Story Market Day

ComCamGuy

Senior Member
Slight correction - Desert Storm was waaaay after VN.

Not that long. Jesse was in the service in the early seventies and retired right after desert storm.
By 73, most things were winding way down in VN. He was too late for that war. Desert Storm kicked off as Desert Shield Aug 90, Storm 17 Jan 91. With his 20 years, and retiring in fall 91-spring 92 it all works. Then 20 years for the forest service, 2012, and retired for 8ish years

I had a Chief Master Sargent in spring of 90 tell us stories of stuff he did at Khe Sanh in 68. He retired the fall of 91 after we came home from Storm.
 
Last edited:

sssarawolf

Has No Life - Lives on TB
My oldest brother was in Vietnam, he never would talk about what went on. The only thing he ever said is the last truck in the convoy rarely made it back to base. He ended up driving the last truck 2 miles from base. Everyone else had been blown up behind him.
 

ComCamGuy

Senior Member
Emilia threw together a good dinner from the pantry. It’s amazing what can be done with a little this and that. She was quite pleased. The talk around the table was of the plans for the next few days.

“Guys, I have to get back up to Zed’s tomorrow morning. He figured to be back tomorrow night or the morning after. You should pack up supplies and such and come up there. We will have all the info and will be able to plan what we can do about these bastards.” There was a gleam in Jesse’s eye as he talked about doing in the park’s invaders.

“Well, I have some stuff we should get ready if we are really going to do some sort of ‘combat’ operation. I have to put together a better medical kit in case things go horribly wrong.” Doug paused a moment, upset with himself for stating it that way. “I also have some more uniform parts around here somewhere. We can make you more official looking.” He said, gesturing to Heidi. “I also have some more ammo for my pistol and rifle. That is one place we are short on; firepower.”

Heidi snorted, thinking to herself “Firepower? These guys really don’t have a clue about firepower.” Doug looked over at her, a puzzled look on his face. Heidi looked around the table and realized all eyes were looking at her.

“Sorry, didn’t know that was out loud” Heidi looked at the table kina sheepishly. Emilia stared at her mother. She wasn’t sure what was wrong, but she suspected it had to do with the empty glass she brought in from the porch.

Doug continued, ignoring the interruption.

“It will take most of the morning to dug up stuff and get it packed into the trailer of the ATV. We could head over the next morning. Driving around at night, the sound carries more and I don’t want to attract any more attention over that way.”

“Well, I have a few more guns up at Zed’s. We can look at what Zed has also. I don’t know how many there are, but we need to figure if it’s a sledgehammer or a mosquito type of thing we can do. If there is too many to take out in one swift blow, we may have to do a lot of hit and run to cut down their numbers. What do you think, Heidi?”

“Me? I think the whole thing is suicidal, but I don’t have a better plan. Hell I don’t have A plan!” she seemed almost as startled by her outburst as the others at the table were. She quickly stood up. “I’m sorry, I’ll be back.” Without another word, Heidi strode to the door and went outside.

Jesse stood and started to go after her. Emilia stopped him.

“Jesse, don’t. She’s like a cooped up bird. She has to work something out. She’s probably doing pushups, or running, or bench pressing a truck or something.”

Jesse sat back down, regretting giving her the scotch. Doug and Jesse started plotting more routes to approach the upper cabin and the main camp. Emilia stood and stared at the door for a long time while the others talked. She wasn’t sure what she could do to help any of this other than organizing stuff, which they already did for most of the day.

Hours later, Heidi came back in the cabin. Emilia was sitting at the table, a deck of cards spread out on its surface.

“Mom, you OK?”

“OK, no. Better, yes. I guess I need to apologize to the guys tomorrow morning. I really shouldn’t drink.” Heidi pulled out a chair and sat with Emilia. “What else did I miss other than ‘look at the whacko’?”

“Jesse is leaving in the morning, we are getting stuff together tomorrow and going to Zeds to get whatever info he was able to gather. Then the planning will begin. That’s it so far.”

“Red nine on black ten. Sounds like what I think I remember.” Heidi looked at the table for a few moments, then back at Emilia. “I don’t know how all of this is going to shake out. I want you to know. You are my most important thing. I don’t care what I have to do to make that happen.”

Emilia could hear the commitment in those words.

“I know mom. We will get through this.”

“I know. I just had to tell you.” Heidi seemed to come to some sort of decision. “Tomorrow, we teach you how to shoot as well. I should have done it years ago.”

“Go to bed, Mom.” Emilia watched her mother head back to their shared bedroom. She saw her pause as she walked past the couch with Jesse sleeping on it, then continue. Emilia sat, playing cards as she thought of the long list Doug made for tomorrow’s packing and sorting. She knew from the talk after her mother left, Doug would be back in charge of what was going on. She was also sure that was probably best for all involved.
 

Griz3752

Retired, practising Curmudgeon
It might sound like over whelming odds but Charlie did quite well w/ improvisation & stealth against helos, firepower & 'better' logistics. Sounds like the game is about to be on.
 

turtlegent

Contributing Member
Emilia threw together a good dinner from the pantry. It’s amazing what can be done with a little this and that. She was quite pleased. The talk around the table was of the plans for the next few days.

“Guys, I have to get back up to Zed’s tomorrow morning. He figured to be back tomorrow night or the morning after. You should pack up supplies and such and come up there. We will have all the info and will be able to plan what we can do about these bastards.” There was a gleam in Jesse’s eye as he talked about doing in the park’s invaders.

“Well, I have some stuff we should get ready if we are really going to do some sort of ‘combat’ operation. I have to put together a better medical kit in case things go horribly wrong.” Doug paused a moment, upset with himself for stating it that way. “I also have some more uniform parts around here somewhere. We can make you more official looking.” He said, gesturing to Heidi. “I also have some more ammo for my pistol and rifle. That is one place we are short on; firepower.”

Heidi snorted, thinking to herself “Firepower? These guys really don’t have a clue about firepower.” Doug looked over at her, a puzzled look on his face. Heidi looked around the table and realized all eyes were looking at her.

“Sorry, didn’t know that was out loud” Heidi looked at the table kina sheepishly. Emilia stared at her mother. She wasn’t sure what was wrong, but she suspected it had to do with the empty glass she brought in from the porch.

Doug continued, ignoring the interruption.

“It will take most of the morning to dug up stuff and get it packed into the trailer of the ATV. We could head over the next morning. Driving around at night, the sound carries more and I don’t want to attract any more attention over that way.”

“Well, I have a few more guns up at Zed’s. We can look at what Zed has also. I don’t know how many there are, but we need to figure if it’s a sledgehammer or a mosquito type of thing we can do. If there is too many to take out in one swift blow, we may have to do a lot of hit and run to cut down their numbers. What do you think, Heidi?”

“Me? I think the whole thing is suicidal, but I don’t have a better plan. Hell I don’t have A plan!” she seemed almost as startled by her outburst as the others at the table were. She quickly stood up. “I’m sorry, I’ll be back.” Without another word, Heidi strode to the door and went outside.

Jesse stood and started to go after her. Emilia stopped him.

“Jesse, don’t. She’s like a cooped up bird. She has to work something out. She’s probably doing pushups, or running, or bench pressing a truck or something.”

Jesse sat back down, regretting giving her the scotch. Doug and Jesse started plotting more routes to approach the upper cabin and the main camp. Emilia stood and stared at the door for a long time while the others talked. She wasn’t sure what she could do to help any of this other than organizing stuff, which they already did for most of the day.

Hours later, Heidi came back in the cabin. Emilia was sitting at the table, a deck of cards spread out on its surface.

“Mom, you OK?”

“OK, no. Better, yes. I guess I need to apologize to the guys tomorrow morning. I really shouldn’t drink.” Heidi pulled out a chair and sat with Emilia. “What else did I miss other than ‘look at the whacko’?”

“Jesse is leaving in the morning, we are getting stuff together tomorrow and going to Zeds to get whatever info he was able to gather. Then the planning will begin. That’s it so far.”

“Red nine on black ten. Sounds like what I think I remember.” Heidi looked at the table for a few moments, then back at Emilia. “I don’t know how all of this is going to shake out. I want you to know. You are my most important thing. I don’t care what I have to do to make that happen.”

Emilia could hear the commitment in those words.

“I know mom. We will get through this.”

“I know. I just had to tell you.” Heidi seemed to come to some sort of decision. “Tomorrow, we teach you how to shoot as well. I should have done it years ago.”

“Go to bed, Mom.” Emilia watched her mother head back to their shared bedroom. She saw her pause as she walked past the couch with Jesse sleeping on it, then continue. Emilia sat, playing cards as she thought of the long list Doug made for tomorrow’s packing and sorting. She knew from the talk after her mother left, Doug would be back in charge of what was going on. She was also sure that was probably best for all involved.
If this was a book, I would have to read it all at one, no pause. I love it.
 

ComCamGuy

Senior Member
Heidi had just stormed out when Doug went high order.

“What the hell was that all about? What went on while I was taking a nap?”

Emilia shrugged her shoulders and looked at Jesse, then Doug.

“I don’t know. I was in the back of the cabin while you were napping.”

Jesse squirmed in his seat a little. He wasn’t sure how much to tell. He wasn’t sure how much he wanted to go into. He looked over at Doug, who was staring straight at him.

“Well Jesse?” Jesse squirmed some more before answering.

Heidi and I had a conversation and some scotch out on the porch.” At this, Doug’s eyebrows went up.

“How much scotch?” Doug asked pointedly.

“Just half a glass. Shouldn’t have been a problem.” Jesse replied, a bit defensive now.

“How big a glass?” Doug shot back. At this, Emilia pointed to one of the water tumblers on the table.

“This was the type of glass she carried in from the porch.” Emilia added.

Doug’s voice went up in volume as he replied.

“Jesse, you sure I’m the one with the TBI? You’re doing frat boy level shit! You probably got a slight buzz from that amount didn’t you?” At this Jesse was confused and only nodded his head. “Dumbass! You are two and a half times her size. We haven’t eaten since lunch by then. That much liquor in someone that small, with no food in her to boot! That’s the same sort of shit I saw guys do at college parties trying to score a freshman!”

At this, Jesse jumped up, anger flaring in his eyes now.

“It wasn’t like that at all! You’re out of line!”

Doug stood up quickly, then had to grab the table to steady himself.

“No, you’re the one out of line! You’re supposed to be the calm cool, collected one. You know, the adult. I’m still not up to par enough to trust all my thought processes to be right. I thought you and Heidi could keep me on course! Instead I have you ruffieing the new girl and she follows right along with it like some newbie sorority pledge! Both of you should have known better! Emilia!” At this, Emilia jumped, startled to be drug into this conversation. “You probably need to be the adult around here. Seems like none of us is pulling it off right now!” Doug swayed a little as he stood there. Emilia took the cue.

“Maybe you should go lay down. We already have the plan for tomorrow figured. We need you thinking tomorrow so we get everything we need.” Emilia led Doug towards the back room and his bedroom. As she left she saw Jesse sitting at the table with a look of embarrassment and maybe shame on his face.

Emilia stayed in the back of the cabin for a little while, straightening up the room she shared with her mother. She started some packing. If they were going to this other house, they would need their stuff. She thought she could hear the sink running and dishes clanking. When that stopped, she returned to the front room with her deck of cards. It’s not like she could sleep until mom came back.
 

Texican

Live Free & Die Free.... God Freedom Country....
Doug chastising the old war horse. Who would have thought.

Thanks CCG.

Texican....
 

Grouchy Granny

Veteran Member
At least it wasn't Black Jack which would have had Heidi putting on the Godzilla suit and getting really off her rocker.

Glad Doug let him have it full bore!
 

ComCamGuy

Senior Member
Heidi woke up, her head pounding. She knew she was dehydrated. She also knew her head wasn’t hurting from just that. She hated dreaming. That was the whole reason she worked herself to exhaustion. She also didn’t drink enough to pass out. She just had enough to screw with the inhibitions and self-imposed mental checks and balances. She felt horrible. She shouldn’t have caved. She hadn’t had more than one glass of wine sipped slowly for over five years. She used exercise to keep the nightmares away. The scotch screwed that all up and freed them back into her mind.

Heidi got up. Everyone else was already awake. She figured a quick shower to make her more presentable. She remembered they had a lot to do today.

Doug was at the table when Heidi emerged into the main room. Jesse was nowhere to be seen. Emilia was writing stuff on a pad of paper by the sink. Doug looked up when Heidi came into the room.

“Emilia, why don’t you go check out the stuff on your list in the barn.” Doug’s voice was friendly but firm. Alarm bells went off in Heidi’s head. “Heidi, have a seat. We need to talk.” Heidi’s mind was really racing. The tone of Doug’s voice was the same as the one she used with some of her junior troops when she had to explain the errors of their ways. Emilia slipped out the door as Heidi pulled out a chair and sat.

“Heidi, I don’t know what went down yesterday with you and Mr Barnhart. At this point, I don’t know if I want to know. What I do know is we have a very serious problem to deal with here in the park. We have murderers killing everyone and hunting us. That has to be the main focus for me. As a park employee, and the only other Law Enforcement member here. I need you ready to work 24/7 until this crisis is brought under a semblance of control. You don’t know how hard this is for me to be harsh on this with you. Without you and your daughter, I would have died at least twice. For that I will be forever personally grateful. On the other side of that, though, I have murderers to deal with and a park to regain. Officially, I have to ask you. Can you do this job? Can you put whatever got jacked up in a box until we are past this crisis? I need to know if I can trust you to be on top of things. Honest answer. I won’t hold it against you if you can’t. I will find a way to do this myself, alone if I have to. If you can’t do it, I don’t want to force you. You have already done so much.” Doug stopped talking and just looked at her, staring into her eyes, waiting for an answer.

Heidi sat there a moment, stunned. She had been on the other side of the table for so many of these conversations in times past. She could read the sincerity and conviction in his face. She knew beyond a shadow of doubt, if he had to do it by himself, he would. Or die trying, the more likely outcome. She thought about explaining the situation with Jesse, but it wasn’t her story to tell, and he didn’t ask for an excuse. He even stated at the beginning he didn’t want to know. She weighed her options. She could take Emilia and run. Where to though? What would she do for work? Where would they live? How long would she be able to live with abandoning Jesse and Doug before she would eat her pistol to stop her self-hatred if she ran away? She had never run from a challenge, even when she should have. She couldn’t now.

“Boss, there will not be a reoccurrence of yesterday’s error. I was out of line and should have had better control of the situation. That is a mistake I do not intend to repeat. What do you need me to do, sir?”
 

Shotgun Willy

Contributing Member
I found this story just last week and have to say I'm addicted.
One question about the tactical messenger bag, I expect it's worn cross body, but up high? Down low? What works best in your opinion?
 

ComCamGuy

Senior Member
I found this story just last week and have to say I'm addicted.
One question about the tactical messenger bag, I expect it's worn cross body, but up high? Down low? What works best in your opinion?
The concept is cross body, opening at about belt level. This way if you push it behind you to do other things, it will usually stay in place in the small of the back
 

ComCamGuy

Senior Member
Jesse was pissed, mainly at himself. He was riding up to Zeds in the pre-dawn light. He was replaying the events from the night before. He should have known better than to lean on the scotch for courage. He really shouldn’t have refilled his glass on the porch. The whole series of events this past week have thrown him so far sideways, his thoughts were scattered and flawed when he found them.

One of the problems was the girl. She was in many ways so like his Karen. She was also so different. He was so knocked sideways when she opened the door. He tried to bury himself in the planning, but in the end, he knew he had to talk to her about Karen. That box in his head was closed for so long, it was painful when it was violently opened that morning. He felt the need to numb himself before willingly opening that door in his mind. He poured himself too much the first time. If it was too much for him, it was far too much for her. Doug was right in that regard. He was also right when he said he should have known better.

Jesse snaked his way along the small trail by the creek. This was the way in now with the tree across the road. As the house came into sight, Jesse could see no signs Zed was back. He rode around back and parked his motorcycle in the pole barn. Zed was supposed to return this evening or tomorrow. Jesse figured to have some food ready when Zed got back. A good meat stew would sit and simmer well. Jesse got started cooking.

It was late in the evening when Zed rode in. Jesse was spending his time cleaning the pistols he brought, loading magazines and worrying, a lot of worrying.

“It’s about time you got your ass back.” Jesse exclaimed as Zed walked in the door. Zed was worn out looking, covered in dust and grime. He dropped his daypack on the sofa as he walked by.

“I agree. The stew smells good. I’m going to go shower off before I fall down. I’ll tell you what I found when I get out.” Zed shuffled off to the master bedroom and closed the door. Twenty minutes later, he emerged looking more refreshed.

“So, did you find Doug?” Zed was filling a bowl with stew and tearing a hunk or two of homemade bread.

“Yeah, Doug is back at his cabin. He ran into some bad shit.” Jesse spent the next thirty minutes relaying the events as Doug had told it. This led to the story of the new Backcountry Ranger and her daughter. Jesse was a bit more subdued when talking about Heidi. Zed picked up on it right away.

“What’s up with Heidi? You seem to be dancing around something?” Zed pointed out in a lull in Jesse’s narrative. Jesse was trying to find the right way to explain any of the issues with Heidi.

“Zed, I don’t ….OK, here’s the thing. Heidi looks a lot like Karen did.” You could hear a pin drop in the room. “When she opened the door at Doug’s, I thought for sure it was Karen. Hopefully, when they get here tomorrow, you will see her in daylight instead of backlit like I did. I thought my heart stopped.”

Zed could see how upset the whole affair had made Jesse. He could imagine how disconcerting it must have been for Jesse. He knew Jesse was devastated when Karen died. Of course, Zed also was crushed when his older sister was killed.

“I’m glad you told me. So, they are coming up tomorrow?”

“Yup, in the morning. So, that’s my half. What did you find?”

“You were right. These guys still had the helicopter up there. They also have probably half a dozen guys up there. They rotate some of them but the pilot and a maintenance guy are there all the time.” Zed started into his story.

“How did you find all of this out?”

“Well, I was in the right place at the right time. I got to overhear a conversation between two of them.”

“You snuck all the way up to hear conversations? That’s pretty risky!”

“Not really. Two guys were driving down one of the trails and had a flat tire. I was close enough to hear them shooting the shit. They keep a couple guys at the cabin with the helicopter. They also swap out with the guys down in the main camp.”

“Shoot! That’s a great! What else did you find out?”

“Well, they intend to use the helicopter with their machine gun.” Zed reaches into his bag and pulls out a heavy u-shaped piece of machined metal. Jesse instantly recognizes it as a pintle mount bracket for a machine gun.

“How the hell did you get that?”

“They had it in their truck.”

“They didn’t know you stole it?”

“They didn’t mind. They are dead.”

“Dead? Did they crash?”

“No, I killed them.” Zed’s voice was flat and a matter of fact, Completely devoid of emotion. Jesse was taken aback by this. He knew in the abstract he might be able to do it, but…

“Did you have any issue with killing them?”

“Killing them wasn’t the hard part. Skinning them afterward was.” At this, Jesse lost his mind.

“You what! Why the hell did you skin them?” Jesse jumped to his feet.

“Relax. I’m kidding. I didn’t skin them. I did, however, quarter the pair of them.” He was talking about this like he was describing getting rid of gophers.

“Why did you quarter them?” Jesse was now a bit worried about his friend.

“Because if you break them down to smaller pieces, smaller animals can carry the pieces farther and scatter them to the four winds. This makes it less likely they will ever find the bodies without a concerted effort and a lot of manpower.”

Jesse realized Zed was looking at these guys like some sort of invasive species of animal. Zed hunted and killed most types of creatures on this planet. Evidently, chopping these guys into a couple pieces was not any different from cleaning other game creatures.

Zed continued.

“I tell you what. They were a lot easier to quarter than the last moose I bagged.” He paused, then continued. “The stew is great. You didn’t happen to make dessert did you?”
 

Texican

Live Free & Die Free.... God Freedom Country....
“I tell you what. They were a lot easier to quarter than the last moose I bagged.” He paused, then continued. “The stew is great. You didn’t happen to make dessert did you?”

Now skinning them and hanging the skins in a tree with their guts would definitely have stirred the pot.

Thanks CCG for the chapter.

Texican....
 
Top