Thursday, October 17, 2013
New Beginning 1014
Lieutenant Richard Gangly (whose last name was an unfortunately apt description of his appearance) lay in the mud beside a trench.
Earlier in the night, openings had been made in the barbed wire and mine fields directly in front of him. Beyond that: No Man’s Land. On the far side of No Man’s Land—perhaps as much as three quarters of a mile from where he lay—the Germans were dug in with layer upon layer of trenches, augmented by their own bands of protective wire and mines. Gangly’s thoughts largely concerned themselves with this large area in front of him, because he knew that he would have to cross through it in just a few minutes.
Wet mud sucked at his elbows and knees as he lay there. The breath plumed from his opened mouth in great billowy clouds, washed pure white by the cold light of the full moon overhead. His breath mingled with the clouds that rose from other men—tens of thousands of men—lying up and down the line. All of them waiting for the whistle to blow, the attack to begin.
Gangly pulled out his smart phone and tapped his banking ap. He quickly put a stop-payment on his echeck to the WWI-France Reenactment Company. He had envisioned wine, women, and croissants, not blood, guts and 90-year-old trench rations. Next year he was going back to Gettysburg, where they took war a little less seriously.
Opening: Dixon Hill.....Continuation: kregger