The day would not end. The hike to where the objective was supposed to be, that Sugar Daddy’s forward reconnaissance team said wasn’t there, was one of overwhelming fatigue and staggering inattentiveness. The first sign that something was wrong with the company came when the Gunny, moving just in front of me, pulled up a 60mm mortar base plate. The thing weighed about twenty pounds.

“What’s going on Gunny?” I asked him, as he set the round iron object back down on the path the company was making through the beaten bracken.