Kratman Snippets

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 30

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 30 No doubt who's still in muddy scraping, either. Got to give them credit, too, though, for sending someone to arrange to give us our bodies back . . . and the worst of our wounded. The thought of the dead gave Verboom another involuntary shiver. Completely unbothered by his shivering, the mosquitoes still landed for their feast on Verboom. They also quite ignored the insect repellent with which he'd doused himself. The repellent was some new stuff, without much smell to it to a human's sense of smell. If...

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 29

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 29 At the harbor's new edge, a quay rapidly put in by his engineers, rode a mid-sized Roll On-Roll Off civilian transport, chartered to the Tauran Union. The RO-RO somewhat lightly loaded due to the still relatively shallow draft of the bay, was currently disgorging forty-two armored vehicles, from tanks (eleven) to infantry fighting vehicles (seventeen) to armored personnel carriers (nine) to self-propelled artillery (four plus a fire direction center vehicle). There was also a mix of wheeled transport...

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 28

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 28 CHAPTER TEN "It is courage, courage, courage, that raises the blood of life to crimson splendor. Live bravely and present a brave front to adversity." --Quintus Horatius Flaccus (Horace) Parilla Line, Balboa The Balboans were pressing tightly, probably on the sound theory that the Taurans wouldn't use artillery close enough to risk having to have to explain to somebody's mommy why her little precious bundle of joy had been killed by friendly fire. Never mind if we're killed by enemy fire, sneered...

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 27

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 27 Poor bastard, he thought once again. For reasons he wasn't even aware of he aimed himself at the repetitive plea, half his squad, he assumed, still following. Ahead, the artillery had stopped landing. Whether this was because the FO was in control of himself again, or the guns had bigger and better tasks, or because they'd simply run out of ammunition, Verboom couldn't guess. It didn't really matter anyway, since the smoke hung around still, blocking unaided sight between Verboom and the ridge that was...

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 26

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 26 About a kilometer and a half to the other side, another company of Haarlemers likewise walked forward, likewise with the rest of their battalions following along. As a reconnaissance in force goes, this seems sufficiently heavy on the "force" part. The rumble of artillery grew steadily, not only because they were closing on the objective, but, so Verboom thought, also because the artillery seemed to have picked up the pace, delivery of shell-wise. However, the sound of the explosions changed, too. We...

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 25

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 25 CHAPTER NINE "The best reconnaissance will always be the attack." --Adolph von Schell, Battle Leadership Bella Vista, Balboa There was a small headquarters set up in the shell of a burned-out home, a couple of hundred meters away. For the nonce, though, Janier left it to his staff while he, alone, tried to get some sense of the looming battle in the open air. He shuddered and almost cringed from the blast of jets moving fast and at low level, just overhead. They passed, this wave of them, in a fraction...

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 24

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 24 "In that briefcase," said Vladimir, "which is my personal gift to you, is enough information to get your bosses off your back. It is neither everything you want nor everything we know. We do, after all, have an interest still in selling our arms, and the more TU soldiers the Balboans can kill with those arms, the more profit we can make. But, for an old friend, why not?" "How much of it is lies?" Campbell asked. "Why none," he answered. "Though do be careful of half-truths that can be wholly misleading....

A Pillar Of Fire By Night – Snippet 23

A Pillar Of Fire By Night - Snippet 23 *** "God-fucking-dammit!" exclaimed Felton, when her loadmaster informed her of the mishap. The anger lasted about as long as the curse did. Then she took to asked herself the serious question, Did I screw something up? Mentally running over the sequence just past, she decided she had not, that it had to have been either a procedural or a material error back at the airport. She continued on. *** The next drop went as smoothly as had the first, as did the next three. With a flutter of wings the Sachsen...