The British troops, used to the moderate temperatures of England, were not prepared for the exhausting heat of the Indian summer. It was dry and hot and it felt to them as if the sun kept shining straight on through the night. It would have been difficult enough to escape notice under normal conditions, but the triple digit heat made it nearly impossible. If a man started suffering dehydration, he was shot and buried in order to escape notice. Three dozen men began the 100 mile journey on foot and only five remained as they approached their destination.
Kraybold Senior turned to the four remaining men and boasted, “we are now down to four men and our mission has barely just begun. We must now help each other to conserve our energy or we have no chance of success. If any among you is not prepared to sacrifice for the country, please bow out gracefully.”
At this, silence came over the group and the weary men looked first at each other and then at Kraybold. Dockett, a junior officer barely over the age of twenty, raised his hand slowly and requested the attention of the group. With a simple nod, Kraybold gestured for him to begin.
“As a boy I dreamed of one day fighting to protect the honor of our great nation. There is nothing in life I want more. Many moons have passed since my father was shot dead. I do not take this mission lightly; however, I think we may all benefit from knowing the true object of our journey. I believe we have at least earned the right to know what it is we are fighting for.”
Kraybold rose to his feet and requested the men remain seated. He then proceeded to tell the men all that he knew about C247 and the call he had received nearly ten days ago requesting him to lead the team on a journey through the desert of India.
To be continued…