Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Light up their life (fiction)

The radio’s ceaseless chirping awakened Lieutenant Martens from a sound sleep.

Groaning, rolling over and looking at the radio’s read-out he said “Whatever you got, Corn Dog, it better be good. It is 2:15 and ithe God-damned morning.”

“Trucks moving east of our position at the warehouse.” Quinn said, then belatedly added “sir.”

“Trucks move around all the time.” Martens growled. He was not at his best when wakened in the middle of the night.

“Usually,” Corn Dog replied “there is only one or two at night and they drive around with their lights on.”

“Well, how many trucks do you count?” Martens asked, frustrated.

“I can’t give you an exact number, but it is more than twenty vehicles.” Corn Dog said.

Then, leaving the button on the microphone depressed to cut off dialog Corn Dog added “Vehicles are east of our position. My spotters on the roof think most of them are heading east but some are coming our way. If they continue to close at their current speed, they will be within range to engage in less than five minutes.”

Corn Dog continued “Is this a DRILL or do we have permission to engage?”

Martens said “Engage at will. This is not a drill. This is NOT a drill.”

Then Martens hollered “Strider. Get your ass in here!”

The next thing Martens did was to attempt to contact General Rife and General Patrick.

General Patrick answered. He lived in a sprawling house on the edge of a swamp north of Howell. Mrs Patrick loved birding and she had chosen the location.

General Rife lived in a townhouse just east of the center of Howell. His location had already been compromised.

After Martens' quick briefing, General Patrick attempted to contact Rife and Torvaldsen. General Patrick was too late. Torvaldsen had just been garroted by the second string, right tackle from the University of Michigan.

General Patrick knew when to take initiative.

“Repel the attackers with all means available.” he radioed back to Martens.

Fifty fighters were tasked with securing the Livingston County food warehouse. That was ten percent of the force Washtenaw County sent to invade Livingston County. The officer running the invasion was playing it safe. He had half of his forces parked in a central location and had deployed the other half to squash the defensive and strategic hard-points.

Troy the truck driver had been incredibly useful. Not only did he know where very defensive hard-point was located, he was able to estimate within 10% of the manning levels based on the amount of bedding transported weekly.

The attacking general had great confidence in his troops and even greater confidence in the flash-bang grenades and tear-gas. The plan was simple. Immobilize them before they had a chance to leave their beds. Give them a chance to surrender. If they hesitated, kill every one of them.

The only target that the invading general over-resourced was the attack on the warehouse. War was all about logistics. Cut the defender’s logistics out from beneath them and they would fold even if they somehow managed to repel the invasion.


Corn Dog dumped the inside lights and then woke up the day-shift. He told them to suit-up. He directed three of them to join the forces on the roof. He told the other six to egress the building and position behind a berm a hundred yards east of the building. He told them to remain in reserve until he needed them.

They grumbled, certain that Corn Dog was over-reacting. Looking up, Corn Dog was gone. He had less than a minute before the vehicles were within range.


The five short buses parked on the median side of westbound I-96. They closed the doors softly. Their weapons hung on single-point, tactical slings but were unloaded. The squad leader handed out magazines. Each fighter inserted a magazine and racked a cartridge into the chamber.

The buses were 800 yards from the warehouse and just outside of where westbound I-96 curved to the left. The position was doubly obscured. If there were any guards patroling the warehouse grounds who were not sleeping, they would not be able to see the vans. Even if the guards were on the roof, the vans were obscured by an adjacent building which obstructed the line of sight.

It was a natural and perfect place to stage an attack.

A fact that was readily apparent to Corn Dog, who had staged more than one raid back in the day.

That is why Corn Dog had a man posted 150 yards away on the outside of the bend, positioned to see, count and report.

The odds were not favorable. Their sixty against Quinn’s twenty...ten of whom had just awakened from a sound sleep.

The attackers had the advantage of initiative and, presumably, unlimited ammo.

Quinn’s force was split in two. The half who proved they could shoot...albeit with a Crosman pellet gun...had seventeen rounds of ammo. The other half had ten rounds of the corroded, surplus Guatemalan ammo.

The look-out reported when the teams left the transport vehicles. He also reported that the team left a guard with each vehicle. Quinn’s estimate of his opponent went up a couple of notches with that information.

Quinn expected the attack group to either circle the building and secure each exit or to attack the hooch much as General Richards forces had done.

The majority of the forces set-up fifty-to-seventy yards south of the hooch. A small contingent approached the hooch after hooking to the east to clear the larger group’s field of fire.

As it got close to show-time, Quinn reminded his fighters “Don’t use your lasers. Focus your fire on the ones who are taking aimed shots. Leave the spray-and-pray guys to last. Their noise and muzzle blasts make ours less obvious.”

Four fighters from the small contingent darted forward, kicked open the hooch door and fired their grenades into the dwelling and then they dropped flat. After the grenades detonated, they boogied back to their group a scant thirty yards from the hooch.

Quinn toggled to the fighters on the roof. “Two quick shots each, then drop behind the sand bags. Light them up.”


1 comment:

Readers who are willing to comment make this a better blog. Civil dialog is a valuable thing.