Part IV The Young Journalist

“Listen miss, I thought you wanted to interview that soldier you told me about. I can take you to him so maybe it would be wise to save your batteries and that tape of yours, don’t you think? Of course you will have to push this chair of mine around because there are no roads where we will be going. My eyes might not see, but I know the area well because I have to, it’s the only way I have survived for all of these years.”“No, it’s alright, I can go back and get some more if need to. Somehow your story has gotten my attention, and I can use it to improve my writing skills. As you can see, even this interview is giving me the chills and I am not very steady with the pencil. Can you imagine once I meet that hero they send me to interview? I hope you don’t mind my questioning and such, it’s my first job, I hope!”At first the area north of where we were heading was dense and it took a while to make our way through it. After about three clicks it suddenly started to change. We could see rice paddies, water buffaloes and beyond that it was evident that some farming was taken place. I hadn’t seen such a peaceful atmosphere like the one we were in so I knew we were in some strange place. As I looked at the map further it did stir my nerves because we were somewhere deep inside Viet-nam. It should have alerted me why this was so secretive, why the orders had came strangely, why we were not allowed to let the rest of our patoon know, and why it was so important not to be discovered.Suddenly the dog alerted us to the presence of the enemy approaching. His handler made sure to keep him quite and his energy under control. We covered ourselves with the surrounding plants and made sure not to stir the tiniest of vegetation. The North Vietnamese force was getting larger as they moved towards us. They had no idea of our presence as they carelessly moved on as though they felt like their foes would not dare attack such a well equipped outfit that deep in their territory.I sensed then that we were in a very restricted area. There would be no air support, no artillery, no mortars, and no near pick-up point for us if we needed to be air lifted. We remained frozen in place for as long as we could, but the dog’s patience was running thin. He was braver than us because he wanted to sink his teeth at the first foe that he could reach. His little faint noises were getting hard for him to control as we all tried to find some kind of treat that would settle him down, but he was trained to find and attack.The skill of the men was unparallel to any I had been with. Even with the tense moments unfolding, they remained unraveled. We were vastly out numbered and to engage the enemy was totally a suicide and a failed mission. Each and every soldier knew their duty as we prepared to defend ourselves. Hand signals instructed each soldier where to make his stand in order to maximize our firepower. No one was to fire their weapon until the person in charge gave the orders.The North Vietnamese army suddenly stopped as they were ordered. They sent a few scouts out to see if a trap had been set up as the rest of them laid low on the ground. They waited to hear from the four men they had sent out as we watched in stealth silence from our nearby positions. It was a matter of wits to find who would prevail if an ensuing force could catch the other by surprise.

Part IV The Young Journalist

oscarelizondo

Harlingen, United States

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