"It's a hand grenade," B.J. stated firmly.
"What?" Hawkeye exclaimed, aghast.
"It's a hand grenade. See the pineapple-y shape to it?"
"Your crazy." Hawkeye dismissed his companion with a head shake.
"All right, smart guy," B.J retorted, irritated. "What do you think it is?"
Hawkeye screwed up his face as he gazed at the cloud, forcing some sort of picture to come to mind. "A major's cluster," he announced definitively a moment later.
B.J. laughed out loud.
"I'm serious," Hawkeye insisted.
"Hawk, it's not round enough to be a cluster."
"Sure it is. And I've spent eighteen more months having to stare at them then you, so I should know."
"If you say so." B.J. deliberately copied Hawkeye's earlier dismissal.
"Besides," Hawkeye continued. "It's not long enough to be a hand grenade."
B.J. sighed dramatically. "I didn't mean one of our grenades. If you look again, you'll see that it looks more like one of theirs."
Once again Hawkeye directed his gaze skyward for a moment before. Then he sighed and shook his head. "What we need is a second opinion," he proclaimed. After glancing around the compound, he spotted Radar making his way towards Potter's office, several files held tightly to his chest. "Hey, Radar!"
The corporal turned, and after spotting the two captains sitting on lawn chairs in front of the swamp, hastily made his way over to them. "You need something, sirs?"
"We need your opinion on something very important, Radar," Hawkeye said seriously.
Radar fidgeted nervously.
Hawkeye pointed skyward over the corporal's head. "What does that cloud look like to you?"
Radar blinked, slightly confused. "Sirs?"
"We're having a slight disagreement," B.J. explained. "I think it looks more like a hand grenade, while Hawk seems to think it looks like a major's cluster."
"Oh," Radar said, nodding slightly.
"Well," Hawkeye prompted. "What do you think?"
Radar turned around and glanced up at the sky.
"It's the roundish—"
"Longish!" Hawkeye's description was cut off by B.J's interruption, and so he sighed.
"It's that one, on the left there, right next to the three-wheeled ambulance."
Radar nodded slightly, his back still to the captains as he continued to study the cloud in question. After a few more moments he turned back around. He dropped his gaze to the ground, refusing to make eye contact with his superiors.
"Well?" B.J. insisted.
"I'm sorry, sirs," Radar said softly. "But it doesn't look like either of those things."
Hawkeye laughed. "Well, whatdoes it look like then?"
Radar hesitated a moment, timid, because he couldn't see what his superior officers saw. "A sunflower."
Both captains' faces froze in the midst of their amusement. Then as one they returned their gaze skyward and seemed to study the cloud until its natural drift had distorted its shape beyond what was recognizable. Somewhere in there Radar made his excuses and departed, once again headed for the colonel's office.
Only when the cloud lost all coherent form did the captains drop their gaze, their faces now slightly paler and lacking any traces of amusement. Without so much as a word or even a glance at the other, they both reached for their previously forgotten martini glasses and downed the contents in one gulp. B.J. then put his glass on the ground while Hawkeye kept his in his hands, running his fingers absently over the lip of it. Silence remained as their expressions became thoughtful, and neither bothered to glance at the clouds again.