Lt. Jackson shook his head for a second, pushing out the mental images of the past few moments. He couldn't spare time to think, he had to act, and he had to work quickly. Wiz quickly pushed everything he had into a pile next to the radio. Wiz was on automatic, now, his body already doing what needed to be done before he could think of that it needed done or why. Wiz sat on the floor admist the pile of loot.
He switched the radio and tunned it to the frequencies that were being used for his troops. "....all units, report now, I repeat all units...." the rest of the message was not really heard by the fighting soldiers, they were too busy trying to stay alive. All the same, the message was out, HQ needed to know what was going on. All the while, at his feet, Wiz had begun pulling the weapons out of the pile and begin to load them....all of them. His loaded beretta lay on the ground beside him, facing the door; an arms length away in case someone walked in on him.
While he loaded all the weapons, Wiz continued to attemp to get information on the where abouts of his troops and of the enemy's. Hopefully it did it without too many outside interuptions. Hopefully his work about him ends with him having a nearly full arsenal of weapons. [And yes, if possible, i intend on taking them all with me]. Rifles and shotguns (Wu's) went in between his back and the backpack. He pulled the straps tight on his shoulders, hopefully keeping the guns in place. He slipped the pistols into his belt and looked quickly around the room for some sort of satchel. If he finds one, he will throw a little ammo and the grenades into it...he doesn't really need a lot of ammo, he isn't planning on reloading anything, just shoot and drop it I think. He slips the satchel charges over his shoulder and then grabs two walkie talkies.
He switches the first radio over to the PA system, and tunes the second in to the current communications with the soldiers. (I am assuming he also got the communications from the Maj and other PCs that were sent out alread?) A gun in each hand Wiz makes a quick breat for his room, guns ablaze if need be, but with or without, he still has stuff to do! If there is another night without any sleep and fighting through out, Wiz isn't sure he's going to be able to make it.
Half sliding, half leaping, and half running Wiz gets into his room (I hope) and slides again to the floor. This time with one eye on the door and the other eye on his camcorder feed. He flips rewind to find out what happened to Wu. If he left, it should be recorded and maybe it was important. And while his eyes are watching those two places, Wiz already had the SKS out from under the bed and on his way to loading it as well. If he was going to get shot, by God, a lot of other people were going to go with him!
All loaded, intel fresh in his head, and (again, this is all assuming everything went as planned - which I doubt) the mystery of Wu hopefully solved, Wiz stands and walks as if to leave the building. Then Wiz finally takes a moment to relax and review his thoughts. He pulled out a looted cigarette and lit it slowly.
"Attention all 3/103, this is Lt. Jackson," Wiz announced over both the PA and the radio communications. He didn't really care if the enemies heard him, they already knew exactly where Wiz's troops were, so he continued. "And so our enemies have come to us like hyenas. They are sly and cowardly. Like hyenas they will only attack when they believe that their prey is lame, or ill, or somehow weak. But, ohh," he said with a sigh, "What a suprise we have in store for them. For this time their prey turned out to, not only be in perfect health, but very pissed off! Rally my soldiers...for today the hyena dies."
Here’s the approx run-down on Wiz’s load. Note that bulk is greater than weight:
Wiz's scoped SKS - 30 rnd mag plus 26 spare rnds (5)
Wiz’s Beretta - 15 r mag, spare 15 r mag plus 29 spare rnds (1.5)
Wu's stainless steel 12 gauge - 8 rnds in internal mag, plus 5 on a nylon shell holder on stock (4)
Garand M1 rifl, 8 rnd en-bloc clip, plus 6 more 8 rnd clips in bandolier. (5.8)
straight razor (.2)
KABAR fighting tanto, (.5)
.22 snub revolver (9shot), box of 25 add'l .22 LR rnds (1.2)
9mm Glock 17 (17 rnd mag, 2- add'l 17 rnd mags, and a pouch with 33 rnds 9mm(2.3)
Taurus .357 magnum revolver, (6 rnds in cylinder), 3 speedloaders 21 add'l rounds of .357, (2.1)
2- satchel charge (20), 4- M26 grenades, (4), 4- other grenades (Spanish) labelled "INCEND", (4), 2- "other" grenades -- homemade jobs, by the look. (3)
Just for clarity, the radio area is only 5 meters from Wiz and Raven's sleeping areas. Reminder: there's just a blanket dividing that area from the rest of the room, and another dividing Raven's area from Wiz's.
That stuff puts Wiz's load up around 53 kg with everything listed here. He also has a Kevlar vest, helmet, and the laptop which I didn't bother to add up. The effect is Wiz will be considerably slower in moving. This is his MAX load amount. Just to give an idea, he will move at half speed with all of that stuff. That means in a 5 second combat round he can move NO GREATER THAN (and probably alot LESS THAN):
Crawl 1 meter, walk 4 meters, trot 7 meters, run 15 meters.
08 MAY 2003 / 2155 hours
Outside, S of 3/103 Command Post
drizzling and cold.
Wiz finished loading the weapons and equipment he had selected from those in and around the CP, and headed out, hoping to find some friendlies, and use them to bolster the defenses. It was a varied load, a veritable arsenal. He smiled a wry smile that thankfully no one could see. He had enough hardware to cause a major ruckus, provided he didn't have to go anywhere in a hurry. That the stuff was heavy was an understatement. The damned .357 kept digging him in the nuts, but he'd have to live with it -- there was no holster. The Garand, the WWII-era rifle Wiz had seen Berger toting around, was especially heavy, and long, too. Wiz prayed he could get wherever it was he was going before he had to stop and fight. He might fall, under all this weight and not be able to move to defend himself...
Wiz walked faster and more steadily after drinking 2 1/2 sixes of Yeungling Lager. He damn near lost it entirely on two occasions, but he kept going. His best guess for finding friendlies was to head down to the pavilions, and then to the First Aid Station at the Dressing Stockade. Wiz soon spotted a few militia in one of the trenches just south of the old Main Parking Area, SW of the CP. He settled down, unburdened himself, and called out the password, "White". The militia offered the countersign "Album". Wiz was uneasy about infiltrators. Did they have the signs? Well, he could sit and mull the options, or he could get on with what he had set out to do. He crawled up to the trench, dragging his arsenal along with him.
Inside were 6 militia, most of them cowering down at the very bottom of their hole. Two were lightly wounded. They looked happy to see someone in command. Only three of them had any weapons. One of them spoke up. "Sir, we'll keep the area here secure. Can you spare us anything to fight with?"
08 MAY 2003 / 2155 hours
Outside, NE of Pavilion #2
drizzling and cold.
Sherman, unsuccessful, but persistent in his attempts to gather up some of the defenders, headed toward the only other site where more friendlies might be -- Berger's gun emplacement. The gun had fired perhaps a minute or two ago but now was silent. As he got closer, he realized he might be mistaken for one of the enemy, so he took cover behind a large oak, and called out the password -- White -- and received the countersign -- Album. Moments later he was staring at a smiling Berger, the former teacher's face illuminated only by an eerie red light from the flashlight of one of his crew. Berger whispered to Sherman as he peered out over the top of the block and sandbag wall protecting the gun. The 4 men of his crew were ready to do their jobs, and kept watch over all points of the compass.
"Definitely 10 or more were inside the wire. They had something going over there, to the northwest." He pointed to the thick foliage growth of the Rapid Run Natural Area. "CO was right -- should-a ran a dozer over the whole F---ing place. Some kinda rocket launcher, something big. Can't help but think it was pointed right at us, here. These boys busted ass and we peppered 'em good with grapeshot before they got off a shot." He pointed again, and then offered Sherman his NVG to have a look. Sure enough, there was some big barreled weapon on a light carriage about 125 meters into the Natural Area.
"Been kinda quiet since then. Sent one guy out to check the CP. That was awhile ago. Haven't heard from him. What've you seen? How badly have they done us?"
"I'm not sure Jack. The Aid Station came under attack. Hannah and Yates are there, I left Cunningham with them. I saw a few of our guys in trenches along the way. But I couldn't get them moving." Sherman shook his head as he admitted his failure, then looked Berger in the eyes. "Looks like you might be the only organised defence in the camp at the moment Jack. No point in me staying here, I'll head back to the Aid Station, they might need help. Should anyone else show up send 'em down to me." Sherman took a deep breath as he prepared to run out. "Oh and Jack good job you and the boys did about that enemy gun, sure as hell didn't need that thing shooting at us."
Sherman then returned to the Aid Station…
08 MAY 2003 / 2155 hours
near M1848 Gun Pit
3/103rd PHOENIX Camp
formerly RB Winter State Park
approx 25 km W of Lewisburg, PA
A scrawny form slinked from a ditch, cursing under his breath. He was toting a little too much stuff considering the danger of the situation, and his ability to cross this broken ground in the dark, and unfortunately, he couldn't defend himself with any of it. He tripped on some unseen obstacle, and then slipped as if on ice. He ended up smashing his elbow on a piece of mountain rock, which when wet, gave only slightly better traction than a frozen lake. They call it mountain rock because it feels like a @#$% mountain when you collide with it. Bad enough that people're shooting at me. Well, at least the shooting stopped. Now maybe if I can avoid giving myself a @#$%-ing concussion...
[PVT Brownawell] (a young militia NPC)
"SGT ! Movement off to the north!", a militiaman said out loud. The tense voice shattered the calm of the lull in firing.
"Just tap me and point. Don't make so much noise...", he chided. He put the NVGs up to his eyes, searched, squinted, and focused on the movement. NVGs were nice, but were tough for him to get used to. Berger knew it would take too long to wheel the M1848 around, so he grabbed the last grenade from his harness, pulled the pin, and waited. "Keep down..."
A voice called out from the blackness. "White..."
Berger breathed a sigh of relief, and answered with the counter, "Album..." Moments later, Wu had belly-crawled into the gunpit, cradling two radios in his arms. Berger could've hugged the man, if it weren't for the live ordnance which he still held in his hand. He fumbled for the pin in the dark, eased it in, and then breathed a little easier. He barbed some sarcasm Wu's way, which seemed to be a major form of interaction between the two old friends.
"Rough goin' without your walkin' stick, huh?"
"Well, it was a last minute invite you sent, and I had to sneak out the back with my company still knocking on the front door. Bastard!"
"Hey, you're here in one piece, right? So fire that thing up and see what Axis Sarrrrry has to say..."
"Real funny you are. I'm half-Chinese. That's Japanese who can't... aw Hell -- I hope they make you an officer some day. This thing is Korean War vintage, not quite WWII stuff. Now shutup and lemme work."
The radio's juice had run out right in the middle of the firefight. Mr. Murphy again. Wu hooked the radio up to the spare battery from the gunpit's improvised telegraph set, crossed his fingers and remaining toes, and flipped the set on. Soon enough he changed frequencies, and was picking up something...
08 MAY 2003 / 2155 hours
Inside Aid Station
The big Irishman continued guarding the bustling Aid Station. There was confusion in the air, and that mingled with the awful stench of blood, bowel, burned flesh, and expended gunpowder. He had heard a broadcast just a few minutes ago -- sounded like LT Jackson calling for a counterassault. At least someone was out kicking ass and taking names. Sean reminded himself to be thankful that he, Guiness, and the others he called his friends were more or less intact. The 5 KIA and 12 WIA were a reality check as to how fragile life could be. He was tired. His ankle throbbed from him hobbling around on it so carelessly before. But he focused on the door, and the growing parade of broken bodies coming through it. He could swear Guiness flashed him a "dog smile", that knowing look from pet to master that said "Everything's cool, boss. Want I should go mounge something else?"
Hannah and Yates kept busy doing what they were good at -- providing care and calm where it was most needed. Some more wounded came trudging in, first two young guys, one dizzy and vomiting, and the other shot through the hand. Sean had seen Berger barking orders at these two kids a while back. Then another guy came in, his head a mess of blood soaked bandages. They all settled on the floor, giving the puking guy a wide berth, and a pail into which he could empty his stomach.
Sean continued to check people in to the Aid Station, collecting weapons and bags at the door, to guard against sappers. He continued to do this while the wounded were cared for. He took on the duty of protecting the two women and to him, that kind of duty was something serious…
08 MAY 2003 / 2200 hours
3/103rd PHOENIX Camp
formerly RB Winter State park
approx 25 km W of Lewisburg, PA
Arriving back at the Aid Station, Sherman called out to Sean, not wanting the big Irishman to shoot him or to be attacked by the brute of a dog the man owned. A number of injured militia were already inside, and Hannah and Yates were tending to them. Sherman looked at Hannah when she glanced at the door to see if any more wounded had entered. He was relieved that she was alright.
Sherman informed Cunningham of what he knew of the situation, which wasn't much. "Berger reckons about 10 raiders inside the Camp -- they were setting up some kind of rocket launcher. But that old cannon of his put a stop to 'em. Not much I can do here… you seem to have it all under control. Good job. I'll go outside and scout around see if can find any other wounded.
Despite never quite getting along, seeing eye-to-eye, or being thought of as anything remotely resembling partners or a team, Sherman and Cunningham together provided the additional security to the Aid Station that Cunningham alone could not do. Sean's ankle still throbbed from the round he had taken just days ago, and stumbling around in the dark did little to alleviate the pain. At least he had been able to curb his language instincts in front of the women. Sherman vacillated between anger and pity for the militia. While it was their job, he found it hard to blame them for not getting their act together and charging the unseen foes in the darkness. They just weren't cut out for it. Come to think of it, who among the group really was...
A few more wounded filtered into the Aid Station. This brought the casualty count up to 6 KIA and at least 12 WIA... At this rate, it would be Sherman, Cunningham, Guiness, and an old Amish lady with a broom, left defending the Camp. Sherman and Cunningham assisted as best they could inside the Aid Station, Sherman helping lift and transfer the wounded, with Cunningham keeping a watch on the doorway. After perhaps 5 or 10 minutes of this activity, a tapping or rapping is heard outside. At first, it was barely heard, with the moans and cries of the wounded, sounds of basin's clanking, clothing being cut away, etc. Sherman heard it first, and called it to Cunningham's attention. The sound is being made on the wooden building itself, at the north side, a few meters east of the breezeway.
Guiness's little nub of a tail was as straight as a bayonet, and his hackles bristled like a porcupine's quills...
"What the hell now?"
Sean grabbed his rifle and headed for the door. He signaled to Sherman that he was going around the back of the building to flank, and that Sherman should go the other way.
Guiness stalked behind his friend not making a sound. The dog seemed somehow to have grown even bigger. The muscles in his flanks are tensed, his lips are pulled back showing his impressive teeth. Sean glanced at him and couldn’t help but smile...it looked like his dog was giving him a very maniacal smile as if asking 'Fresh meat Boss?'
What was that? Cunningham had already decided to go and have a look, his dog dutifully behind him. Maybe it's just something blowing against a wall, a loose board or something, Sherman thought. But the way Guiness had assumed an aggressive posture, even its stubby tail was standing straight. Sherman was worried.
He indicated to those in the room to carry on as normal. He motioned to the two militia men guarding the breezeway, one to follow Cunningham the other to go with him. Sherman then quietly headed outside...