, "I'm sorry Sgt. Anderson if I am taking you away from your important duties. But my daughter Jennifer has been wounded and is in surgery right now. They don't know if she's going to make it or not. I would really appreciate it if someone could take me to be with her during her surgery. However I want you to know this is in no way an order, it's just a request from a mother to a Marine. And I will totally understand if you can't do this and there will be no retribution from me or my husband if you can't help."

 

Present – Sgt. Anderson - 1st Battalion 9th Marines – The Walking Dead - Alpha Company, Zulu Squad - Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

Son of a bitch! Cpl. Cohen wasn't bullshitting me, Mrs. Donaldson does seem to be acting human, totally different than what I've heard about her. She of course requests to see her daughter, but makes sure I know it’s a request, not an order. And then she says the one thing that no Marine can resist, she makes it a request from a mother to a Marine.

 

My mouth drops open, then I reply, "Ma'am I'm not too busy right now, and I'm sure I can pull two of my men off the evacuation duty. However I want to warn you, the only way which we can get you to the front of the hospital is by taking you through the hospital again."

 

She gently interrupts me, "Sgt. Anderson, Frank told me about the plans the terrorists still have for the hospital and I should have known better than to ask you to risk your life and the life of your men on a possible suicide mission."

 

Holy shit! I can't believe what she just said. I look at her for several minutes and I make up my mind. "Ma'am, I can't think of any better way for a Marine to die than trying to reunite a family. Let me ask for two volunteers and I will be right back."

 

I walk over to where the rest of my squad is resting and taking a smoke break, one of them asks, "So did you just get your ass chewed?"

 

I look at all of them and say, "Hell no, she shocked the hell out of me. She was as polite as could be and treated me with more respect than I could even believe. I need two volunteers, and I want you to know I'm leading this mission and all of you are totally free to decline, we need to take Mrs. Donaldson through the hospital and out to the triage area where her daughter, Ex-Sgt. Jennifer Donaldson is having surgery."

 

LCpl. Bascom throws his smoke to the ground and says, "Count me in, but I'm not doing it for that bitch I'm doing it for SM. Blaine and Sgt. Donaldson."

 

I look at the rest of the squad until PFC. Slater stands up and adds, "Shit I'm bored just sitting here so I'm coming too."

 

I look over at Cpl. Wright and order, "Take care of the squad until I get back."

 

We head over to Mrs. Donaldson. When we get to her gurney I see a tear in her eye as she says, "I want to personally thank all of you for your help. And I want to make sure you all know if you change your mind I will understand."

 

I watch as Bascom and Wright get amazed looks on their faces. LCpl. Bascom says, "Ma'am it's an honor to help you get to your daughter." I hope she can't tell it's just partially true.

 

PFC. Wright says, "Ma'am, I'll be the one pushing your gurney. I will try to be as gentle as possible and you just yell at me if I take any bumps too hard."

 

She smiles at us and says, "No matter what happens I will never yell at any of you."

 

I order, "Okay devil-dogs! Let's get this mother to her daughter. Then we head back into the hospital.

 

Present – Ira – Hospital – Ramstein AFB Germany

 

With the elevator descending towards me, I silently scold myself for not immediately assessing the situation better. Now I have only thirty seconds to figure something out, or be crushed. I fumble for my flashlight, flip it on and see the half height access door at the bottom of the elevator shaft.

 

I rush to the door and hold my breath as I turn the knob. At first it is hard to turn so I try with all my might. Finally it squeaks, groans and turns. I pull on the door but it does not move. I glance up and see the elevator continuing its downward course.

 

I toss my pack and look for a pry bar. I find it, shove it at the edge of the door, fight with the door knob again and then push against the pry bar with all my strength. The door lets out a huge creak and opens. The noise alerts the two guards and they start firing into the elevator doors. I barely make into the access corridor for the elevator, but cannot get the door closed behind me as the elevator crushes it causing a huge and terrible noise.

 

This has the terrorists aggravated and it sounds like there are hundreds of rounds being fired into the elevator car. I lean my back against the wall and take a few deep breaths. Eyah! They hurt because I have injured my rib again.

 

This time I do not make the same mistake so I carefully assess where I am and decide my almost death has instead been very fortuitous. This is some sort access tunnel which looks to lead somewhere under the basement.

 

I listen to the terrorist's radio frequency, and there is nothing but white noise. Finally someone has gotten smart enough to jam all their communications. But knowing them as well as I do, it also means they could become impatient and destroy the building any time. So I crawl down the corridor to see where it leads me - it reminds me of Alice falling down the rabbit hole.

 

I round several corners and I see three large conduits running along the ceiling. I reach up and touch them and can barely feel the vibration of the high voltage running through them. Then I get an idea. I crawl all the way to the end of the tunnel and find the exit door, I carefully try the knob and it turns easy and the door opens silently.

 

I move back to the three big conduits, pull six thermite charges out of my pack, place two on each conduit and set the timers for five minutes. Then I crawl back to the exit door and start getting all my gear ready. I check my watch and close my eyes and put my back towards the charges. With one minute left I begin to meditate - I need to become a killing machine.

 

The charges go off, I wait a couple seconds and open my eyes to total darkness. I turn on my night vision goggles, open the door and creep out into the basement. It is utter chaos with terrorists yelling and screaming and randomly shooting. Stupid fools, they should know better than to be firing weapons around all the explosives, but then life doesn't matter to them, just death.

 

I reach down to my vest, and one of my throwing stars finds my first victims forehead, he slumps to the floor. I slip through the basement like a panther stalking her prey and find another terrorist, this time a throwing knife soaked in pigs blood finds his heart.

 

  After that I become the weapons, and the throwing stars, dispensing death everywhere. And of course my ancient katana send many terrorists to hell to be with their pretend prophet.

 

The last one I hack in half. I clean the blade and put the katana away and realize I am tired, very tired. I look at my watch and find I have been fighting for over an hour. I slowly walk towards the stairs where most of my fighting took place as the cowardly terrorists tried to escape. The floor is a bloody slippery mess. I put my foot on the first step, start to lift and my foot slips out from under me. I remember thinking this will not feel good. I slam into the floor as pain from my rib racks my body and I slowly drift into unconsciousness.

 

Present – Liz – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

We run over to Jens and immediately I see she's unconscious. Shit! Somehow she's been shot! It must be because that fucking bastard terrorist took off part of her body armor. Mira kneels beside her and says, "Ms. Morgan, we need to get Ms. Donaldson immediate medical care."

 

Then she becomes a whirlwind of activity. "Matt, stand guard and make sure no one gets close." She grabs a bunch of supplies out of my pack, opens some gauze and presses it against the wound and says, "Ms. Morgan, it's important you keep this pressed against the bullet hole as hard as you can or she will bleed to death. I am going to call my sister and see if they can send a helicopter to evacuate her."

 

Mira stands then sways for a moment and falls to the ground. I yell, "Mira what's wrong?"

 

I watch as she shakes her head and slowly stands back up, "Ms. Morgan, something terrible has just happened to Ira."

 

I interrupt, "Don't tell me she's dead!"

 

Mira says, "No, she is not dead, but she is very hurt."

 

Fuck, double fuck and triple fuck! Things are a FUBARed mess now! We are with Jens and she is seriously injured, and somewhere Ira is also seriously injured and Mira seems dazed and not quite sure what to do.

 

I yell, "Mira you get over here and take care of Jens, I will find some way to get us all to the hospital." Mira runs over and starts working on Jens.

 

I pull out my cell phone and fuck! It doesn't work inside this building. I yell, "Matt, I need to step outside to make a call, I'm taking my rifle so I will be fine. You just keep the fucking terrorists away from Mira and Jens."

 

I grab my rifle and walk out the door.

 

Present – CW4 Sam Smith – Ramstein Hospital Germany

 

To say the airfield is a target rich environment is like saying the Pope is Catholic. We have depleted all our pod weapons, other than the stingers and all we have left is our minigun. I am circling the field and Jones is letting go strategic bursts and taking out the fucking towel heads as they come out of the buildings.

 

It's like shooting fish in a fucking barrel. We come around and see a lone terrorist step out of a building, Jones is just getting ready to fire when I pull the nose of our chopper straight up in the air.

 

"God fucking damn Sam, you made me miss and waste some ammo." Jones barks.

 

I answer, "Get your fucking head out of your ass and look at your targets better. That target has long blonde hair." I drop the nose down again as Jones takes a good look and says, "Shit that's a hot looking woman!"

 

We watch as she holds her weapon up over her head. Then she slowly lowers it to the ground and waves at us.

 

Present – Liz – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

I-I-I think I almost became one with the minigun that saved us from the terrorists. I walk out of the building looking right at some bad-assed chopper. The nose of the chopper goes straight up in the air and the minigun on the front fires. I'm not sure who made the gunner miss, but is he ever going to get a reward from me.

 

I put down my weapon to show them I'm not a terrorist. Then I reach in my pocket and pull out my mobile phone. The chopper gets lower to watch what I'm doing. I hold up my phone and wave it at them. The man in the front nods his head. I turn my back to the chopper, bend over, pick up a stick and write my mobile phone number as big as I can in the sand.

 

Present – CW4 Sam Smith – Ramstein Hospital Germany

 

I yell at Jones, "For once tell me you didn’t follow procedure and brought your mobile phone with you." (He was always bringing it when he wasn't supposed to and I hoped he had done it this time too.)

 

Jones replies, "I sure did, give me a minute." I see him whip out his mobile phone and some wires and watch him plug it into our choppers com system. He dials the number and we see the lady answer her phone, she says, "Thank God you guys are here. I'm Elizabeth Morgan from the Truth Network I need immediate medical evacuation of General Donaldson's injured daughter. Can you fly us to the hospital?"

 

I reply, "Sorry, Ms. Morgan but we cannot transport wounded in our chopper, it is an attack helicopter. However, I'm going to call the hospital and make sure they get a Blackhawk here right away. And did you say General Donaldson's daughter? That wouldn't be Ex-Sgt. Jennifer Donaldson would it."

 

She replies, "Yes, that's her. Please call as quickly as possible."

 

I answer, "Shit, I tell you what. I'll make sure that Blackhawk gets here ASAP even if I have to fly that piece of shit myself. I owe her fiancé a big debt for pulling me out of a wrecked chopper. Not only that we will fly air support just to make sure you get to the hospital safely."

 

She smiles and says, "I owe you big time, please hurry!"

 

I order, "Kill the call Jones." He hangs up and I switch frequencies and contact the hospital, "This is foxtrot one calling Ramstein hospital."

 

"Foxtrot one, this is Ramstein hospital. Please identify yourself."

 

"We are the gunship group sent from MARFOREUR to help out. We are currently at the airfield and need an immediate medical evacuation."

 

Ramstein hospital interrupts, "We're sorry but we can't do any medical evacuations right now. The Blackhawks are allocated to moving the severely wounded to safe areas."

 

I snap back at them, "Listen here moron, this is for the daughter of General Donaldson and Elizabeth Morgan the head reporter for the Truth Network. I would suggest you reallocate a Blackhawk and medical team for them immediately."

 

There is a short pause and I hear, "We are reallocating a Blackhawk right now, how will we know their position?"

 

I reply, "I will be hovering over the area making sure there are no terrorists here and will provide air support on the flight back. From what I understand you might want to bust a hump on this one, Jennifer Donaldson is in very bad shape."

 

"Roger foxtrot one, the Blackhawk will be airborne in two minutes."

 

I order, "Jones, call Ms. Morgan back." I watch as she picks up the phone, "Ms. Morgan, the Blackhawk will be airborne in two minutes and should be here in five minutes."

 

She smiles and gushes in the phone, "Oh thank you so much!"

 

Jones hangs up the phone and says, "Shit Sam that's Liz Morgan. She's got the best news network in the world. We're going to be fucking famous after she reports on us."

 

I need to take him down a notch or two so I reply, "I sure hope she forgets about you trying to blast her with the minigun."

 

He gives a dejected answer, "Shit Sam, I sure hope she does forget about that. By the way, thank you for keeping me from making a huge mistake."

 

We watch as Ms. Morgan heads back into the building. I order, "Okay Jones, let's make sure we keep this LZ safe for the Trashhawk2 to land."

 

2 Sam hates Blackhawks and prefers to call them Trashhawks.

 

Present – Liz – Ramstein Air Field Germany

 

As soon as I walk into the building I can tell Mira is under control again. She's been working on Jens and I'm surprised when I approach the two of them and Jens turns her head and looks at me.

 

She weakly smiles and says, "Liz, I'm so glad to see you again. I have a favor to ask you."

 

I walk over to the side opposite of Mira and kneel by her head, "I'm here for you Jens, so spill it."

 

"Liz, I'm really hurt this time and I don't know if I'm going to make it. If I don't, I want you to take care of Ben for me."

 

For a very brief second I think about how nice it would be to take care of a grieving Ben. Then I answer, "Jens, if you weren't hurt right now I'd kick the hell out of you. Remember how hard Ben fought to be with you again, all the hell he went through? And now you've got a little flesh wound and you're going to die on him. He deserves, NO, you owe him a fight as hard to get through this as the one he fought to get back to you."

 

She argues, "But Liz, we're too far from the hospital."

 

I laugh at her and answer, "Jens, any minute now a chopper is going to be landing and evacuating all of us to the hospital." It's almost like I have it planned because as soon as I finish we hear a chopper landing outside the door.

 

Seconds later medics rush through the door with a stretcher. Mira and I step back and watch them take over. First they assess her vital signs and her wounds. One of them says, "Someone did a hell of a job keep her from losing too much blood and keeping her from going into shock."

 

I look at Mira and smile knowing how hard it had to be for her to save Jens. The medics get her onto the stretcher, Jens lets out a moan and passes out again, they pick up the stretcher and we all head outside to the waiting Blackhawk.

 

Mira pauses for a moment when she sees the two gunships flanking the Blackhawk and says, "Ms. Morgan, how did you do this?"

 

I pull her arm and answer, "I guess some of Ben's luck has rubbed off on me."

 

We all jump into the Blackhawk, and are on our way to the Ramstein hospital. I remember the basement and I ask one of the medics, "Are we going to the actual hospital?"

 

He answers, "No miss, we are headed to the triage area. The General is awake and has the best doctors standing by waiting for us to arrive.

 

Mira leans over and whispers into my ear, I pull away and nod my head. She looks at Matt and says, "Matt, I am going to need to leave Ms. Morgan in your protection when we land. Do not let her get injured."

 

I watch Matt as he gets a very worried look on his face. Then the Blackhawk starts its landing descent.

 

Present – General Donaldson – Hospital Triage area Ramstein AFB Germany

 

I wake up and I'm sure they wish I was still asleep. I've been raising hell and chewing ass ever since I found out Jennifer has been injured while trying to get to us. This is too important to trust to my aide or the former Cpt. Musgrave so I've taken over and have them all stepping and fetching, like their heads are on fire and their asses are catching.

 

I guess one of the gunship pilots somehow found her and fought with the tower until they sent a Blackhawk and medical team to pick her up. I owe that pilot big time! I force them to put me into a wheel chair, it hurts like hell, but I can be in command and I'm hell on wheels right now.

 

I want to go and make sure Jens is okay, but there is one thing more important that I need to do first. I need to do my duty as a Marine and make sure things are being taken care of. I yell at my aide, "Get me to the fucking command tent."

 

He's pushing me as fast as he can and I'm yelling, "Get the fuck out of my way." We watch everyone scatter as we come through. We roll into the tent and someone says, "General's in the tent." The all scramble to their feet and I order, "Who's in charge here?"

 

A First Lieutenant comes right up, snaps to attention and says, "Sir, since you relieved Cpt. Musgrave of his duty I have taken charge."

 

I look him up and down and size him up, then I order, "Lieutenant  Hastings, I need a sitrep right now!"

 

"Sir, Sgt. Anderson's Recons successfully secured the rear of the hospital with the help of two gunships from MARFOREUR. They suffered two casualties and are in the process of evacuating the patients to a safe distance from the hospital. The same two gunships eliminated the terrorists C&C and also enough of the terrorists we were battling that they are now on the run. I reallocated enough of our troops to insure the hospital will be fully evacuated in another fifteen minutes. Once it's evacuated we plan on sending in some Recons to check out the basement. And yes Sir, I know this may be a suicide mission and I will ask for volunteers and plan to lead the mission myself if need be."

 

He takes a breath and continues, "I have been in contact with the Blackhawk transporting your daughter. She has a dislocated left shoulder which should relocate just fine. She also has been shot in the right lower chest cavity. Because of excellent field care she didn't lose much blood, but she has a collapsed lung and will need immediate surgery when they land."

 

He looks at his watch, "Which should be in just a few minutes. I have the absolute best thoracic and orthopedic surgeons standing by in the operating room. The chopper will land adjacent to the operating tent and she will be taken immediately into surgery."

 

I look at him and smile, He reminds me of me when I was young and gung ho. I say, "Excellent job Cpt. Hastings."

 

"Excuse me Sir, I am not finished. We have also been in contact with MARFOREUR, they are fully mobilized and have taken out a large terrorist attack force which the gunship pilots identified and stopped before they could reach the base. The current base commander is working with NATO and the German military to develop a battle plan to combat the continuing terrorist attacks. Which have now spread to Spain and also Italy. The Russians are fully mobilized and are having issues with the Chechens and other fundamental groups."

 

I'm impressed as I ask, "Anything else to report my new Captain?"

 

"Yes Sir, two more things. Because of continued riots in the United States directed towards the President, he has declared martial law. So we can't count on any help from him."

 

"And finally all hell has broken loose in the Middle East. Iran has crossed the borders into Iraq and the coalition troops are locked in a huge battle. The Taliban has gone on the offensive in Afghanistan. Syria, Jordan and Egypt are attacking Israel. There are rumors that Israel is going to retaliate with nukes."

 

"Now Sir, if you don't mind. I hear the choppers approaching and you need to get to your daughter."

 

I look at him and say, "That was a hell of a sitrep! Captain Hastings you are greatly exceeding my expectations. Keep up the good work and notify me immediately if there are any big changes in any situation. I'm going to make sure my daughter gets safely into surgery, then I'll be in the com tent working on our response with MARFOREUR and the JCS3 and the SOD4."

 

          3 Joint Chiefs of Staff

          4 Secretary Of Defense

 

 

I order, "Aide, get me to that chopper right now."

 

He wheels me out of the room just as the chopper is setting down, I see the medics fly right into the tent with a stretcher. Then Liz, some other woman who looks sort of familiar to me and… son of a bitch! One of the fucking Marines I sent to Thule all jump out of the chopper. I see the two gunships and I yell at my aide, "Make sure we know who those gunship pilots are, I owe them a huge favor."

 

Liz sees me and walks towards me, the Marine falls in behind her, while the other woman takes off in a sprint towards the hospital. My aide rolls me right up to Liz and I say, "Liz, I want the truth. How bad is Jens hurt."

 

She looks at me with tired eyes and answers, "Glen, she's pretty tore up and has lost some blood but they think she might make it. If she does you can thank the gunship pilots for getting her here so quickly. We should know in the next few hours."

 

Present – Ben – WRAMC – After surgery

 

The son of a bitch doctor has kept me drugged up as hell all day long, he has me hooked up to some damn machine and it pumps its poison into me every once and awhile. Even as wacked out as I am right now, I can still feel my Jens' pain. First it was her left arm, but now it's her arm and right lower chest.

 

I need to get out of here and save her, but they have two Marines who just stand and watch me all the fucking time. Plus they have my arms and legs restrained and even some sort of restraint vest that covers my chest. I'm so damn tied up I can hardly move.

 

But I have a plan to escape - shit I always have a plan to escape. I'm just getting ready to escape when my doctor comes into the room, looks at me and says, "SM. Blaine, you have a phone call that's being transferred to your room."

 

I hear the phone ring, the doctor picks it up and puts it up to my ear, I slur and say, "Hello, this is Ben."

 

"Ben, this is Liz. What the hell is wrong with you, you sound terrible!"

 

I force out a reply, "Liz, forget about me. I can feel that Jens is hurt. Tell me what the fuck is wrong with her!"

 

"Ben, the terrorists attacked us and Jens was shot. She's in surgery right now and the doctors think she will fine."

 

Well that sure wakes me up, "Liz, where, where, where was she shot?"

 

She answers, "Ben in her right lower chest. I forgot to mention, she also has a dislocated shoulder. But how are you doing?"

 

"Liz, I'm not important right now. What is important is Jens. Dammit, I should be there with her right now!"

 

Liz tries to comfort me, "Ben, with your arm you would have been more of a hindrance than a help. Ben, I need to go, but know I am here taking care of her for you."

 

The phone goes dead and I make up my mind to get the hell out of this fucking hospital and somehow get to Jens. First, I have to get rid of the fucking drugs and then out of these damn restraints, the rest will be easy.

 

I maneuver my good arm, the one with the damn machine hooked to it, in such a way it kinks the fucking tube to the damn machine. No more of that poison for me. Two hours later I'm feeling much more alert, but I keep up the ruse so I don't alert the Marines.

 

Now for part two of my plans, getting out of the restraints, it's hard as hell for me to do but I will suffer any embarrassment for Jens. I look at one of the Marines and say, "You need to call the nurse, I think I had an accident."

 

They crinkle up their noses and one of them presses the call button for the nurse. She comes in the room right away and says, "Don't tell me, you had an accident."

 

I still pretend to be drugged and say, "I-I-I'm sorry, I think I did."

 

She comes over, takes a look at things and says, "Oh my God, you made a huge mess out of things. Let me go get some things and we will get you cleaned right up."

 

She comes back with an armload of sheets. She looks at the Marines and says, "You two need to wait in the hallway until we're done."

 

They both gladly leave the room and my nurse starts to remove the restraints.

 

Shit, I even let her turn me on my good side and clean things up. Then once she is all done and gets ready to put the restraints back on, I grab my nurse with my good arm and put her in a head lock. She starts to scream and I shush her, "If you scream, you're going to be hurt." She clamps her mouth closed. I grab the fucking tube from the damn machine with my teeth and rip it out of my arm.

 

Then I maneuver my nurse around so I can put her in a sleeper hold using just my good arm and my chin. I slowly increase the pressure until she goes limp. I let her slowly slide to the floor.

 

I slip out of bed and head towards the doorway, now I just have the two Marines to take care of. I'm almost to the doorway when Shit! Jim walks into the room and yells, "What the hell are you doing out of bed and on the loose."

 

I go to smack him with my good arm and I must still be a little groggy because he ducks and I miss. The two Marines come running in from the hallway and I say, "Well now this should be a fair fight you three against me."

 

Then the phone starts ringing and the doctor walks in the room, he looks at the situation and says, "SM. Blaine you really need to sit down and take this phone call."

 

I look at him and fear the worse. I sit in the chair and pick up the phone.

 

Present – Zarika and Yasmeen – Tajikistan

 

I am very sad and very unhappy. It has been a very long time since I have seen one of the nice ladies that comforted me when I thought we were in prison. The man that has no tongue and cannot speak still takes good care of us and they no longer lock the door to the cell so I guess we are not prisoners.

 

I say to Yasmeen, "I am getting tired of waiting around for Ben to come and find us."

 

She stops fussing with her hair and answers, "Zarika, we need to be patient and trust the nice ladies. They said they would be busy for a few days or weeks. Besides they feed us well and give us wonderful clothes to wear."

 

I question, "But what if this is some sort of trap? And what if Ben or the Liz lady never comes for us? What if Ben has already married that fat cow American Jennifer lady?"

 

Yasmeen jumps up and comes over beside me, "Zarika, sometimes you worry too much." She holds up her mirror so I can see myself in it and continues, "Just look at how beautiful you are." Then she smiles, "And see how beautiful I am. There is no way Ben could ever forget the two of us. Remember how sick Ben was, he almost lost his arm. I am sure he cannot wait to get back to us, his two wives."

 

I complain, "But we are here and the Jennifer lady might be with him right now. I hear American women are very sneaky and trick men into marrying them all the time."

 

Yasmeen smiles and gets the papers, "But we have the documents that say he married us."

 

I look at her, "But the nice ladies know they are not real and they will tell Ben and maybe even the fat cow."

 

Yasmeen laughs and replies, "And I have a plan on how we will keep them from doing that." She moves close to me and whispers her plan to me. I look at her and grin, "Yasmeen, this is a very good plan."

 

She sits up and smiles at me and starts to sign a song from my childhood, only the words are different.

 

"Jennifer lady is a fat American cow."

 

I smile and sing, "E-I-E-I-O."

 

Yasmeen continues, "And when she talks she even sounds like a cow."

 

I sing, "E-I-E-I-O."

 

We both sing, "With a Moo, Moo here and a Moo, Moo there.

 

"Jennifer lady is a fat American cow. E-I-E-I-O."

 

I smile and sing, "Jennifer lady walks like a duck."

 

Yasmeen sings, "E-I-E-I-O."

 

"She's so fat she can't fit in a truck."

 

Yasmeen sings, "E-I-E-I-O."

 

We both sing, "With a waddle, waddle here and a broken truck there. Jennifer lady walks like a duck E-I-E-I-O."

 

Then we start giggling and rolling around on the bed. The man with no tongue and who cannot speak has been watching us. He just shakes his head and leaves the room.

 

I smile at Yasmeen, "Thank you for helping to cheer me up. I feel much better now. You are right, how could Ben love that fat American cow."

 

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