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Chapter 33

Copyright© 2013 by Banzai Ben

Present – Maria – In the equipment room

Liz asks, "What the hell was that explosion?"

I command, "I don't give a fuck right now! It's imperative that we stop Jens' blood loss and replace her fluids. Blood loss is the major cause of battlefield death." While Liz and Bernie start looking in the cabinets for the medical supplies I continue, "I need an IV setup, something to replace her blood, and a chest tube unit."

They begin to look in the cabinets and Bernie says, "Hey, I found a refrigerator full of blood."

I order, "Bring out two units of O negative blood and find some way to slowly warm them."

Liz states, "I found the IV equipment but I'm not sure what a chest tube unit looks like."

I look around, see a woodworker's clamp and order, "Bring me that clamp on the workbench over there."

Liz questions, "Which one?"

I continue, "The bar clamp that has the blue handles on it."

Liz runs over to me with the clamp and IV setup, hands them to me and asks, "What are you going to do with the clamp?"

I explain, "I learned this in the sandbox. They used these clamps to apply pressure to the wounds to slow the bleeding."

I change the diaper/compression bandage on my princess boss, adjust the clamp so it presses on the wound and squeeze the handle, compressing the hell out of the clamp and her wound. I then take the IV set from Liz, tie off Jens arm, (thank God she has good veins) find one to get it started and begin to give her normal saline. I demand, "Bernie, where the hell is the blood?"

He answers, "It's coming. You said you wanted it warmed slowly."

I look at Liz and order, "You monitor my Princess Boss's vital signs while I look for a chest tube kit..."

Present – Liz – In the equipment room

Wow! I am impressed as hell with Maria! I wasn't so sure about her when Jens first hired her, but she's like having a doctor here. I check Jens pulse and state, "Maria, Jens pulse seems weak."

Maria is rummaging through the medical cabinet and says, "It will get better once we get some fluid in her; she's bleeding out into her lung. How is her breathing?"

I state, "Not good; she seems to be having trouble..."

Ivan interrupts, "Princess is very sick. I think she die and I have to kiss to wake back up like Sleeping Beauty."

Then Jens coughs, wakes up and says...

Present – Jens – In the equipment room

I wake up, look down at my chest and complain, "What the fuck is this wood clamp doing on my chest? It's uncomfortable as hell!"

Maria yells, "It's putting pressure on your wound; don't fuck with it! Jens, tell me you have a chest tube apparatus."

I reply, "Of course I do." I look at Maria and give her directions, "But you're looking in the wrong damn cabinet, it's over there."

I point, it hurts like hell and things begin to grow dark again...

Present – Liz – In the equipment room

I update Jens' condition, "Maria, Jens passed out again."

Maria comes back over with some equipment and says, "Good! She was being too much of a pain in the ass when she was awake. Now that I'm here, you go and see if you can find me some antibiotics and morphine."

Ivan giggles, "She say bad 'ass' word. We need wash out mouth with nasty soap."

Maria threatens, "I will wash your damn mouth out with nasty soap!"

Ivan counter-threatens, "I get my big papa to spank your bottom and then I help wash your bad mouth out with soap!"

Maria glares at Ivan as Bernie heads to the table with two bags of blood. He offers, "I'll help you look for the drugs Maria asked for."

I decide it's better to keep Maria and Ivan separated, so we head to the cabinets and begin searching for the drugs...

Present – Masha – At the cabin

I was thankful the helicopters scared the fox away because she was going to bite me and if she bit me I would need to have a rabies test and possibly suffer through the required progression of shots. I get Jennifer's dog's leg set, wrap it nicely in the piece of scarf I cut off then I take two sticks, placed them on either side of the fracture and secured them with the tie wraps from my purse.

I just finish when I hear some approaching soldiers and they order, "Ma'am, please surrender your weapon."

I raise both my hands and state, "You are free to acquire my weapon, however I would like it returned as soon as possible."

One of the soldiers takes my pistol while another looks at Jennifer's dog and states, "That's a bang up job you did on his leg; I would have never thought to use tie wraps to secure a splint."

I question, "Do you have a doctor who can check on this dog? He is a hero and saved us from the truck bomb you see immediately past me."

One soldier informs me, "Ma'am we are in the process of setting up a cash1 because of the numerous casualties."

1 CSH – Combat Support Hospital (pronounced cash) - a modern military field hospital

Another soldier questions, "Has anyone neutralized the truck bomb?"

I reply, "We did not have the time to investigate the status of the bomb."

The soldier orders, "Okay Ma'am, we need to move you and the dog to a safer area."

I watch as the soldier who commented about the tie wraps gently picks up Jennifer's dog and then we proceed away from the area.

I question, "My son has been trapped in the tunnels with several other people. Do you have any plans to excavate the tunnels?"

I am surprised by the answer but even more surprised at where they take me...

Present – Jack – At the cabin

After Glen's warning (where the hell is he anyway?) I put my weapons on the ground and head toward the Chinooks. Hell, we really screwed the pooch when we blew up the machinegun since it collapsed the ventilation duct. I hoped like hell the Greenies have some idea of how to access the tunnels because I had ran out of possibilities. A Captain steps out of the Chinook and I realize we are more fucked than when Glen was here! Hell, the lower the brass the worse the problem. I walk up to him, salute and say, "I'm Jack Reynolds and Jennifer Donaldson put me in charge of her facility."

He looks down his nose at me and sneers, "And what was your rank before they drummed you out of the Corps?"

I counter, "I was a Sergeant and retired with honors. I don't have to take this bullshit from Captain Obvious,"

I turn, begin to leave and he orders, "Detain Sgt. Sarcastic, I think he's an enemy combatant."

The Greenies grab me and I wish I had my rifle because I would shoot all of them - with the Captain being the first target...

Present – Linus – Rescuing the survivors

The Greenies run up and instead of helping they begin to give me shit! They question, "Who the hell are you and what the hell are you doing?"

I answer, "I'm a Navy Seal and will kick all your asses. I'm rescuing the troops that were injured when the armory tent exploded."

They stated the obvious, "This looks more like a mess tent than an armory tent."

I answer, "Doh! You need to get a gold star! This is the mess tent which was too close to the armory tent. Now are you going to help or get out of the fucking way so I can do my job?"

They began to mouth off when Mable comes over and challenges them, "I don't know who the hell you are but if you are not going to help, get the hell out of my mess tent."

Mable put the fear of God (or perhaps Mable) into them because they began to help...

Present – Alexi – At the cabin

I am observing with keen interest the tactics of the Army Special Forces. I was led to believe they were here to ascertain differences between the charlatan and real Marines and render assistance. However, that is not what I observe. They are actually detaining all the Marines by herding them like cattle into a hastily erected fenced pen. I am surprised when I see them even detain Sgt. Reynolds and shocked when they place his wife in the same enclosure!

As Marcellus said in oft misquoted line from Hamlet, "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark." Shakespeare specifically added the word 'state' to imply that the Denmark was rotting from the head down – in Hamlet all was not well with the political hierarchy of Denmark - just as all is not well with the arrival of the Special Forces, from the Captain on down...

My sister Mira begins to waken so I send her hand signals to remain still. Unfortunately one of the soldiers observes her slight movement and foolishly threatens, "Ms., if you move we will be forced to fire."

I counter and remind him, "Corporal, if you again threaten either of my incapacitated sisters or myself I will be forced to kill you like the cur your behavior resembles. Remember, the three of us hold diplomatic passports so any escalation on your part will be viewed as an act of war by my government."

He replies, "Shit you don't know your ranks boy - I am a Sergeant."

I smile and explain my threat as to a child, "I recognized your stripes and I simply visualized how many of them you will lose if you continue to force this situation. My sisters and I pose no immediate threat to you and we will not be forcibly detained like the Marines which you are herding into the holding pen. I will patiently sit with my rifle across my lap to protect my sisters until the commanding officer arrives. However, should you continue to threaten our corporeal selves, I will demand to speak with my Ambassador and we will make this an international incident."

Mira slowly sits up and affirms...

Present – Mira – At the cabin

I have observed exactly what Alexi vocalized. The Army Special Forces have removed all the Marines, other than the ones working in the decimated tent of mess, into a concertina wire enclosure.

I slowly set up and continue Alexi's threat, "Sergeant, soon to be Corporal, I am going to reach inside my body armor and produce my diplomatic passport. When I am finished my brother will perform the same act."

I reach inside my body armor, locate my passport, slowly extract it and wave it in the air. The Sgt. takes it from me, opens it and immediately complains, "Hell, I should have known they're damn Russkies!"

I question, "But is it not a diplomatic passport?"

Alexi hands the Sgt. his passport and states, "So is mine."

The Sgt. relents, "Yes, they are diplomatic passports."

The Captain arrives and immediately demands, "Why haven't you removed the weapon from this boy."

The Sgt. explains, "He has a diplomatic passport from Russia." He then hands both passports to the Captain.

I state our concerns, "Yes Captain, we are diplomats of Russia and as such we demand superior management to the demeaning treatment the Marines are receiving."

He laughs, "I am just following orders..."

I interrupt, "Did your orders include specific instructions on the treatment of three diplomats?"

He replies, "Hell no it didn't! Sergeant, take these three to the new mess tent."

Alexi states what should have been obvious, "Excuse me Sir, but my injured sister and Todd require prompt medical attention."

He relents, "Okay, take the four of them to the cash, but only after the boy surrenders his weapon."

Alexi acquires my visual units, I flash him a sign, he relinquishes his rifle and they escort us to the cash.

I question who has provided his orders, but on the way to the cash a new helicopter lands and I see... HIM!

Present – Jack – At the cabin

They have herded us like fucking cattle into a concertina wire enclosure! They even bring in Masha, she runs toward me, hugs me and questions, "Jack, I do not understand this treatment."

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