15 minutes…..


Fifteen minutes, really has it only been fifteen minutes since I radioed that our HMMWV had been hit by an electrical pole, no we didn’t hit it, it actually hit us as we were driving by. Now I am squatting in the outside corner of what was once a building with the constant thump of RPG’s and the zing of AK-47 rounds all around me, random thought just hit me I remember being told if you hear the zing of a rifle round it is too damn close, if you hear the zip you have nothing to worry about, hell I might even have that backwards. There were five of us when we rolled out of the gate that morning to do our daily patrol, you can call us Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta and Echo, I have Bravo, Charlie and Delta with me Echo is still hanging half in and half out of the gunners hatch on the HMMWV I cannot stick my head over the low wall to see if he is still alive or not but I can hear the whine of bullets ricocheting off the armor of the HMMWV.

The taste is the worst it is chalky, bitter, gritty and I don’t seem to be able to get rid of that damn taste in my mouth it is in the dust that is filling the air with every RPG round and every round from an AK-47, it hasn’t stopped since we took cover after being hit by the damn pole. Ah yes the damn pole, you see whoever blew that pole either had really good luck or had very good timing, you see one second either way and it would have landed in front of us or it would have hit the rear of the HMMWV instead of hitting the front of the damn thing.

I have Delta covering our six, like I explained we were taking cover in the outside corner of a building that had been blown to hell, it has holes in it big enough to drive semis through, hell you can even see the sky through the holes in the floors above us, you can even see other buildings and if we can see that they can see us. Charlie is between me and Bravo and he is fast talking over the radio begging for a med evac and some god damn support, as I look at him again for what seems like the hundredth time he gives me the bureaucratic hand signal for bullshit, fuck we need help and in a bad way. I inch my way to a spot to where I can see Echo and I don’t even get my head above the edge of the blasted block wall when shots pepper my position, damn it I can’t even see if the man is still alive or dead, I don’t even think about trying to return fire, hell we still have full battle rattle, we haven’t shot more than five rounds between all of us, it seems like every insurgent in the entire country is raining hell down upon us, in all reality it is probably only ten to fifteen guys out there probably three with RPG’s and the rest with AK-47’s but man are they laying down the cover fire, like we actually did something to piss off each and every one of them. Fifteen minutes, nope check that it has now been seventeen minutes. It seems like hours not minutes, the way Charlie is babbling over the net it looks like help won’t be coming real soon, it makes me wonder just what the hell we rode into for them to be so intent on blowing the hell out of us. Hell we have been all over this area for weeks now never the same route more than once, how did they know where we would be, hell this could all be a fluke, except for the fact that we drove down this street and they rigged an electrical pole to blow at just the right time, I am not saying they were laying in wait for us and I am not saying that other squads that left this morning aren’t in the exact same type of predicament, but it sure as hell feels like we are right in the middle of shit central. Man I have to see if Echo is alive, jesus I can’t get that damn taste out of my mouth for nothing I don’t even want to move enough to get my damn canteen out. Damn it where is the cavalry, where is the air support, they should have been here by now. Fuck I couldn’t even hear them if they did come for all the damn explosions and weapons firing.

Now, I tell myself look over the god damn wall and see if Echo is still in the same position or has fallen back into the damn HMMWV and is laying lower than a snakes dick for cover, damn the taste in my mouth, NOW, shit here I go and then it is done I pop my head out of cover and look back at the HMMWV and…..

With much love and gratitude,

Dan Kline


3 Responses to “15 minutes…..”

  1. OK that was mean Dan… Excellent writing, riveting and just plain mean. Are you going to give us the rest?

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