Thursday, August 10, 2006

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# 14

“Well, look who’s back. I thought you might have called it quits by now.”

“If you really did, then you have way underestimated me Sarah. I don’t quit on any job till it’s finished.”

“Berg you do tend to amaze at times, not always for the better though.”

“Sarah, how hard do you work at this or does being a bitch just come naturally to you.” Sarah bristled at Berg’s remark but eased back a bit. She knew she had it coming.

“Sarah Lee, you really should think of putting away that wooden box and come into the modern world.”

“John, look out there. What you’re seeing isn’t the modern world. It’s the mid 19th century and to accurately capture that you need the tools of that time. I’ll stick with my old wooden box.”

Berg and Sarah were both setting up for the final engagement of the day before the cookout and nighttime fireworks. There would be a lot of action as the Union troops rallied to route the outnumbered Confederate defenders. If it were the real deal, many of the soldiers who began the day in fear, would die in agony and terror.

Berg was set up to the left and just down hill of Sarah giving her a slightly higher position to compensate for her lack of mobility.

Within half an hour it began. The Union had brought into place a couple of six pounders and were firing grape shot rounds onto the Confederate lines forcing them to break and run up the hill towards the ridge The air was filled with a thick gun-smoke fog as the Union troops began to form a skirmish in the wooded creek bed at the bottom of the hill.

Berg looked at the crowd watching the last battle. Peter had been right. This, the cookout and fireworks that would follow had really brought out the crowd. There were at least 7500 people and more would show up, as the time for the fireworks grew closer.

Berg saw Peter atop the ridge with his assistant near by watching the reenactment’s final charge. Berg heard the sounds escalate as the Union infantry emerged from the woods. He changed to his Canon Rebel to get a shot of Peter on the ridge for old times sake. As he focused on Peter he froze, his blood turned cold with what he saw.

“P-E-T-E-R-!” Berg was moving forward up the hill knocking Sarah down in the process.

“Sonovabitch! Berg, What the hell are you doing?”

Berg didn’t hear her. He knew it was already too late. The red dot had disappeared and all he saw was Peter’s body crumple to the ground. Suddenly everything was in slow motion, The Union line moving up the hill, Mary’s blood and brain splattered ranger’s uniform and her gaping mouth’s silent scream as she looked at Peter’s body on the ground. Very few others even noticed. One or two, who were near, had come to see what had happened.

Berg reached his friend and saw the devastation to his body. There was an almost perfect half-inch hole just above his left eye but the entire upper left backside of Peter’s head was gone. Mary was wearing a good bit of Peter’s missing brain.

Sarah followed Berg up the hill cursing him all the way. She wasn’t as close behind as she might have been. She had stopped to make her two shots before she climbed the hill.

“Oh shit! Peter. Some idiot must have left his gun loaded from the live fire demonstration from this afternoon but Berg how did you know?”

“Sarah, he was assassinated! Here look at this.”

Berg handed over the Canon Rebel and Sarah look at the LCD display. It was the frame Berg was taking when he charged over her. Berg had zoomed in on his friend. She saw the tale-tale crimson dot of a laser sight just like she had used on the police SWAT team and knew Berg was right on the money but, why Peter?

The reenactment was winding down. One of the spectators had already used his cell phone to call 911. Emergency medical services would respond even though Peter was beyond help, they might do something for Mary. It’s not every day your boss’s head explodes in front of you.

‘The police will be here soon”

”I know Sarah and then the FBI”

Sarah thought, that’s right. It’s Federal land, so the FBI will lead.

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