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» The General - Chapter 2

     After convincing his entourage to allow him to stop at his locker and change into his military uniform from his civilian clothes. He entered the special briefing room, ironically where he was supposed to give his presentation in two hours, where CIA director Helmsy and Conrad's CO Colonel Durvey were waiting.
"Your late Conrad," Director Helmsy started.
"Well for some odd reason everyone was trying to leave Washington, not get into it, so my commute was a bit longer than usual. That wouldn't have anything to do why I am here, would it?" Conrad replied.
"At, 0400 Hours this morning our spy satellites detected this in the Atlantic Ocean," Durvey said pointing to photographs on the wall.
"Those look like Hades-class Dreadnoughts and Scorpion-class escorts... I don't understand. Are they trying to blockade the eastern seaboard or something?" Conrad responded. The soviet rearerment was no shock to those in CIA, they had known about the Russians building and upgrading their surface fleet since the end of the last decade.
"That's what we initially thought too, but when then listening stations in northern Canada and Greenland picked up these," Durvey said again pointing to some more pictures. "And some unusual happenings in northern Mexico and when we adjusted the satellite and saw these pretties."
"Those look like tanks and a lot of them at that. I don't recognize what type they are though, you don't think they are going to try and invade do you? We have more than enough land, sea, and air forces to handle this, not to mention our nuclear deterrent," Conrad said in response to the new set of photos.
"Which brings us to the next bit of information: at 0500 hours thirty-five of our bases in California, Texas, and along the Eastern coastal states where hit. By what we don't know but what ever it was it was very effective," Helmsy revealed.
"So...we just nuke those bastards back to the stone-age," Conrad said impatiently.
"Yes, we had that option about an hour ago, but when President Dugan contacted Romanov about an hour ago in question of the data we received, our nuclear silos where hit as well," Helmsy responded.
"That's impossible!" Conrad snapped.
"We think these attacks have to do with this man...Yuri and his Phi Corps," Durvey added.
"Oh don't tell me you believe in that mind-control B.S."
"You above all people should know that it is a real threat," Helmsy added in. Conrad just rolled his eyes and mumbled something inaudibly.
"Okay, so the reds are invading what does this have to do with me?"
"Well are problem isn't finding enough men, we have plenty. We are having shortages in the officer pool. Corporals are becoming Sergeants, Sergeants becoming Lieutenants, becoming Majors, and so on. It seems that the Reds put out a death warrant on everyone above the rank of Colonel. Most of the officers we do have very little or no combat experience," Helmsy explained.
"Yes, but what does that have to do with me?"
"Well it appears while going over the list of available officers the boys at the Pentagon were very excited when they saw a Colonel that wasn't either dead or on vacation," Helmsy said coming to the point.
"Wait a minute... No no no. what about Durvey here, he's my CO. Why didn't they pick him?" Conrad said trying to get himself out of what he knew he was getting into.
"Because they want you. Besides I need Durvey here. Believe it or not you are the most experienced one here," Helmsy cut in.
"Well yes, but sneaking around stealing information is a lot different than leading thousands of men in battle," Conrad pointed out.
"Well, they don't know that. They think you are the commander of an elite battalion of soldiers attached to the CIA," Helmsy replied.
"Gee... I wonder how they got that idea." Conrad said extremely sarcastically.
"It doesn't matter now; we've changed your records accordingly. The good Lieutenant waiting outside will take you to the Pentagon, where you will report to General Carville for your assignment," Durvey said in a hurry.
"Why you sons of..." Conrad was cut-off before he could finish.
"Don't be mad Adrian, now you get to wear your favorite uniform all the time," Both men started laughing at the fact Conrad hated his Battle Dress Uniform. "Now, take your file and get going," Helmsy finished, trying to contain his laughter. Conrad, on the verge of saying something, thought the better of it and left before saying something he might regret.

*    *   *   *   *   *

     The drive over to the Pentagon didn't take as long as it usually did; most likely due to the police escort he was given. By this time most of the city was up or at least getting up and realizing what was going on. When they got to the Pentagon, Conrad was treated like a king, at the door he had escorts ushering him in and through the maze of doors and corridors. He was led to the Pentagon's war room, where he was to meet Carville.
"Ah, it's about time commander, what took you so long?" Carville started.
"The traffic, sir, it's murder," replied Conrad.
"It's a mess, a lousy mess. We've got a Soviet invasion from Mexico, we've got a soviet invasion in California, and we've got another at New York, that's where you come in. We should have sufficient forces in the South and West 'till we get some of our commanders back from their vacations and the ones just being promoted; it's just the New York theater that worries me. We have only have a few infantry divisions, and our armor divisions there have been hit hard by sabotage. Your bosses at the CIA tell me you're the best and that's what I need," Carville stated.
"I guess if the CIA says so. By the way how much do I have and how much do they have?" Conrad asked. Carville paused for a moment not really wanting to tell, but having no choice.
"Well, I think there is the 8th, 9th, and 27th Infantry divisions and perhaps some elements of the 32nd Mechanized Infantry and III Armored Corps, if it ever arrives from Albany. As for the Reds, by the size of their force id say at least ten divisions maybe as much as fifteen at least half of those are armor, plus they have mobile artillery, V3 rockets and naval support," Carville explained.
"Do I get any air or naval support?" Conrad asked.
"Oh I almost forgot about that. The 8th airforce stationed near Buffalo is under your command and as for naval, that is out of the question. Our Atlantic fleet has been ordered to guard Washington and Norfolk. Now, don't kid yourself Conrad, I your job isn't to repulse the attack, just stall them until we can get sufficient elements there to fight them. Oh and you do have one more asset in the area: Special Agent Tanya is in there, she is a crack shot and an expert in demolitions, be careful, she doesn't take kindly to officers," Carville added.
"Don't get tied in a knot just cause she's a she. She is our most valuable asset in the area right now and not to be underestimated," Carville ordered. "One last thing, you are out of uniform, commander." Conrad looked around with great worry. "Here you don't need those eagles anymore, you'll be wearing stars from now on out. Also, you are now the Commander of Eastern US Forces." Carville handed him the two pairs of two stars, the rank of a Major General (Conrad along with a handful of other officers were promoted to General, Conrad getting being the only one to get Major General, the others were just Brigadier Generals, just moments earlier in a special session, before being transported to a secure location) which Conrad immediately put on. "Now when you get up there, you'll need to find Captain Harrison, he's in command until you get there and once you do he'll be your number two, Lieutenant Eva will have your intel and logistics, so if you need her she'll be there on the radio. Now get outta here before something else goes wrong. Your plane is waiting over at Dulles.
"One last thing sir, what about my wife?" Conrad inquired.
"Don't worry she's being moved to a secure location as we speak," Carville replied. Conrad then saluted and headed out the door to where a jeep was waiting to take him to the airport.

*    *   *   *   *   *

"Take a right here would ya?" Conrad asked.
"What for sir? My orders are to take to directly to the airport."
"Didn't they tell you? I have to stop by my house to pick up some items I need for my assignment," Conrad lied. "Besides it will take five extra minutes...just tell them there was heavy traffic."
"I guess, but my orders..."
"Well orders change," Conrad said to the driver with a smile. A few minutes later they arrived at the General's house which he had left only a few hours ago, but what seemed like an eternity. The General disappeared into the house only to reappear moments later with a huge army duffel bag.
"What do you have in there, General?"
"My toys, Sergeant."
"Toys, sir?" Conrad opened the bag and took out two pistols (taking time to load them, holster one and the other he put concealed under his belt) out of the arsenal automatic rifles, sniper rifles, explosives and ammunition; just about anything you could think of.
"Yes, toys." They then resumed their course to the airport. They actually arrived early, because of Conrad's knowledge the city and back roads to the airport. When they got to the runway it had the appearance of a military airbase with ammunition, planes, vehicles, and men spread out of over the complex. After a series of stops they finally reached his plane, a young solider tried to pick up the General's bag but couldn't due to the weight.
"What do you have in here General? Feels like enough weapons to fight the Russians yourself, sir."
"Well from what the guys at HQ tell me it may come down to that," Conrad responded in all seriousness. He boarded a cargo plane that was packed with men, at least platoon or so at Conrad's estimate. On passing through the aisle he took special notice of one private that was starring out the window looking very frightened and couldn't have been more than 19.
"What's the matter, son?" This was ironic as Conrad had hated being called 'son' by his superiors and yet now using it himself.
"I..I..guess I'm a little scared. I'm afraid I won't be able to do it, sir," he responded coming to attention.
"Well you want to know a little secret?" Conrad asked motioning the private to sit down back down.
"What's that, sir?"
"Every man is scared shitless before he goes into battle, hell even me ...especially me. But once you step on the battlefield and see your brothers bleeding and dying. You'll lose your fear, then your duty and training will take over and that will keep you going," responded the COEUSF.
"Thanks, sir. Thank you very much," Conrad acknowledged this by nodding his head and giving him a salute. Conrad continued down the aisle studying the wide variety of faces of the various soldiers, some scared, some eager, all anxious to get it over with.
"Sir, Sergeant First Class Rogers, Mark Rogers reporting for duty, General sir," shouted a soldier as the COEUSF approached the stern of the aircraft.
"Who the hell are you? Rambo?" Conrad replied.
"Sir, no, sir. I'm in charge of this Marine platoon, General sir. Just a little eager to go kill some Russkies, General sir."
"Don't worry solider there will be plenty of them to kill, when we get there." Conrad hadn't noticed the Marine insignia on the uniforms till then and the thought of spending the next hour or so with a plane full of Marines was less than appealing to him.
"Sir, yes sir! General sir your seat..this way," he lead Conrad to an area with maps and papers obviously of the area and situation they were about to enter.
"Very good, Killer. Let's see how fucked up this situation is."
"Sir, with all due respect, sir my name is Rogers, sir."
"Well from now on it is Killer, because you want to kill more than any real person I've ever known.
"Sir, YES, SIR!" Rogers responded proudly. Nothing more appeased a Marine than reaffirming the killing machines they where, Conrad knew this. For the duration of the flight Conrad mainly listened starring blankly out the window like the private he'd spoken to earlier as Killer gave the Situation Report. Most of the information went in one ear an out the other. Conrad only was worried about the scale of death and destruction he'd witness in the hours, days, weeks, months, and possibly years to come.

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