“How does the uniform look Mum?”
“It looks smashing Ted, remember to keep your head down”.
“Don’t worry Mum, no Jerry is gonna get me”.
He kisses her on the cheek, salutes, smiles, then turns to begin his journey to war, and manhood.
As mother stands on the footpath, holding the gate, so she won’t fall under the grief, she watches her third son go off to do his duty, she smiles, swipes at the tears and waves him goodbye…forever.
end note : every few weeks I submit to the challenge to write a story in 5 sentences. The word prompt for this week is “Waves”. hope you enjoy. Dave
He wasn’t even shaving regularly when he first donned this uniform. There was a joke amonst his friends that he could trade his shaving kit for a couple of smokes.
Now his skin was not so smooth, his attitude less cocky. His hands shook as he did the stiff buttons on the faded khaki tunic. His boots were long gone but Kelly had helped him on with his socks and shoes that a young cadet had polished till they sparkled like glass.
He straightened his medals and pushed his hat firmly on his head. He could smell the polish on the chin strap as it passed under his nose. The thick glasses now perched on his nose were not part of his original official uniform. Taking the crisp white handkerchief from his pocket, he dabbed at the water leaking from his eyes, and wiped his glasses, grabbed his stick and stood.
Kelly helped him into the car and strapped him in, Not much was said, there was not much to say.
“Wait Grandad!” young Cameron yelled.
He pulled a small branch from the bush next to the driveway and reaching through the window he pushed a small sprig of Rosemary into my buttonhole. He kissed his grandad on the cheek, stood straight and saluted.
“Say thanks to your friends for me”.
The wail that was welling up inside finally broke and the old private remembered his friends on the way to the memorial.
Remembrance day. 11.11.2014
“McCosker is down! Medic!” shouted Brian
Dumbo came over to where Mac was laying in the dust, blood gushing from the wound in his neck. I don’t know how he does it, but Dumbo always manages to have a pair of blue sterile gloves in a pocket. We don’t want to give a dying man an infection do we?
Mac is screaming and I am trying to hold the compression bandage to the hole in his neck as Dumbo plunges yet another needle into Macs chest. Mac stops screaming and is silent.
“Dumbo, what’s happening?” I scream above the roar of the firefight and the thump thump of the approaching chopper blades. Being the lance corporal I need to take control. “Jojo, Rog, provide cover. Cheech, Bob, Singer, Ted get the stretcher from the chopper, GO GO GO!”
Brian gave the co-ordinates to the guy o the other end of the radio, and soon we heard bombs whizzing overhead toward the enemy lines. Damn it will be good to get out of these dirty sweaty clothes and under a shower back at base.
Someone else needs a shower too. Young Cheech has crapped his pants again and more than one soldier has released some nervous urine.
We all pack into the chopper, leaving behind the broken twisted bodies of the enemy who were hit by our mortar attack. The dust rises in the wind stirred up by the increased speed of the rotors and we leave hell behind.