The litters started to advance. Dee looked for an opportunity to assist. She saw a swinging I.V bag and steadied it all the way to the waiting ambulance.
More litters followed, heads wrapped with blood soaked bandages, and amputated legs covered with heavy dressings with thick white strips bound loosely. Dee smiled at the men and asked what they needed. Some made quips, but others just expressed their thanks and requested nothing. The more severely wounded were heavily sedated.
Dee and the surgeon passed by litters of critically injured soldiers being carried from the choppers. She glanced at bandages wrapped around heads, stomachs and limbs, often with blood oozing from beneath them. Several comatose patients were carried; their glazed eyes staring from ashen faces.
The Captain shouted an order. Dee froze but the order was not directed at her. Dee watched as the Captain inserted a cathedra back into a patient. It can come undone.
Dee noticed that she put a hand on the man forehead and bent down to whisper something
in his ear. She walked away and the man kept waving to her.
Dee took a glance back at the Captain. Too bad she’s such a bitch. She’s one sexy woman.
The Captain caught her glance. Dee looked away instantly away, God, how long had she been staring?”
She walked in the same direction as Dee, both heading towards litters being from the aircraft.
“One moment, Lieutenant.”
Dee spun around. There was no one else around.
“Lieutenant, may I make a small suggestion?”
Dee nodded. They kept walking.
“We’re in the tropics, Lieutenant.” The captain pointed, “Nylons under fatigues? Army dress is so restrictive, and far behind the Air Force’s uniform.”
Dee gulped. In her hurry and anxiety to attend to the body bags, she had forgot to remove her nylons. ‘What a bitch’ to comment on this act of forgetfulness. But, Dee realized that the Captain was smiling and she actually turned and winked at Dee.
“Relax, Lieutenant. You can’t help it if you chose the wrong branch.”
“More women sign up for the Army, Captain. Perhaps, they know a thing or two?”
The words were out before Dee had control over them. Was she being rude to a higher ranking officer?
Skip smiled and kept her eyes intensely on Dee. She scanned Dee from head to foot. It felt like being undressed. Skip was embarassed and yet intrigued.
“I’m just checking that there are no further lapses in the wearing of a military uniform. Lieutenant, you are so wet behind the ears, that if we ever meet again, I will have to show you a thing or two!”
The mischievous grin took Dee’s breath away. The Captain was flirting with her.
“That incident with the Major, are you going to dance with him? Is there another fella back home waiting?”
“No Captain, there’s no men in my life.”
“Same here, Lieutenant. Men can be a waste of time, if you ask me.”
A red flag went up in the young Lieutenant’s mind. ‘Conduct unbecoming an Office,’ Homosexual relationships led to a dishonorable discharge. Not worth it, Dee.’
“If you say so, Ma’am.” Dee distanced herself.