A Day in the Life of Marine Captain Cross before the Zoastra Affair Part Twenty One
The scouts that Cross sent ahead rushed to meet the traveling group once they saw them on the road. The three privates stood in formation upon arrival back, waiting for Cross to call them forward. Their eagerness made them seem young. Major Newman joined Captain Cross, walking to meet the men in line and in complete silence.
Cross asked the second private in line, “What did you see?”
“In the palace, if that’s what it is, there’s a lot of activity going on,” she answered. “Every second of the day, someone is walking in and out of the place unchecked. In the village below, people are busy and there’s a lot of talk.”
“About?” Cross pressed. Every detail mattered to plan an attack.
“We’re not sure. Our communication translator must be broken, sir.”
Major Newman asked, “What did you believe they said?”
The woman blushed. “Guy talk. Silliness.”
Cross realized that he was grilling a female private officer, who didn’t talk like most of his soldiers. She must be a lady. Ladies have almost no use on a battlefield. She’d need more experience to knock that out of her, if she planned to stay in war.
If she stayed a lady, there were other positions available for women. He shook his head and called to the third private, a male. “You. What happened in the village? What was being discussed?”
“Sex, sir. And what kind of man a woman wants in bed.”
“Anything about the king?” Sex could mean a possible rape. They needed to get the women out. Security remained high near heads of state.