Red skies over Germany.

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Inspiration for story: I was playing a solitaire game known as B-17 Queen Of The Skies, and I was a few missions in with my bomber; the Alaskan Avenger. The mission was a blood bath.

There she was; the Alaskan avenger. I had been flying with her since her second mission after her original Co-pilot was shot up over the English Channel. The maintenance crew had just finished getting her ready for the next mission, and the pilot had just finished the checking the exterior of the plane. I was late, again. Mark didn't seem to notice, but he usually didn't care either. We got in the cockpit. Cameron, our engineer greeted us. Cameron had been with us since our 4th mission after our original engineer took some bad hits, killing him on our way back to base. Cameron was on his way to becoming the squadrons first ace, after getting 4 kills, 3 of which were in his second mission.

As we started our cross over the English Channel, we met up with our escort: a half dozen P-51’s; awesome, good fighter coverage all the way to Germany.
As the fighter coverage broke off and returned home, I had the feeling in my gut that, although we were in the middle squadron, AND we were the middle bomber, this wasn't going to be a cakewalk. Almost the moment we lost sight of our “little friends” we caught a glimpse of our first wave of fighters. Luckily, even though our guns missed them, the two interceptor fighters missed us as well.
Going into zone 6 we were hit by a wave of 4 109’s. Our port waist shot one down, while one missed us completely. The other two landed 3 hits on us each.
Our Bomb bay doors jammed up, and we realized that there would be no bomb run. Travis, our port gunner, said his suit heat had stopped working, and the port wing only got superficial damage, all other hits were superficial.
The pilot said we were going on to the target, so that we don't lose formation and have to deal with more fighters on our way back. 
In the target zone we went into a tight formation as a wave of fighters hit us. Three 110’s came at us, Two missed, and the other was shot down by our tail gunner, Sam.
Then came the flak, it was medium, and we got three hits. We lost our port landing gear brakes, the tail gunners Oxygen got hit, but was still operational, and there was no fire. The last hit was superficial damage to the tail.
The trip home was the worst. We were hit by three waves in zone 7.
The first wave wasn't too bad. The two 109s were scared off by our starboard gunner and navigator, while the 190 registered 3 hits, the Pilot compartment, and the starboard wing twice.
As the shells riddled the compartment with holes, I heard an explosion from behind. Cameron was knocked out with blood all over his face and torso, the top turret had a huge hole in it, and the guns had been crushed. Two shells had hit our starboard wing; one of which was superficial, while the other had destroyed our starboard aileron. As the fighter came around, he was scared off by spray fire.
The second wave was the worst. A total of 9 hits registered, one of them walking hits/fuselage. Our navigator was killed instantly from a well placed shot to the head, while Mark, our pilot, got a serious wound to the gut. Before I could even think Mark was hit again and started coughing up a lot of blood. He was dead in seconds. The hits in the bomb bay were superficial, and so were the ones to the radio room. Travis was hit in the chest and died shortly after, while we lost our starboard elevator. The other hit to the tail was superficial. Another hit to the waist and a hit to the starboard wing proved superficial as well, however our port aileron got destroyed.
The successive attack was better, one was scared off, while the best thing the other could give was SF damage to the fuselage.
The third and final wave was small. A 109 attacking at 6 high; that was scared off by our radio operator.
Zone 6 proved just as fatal as the previous zone. We faced one wave of 4 190s, none of which were hit or scared off. 2 missed, while the other two scored a total of 4 hits.
One hit was superficial, while we got another superficial hit to the port wing, a no effect hit on our bombs, and our tail wheel was shot out. On the successive attack, only one registered any hits. Our bombardier who was about to help me fly the plane got a giant piece of shrapnel in his leg, narrowly missing the artery. Superficial damage to the waist, and my oxygen supply got hit. Luckily there was no fire. Its third successive attack was a total miss.
Zone 5 proved the easiest. I was able to get the radio operator to help me fly the plane while we flew the last leg of the mission. We laid the unconscious body of Cameron in the radio room while we stuck the lifeless body of Mark where the top turret once was.
We were hit by one plane only. Twice in the Bombay and once in the waist; we lost our rubber rafts, while the other two hits were superficial. It missed on its successive attack.
Just as we left the fighters behind, we saw our “little friends” the rest of the mission was uneventful and we made it back to base in good weather. As we touched down and came to a stop, we could hear some light cheering from the waist and tail. me and Trenton just looked at each other and let out a sigh of relief. we were back, we had lived. Little did I know, our bomber took the least amount of damage in the whole squadron. Two planes never made it back.

Nathan (Bombardier): Purple Heart. Invalid
Chris (Navigator): Purple Heart (posthumous): KIA
Mark (pilot): Purple Heart (posthumous): KIA
Nick: (Co-pilot): No award: OK
Cameron: (engineer): Purple Heart: Invalid
Trenton: (Radio Operator): Bronze star: OK
Alex: (Starboard gunner): No award, same as co pilot: OK
Travis: (Port gunner): Purple Heart (posthumous): KIA
Michael (Ball turret): No award: OK
Sam (Tail gunner): no award: OK

Total damage points: 211.

Submitted: December 08, 2014

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