Countdown, Part Seven

Continued from Part Six

Colonel Morgan stood outside of Colonel Dread’s door. It’d be Lieutenant Dread by the time he was through. Dread was still in bed at 0700 hours, the sign of an undisciplined officer. Morgan knocked. Loud snoring answered.

He knocked again. “Colonel Dread!”

A groan emitted behind the door.

“Colonel Dread!”


Morgan kicked open the door.

Dread covered himself with a sheet and sat up. “Who the blazes are you?”

“Colonel Morgan of Moscow, Idaho.” He added to the light bird, “A full bird.”

Dread groaned. “Sir, you’ll pardon me if I don’t stand to salute.”

“That infraction I can forgive, but it’s the only one. Are all your people asleep?”

“No, sir. Everyone else was up at 0600.”

“Indeed, everyone in this army was up at 0600, except for you.”

“Sir, what brings you here?”

“Private A. L. Snyder provided me vital information and you put him in the stockade.“

“He violated regulations.”

“So you are concerned if your under-lings obey regulations? In this case, he did what was necessary, and I’m demanding his release.”

“Begging your pardon, sir, but you don’t have jurisdiction. My direct line of command is General Wolfe, and he hasn’t ordered me to release the prisoner. And while you do outrank me, I would point out that I have special status as an Imperial hero.”

Morgan smirked. “Really?”

“I uncovered evidence of Ivan’s treachery that vindicated his just execution in the eyes of the public.”

“That’s nice. Six years ago, I was a captain serving in the African theater and saved the life of a young man under my command. I was rewarded with a promo-tion to Colonel.”

“So what?”

Morgan laughed. “I can call him for you. I’ve got his personal number on my speed dial under D. He’s always willing to chat, though he gets grumpy if I call this time of the morning. He takes his personal time now and doesn’t like to be interrupted.“

“Are you implying the boy you saved was Donovan the Steward?”

“That it was, Colonel. Do you want me to call him?”

Dread sighed. “Let’s get Snyder.”

“Glad you see it my way, Colonel.”

“One thing, Colonel. It’s confusing to call each other Colonel. We’re very close in rank, how about we call each other by last names?”

“I’ll meet you half way. I’ll call you Dread. You can call me sir.”

Dread grunted. “Yes, sir.”

Continued Next Thursday

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