McGilligan lay in bed trying to sleep. The Battalion had been given the night off of any duties and the rest of the squad had left for an evening in the nearby town. And since she hadn’t been welcome among most of them for the past few days, McGilligan had stayed, read a few chapters of a book, then went to bed. It was nice to be alone. No one shouting slurs at her. No whispers.
She then heard voices. One was Johnson. Fucking Johnson. Constantly acting like she was someone better than everyone. Especially the whore McGilligan. Maybe if she tucked her blanket over her head, Johnson wouldn’t see her and try to give her a lecture about her evil ways. The other voice was unfamiliar. Some man.
Johnson was a bit intoxicated, but luckily a nice man named Harold had offered to help her back to the tent. Harold was a Corporal in another regiment. He was a farmer from Halsey. They had met at the bar, and talked the whole night through. When they got back, Johnson let go of Harold and grabbed onto the tent door, “Thank you Harold. I can get back to my bunk myself.”
“Nonsense, I’ll help you in Emily.”
“Thank you very much.”
Once they got to the door of the bunk room Harold grabbed her arm tightly and whispered, “So, we’re back at your bunk. Now what?”
She whispered back, “I am going to bed silly.”
“What about me? You think I came all this way to wander back alone?”
Johnson’s face flushed, “Oh no, I’m not that kind of person.”
“Well I guess you’re going to make an exception tonight,” he said as he covered her mouth and pulled her into the room.
McGilligan had plugged her ears to ignore whatever Johnson was saying. It was probably just more insults. But she eventually heard the door open. The weren’t any candles lit, so Johnson was probably going straight to bed. She heard some sort of struggle, so she peaked out from under the covers. It seemed like there was something on top of Johnson. A flash of light caught Johnson’s eyes. They were wide open in terror. There was a squeak that was quickly silenced.
Shit. McGilligan knew what was happening. She slipped out of her bed as silently as possible. She pulled the shovel out from her webbing and stepped closer.
In the moment of distraction, McGilligan brought down the flat of the shovel onto the man’s head. She pulled the unconscious man off of Johnson.
Johnson lay there in silence, so McGilligan sat down on the side of her bed and buttoned Johnson’s uniform back up.
“I am forever in your debt,” Johnson’s voice trembled.
“Don’t worry about it Johnson.”
“Call me Em. And I am sorry.”
“Then call me Kitty. And sorry for what? No woman should be blamed for an evil like that.”
“I am sorry for saying those things about you Kitty.”
McGilligan walked over to light a candle, “Don’t worry about it Em. Now, we need to turn this man into the military police. Can you help, or should I find someone else?”
“I don’t want to be alone.”
“Very Well, I’ll bind his wrists and feet, then we can pick him up.”