Posted by: TheAuthor | 26/02/2011

Sleeping Stag

“What was that?!” The soldier jolted up right. It was pitch black, everything felt cramped and enclosed. No room to move, no room to stand.

Remaining vigilant, there’s no way he was going to fall asleep. Searching around the Sanger, he felt for his rifle… nothing. It had gone, same as his body armour and night vision equipment. Checking the time on his watch, he saw 0230hrs. Half an hour before relief arrived to take over stag duty in the Sanger. He had to come up with an idea, or find his equipment…. fast.

As it was dark outside, turning on a torch was rule number 1 in ‘Light discipline’. Fumbling around in the darkness, nothing could be found. He noted that he was sitting down, and he was straining to see out. There were also few sandbags around the parapet, the RPG caging was still intact and all around the openings.

0245hrs, nearly time to go back to bed. It had been a long tiresome day, if not longer. Tiredness had become the norm over the past few months for the soldier. Used to feeling that way, he just looked out and thought of home.

A light turned on from within the base, “Turn that light off now” he uttered in a hushed, but sharp, tone. The light kept approaching the Sanger, “TURN OFF THE LIGHT!”. Nothing, the light kept on coming towards the sentry position. Jeopardising both of their safeties, the enemy were alert at night. As he was about to dress down the person holding the oncoming torch, he had a sad realisation.

The torch lit up a doorway, a dusty floor, a mosquito net with a tired soldier sitting cross-legged in it. “Your on stag now mate” the man behind the torch beckoned. The tired soldier hung his head, mummering to himself “I have been on for the past 3 hours….”. It had all been fictitious, a figment of his mind so very used to going on stag duty. Time to get up and go on duty for real, sleep had to wait.

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