Episode 6 - Unwanted odors

We spent the last few days creating observation posts through out the ridge. Supplying the old towers across the valley and the pond ridge with Ma Duces M2 .50 Caliber Machine Guns and some food items. Sometimes we hear our helicopter pass by, so far Captain Schneider has been on time delivering our supplies. No sign of Roy's guitar yet though. We also started our rounds along the pond's shore. We haven't seen any more tracks of the giant reptile. Dan blames it to the drop of temperatures in the past week. He has been studying the photos taken at the "abducted box" site and he's convinced it's no alligator; there's a lot of speculation by the men. Roy believes it's some sort of dinosaur. He bases his belief on the strange vegetation surrounding us. Ben guesses it's a Komodo Dragon. I honestly don't know what to think. I had a fight with Dan about splitting chores around camp a few days ago and he won't speak to me much. As a matter-of-fact he hasn't spoken much to any of us in the past few days, but there is a lot of talking between him and the sarge. Although things are quite normal lately, we keep from admitting to ourselves things are a bit strange. The good old warm nights of summer are gone, and sometimes I feel for Professor Evgeny's health. He's been coughing a lot and complaining about back pains every time we come back from a field trip. But he's been his jolly self, telling "not so funny" jokes all day. Ben told me not to worry. He said - the guy is Russian, he's used to the cold weather. I couldn't disagree. This morning we split in two groups. Sgt. Palmer led the first one with Roy and the Professor. Destination: The Abrams River. There is an outlet of the pond that merges with the river, 2 miles down base camp. The professor wanted to run some tests and scan the river banks for any sign of radioactivity. The pond showed some small levels of Alpha rays last week, which made the professor concerned. I led the second group on our daily pond patrol. Dan and Ben were with me. We were scouting the area for possible animal tracks and trespassing hikers, since the old logging road still connects to the town of Little Hope. The boys and I secretly started to make fun of Dan who hasn't changed his clothes for the past week and a half. We call him Mr. Reek. He really smells. We even had to trick him into the water today, he was so into he's work taking pictures and collecting water samples, he didn't even notice what Ben was up to when he suggested to cross the pond through the water. I can't wait to tell Roy and the Professor that we got him to take a bath. Well, more like a half bath.

by Corporal John Harris, October 06, 2005