Oct. 15th: 0600 hours
"Colonel Potter, thank you for your hospitality." Colonel MacAllister told the M*A*S*H commanding officer.
"Glad to have you, Colonel. We thank you for all the blood you've provided us. Come back, again."
"I will. With your permission, I'd like to visit post-op before I leave."
The redheaded colonel walked into the post operative area with a smile for the nurses on duty. "Major Houlihan, I wanted to say goodbye to you and the other ladies."
"Certainly, sir. Colonel, I'm sorry you have to leave so soon. Please come back. Perhaps we'll be able to talk longer next time---discussing this M*A*S*H unit, of course."
"Of course." The Texan smiled at the head nurse. "I'll be back every chance I get."
The colonel also took the time to locate one nurse in particular. "Lieutenant Kellye, I sure enjoyed talking to you, last night. Would you mind if I wrote to you?"
"Not at all, sir." The woman told him with a shy smile. "I'd like that."
"Crockett, I sure wish you didn't have to go." Sarabeth said as she held her brother in a tight embrace.
"I'll be back as often as I can...now that I know where you are." Cradling her chin in the palm of his hand, he gazed at her with concern. "Remember, this is a dangerous place! Don't take any unnecessary chances."
Affectionately, she smiled at him. "I was going to tell you the same thing, big brother. We stayed up and talked all night. Are you going to be able to drive?"
"Sure. This isn't the first time I've lost sleep because of you, little sister." He teased. He held onto her, reluctant to turn her loose. "God, Sarabeth! I love you. Please be careful!!"
"I love you, too, Crockett." She stated and stretched to kiss him on the cheek. "And you had better be careful, too! You hear me?"
"I hear you." The tall Texan replied. He looked at the company clerk who was approaching and released his sister.
"Here you go, sir. A fresh pot of coffee for your trip." Corporal Klinger announced. He set the canteen in the colonel's jeep.
"Thanks, Corporal. I appreciate it." MacAllister leaned forward slightly. He whispered, "Keep taking good care of my sister, will you?"
"Yes, sir!" Klinger promised with enthusiasm.
The soldier climbed into his vehicle. Corporal Klinger and Lieutenant MacAllister stood at attention and saluted. He returned their salutes and then grinned. "Sister mine, get in out of the cold!"
"As soon as you leave, brother mine." Sarabeth retorted.
Sarabeth was still standing in the middle of the road after the jeep had disappeared beyond the hillside curve.
"This is a dangerous place, Crockett." She agreed. "Please, be very careful out there."