He was done and smile towards our direction and was about taking a step further before we saw how a hot bullet pierced through his chest and some amount of flesh followed suit . Some quantity of blood puffed out through his mouth. He was falling down and received another right on his belle
“No…” one of the soldiers in the squad screamed as he rushed out with his rifle and rushed towards the friend that was already fallen by a bullet probably from the terrorists.
“Don’t move” Lt Banji ordered on top of his voice. There was no way we could see a fellow comrade die without justice being delivered. We quickly ran out of the forest and with the little ammunition in our possession, we were ready to die fighting for our comrade who just sacrificed his life for us. We quickly dragged him amidst flying bullets all over the place and took positions behind some little log of fallen trees and rocks in the dense forest. The terrorists advanced towards our position with more weapons and we were always forced to retreat as they kept advancing.
“Right is good… I repeat right is good” Lt Banji yelled as some soldiers quickly took their right turn and went behind some barricades there. With some hand signs that kept indicating “Lie low”, most of us laid flat on the ground to avoid the bazookas that was being launched by the insurgents.
“On me” I shouted as I requested for cover to move front and gain foothold of our front line. Bright kept shouting “No” but I was determined to die a hero for a comrade than being seen as a coward. I knew the implications of this step but I was prepared to take it. I quickly rushed and dived behind a small rock and positioned my weapon. I could clearly see as one of the guy raised a rocket launched and was about to hit the trigger. I stood up in fury and fired towards his location and luckily he was hit in the stomach and the release went so wrong. There was a heavy explosion right in their position as he missed target while falling to the ground. I have seen lots of cowards during my short stay in the military but I have never seen anyone like Lt Banji. He was always at the rear commanding, instead of leading the front line.
One would have thought that the explosion would force the terrorists to retreat, but it wasn’t so. They actually increased in number and only a spirit being could tell from where. The sound of Ak’s rocking right there in the forest and the number of insurgents that flanked us made Lt. Banji kept shouting “Retreat”.
“Arrghh” One of the soldiers cried bitterly. I rushed to his position and one of his eyes had been blinded by a bullet. It wasn’t a good sight to behold as blood kept gushing out from that eye. He laid down there as another guy tried blocking the place the blood kept gushing out from.
“We’re moving back” LT Banji shouted. We dragged him along while running deep into the forest and it was long before another bullet pierced his belle. I had to drop him and run after the other guys. The weapons they used at us were ones I never saw during my short stay at the camp. We were just about 5 that had their magazine still loaded and Bright was among them.
“You have to do this Bro” I whispered to him. He moved some steps forward and I covered him. The way he fired his weapons, I couldn’t help but smile. He single handedly repelled some advancing terrorist with his precise shootings. “Nice one” I yelled as I tapped his back and laid low.
“You good” I smiled
“I know” he replied. I couldn’t help but smile. “Don’t flatter yourself” I said as we went back to our front line to hold position.
We finally hid behind some rocks and little trees as we spread into smaller unit but not very far from each other. We wanted to try the little trick we learnt at the camp and knew if it was going to work. I couldn’t tell the amount of soldiers that were in our squad currently because most of them had injured and some had died. We had the number but lacked the ammunition. We were clearly hungry and had not eaten for days and the consistent running was making almost everyone feel weary.
Everywhere was quite for a while but I knew that the terrorists had not gone away. They wanted to end us all right there in that forest and they were never gonna give up just like that.
“Lieutenant” I whispered. He looked at me with open eyes. “I wana advance” I spoke into my coms
“Remain still” He ordered and I held position. He ordered some other guys to move forward and cover some spaces that could grant the enemy space to cover grounds on us. It was a calculation that actually and it really helped. It wasn’t long before they swept on us like hurricane. The other guys held on tightly to position but the firepower of the terrorist were beginning to show and other soldiers with better rifle took over the front line, while the other went behind to retreat. The casualties on our side were beginning to show. About 3 soldiers were hit and one died instantly, while the other two were bleeding to death. The casualties kept on increasing and more soldiers were falling but we weren’t going to just relax and die like cowards.
“We are moving back” Lt Banji yelled again “Retreat”
We started retreating. “I don’t want to die…please help me” One of the soldiers cried. HE had been right there on his neck and he was bleeding profusely. I tried covering it with my hands but the blood pumping out was much. I carried him on my back and handed over my rifle to another soldier. More soldiers were getting injured and collapsing on the way. Despite all we tired, we were running away from battle but it was for long again.
We suddenly turned back after a while and saw that those that were pursuing us were now scattered and running in various direction.
“What happened?” I asked another guy in a local dialect “Amaro kwam”(I don’t know) He replied.
To Be Continued…