BROKEN

Chapter 1: Good-Bye Colonel Hogan

Since the late summer day was unusually cold, wet and miserable, the men of Barracks 2 were sitting inside around the table in the common room playing a game of cards.

"I'll see your oatmeal and raise you a chocolate chip." Carter said glancing once again at his cards.

"Sounds like you have a good hand Andrew" commented LeBeau "I fold; it's too rich for my blood."

"Alright mate; it's just you and me now. I call; full house." Newkirk said as he raked all the cookies toward him.

"Man, all I have is a bunch of hearts," said Carter

"You can't. I mean let me see those." Newkirk looked at them. "How did you end up with a royal flush?"

"I don't know. Those are the cards you gave me. Does that mean I win?" asked Carter.

Before Newkirk could answer, the barrack door flew open and three Gestapo walked in

"I thought gambling was verboten, Colonel?" asked the captain.

"Only if you use money. Cookies don't count," replied Hogan.

The captain bent close to Hogan's ear. "Do you know who I am, Colonel Hogan?" When Hogan turned his head to face the captain, he grabbed Hogan's hair and forced him to face forward. "I didn't give you permission to move."

The rest of the group was ready to come to Hogan's aid when the two Gestapo corporals aimed their guns at them.

"I am Captain Josef Koch. I have heard Major Hochstetter talk about you a few times and have taken a personal interest in your case. He said he could never prove any of his suspicions about you. I intend to succeed where he failed. Arrest him."

As one of the guards moved behind Hogan to handcuff him, Hogan protested. "You can't take me out of here without reasonable cause. I am under the protection of the Luftwaffe!"

Koch held up a piece of paper and waved it in front of Hogan. "Not any more. This piece of paper says you belong to me now."

Roughly, one of the corporals yanked Hogan out of the chair. After handcuffing him, Hogan was drug out of the barrack. Hogan jerked his arm from the corporal when they got outside. "I'm perfectly capable of walking on my own."

That comment earned Hogan a backhand by one corporal while the other brought the butt of his rifle down between his shoulder blades. Hogan fell to his knees. He bit his lip to keep from making a sound. The corporal, who backhanded him, kicked him in the back, causing him to fall face forward in the mud. The three Gestapo laughed at Hogan.

Hogan was determined to stand up on his own before he was forced up. Since he couldn't use his hands, it was an awkward feat, but he did it. Before he was shoved into the car, he gave Kinch a nod. "Don't wait up for me."

Kinch knew what Hogan meant. It meant he was in charge of making sure everyone got out safely in the event the operation had to close. And no one for any reason was to come after him.

The gang could do nothing but watch their CO rough housed and taken away. Carter stood in shock staring out the window. Without facing his friends, he asked, "What's going to happen now?"

"We follow Colonel Hogan's orders and mind the store. At the first sign of trouble we abandon camp." Kinch answered solemnly

"We have to help him somehow." LeBeau said with worry.

"You know the colonels orders. No one is to risk their life to save his. We'll just have to wait," said Kinch.

Newkirk crushed out the cigarette he was smoking. "He can't court martial all of us or there wouldn't be a team."

Kinch wasn't surprised by Newkirk's comment. "If we manage to get him out without getting caught or killed, he'd probably wait until the end of the war to court martial us."

"And ask Klink to put us on more work details in the mean time," added Carter.

Schultz poked his head in the door. "Hi fellas. Kinch, Kommandant Klink said you'll be the SPO from now on."

"Don't you mean acting?" asked Kinch

Schultz just stared at the ground as he closed the door.

Carter stared at Kinch with worry "Why didn't Shultz answer your question?"

Newkirk lit another cigarette "He did answer him."

"I didn't hear him say anything," said Carter with falling hopes.

"His answer was the colonel isn't coming back," said Kinch with mixed emotions.

The men new well enough from recent encounters with the Gestapo, whatever they had in mind, it wasn't going to be pleasant. The men remained silent as they went to their beds. Each man bowed his head, saying a silent prayer for Hogan.

Kinch went into the tunnels. Should he tell London what happened? What could he tell them? Truthfully, he didn't really know anything yet. The only thing he knew for sure was Hogan wasn't invited to a tea party and the next however long of his life he had left was going to be painful.

The tunnel seemed eerily quiet. Kinch found himself standing in front of Hogan's locker. With reservations, he opened it. He removed a small box from the top shelf.

His mind drifted back to how much pain Hogan was in after Hochstetter lashed him with the cat-of-nine-tails. He knew that pain wouldn't compare to the pain he was going to face.

He opened the little box. Inside was a single small capsule. London insisted they each have one for emergencies. Problem was, carrying it wasn't smart incase you were caught with it. So everyone kept it in their locker. Maybe, there was some way he could help Hogan. If he couldn't get him out alive, he could do the next best thing. Make sure he didn't suffer for long. Question now was how to get it to him?

HH HH HH

Klink stared in shock at his copy of the transfer orders. He could understand orders to question Hogan or any of the prisoners, but to transfer them to the Gestapo? This was an outrage and went against everything he believed.

Even though Klink didn't like Hogan or most Americans very much, he respected him as a fellow pilot and officer. It if wasn't for Hogan, he or Schultz would have found themselves wearing snow shoes or shot. But how many of those times was their transfer or almost getting shot because of something Hogan said or did1?

Because Hogan was a pilot and an officer, he was supposed to be protected by the Luftwaffe and Geneva Convention from this. Granted, if he would've been caught outside the fence or out of uniform, he could be shot as a spy or tortured and nothing could protect him.

This wasn't the case. Since Hochstetter lost his temper with Hogan during one of his interrogation sessions, Hogan had been very quiet. For that matter, the camp had been quiet. Until that dreadful day, Hochstetter had been all bark. Sure there were a few bruises, but nothing leaving lifelong scaring. That single act changed the whole demeanor of the camp. No German planes, tanks or bombs mysteriously appearing in camp or firing upon Germany2. No unexplained explosions or deaths.3 No Germans loyal to the Third Reich defecting4. Nothing unusual at all; which for Stalag 13 was unusual? There was no reason Klink could think of to cause the Luftwaffe to agree to the transfer.

His biggest problem now was how the prisoners were going to react? Would they view this as a betrayal by their protectors? Would they riot? Would they do something stupid like try to take over the camp?

Contrary to what many believed, Klink wasn't dumb. After all, he used to be a book keeper before the war. Numbers was one thing he was good at. Then again, it didn't take a rocket scientist to see his guards were greatly outnumbered by prisoners. It didn't matter his men were the only ones with guns. Prisoners were resourceful. If they were to upraise, they would find some way to arm themselves.

The prisoners would put up a good fight and may even win. In the end though, both sides would lose a lot of men. And for what? If Berlin discovered prisoners took over the camp, the SS or some other branch would be sent in here to kill everyone. Klink shook his head, trying to erase the horrible image.

Klink went to the closet where his gun belt hung. He removed his sidearm from the holster. His hand glided over the cold steel. With sadness, he loaded the gun. When he first took over the camp and saw how calm its prisoners were, he figured there was no need in keeping the gun on or around him, so he hung it up. When he took it out before, it was more for show then protection. Most of the time, he didn't bother loading it. With the future of the camp uncertain, he wasn't going to take any risks. Yes, it was his job to protect the prisoners, but his firs responsibility was to himself and his men.

He sat down at his desk, placing the pistol in the top drawer. As he closed the drawer, he prayed he would never have to use it.

1 Episode 4 The Late Inspector General, 105 Will The Real Colonel Klink Please Stand Up Against The Wall?, 124 The Kommandant Dies At Dawn, 141 The Sergeant's Analyst, 162 To Russia Without Love

2 Episode 2 Hold That Tiger, 3 Kommandant of the Year

3 Episode 37 The Battle of Stalag 13

4 Episode 19 Hello, Zolle