PRIMAL HUNGER, First Chapter

 

I hunger.

The familiar voice startles First Lieutenant Dieter Müller with its declaration.  The German officer finds himself riding in a convertible army jeep, surprised and disoriented.

I hunger.

Dieter recognizes the road from the airfield, and remembers; he had gone home, back to Lükenwalde … back to mother.

I hunger.

I heard you.  I can’t do anything about it now.

The trip in the open-topped VW Kübelwagen jeep was strangely cold to Dieter.  A springtime drive through the countryside of Poland should be warm and pleasant, but Dieter is chilled; his hands and feet in particular.  He’s near shivering.  The odd weather is like the trip home had been; quite different than he’d expected … disturbing even.

“It feels too cold for the season.” Dieter offers to his driver in an attempt to stop any memories of his trip from worming their way into conscious reflection.

The young corporal looks at Dieter in the rearview mirror.  “You think, sir?”

Dieter feels suddenly uncomfortable.  It seems that somehow the young corporal can see right through him, all the way down to his hidden soul; see it as clearly as the polished skull and bones insignia of the SS on his uniform.  Yes, Dieter knew why now.  It was the corporal’s eyes—those emerald eyes—they were Mother’s; penetrating, knowing, accusing…

“Perhaps it’s not too unusual.” Dieter concedes to end the dialog.

The corporal returns his attention to the road ahead.  They were approaching the main gate of Auschwitz.

Already?  Was I lost in thought the entire way from the airfield?

He must have been.

Strange…

He finds himself in his quarters; his bags placed on his bunk.  He looks around confused.

Am I blacking out?

Music and merrymaking from the mess hall at the end of the barracks corridor steals his attention.

Dieter steps out of his room and strides toward the double mess hall doors just as Karl Weber burst through them.  Dieter’s senior sergeant is red-faced, and his uniform disheveled.  “Welcome back, Obersturmführer.” he slurs in greeting.

“You’re drunk, Sergeant.”

“Yes, sir.  Heil Hitler!” He salutes and laughs.

Dieter is not amused.  “What’s the meaning of this, Karl?”

“You have forgotten?  It’s Erik’s birthday.”

Dieter remembered now; the young sergeant who’s family knew the Commandant.  Everyone had been excited about the party because, given the family connection, normal protocols of discipline would be relaxed—very relaxed!—and the boys definitely knew how to blow off the stress of their grim duty here at Auschwitz.  Yes, it would be a wild party indeed.

“Come join us.  You look like you could use a drink, Lieutenant.”

Dieter feels again the twinge of insecurity at his distress being so evident.

“I must decline.  It’s been a long trip.”

Had it?

He couldn’t remember travelling at all; nothing but his driver and the cold, which he realized he still felt; his hand and feet frigid now, and his nose stung as well.

“The men will be disappointed.” Karl says.

“I feel confident they’ll recover.”  Dieter offers a weak smile.

“Suit yourself.”  Karl shoulders the doors open again sending them swinging all the way back on their hinges.

Dieter can see his men drinking inside, and there is a woman lying on a table half-naked, the bright pink areolas and erect nipples of her pale breasts in stark contrast to the drab decor and the gray and black of the soldiers’ uniforms.  Young Erik slurps a shot of liquor from her navel as she giggles.  Everyone watches and laughs.

Her hair…

…its perfect golden hue glistens even in the dim barracks light.

Her laughter…

…it seems a familiar symphony of simple gaiety.

She turns her head—Her eyes!—and smiles at him.  It is unmistakable…

Gretchen?

Dieter steps forward as the double doors swing closed.  He hesitates.

No.  It couldn’t be her.  She’s…

He snatches his cap off and rubs a hand vigorously through his cropped hair.  

My mind … I’m weary.  I need to rest  … that’s all, just rest.

Dieter is back in his quarters again.  He looks around confused for a moment, then undresses.  He lies on his bunk, shivering as he pulls a blanket over himself, then closes his eyes.

I hunger.

Dieter sits up.  His breath condensates as he exhales.  The thick white plume dissipates into the aether.

Goddamn, it’s freezing now!

Didn’t he just lie down?  Did he sleep at all?

I hunger.

Dieter glances at his watch; 4:17 am.

It’s too early; too dangerous.  There will be a selection tomorrow.  I will do it then.

He looks about the room.

What the hell?

His quarters are coated with a thin layer of ice.

How can this be?  It’s fucking April.

I hunger.

I heard you.  I’m going.

Dieter slips out into the dimly lit corridor.  It seems too long somehow.  Snow blankets the floor.  He straightens his coat and cap, then heads for the exit at the end.  His heart races inside his chest.

This is all wrong.

Every bunkroom door hangs open.  Snowdrifts gather against them.  Dieter peaks in the rooms.  All the guards lie in their bunks; Karl, Erik—all of them!—are frozen in ghastly contorted poses.

My men!  Where’s Colonel Höss?  Why hasn’t someone done something?

 I hunger.

I know, Goddammit.

Outside in the courtyard, the wintery wind feels like icy needles piercing Dieter’s face.  He looks up.  A full moon shines in a perfectly clear sky, yet, snow falls in spite of the impossibility, blowing about in swirls, and drifting against the trees and shrubs that are flush with thick, green leaves.  The flower garden of the Commandant’s villa is rife with colorful blooms.

This is madness.

At the gate to the prisoner compound two guards stand frozen, staring at Dieter.  Blood pools at the threshold from crimson icicles that drip from the iron sign across the gate which reads:

“ARBEIT MACHT FREI”

Work makes you free.

Dieter splashes across the bloody threshold, leaving crimson boot prints behind.

Music carries on the wind.  He knows the tune.  It’s changed though somehow; deceptive now as its sinister intent.  The prisoner band, with instruments in hand, stands rigid where they always play for new arrivals.  Their eyes follow Dieter as he passes, and though they move not at all, the music plays on.

Something’s amiss.  The blood, the band…  Why is it so hard to think?

Dieter heads for the political prisoners building, Block 11.

No.  A daughter of Israel.

Dieter alters his course, and enters Block 10.  He turns the light switch in vain.  Only the moon illuminates the scene.

Dieter sees a dark pool of blood on the floor.  It animates and runs like quicksilver, flowing down the hall then up the stairs.

Dieter on instinct follows.

The blood makes its way to cell door 13-B, and flows under into the room.  Dieter unlocks it, and steps inside.  With a flashlight he looks at the sleeping Jew women.

They’re not frozen…

The blood spreads across the floor.  Dieter splashes in it as he inspects each woman, not knowing what he seeks.

The youngest…

Dieter finds a girl of maybe sixteen.

Humiliate it.  I want its screams.

Dieter’s now in the downstairs office, hitting the girl on the back of her head with his pistol, his teeth bared in a grimace.  She’s naked, and he thrusts into her from behind.  Her pale blue flesh is ice-cold.

Dieter stops.

Wait.  I know where I am.  I know her!

He turns the girl over.  Her dead, hemorrhaged eyes stare up at him.

Why am I here again?

The girl blinks.  She raises an arm.  The movement rips her rigor mortised muscles; the sound echoes through the building.  Dieter retreats.  Her fingers crack and pop as she points.

Dieter shrinks back.  “Stop it.”

The girl cackles, the laughter belonging not to a girl, but to something vile and putrid.  She curses him in Yiddish.  Black bile flows from her mouth.  The curses turn to gurgles.

Dieter yanks his pants up and flees.  She shambles after him, cursing, and cackling.  Dieter runs slipping and sliding on the frozen hall until he falls through the door, and lands in the snow outside.

Beams from a hundred flashlights shine down on him.  A looming silhouette with the voice Colonel Höss steps forward.  “An Obersturmführer of the SS sullies himself with Jew whores?  You’ll be court marshaled for this, Müller.”

This shouldn’t be happening.

Wake up.

It can’t be happening!

Wake up, Dieter.

Dieter wakes on a bed of layered clothing in the bottom of the bomb crater he has made his home.  He wears a mismatch of German and Russian winter army gear.  His face is soot-stained and scruffy.  A small pile of embers glows at the center of the crater.  Dieter sits up and shivers.

I was dreaming again.

You have a penchant for it of late.

The far side of the impact crater is littered with bones, boots, belts and shoes.  The crater is covered by a make-shift roof of rubble.

I hunger.

So do I.  

Dieter sifts through the bones.

I am hungry, Dieter.

I heard you.  Can’t I feed myself first for once?

Your resistance disturbs me.

Dieter ceases his searching.  “I’m not resisting, Goddammit, I just … fuck it, never mind.”

Dieter climbs up the slope and pushes a sheet of metal aside.  Sunlight pierces the dark crater through the hatch.  Dieter shields his eyes.  He grabs his Gewehr infantry rifle and crawls out.

Snow covers the war-ravaged ruins of Stalingrad.  Not a single building stands intact.  Sporadic rifle reports echo from several kilometers north.

Dieter heads south, dashing from cover to cover.  He moves, hides, checks his surroundings, then moves again, dashing across a wide rubble-strewn street, and imagining a snipers bullet penetrating his flesh.

Fucking snipers…

The Russian sharpshooters were a thing of terror for the German soldiers here; the bogymen of war torn Stalingrad.  Dieter’s demon could sense when others were near, but not so far away as a sniper’s nest would be.

Dieter ducks into the bottom level of a half-destroyed storefront, relieved that yet another imagined death by sniper was behind him for now.  He makes his way through the shop, careful of his footfalls, eyes wide and ears alert until he secures the area.  He surveys the view from the rear window.

Okay … This is where we got the fat old woman.

You enjoyed that one immensely, I recall.

No, you enjoyed it; watching me spill all her fat everywhere—all over myself!

Guilty.

And when it oozed out of her leg and into the fire and started melting—my God, the smoke and the stench!  You’re lucky you can’t smell, I’ll tell you that.

Rare comedy.

Only for you.

Dieter moves to another window, and scans the area.

 There must be more of them out there camped in a basement or something; an old woman can’t survive alone.

You proved that.

I meant she’s got to have family near, or someone.  Can you sense anyone?

Yes.

A shot rings out exploding into the brick wall only a foot from Dieter’s head.  He dives to the floor.

Why didn’t you warn me?

I did.

That was a Gewehr rifle.

“Hold your fire.  I’m German.” Dieter shouts.

“You hit?”

“No.  I’m coming out.”  He peeks out the window.

Three German soldiers look down from a large hole in the second floor wall of the building across the street.  Dieter hurries over and heads up the stairs.

He find the trio huddled near a large, tri-pod mounted MG-42 machine gun.  The guilty soldier holds his Gewehr rifle up apologetically.

“I’m sorry, brother.  I thought you were Russian.”  He gestures at Dieter’s attire.

Dieter looks himself over.  He had forgotten he was wearing Russian boots and wool pullover cap.  “I took them off some Reds I retired.  Their winter boots are better.  Finding ones that fit is the tough part.”

“Who you with?” the soldier asks.

“24th Division, 4th Panzer, Group-B.”

“Stuck inside the perimeter with us 6th army fools, huh?  Lucky you.”

“Yeah, lucky, that’s just how I feel.  General Hoth’s a ruthless bastard, but I wish I was rolling into the Caucuses with Group-A now, or anywhere but this fucking shithole.”

“You and a hundred thousand others … us included.”  His comrades grunt and nod in agreement.  “Where’s you squad?” he asks.

“I’m alone.”  Dieter shrugs.  “Can’t find anybody.  We’re all split up.  I’m glad you didn’t open up with the 42.”  He gestures to the big machine gun.

“Wouldn’t waste the ammo on one lousy Red.” the stocky machine gunner says patting the lethal weapon like a favorite pet.

The would-be-sniper looks to his comrades.  They each give a nod.  He turns and offers a gloved hand to Dieter.  “I’m Gregor.  This is Alfred, and Eckhart there on the MG.”

“Dieter Müller.”  He shakes Gregor’s hand.  “I have tobacco.”

They look at Dieter in disbelief.

He digs a pouch out.  “It’s Russian, but it smokes.”

Gregor slaps Dieter on the shoulder.  “I guess you can stay then.”

Dieter sits on a pile of bricks, and rolls a cigarette.  “You three here by accident, or on orders?”

“Orders,” Gregor answers, “but I think they pulled the line back and forgot about us.”

“Hadn’t been a fucking runner in days.” Eckhart says.

“That’s right,” Alfred agrees, “we were thinking one of us should go back and find the line, but, two men can’t hold this position.”

“Not without getting our asses flanked and spanked, that is.” Eckhart adds.

Dieter lights the cigarette and takes a long drag, “Well, you’ve got four now, brothers.” he passes the cigarette to Gregor.  “I can cover for your runner.”

What are you doing?

“That’d be me.” Gregor says, then drags on the smoke.  “I’ll move out at dusk; too many fucking snipers out there.  I should be back in an hour … two tops.  If not…”

“We’ll write your folks.” Eckhart finishes.

The four soldiers laugh; the humor being in the truth of it.  They pass the smoke around.

I hunger, Dieter.

I know.

Do something.

I will.   I’ve got to help them first, then we’ll…

Now.

I can’t just wander off to hunt.

No need.

Dieter realizes what’s implied.

You don’t mean that.

Do it.

They’re Germans.

They are Prey.

No … no fucking way!

It has been weeks since the old woman.  I am famished.  You know the bargain; do it, or suffer in their stead.

Please don’t make me…  I can’t!

Gregor offers the cigarette back to Dieter who seems not to notice.

You will.

I can leave.  I’ll just go.  We can find someone else!

No.

Gregor sees the distress in Dieter’s expression.  “You okay, brother?”

Do it.

But…

Do it!

Dieter looks up, smiles, and takes the smoke.  “Just thinking, that’s all.”  He takes a drag and hands the butt back.  He stands.  “There’s not enough room at this position for us all to get a firing lane.”  He gestures at the cramped space, then points up.  “Gregor, you and I should take a position upstairs.”

Gregor looks to the others.

Alfred nods.

“It’s a good idea.” Eckhart concurs.  “You’d definitely have a better field of fire with two of you.”

Gregor slaps Dieter on the shoulder again. “You have the tobacco; you lead and I’ll follow.”

Excellent.

The stairs go up a flight to a landing, then turn right and continue up to the third floor.

Some of the roof has caved in.  Part of the forward wall has collapsed, and nearly half the back.

“This doesn’t look too safe, brother.” Gregor says.

“This is Stalingrad; nowhere is safe.  I’ll roll us a cigarette, you look out the rear.”

Gregor nods and lies prone behind debris at the back wall.

Dieter looks at the soldier’s back, his heart pounding, threatening to explode from his chest.

Feed me, Dieter.

The others, they might hear.

Do it.

He’s German, Goddamnit…

Do it.

I don’t…

Kill it.  Kill it.  KILL IT!

Dieter pulls a length of rope from his coat.  He wraps it tight around his hands.

Forgive me, brother.

He drops a knee into the small of Gregor’s back as he whips the rope around the prone soldier’s neck, crosses the lines, and pulls.  Gregor instinctively reaches up to his neck with both hands dropping his rifle.  He thrashes wildly, fighting to survive.

Yes…

Dieter bares his teeth as he arches back.  Gregor manages to turn his head, and with one bulging eye, looks back at the man choking the life from him.  Dieter sees the fear of death in Gregor’s pale blue eye, and the unmistakable question: Why?  Dieter’s strength falters.  He relents a moment.

Finish it.

Dieter thrusts down with his knee again and pulls with all his might on the rope.  Gregor’s purple tongue protrudes from his mouth.  Veins pop in his eye as it hemorrhages and rolls up into his head.  Gradually he grows weaker; his struggles lesson, then finally cease.  His arms drop limp.  His head lolls forward.  Dieter releases the rope and steps back and inhales in a great gasp.  Beads of sweat run down his face in spite of the cold.

Come, my sweet.  Come to me now.

Gregor’s body shimmers.  His glowing spirit ascends out of his corpse.  He looks at Dieter, his countenance fearful and confused.  He points at Dieter accusingly.

Dieter’s body shutters and emanates an ethereal black mist that rises up, shifting into a monstrous and menacing shape of shadow.  Amber eyes glow in its looming darkness.

The essence of Gregor sees the horror, and turns to flee.  The demon lashes out with its shadow talons, and snatches Gregor’s spirit.  It howls as Gregor screams; an ecstasy and agony only Dieter can hear as he turns away from the murder of Gregor’s soul.

The demon-shade devours the wailing spirit of Gregor, swallowing his light into its darkness.  Gregor’s screams fade as he is pulled down … down into nothingness.

The shadow-demon expands, moaning in sweet rapture, then is silent, and retreats back into Dieter.

The others.

No.  No more.  I’ve done what I must.

The others.

“No!” he shouts aloud.  Dieter freezes, realizing what he’s done.

Well done.

Dieter hears someone coming up the stairs.

You have no choice now.

“Gregor, what’s going on.”  Alfred inquires from the below the landing.

The demon chuckles.

Dieter tosses the rope aside, then grabs Gregor and hurls him off the building.  The body thuds on the ground three floors below, just as Alfred turns the corner to the landing below.  “Everything alright?”

Dieter looks down at Gregor’s body.  “He fell.”

“What?”  Alfred hurries up the second run of stairs, and looks over the edge.  “How did he fall?”

“I don’t know.  He just slipped and went over.”

“He lies!” Eckhart shouts from behind them.

Dieter and Alfred whirl around to find Eckhart on the landing below, pointing his pistol at Dieter.  “I just saw Gregor’s body fall.  He’s killed him.  He’s a Russian impostor.”

Alfred looks at Dieter confused.

Kill them now.

Dieter hip-fires, and hits Alfred in the abdomen just as Eckhart shoots, grazing Dieter in the shoulder.  Dieter ducks behind the wall of the stairwell.  He points his rifle around the corner, and blind-fires down the stairwell.  Eckhart cries out.

Alfred fires a half second after, hitting Dieter in the right leg knocking it out from under him.  Dieter falls to the ground, his Russian cap flies off.  He rolls over to return fire.  Alfred, severely wounded, teeters to his left, but manages to fire again, hitting the floor near Dieter’s face, and peppering him with bits of the shattered round and concrete.

Dieter shoots, hitting Alfred in the left shoulder.  Alfred spins back and falls out the opening of the wall.  He screams briefly until he hits the ground with a sickening smack.

Dieter sits up.  Blood runs down his forehead and into his eyes.  He wipes it away only to have more pour down.  He tries again in vain.

Get down there.

Wait…

They live.  I want them.

Wait.

Dieter scoots against the stairwell wall and listens.  He hears grunting and movement from below.  He unbuttons his coat and tears a thick strip of a shirt away.  He wipes at his face again then ties the cloth around his forehead.  He grabs his cap and pulls it down low.

He peeks around the corner to find the stairwell empty.  He stands favoring his left leg and limps down to the landing.  He hears Eckhart grunting loudly now, in obvious pain, and something like metal scraping on concrete.  Dieter peeks around the corner down the next flight.

All clear.

He limps down.  At the bottom of the stairs he gives a quick look around the corner into the 2nd floor.

Eckhart lies on the floor aiming the big machine gun at the stairwell.  He opens fire.  The five-second burst sends 240 7.92 mm rounds blasting into the brick wall of the stairwell, and half of those ricocheting in all directions.

Dieter dives back up the stairs and crawls to the landing.  Ricochets graze his hip, left arm, and ear.  He scrambles around the corner and up to the 3rd floor, then rolls clear of the stairwell.

Eckhart ceases fire.  “How do you like that, you Russian pig-fucker?  You still alive?  Huh?”

Dieter pulls off his coat and layers of shirts to check his wounds.

His arm is a grazing shot just below the deltoid.  It did hit bone though and hurts terribly.  If it fractured the bone, even a little, it could be a real problem.

The hip is a little worse.  The destroyed fragment of the MG round struck bone there too, and is embedded in his abdomen.  Not deep though.  The ricochet took most of the punch out of it.  Dieter can feel it right below the skin.  The wound won’t kill him, but an infection will if he didn’t get it out treated properly.

“Come on down you Red bastard.”

I couldn’t see where I hit him, but he obviously can’t stand.  I’ll wait it out.

No.  I want it.

I can’t get down there.  He’s covering the only way.

Find another.

There is no other way.

Your refusal has caused this.  Now find a way.

Fuck you.  I can’t.  I won’t.

So be it.

A piercing shriek tears through Dieter’s head.  His hands cover his ears.  He screams and rolls around in the dust, the agony unbearable.  The shrieking rises in pitch and volume; like a thousand razors, it cuts through his mind.

“Stop.  Stop.  STOP!”

It ends as abruptly as it began.

Dieter lies on his side still holding his ears, panting heavily.  Tears stream from his eyes, sweat from his face, mucus from his nose, and spit from his mouth.

Downstairs, Eckhart laughs.  “You don’t sound very well, cocksucker.  My MG put a few in you, huh?  Come down here, I’ll fix you right up.”

Find a way, Dieter.

Dieter only nods.

He crawls over to his clothes, and pulls his shirts and coat back on.  He sees the rope he strangled Gregor with, grabs it, and goes to the hole at the front of the building.  He ties the rope to a twisted length of rebar jutting out from the shattered section of the floor there.  He leans out and looks down to the next floor.

The opening where the MG was set up is over to the left.

Damn it.  If I only had my pistol!

He snatches up his rifle and wraps the shoulder strap around his forearm, and tucks the butt snug in his armpit.  He grips the rope with all his strength, and edges out the hole.

He drops down, kicks off the building, and swings into the hole onto the second floor.

Eckhart sitting behind the machine gun looks behind as Dieter lands.  ”You fucker!”  He snatches up his pistol with his free hand, and snap-fires back as Dieter levels his Gewehr, and returns fire.

Eckhart’s shot grazes Dieter’s ribs under his left arm.

Dieter’s shot punches through Eckhart’s neck.

Eckhart’s pistol-hand fires a three-round reflexive burst high and wide as the MG-42 roars and fires up the wall and across the ceiling until Eckhart’s grip slips off the stock.  Eckhart drops the Luger as his body slumps over.

Dieter stands over the dying Eckhart who rolls to his back, and looks up at him.  The machine gunner coughs up blood, the crimson spray spewing up and raining down like a geyser.  He raises a shaking arm, and points at Dieter, then with sheer force of will manages to speak a final time; blood and saliva spraying as he spits his hatred out.

“Fuck-ing Russian … you’ll …  burn … in … Hell!”

He was right on one count.  Dieter saw no need to correct him on the other.

Eckhart’s arm drops and his head lulls to the side.

Yes, come now…

Eckhart shimmers, and his soul rises up from his corpse.  It stares in horror at the phantom fiend rising out of Dieter.  The spirit points with the same finger, shaking its head.

“No.”

Dieter closes his eyes.  The demon laughs as it devours Eckhart’s soul, then returns to its host.

The other one alive?

No.  They are yours now.

Dieter gathers weapons and ammunition.  He searches the dead Germans and their MG position for any other items of use.  He stares at the big machine gun a moment, knowing he can’t take it, but loathing to leave it behind.  He pulls the ammunition from it and tosses it away.

I wonder why you concern yourself with such things.

I’m not leaving a MG with ammo here for the Reds.

I understand your intentions.  Again, I wonder as to why.

Dieter pauses in his labors a moment.

I don’t really know.  Training, I guess.  And fuck the Reds anyway.

Dieter hurries down to Gregor’s body.  With effort he lifts the corpse.  Dieter, wearing Eckhart’s pistol on his waist, and carrying Gregor across his shoulders, makes his cautious way back towards his crater, visions of sniper’s crosshairs on his skull tormenting him as always.

You are hunted.

Dieter drops Gregor.  He shoulders his rifle.

How many?

Seven.

Fuck!  We’re only about halfway back.

Dieter aims around the rubble.  His sights find no one lurking on his six.

Where are they?  How close?

Very.

Six savage dogs emerge from the shadows, and fan out.  Dieter put the rifle sight on the head of the bravest of the lot, a gray husky on point.  They stare back at him and snarl.  Dieter holds his position.

Dogs?  Wait.  There are only six…

Your right flank.

Dieter looks and sees a huge Kangal in the shadows.  The dog, obviously the alpha of this pack, stands three feet high at its shoulders.  Its head is bigger than Dieter’s.  It growls, revealing savage canines the size of rifle rounds.

Dieter doesn’t move.  Neither does the Kangal.  Three of the others split from the pack and slowly make their way around the rubble to Dieter’s left.

They’re flanking me.

To claim your kill.

Well, fuck them!

Dieter fires his rifle.  The round craters the head of the husky, blasting it backwards.  The forward dogs scatter a moment, but the Kangal lunches an attack.

Dieter turns and holds his rifle up in defense, as the enormous Kangal plows into him, knocking Dieter onto his back.  Only the rifle saves Dieter’s throat from being ripped out by the snapping jaws of the 160 pound beast.

Dieter manages push the Kangal off of him with his legs, as the other starving hounds close in.  Dieter pulls Eckhart’s pistol and fires as the Alpha lunges again.  He grazes the big dog in the shoulder, as another mutt attacks from behind, biting down on Dieter’s arm.  The Kangal yelps and retreats.  The mutt yanks Dieter’s arm violently, slinging the pistol across the rubble.

Though the thick layers of clothing keep Dieter’s flesh from being torn off, the pressure of the bite is tremendous, and the force of the canine’s jerking head nearly dislocates his shoulder.  Dieter bashes the mutt with his rifle until it unclamps its bloody head from his arm.  The mutt withdraws whimpering.  Dieter stands and whirls around at the growls behind him.

Three dogs drag Gregor’s body away.

Dieter fires his rifle, hitting one of the dogs in its hind quarters, spinning it around several times.  The other two flee in opposite direction.  Dieter runs to defend his kill.  The wounded dog, whining in agony, tries to escape, but Dieter, with several blows from his rifle butt, smashes its head in.  He levels his weapon at the Kangal as the dog retreats into the shadows.

Dieter retrieves his pistol, shoulders his Gewehr, then hoist Gregor up.  He checks his six one more time, then stumbles off in the general direction of his crater.

 

~CLS~

 

~End First Chapter

Leave a comment

9 Comments

  1. I have just read what you wrote about ‘Primal Hunger’ in your latest post and it sounds fascinating. Maybe you could create a page for all your edited ‘Primal Hunger’ posts, it would make reading and commenting easier.

    Reply
    • Christopher Shawbell

       /  August 7, 2013

      Thanks for the suggestion, Gabriella. I have begun that, but not completed the site yet. Too many things gong on, ya know? In the meantime, I have a pretty long “resent posts” list–25 I think. Which post did you read about PH in?
      ~C.

      Reply
      • The one you have just posted.
        You’re welcome! I did this last week for my own continuing story and find it is easier to link just the one page than the different post, which is exactly what I did yesterday when for my Trifecta post.

      • Christopher Shawbell

         /  August 7, 2013

        Did you read through to the disclaimer at the end?

      • Do you mean about it being an ‘ intense sci-fi/erotica piece’?

      • Christopher Shawbell

         /  August 7, 2013

        Good. You git there. Just didn’t want anyone skipping into Primal Hunger or the Kayla Mack stories misunderstanding. PH is dark fiction (like umbra type dark), and KM is indeed a sci-fi/erotica crossover piece that I’m having fun with. It is my break from my PH rewrites.
        ~Chris

      • Not to worry! I fear censorship more than explicit writing.

      • Christopher Shawbell

         /  August 7, 2013

        Well-said!

  2. Wow, I never thought I’d be a fan of WWII Fiction, but this action packed story is paced to perfection, making it impossible to turn away from. And it’s dark enough to suit my tastes. Well done!

    Reply

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