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Posted on Feb 9, 2007 in Armchair Reading, Front Page Features

Interactive Combat Story: The Calm Before The Storm

By Brandon Neff


Alas, aid does not arrive in time. As you squeeze your friend’s hand, you notice his grip weakening and finally falling limp. You look into his eyes and they glaze over, his skin a sickly pale color. Private Bernson lowers his head and wipes his sleeve across his eyes, mourning the loss of his friend. You turn and place a reassuring hand on Bernson’s shoulder and you both turn back to the face the enemy.

Your NCO, Sgt. Peterson, barks out orders as he rallies the troops in preparation of a German advance and you are ordered to hold the line. You and Pvt. Bernson ready your weapons and peer into the smoke-filled void to the east.

The Germans waste no time, hoping to capitalize on the chaos inflicted by the artillery, and gunshots are heard a few hundred yards away. The sounds of battle draw nearer, and you wipe your eyes to clear your vision.


Your visibility is limited to approximately 6 yards and through the darkened mist, several shapes begin to materialize, running towards your trench. At this range, you can’t be sure if they are friend or foe!

If you fire on the men, Go to 4.

If you wait until the men can be identified, Go to 23.

[continued on next page]

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