A Secret Grave 144: Safe from Enemy Fire

 

When Josiah regained consciousness he felt like the same person he’d always been. Of course his body was sore from the fall, but his mind felt the same. He knew who he was, where he was, and, aside from his broken collar bone, there didn’t seem to be any lingering effects until he realized something weird. If he was on a mission, he’d have a mental image of an explosion moments before there was actual enemy fire. The image was always the same: a cartoon of a bomb blast that would appear in his mind no more than five minutes before the event. At first he didn’t pay attention. It couldn’t be true; it was just coincidence. But the image always appeared at the same time, a presage of an attack as reliable as sunrise.

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explosion .

He told a few of his buddies about this strange phenomenon, and they joked about how if you wanted to be safe, hang with Bennett – he could see the future. Everyone laughed about it, but as Josiah successfully predicted one blast after another, there wasn’t a person in his division who didn’t want to stick close to him. Eventually his sergeant took notice and mentioned Joe Bennett’s psychic ability to the lieutenant, who reported it to the captain, and so it went up the chain of command until Josiah was pulled from his rank and sent for questioning. Around that time Lloyd’s own luck changed, and he was taken prisoner in an ambush. “If I’d been with Joe that wouldn’t have happened,” he told Ramona.

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Vietnam POW

1973 U.S. Prisoners Peer Thru Bars at POW Camp ‘Hanoi Hilton’, manhhai, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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He wouldn’t talk to Ramona about his experience as a prisoner, only to say that it sucked. But Ramona noticed odd little quirks in Lloyd that must have been holdovers from the war. He’d flinch at a car backfiring or other loud noises. His hand would develop a tremor if someone yelled or spoke loudly in his vicinity. Sometimes he would suddenly go blank and lose track of time. He refused to go to the movies or even to a concert, saying being trapped in a dark theatre with a big crowd of people was dangerous, a total no-no. Ramona thought this was phobic behavior, and maybe it was. She used it as an excuse to keep a little bit of distance from Lloyd, who was beginning to call her every day and ask her out every weekend. I urged her to get more information about Josiah – for instance, what happened after he was questioned by the army brass and when did he and Lloyd meet up again? At these requests, Ramona gave a long suffering sigh and stared at me as if she was a martyr. But I knew deep down that Lloyd excited her, and it was no real punishment for her to be with him. I must admit here, shameless as it seems, that I didn’t care how Ramona felt. I just needed her to continue asking questions.

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act like a saint

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To be continued…

Cover photo ~ http://pacificate.deviantart.com/art/Doble-Elefante-Telepata-de-Guerra-Cosmico-458790134

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