This is a little short story based on a true event. Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent ( and the guilty LOL)
We had reconnoitred the target the previous night; dark clothes were definitely the order of the day, or in this case, the night. We could cross the three cornfields completely hidden from prying eyes. This time tomorrow we would have accomplished
our mission. The whole troop was on edge, this was our most dangerous undertaking yet.
Joe was the clown of the group, everything was grist to his mill, and his black humour
usually lifted our spirits no matter how serious the situation was. This time we found it hard to appreciate his jokes. The pessimist, Mick, was his pole opposite, seeing nothing amusing in any event. The rest of our little gang were a mixture of these two, willing to
adapt to either camp, depending on the situation. This time we were leaning towards Mick’s outlook on things. We had been considering this expedition for weeks, finally deciding the time was ripe at last. We were all sworn to secrecy, this was a top-secret mission, and only the most reliable of our group were to be involved. There would inevitably be hurt feelings when the truth was out, but the fact was, a few of our company had loose lips and it was important not to compromise the mission.
We had briefly considered abandoning the operation last night when we first saw the huge dog patrolling the grounds with the armed man. Further observation had revealed the fact that the dog was locked up at a certain time last night and we decided that this was probably the normal practice. If this was wishful thinking on our part, we would be in big trouble tonight. We were committed to action now. All our plans had been meticulously made and rehearsed as far as we could safely go without compromising the plan.
In the months before this mission we had all lived carefree or comparatively carefree
lives. We enjoyed the unusually warm summer with very little to trouble our existence. It was a long time since we had anything like this mission to perform, hopefully we would not be too rusty when the time came. We should really be okay as we had spent the summer actively, plenty of exercise, swimming, running etc.
When we first decided the time was ripe to proceed with this plan, there was some discussion about the risk involved. Some of our members were in two minds about it; not least of the problems was the need to keep family members in the dark, hence the decision to exclude certain members of our band. We had a few setbacks involving our plans, certain family incidents occurred entailing absence from our meetings. Joe in particular, was absent on more than one occasion. Now at last we were ready, tonight we would move and hopefully succeed.
The first setback came when we reached the first cornfield dressed in our black
camouflage. The corn had been cut!!! Nothing remained but white stubble, we would definitely stand out like sore thumbs. It was too late to change our plans; we had
to go for it. As we stealthily crossed the first field, we looked like giant black spiders. As we rounded the corner on to the second field our hearts sank. All the fields had been cut. This would make our mission even more dangerous, as we would be immediately visible to anyone passing the windows of our target house. After a brief consultation we decided to continue. As we neared the boundary wall, Joe volunteered to scout the target as we held our collective breaths. We breathed a sigh of relief as he scaled the wall and climbed on to
an adjacent tree without incident.
BANG!! The shotgun blast sent us into hysterics and we scattered in all directions. As we
reached the second field we suddenly remembered that Joe was still stranded in the tree. We slowed down and tried to collect our wits. For two hours we lay on the sharp stubble waiting for the shotgun bearer to finish patrolling the wall. Eventually he decided to call it a night and returned to the house. As Joe tottered towards us on shaking legs and collapsed beside us we decided to give this orchard a miss in future. We weren’t THAT fond of apples and pears.