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 Category:  General Fiction
  Posted: November 30, 2018      Views: 102
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Retired Marine; retired high school teacher; married 34 years; father of three; five grandchildren; one rescue granddog.

He is a top ranked author at the #11 position.

He is an accomplished novelist and is currently at the #12 spot on the rankings.

He is an accomplished script writer and is currently at the #3 spot on the rankings.

He is an accomplished poet and is currently at the #34 spot on this years rankings.

He is also an active reviewer and is holding the #10 spot on the top ranked reviewer list.

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Chapter 9 of the book Memoir
Short story, 491 words, of a hot summer night
"Level Seven in Somalia" by Bill Schott

Image from Google

Walking the parapet on the top of our headquarters, an abandoned hotel in downtown Mogadishu, was like taking a summer stroll on a cloud after the apocalypse.

The night smelled of urine and the scene was a flattened city. Thirty blocks in any direction looked like World War III had come and gone. The only electrical power was generated by United Nations' engineers in three corners of the former Somalian tourist destination.

As Officer of the Day (OOD), in charge of the perimeter guards and the general security of the area, I began my first of six nightly patrols. I walked the concertina-wired barriers to check on the guards that were posted.

There were five positions and each had two guards. The current threat was low, so one guard could sleep on the post while the other stood watch. The first four stops were routine. The guard on duty gave a report and I advised of any updates to our situation. The fifth post was the furthest from the building and covered a wide view of leveled area. This position provided eyes on the ground of a quarter of our perimeter.

Reaching the post, I was not stopped and asked to identify myself. That was my first clue that something was wrong. Coming up to the front of the entrenched and sandbagged post, I found the guard sitting, earphones on, playing with a Gameboy. He was totally unaware that I was standing in front of him.

I looked around and found a loose brick. There were hundreds to choose from. I tossed it into the post, hitting the guard on his helmet. Startled, he shot up and shouted, "Stop! Who goes there?!"

"Wake up your relief! Post him! Then get up here with your gear and that toy!"

The marine moved like a little tornado to get up his replacement and leap out to present himself in front of me.

"Tell me, Private --"

"I'm a Lance Corporal, Gunny."

"I assure you, marine, you're not. What's your second general order?"

"To walk my post in a military manner, keeping always on the alert and observing everything that takes place within sight or hearing."

"This is a war zone, marine. Your brothers are depending on you to protect them while they're sleeping. Are you?"

"I was -- no, Gunny."

"Give me that piece of crap!"

The guard handed over the Gameboy.

"Get back on post and guard us. While you're doing that, pray to God I don't have you confined to quarters and referred for a court martial."

After leaving the post with the computer game, I returned to the guard office to update the OOD journal. Once I finished, leaving a line open for the 'incident', depending on how the rest of the night went, I posted the Sergeant of the Guard and went to take a nap.

I didn't get much sleep, but I crushed level seven on Mario World.


Flash Fiction Writing Contest contest entry

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