Finally we have an infiltration exercise at night, our mission to sneak past 4 enemy sentries and make it out of the forest where we will camp for the last time. I’m so exhausted I cant force myself to sleep. About 2 hours into our scheduled downtime, a volley of flares fire into the night sky, lighting up the entire area. There’s the sound of voices coming closer, when suddenly the sound of bullets ricochet past. Bark on the nearby trees explode when hit and send wood splinters everywhere. One of the instructors takes a round to the knee and screams out in pain. I compress the wound and signal for Maria to grab him. “everyone on me” I whisper.
There’s no need to shout people awake, the whole platoon is up and we are moving through the dense forest. As Maria grabs the instructor, we cover her and she slips into the middle of our convoy.
I put Taylor and Harris on point, with Maria in the middle and I take tail end Charlie. The others watch our flanks as we move as silently as possible through the darkness of the forest.
“just a bit more” Our platoon keeps taking fire as we make our way up ‘The Reaper’ and hump over the top of Edson’s Ridge and finally come to a clearing where we find ourself at DI Bridge. At which point the bullets stop and the injured instructor walks past singing Yellow Bird, and we fall in and continue the jody call.