The dive bombing tactic had been successful for as long as any one of them could remember. Sure, there were the occasional losses due to enemy strikes or poor navigation or lingering too long over the target. There were always a few who got lost on the return trip, or snatched out of the sky for who knew what reasons. And, as is normal with all martial forces, those that flew paid little or no heed to those that crawled through the mud. The enemy might worry about the ground forces, but those that flew did not.
The war, in progress for so long that no one on either side could say accurately when there had last been peace between the two, escalated as all wars do with better methods of attack, more efficient means of propagation, more numbers. That is the nature of war; it continues until one side surrenders, or is completely annihilated.
That was not the worst of it. Competition among “friendlies” was ruthless and fierce. There was constant harassment and interference from others, supposedly neutral. These forces could be, and quite often were, as deadly as dealing with the enemy. Still, the war raged on with no end in sight. No surrender forthcoming.
The host, as they had done since the war began, departed their bases just before dusk. Early evening was always best for hunting. This night would be no different than countless of those past. The end, for too many of them was always the same:
SLAP! “Damn mosquitoes!”
© 2012, J. Michael Raymond. All Rights Reserved.
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