Cunningham was sure he was onto something with the Petey Slade - Hannah thing, but for now there just wasn't time to follow it to it's logical (or illogical?) conclusion. He had to find Sherman and Jack Booker. Booker was probably easier to find -- he was always hanging out at that place he and Wiz used for a shop. So Sean hobbled there the best he could. At least Hannah and that nurse Yates had set him up with some crutches. There were home made, and a little short, but better than taking a spill or treading on that foot the wrong way, especially with all the uneven ground around here. If only he could train Guiness to do his footwork, he'd be free for more intellectual pursuits. On second thought, maybe the dog should do the melonwork...
~~The guards were alert enough this evening. Almost everyone expected a few mortar rounds, and stayed closeby the hastily-dug trenches. Damned ground up here was so rocky, most of the trenches weren't that deep, but any port in a storm. ~~ thought Sean.
Sean found Booker quickly enough, and let him know Wiz, er, LT Jackson needed him at HQ. Sean then set off for Sherman. ~~Well, it's what, quarter of 11. Almost his bedtime. He's probably putting on his police jammies right about now. Heh. Well, really, that wasn't quite fair. Sherman seemed abit more tolerable, anyway, and Sean had promised himself to make the supreme effort. ~~
Sean stopped one of militia and asked if he had seen SGT Sherman. The man said yes, he had. Sherman had entered the first aid station a few minutes ago. "If ya hurry, ya might catch 'em", laughed the guard as he watched the big Irishman hobbling along. Sean ordinarily would've pounded the guy for something like that, but again, he was trying to turn himself around, so he let it slide.
Oddly, the door to the First Aid Station was closed. It was never closed. Yet the lights were on. Sean felt obligated to knock. Maybe someone was having an embarrassing growth removed or something...
Sherman and Hannah would have to cut their conversation short for the time being. There was a knock at the door.
Almost at the same time, the familiar sound of the spoon of a grenade being flung from the deadly ordnance made Sean huff his crutches and take cover.
We go to rounds with your next post...
Note on the Aid Station:
This is in part of the dressing stockade just north of the beach / lake. It looks like a Walt Disney-ish version of Fort Apache or something -- rough timbers, sharpened at the tops. Men's side is east, Women's is west, with a breezeway between. On the east side is the Aid Station (actually enlarged into the men's area with a few added walls) and on the west side is a small office formerly used by Lifeguards. This now serves as additional storage for small amount of medical gear.
Just north of the stockade is a 1.5 meter hill/bank, which was cut down on the beach side when the stockade was built. Steps are carved into the bank, giving egress to the stockade and beach beyond. The walkway is flagstone, as are the steps. Basically, this area forms a fair bunker, much to Sean's pleasure...
Back to the story…
First Aid Station and surrounds
RB Winter State
cold, light drizzle
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:01 hours I=4
"What the F**K!" Sean looked for the origin of the grenade and the gunfire. He thinks he sees some muzzle flashes-- no he definately sees some muzzle flashes, 50-60 meters west of the Aid Station, approximately at the picnic tables between Boiling Spring Trail and Rapid Run Trail.
2146:06 hours I=3
Scanning through the sights on the .45 Sean searched for a target. Inside:
Another attack! "Stay down Hannah." yelled Sherman.
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:11 hours I=2
He moved away from her and crouching low dashed over beside the door. The sound of gunfire could be heard outside. Opening the door cautiously, his shotgun ready he peered around the door frame, looking out into the camp. He saw Sean Cunningham just outside, with his pistol drawn.
"Come on you piece of Shitte...no one tries to blow up Sean Patrick Cunningham and gets away with it! Come on out and meet yer maker!"
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:16 hours I=1
A fusillade of gunfire erupts throughout the camp. A few rounds whack into the area of the Aid Station door, and one bites into Sherman's right arm. Sherman backed into the cover of the Aid Station. The round nicked him slightly, hell Sherman had done worse shaving with an old razor. At least he felt he could still use the shotgun....
Likewise, a few rounds chase Sean down the bank north of the Aid Station. Actually he fell, rolled, call it whatever. He was exposed where he was, and while the move made him wince in pain (blasted ankle), he felt better with a little earth and fieldstone between him and the hostiles. Reaching down to a wet spot on his right leg, he smeared a little blood onto the butt of his trousers. He'd been hit! Suddenly it hurt, but Sean wasn't gonna deny himself some revenge...
Sean suddenly remembered his friend and changed his search for Guiness. "Guiness Lad, come here boy!" Guiness could not be seen nor could he be heard.
Ten seconds elapse with only occasional shots here and there...
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:31 hours I=4
The Irishman doesn't really see a distinct target, but rather muzzleflashes, a few rounds thudding into the ground nearby, and some indistinct movement again from the picnic tables. He aims and fires twice. He might've hit something. They're a little far, tho...
"Cunningham, get inside!" shouted Sherman, who then moved out of the doorway to bring the crazy Irishman inside.
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:36 hours I=3
"I'm fine...everyone inside OK? The firefight seems to be coming from that direction (points west). They are in the perimeter, and that explosion was a grenade, not a mortar.
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:41 hours I=2
The ex-cop peers out the door at Cunningham.
"What do you say we round up a few swingin' dicks and see if we can cut off the escape route?"
Sherman arched an eyebrow, looking down at Cunningham's foot then back to the mans face. "Only if they're escaping in wheelchairs...." he said to himself.
"Your not in much condition to be running around, Sean. Hannah is inside the Aid Station, stay here with her. If the enemy have got inside the camp, nowhere's going to be safe."
8 MAY 2003 / 2146:46 hours I=1
Sherman will then run off towards the direction of the shooting that Cunningham pointed out, stopping by the nearby trenches to order those in them to follow him. It seemed most of the militia were paralyzed with fear. A few did give Sherman some cover fire however. (Thankfully!)
Sherman racks the slide of the shotgun as he sprints. The muzzle flashes twinkle in the night, and things seem to happen very slowly. He thinks of Christmas lights, Fourth of July Fireworks, and the time he toured a steelmill.
Sean tried to protest, but there was little he could do to stop Sherman. It seemed rash, and Sherman might pay dearly...
Sherman closes to perhaps 30 meters from where Sean indicated, even as bullets thud into the ground and trees all around him. Three vague forms materialize from behind the flashes, and he cuts them down with the shotgun. It almost sounded as if the weapon were on full auto. Another round slams into Sherman's right arm, and he rolls into a nearby trench.
An explosion rocks the HQ Command Center. A door bursts open in the time Wiz has to draw his Beretta DeLuxe. Two men enter, firing. A round whacks into Wiz's bulletproof vest, feeling like a heartpunch, as he rapidly returns fire. He fires five or six times, (or was it 10?...) One of his assailants drops to the floor of the CP, the other fiddles with his own pistol. Wiz hated that vest. It was hot and felt like a straightjacket. MAJ Raven said everyone was to be armed and ready at all times, so he wore the thing all day today. Wiz never wore the vest much before. He now swore by the thing...
And again he swore. "Dammit!"
Josh, your offering to the mighty God Kevlar was accepted. Now, for your firstborn...
10 seconds elapse with what seemed to be a lull in the action...
Wiz's mind instantly was filled with rage and aggression. Who did these guys think that they were, barging in here, guns ablaze. Paying little attention to his own life, and giving only slightly more care to the bag on his back, Wiz ran full speed at the man who was fubbling with his gun. Wiz raised his pistol, locked his arm straight out, and fired as he ran onward. He wasn't sure how many bullets he had in the gun...if any. But if the man didn't die of a gunshot, Wiz was going to beat him to death with the Beretta. Battle on...
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:01 hours I=3
Wiz charged, full of anger. A yell could be heard above the hammering din of his pistol in the confined room. The intruder continued firing, and Wiz felt the thud again and again into the vest, and it hurt like a hard punch, but thankfully the vest held. Wiz and the one remaining man closed the distance, and neither had managed to put a slug into the other's vitals!
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:06 hours I=2
They could nearly touch each other, and that they did. Or more accurately, Wiz did. The other man continued to fumble with his pistol. As Wiz neared, he saw a look of panic in the man's eyes, and jammed the Beretta muzzle-first, right into his face, hard. The man's nose exploded in a bloody mess...
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:11 hours I=1
....and then Wiz pulled the trigger. The back of the man's head opened up and blood and brains splattered over the remains of the doorframe.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:16 hours I=6
Wiz scanned around the room while he caught his breath.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:21 hours I=5
He saw the other intruder writhing on the floor.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:26 hours I=4
Wiz's rage again builds.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:31 hours I=3
He approached the man and swiftly kicked him in the stomach, and then administered a coup de grace with the pistol...
Despite the fury of the attack and that of Wiz's retaliation, all was quiet in a foreboding way outside...
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:36 I=2
Wiz replaces magazine of pistol with a fresh one from belt.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:41 I=1
Wiz reloads / tops off original magazine of pistol from box. He expended 11 rounds in the brief firefight, but he's breathing and the other 2 are not. That leaves 29 loose rounds in the box in his fanny pack.
Well done, Josh. They could've killed you, both were of equal skill with Wiz, and also had INIT = 3...
Note that INIT #'s will NOT match for the same times in diff. areas....
There is a sudden lull in the firing. Are they all dead, retreating, on the move, or feigning for some bigger play?...
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:01 I=3
Sherman glances at his arm, hoping he can still move his fingers. Thankfully he can do so.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:06 I=2
He topped off his shotgun, and quickly took stock of ammo for that weapon. With 8 rounds in the weapon, he still had 18 more in the pouch on his web gear.
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:11 I=1
Sherman called out to the nearby militia and tried to rally them. They seemed to be hunkering down in their trenches, more or less oblivious to all going on around them. Here and there, one man or woman would pop up from a hole or other cover, fire a quick round, and then disappear into safety...
8 MAY 2003 / 2147:01
Sean Cunningham is in a repetative action of guarding the door of the Aid Station, pistol benchrested at a distance of 3 meters. So far, no takers...
Sean watched as the first few wounded came in. He realized this would be a prime target for some sneaky bastard to try something. "Hanna, I'll be right outside if you need anything." Sean stood outside the door, as the wounded came in. "Sorry folks, there will be no weapons or bags allowed inside. I will be collecting them here and you can pick them up on the way out." He searched his pack and pulled out a piece of paper and pen. He made a simple inventory list, person A: 30.06 small rucksack. He carefully stacked the weapons and gear behind him. When he got a break from the influx of wounded he would shout out for Guiness. The big Dog could take care of himself very well, but he was getting a little nervous, he hadn't seen his friend since the shooting started.
8 MAY 2003 / 2148 hours
RB Winter Aid Station
(no longer combat rounds for the moment...)
Sean Cunningham continued guarding the door to the Aid Station, his .45 propped up on an improvised benchrest. Hannah kept busy, readying the meager First Aid supplies for the inevitable casualties that would soon appear at the door. Finally, when the shooting let up, she hastily packed a bag with some medical supplies. To Sean, the bag meant only one thing -- she was going out into this dangerous situation to help people. It was insane.
"Woah, there, lass. You go out there to help someone and get shot, then who will be here to deal with the rest of the injured that come in, me? I dunno a thing bout First Aid, and my bedside manner is better for drunks than the injured. Ya better just stay, those needing care'll be in soon enough".
The Israeli student looked to be an emotional mess anyway, and Sean's admonishment had the intended effect. "You are right, Mr. Cunningham. Where the Hell is Specialist Yates, anyway?" Hannah cleared off two spare tables. From the volume of gunfire a few moments ago, there were bound to be several people needing attention.
You (OK, I) rolled an outstanding success for persuasion. My apologies for butchering Sean's dialog style....
Soon Yates came in, leading two Militia PVTs, both walking wounded. They carried a third man that looked in serious condition.
8 MAY 2003 / 2148 hours
Outside RB Winter Aid Station /
Sherman looked back at the militia. He couldn't blame them for not wanting to come forward, in cover was the smartest place to be. At least a few were shooting back. He peered over the lip of his trench to see if he could see the enemy.
Sherman ran, dodging and zigzag-ing back to the militia. "Have to get them going" he thought. He could play it any one of a dozen ways. Really there was only one choice, and that was to order them to get up and find the SOBs in the raiding party and either kill or capture them.
Sherman low-sprinted to the first hole where he saw any militia. There were four men there, two cowering very low in the trench, minus rifles or helmets. The third and fourth at least had their pots on and rifles pointed toward the last know enemy position. He kept talking to Warren, the man beside him.
"Warren, ya see 'em? Watch the flanks, Warren. They're sneaky bastards, but we've got 'em now. Warren? Warren! WARREN!..... SGT Sherman! Don't let 'em get Warren!"
Sherman could see that Warren might have difficulty answering, what with the huge bloody patch spreading on his shirt, right between the shoulder blades. He recognized the screaming man. John's training as a State Police Trooper would again be put to the test. His tone was firm yet even. "PVT Griner! They can't hurt Warren now. We need to form up and move on them before they hurt anyone else." Then to the two cowering men. "You too, let's get moving before they do any more to the Camp"
Try as he might, Sherman couldn't get these men moving. PVT Griner was shaking uncontrollably, and was probably more a danger to himself and the others around him, than he would be to any enemy, at least for the moment. The two men in the bottom of the trench were so paralyzed with fear that they weren't much better.
Scanning around, there were three other fighting holes nearby with people in them. Sherman could physically pick up any one of these men, and put them into motion. But that would probably carry them only a few steps, and then they'd all be sitting ducks for some sniper. To Hell with these guys, thought Sherman. He'd try another hole, if he could make it there without getting shot by some damn raider hiding out for just such an opportunity.
He rose out of the trench, and heard more gunfire, up by the parking lot outside the CP. This was answered by the characteristic CHUFF! sound of Berger's Civil War cannon unleashing. Crazy Berger, fighting 'em that way. Well, at least he was fighting 'em.
8 MAY 2003 / 2148 hours
Josh, your scoped SKS has a 30 rnd mag and 26 additional loose rounds. It's under your cot. The info on setting that you asked for is in the text below...
Wiz, alone in the room had managed to put down two attackers without being harmed himself. Wonder of wonders. He only wished he had more ammo. The SKS was in the other room. Was there time to get it? He got himself oriented a little better. It had all happened so fast. Almost like a cartoon. A damned deadly cartoon... He went over to the radio area, hoping to find Wu there, but all he saw was that man's sawed off shotgun. Where he was, was anyone's guess. Next he checked the guard at the door. He was dead, as Wiz had suspected, shot several times in the face by the two who came in guns-ablazing...
His next thoughts were to protect the laptop PC. He had done so to this point. It had nearly cost him his life a time or two already. Something that important just couldn't be left on the desk. Too bad the floor to this place is concrete -- he could lift up a few floor boards and hide the thing in there. About the only secure place nearby was the Armory. Wiz had the keys, but it'd be a real bitch to lose both the laptop and whatever munitions inside should that thing get hit and go up... Maybe as a last resort...
Turning back to the guard at the door, he undid the man's Kevlar vest, and tightened it around the laptop, then thrust it into the backpack he had carried it in earlier. This made 2 kevlar vests protecting the thing. It wasn't perfect, but it was better than nothing.
Wiz quickly searched the bodies, and was shaken by what he found. Each man had a pistol, spare ammo, several grenades, satchel charges, knives. These guys were armed to the teeth, but it was the crude Xeroxed photos of MAJ Raven, Wiz himself, Sherman, Hannah, Berger, Robbo, Cunningham, and Wu taped to a hunk of cardboard, that really put him to thinking. Somebody was bigtime pissed off at the 3/103 Command Staff, and had no doubt sent a hit squad to eliminate as many as possible. Wiz grabbed the smallish poster, folded it, and stuffed it into a cargo pocket. It was kind of obvious what it was, but maybe the MAJ could get something more from it. If Wiz ever saw the MAJ again...
"Dammit where's Wu", he thought. "He could deal with this better than I can." Wu's fancy cane was gone, but he had left his shotgun in the corner. That was odd. Wu practically lived within 10 feet of the radio. Then he remembered one of the CB radios in all that radio gear was rigged as a PA. Not great projection range or anything, and the only speakers were the one outside, and the one that had been strung down to the Aid Station. Then again, there was the primitive (non-)Morse Code telegraph system Robbo and Wu had installed a day or two ago.... Ah, for the moment the PA seemed a better bet.
Yes, Wu always walks with a cane. He took a 9mm round to the leg WAYYYY back at start of game, and has a fancy cane, rosewood with an iron Oriental dragon for a handle. More than a little strange that he's not in the CP.
There are 2 speakers, one bigger one right outside the CP, and the other one I mentioned, a little one inside the Aid Station.
As for specifics for the raiders, and what also might be readily available in the room:
Wiz's SKS under his cot, and Wu's stainless steel 12 gauge riot gun in the corner by the radio gear. The guard at the door had a Garand M1 rifle, 8 rnd en-bloc clip, plus 6 more 8 rnd clips. Wiz already took his Kevlar vest. There also is an old-style pot helmet. (Vietnam era). There is a plastic police whistle on a cord around his neck.
The pile Wu made as he searched the dead raiders was extensive: several packs of cigarettes, matches, a Butane lighter, a vile of medicine, a crowbar, wirecutters, a bolt cutter, 2- piano wire garrotes, survival knife, straightrazor, KABAR fighting tanto, .22 snub revolver (9shot), box of 25 add'l .22 LR rnds, 9mm Glock 17 (6 rounds left in mag, 2- add'l 17 rnd mags, and a pouch with 50 rnds 9mm, a Taurus .357 magnum revolver, (2 rnds in cylinder), plus 3 speedloaders found in a pouch. 25 add'l rounds of .357, and these are some nasty looking bullets, hollowpoints with a star pattern on the face of the bullet. Damn, what were they called?
Each man carried a satchel charge(so that makes 2), or that's what they look like anyway (Wiz is a computer guru and maintenance expert, not a demo man). Wiz is a bit nervous about checking those out much further... 4- M26 grenades, 4- other grenades with what looks like Spanish words on them. They are labelled "INCEND", and that's all Wiz wants to know. Finally, there are 2- "other" grenades -- homemade jobs, by the look. They appear to be made of 18-20 oz tincans, containing something. Each has some fabric streamers coming out of the non-fuse end. There is a strong ammonia or maybe road tar smell to them, and each has a 12" long fuse. It looks like the waterproof cannon fuse Berger supplied when he and Wiz cooked up the black powder charges for the 3/103 raid on the Norry Fuel Facility, way back a week or so ago...
Josh recognized the guy with the Glock. He was one who had just been admitted to Camp yesterday. Gotta tighten up security. How'd these guys get the weapons through? Be glad the guy with the .357 went down first, Josh. That might've punched thru your vest....
Sherman looked about at the men in the trench. GOD! I don't have time for this he thought, as if I don't already have enough of my own problems. Sherman could feel the heat in his face the sense of rage building up. His hands shook as they tightned on the shotgun. His eyes bore through Griner showing his absolute hatred of the man, Sherman was about to explode.
Griner looked up at him his eyes wide with horror his body shaking with fear. Sherman looked back and felt ashamed, what the hell was I thinking.
He closed his eyes for a second, his rage dissapating. Then reached down and placed his hand gently upon Griner's shoulder and smiled calmly "You'll be alright".
Nothing more he could do here. Sherman looked over at the other trenches….
And then dashed off towards them.
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 found 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 amidst the pile of loot.
He switched on the radio and tuned 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 check and 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 attempted to get information on the whereabouts of his troops and of the enemy's. He did so without interruption. Despite the utter seriousness of the situation, Wiz managed a grim smile of satisfaction at his ad hoc assemblage of weapons.
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. He found a satchel, and put the spare 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.
Here’s the approx run-down on Wiz’s load. Note that bulk is great even if weight isn’t:
Wiz's SKS (5) Wiz’s Beretta (1.5) Wu's stainless steel 12 gauge (4) Garand M1 rifle, 8 rnd en-bloc clip, plus 6 more 8 rnd clips in bandolier. (5.8) survival knife(.5) 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)
He switches the CB over to the PA system, and tunes the second to the current communications frequency used by the soldiers. 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.
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.
It took a few moments to rewind the machine. Those moments seemed longer than they really were, especially with Wiz keeping an eye on the TV, the door, and the windows, too. If he was going to get shot, by God, a lot of other people were going to go with him!
What Wiz saw on the tape made sense for the most part. There was a lot of firing, not too close, but not far either. More commotion, and noise. He heard Wu swear, as the Asian man leaped from the seat by the radio. Wiz was out of view for the moment. More shots, very loud and close. Again Wu swore. He came into view, limping, clutching his arm, heading for the radio again. More shooting. Then Wu vaulted through the glass window, and was gone.
Wiz spotted glass shards, the open window, and a few spatters of blood that were not those of the two he killed. Wu had apparently made it through an earlier assault, but as to his well being at this point, it was anyone’s guess.
Wiz finally stood and walked as if to leave the building. He took 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 surprise 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."
Then he walks out the door into the battle to rally his troops…