***2010 Bronze PBA Award Winner Tied With What If? for Best Story Based on an Episode***
A General's Revenge
This story begins where the original episode "The Collector General" ends. The characters of General Metzger and Hogan's Heroes are not mine, but the DVD collection is and I enjoy watching them daily. My thanks also to Jennaya for her suggestion to do this story as a continuation of the original episode.
General Metzger stood outside near his staff car waiting as Colonel Robert Hogan, Senior POW officer of Stalag 13, emerged from the Kommandantur zipping up his bomber jacket against the chilly night air. He saw the General approach.
Hogan: "Evening, General." He turned up his jacket collar. "Pleasant surprise."
Metzer: "Hogan, ummm, about that commando raid. I saw those dummies that were dropped."
Hogan(feigning surprise): "Dummies? Really. What will they think of next? It's a great way to fight a war. Nobody gets hurt."
Metzger(chuckling/smiling): "Now tell me Hogan. Do you have any idea of where I might find that ammunition?"
Hogan(with a smug grin): "Yeah. In a museum after the war."
Metzger(angry): "I'm going to order a thorough investigation of this matter, Hogan."
Hogan: "I don't think you will, General."
Metzger(turning red): "Oh really? And what makes you so sure?"
Hogan: "When you steal from a thief, one sure thing he'll never call the cops." Hogan then smiled innocently. "Good night, General." He turned and walked away without saluting.
Metzger glared at Hogan's receding back as the Colonel walked in the direction of barracks two.(1)
Chapter one---One Year Later
He had one entire year from that night to think about losing his fortune in stolen artwork thanks to Hogan. One entire year in which to sulk, fuel his anger and plan on how to get even with the smug American officer. Metzger figured whatever he came up with would have to be carefully planned and well thought out, because any prisoner who could arrange the theft of what Metzger felt was rightfully his, was no fool and very cunning. During that one year, it had taken much thought, secret investigation, checking, rechecking, and careful planning. But finally Metzger had come up with what he considered the perfect plan to not only get his revenge, but to get Hogan to recover the artwork he had taken from him. And afterwards Hogan, Metzger thought with an arrogant smile, I will put a bullet in your head.
LeBeau, with Carter's help, had just finished the breakfast dishes and sat down at the long table in the common room of barracks two where Newkirk and Kinch were seated. Kinch was playing solitaire and Newkirk was sipping a cup of coffee and puffing on his cigarette. Colonel Hogan was in his quarters with the door closed.
"Les choses ennuyeux ainsi autour d'ici," said LeBeau cupping his chin in his hands. "Things have been so quiet with London I think they've forgotten we're here."
Carter looked puzzled at the little Frenchman. "Les choses...." he couldn't pronounce the rest of it.
"Les choses ennuyeux ainsi autour d'ici. It means things are so boring around here."
"They sure have," Kinch agreed. "Even Colonel Hogan's going a bit stir crazy from the inactivity."
"Y'know things are boring 'round here when the most exciting thing is looking forward to laundry day," Newkirk exclaimed half-heartedly.
"You think that's exciting?" asked Carter sarcastically. "I found myself reading my mail from last month over again. Now that's boring."
The mens' heads turned at the sound of Hogan's door opening. The Colonel grabbed his coffee cup off the window sill, approached the potbelly stove and poured himself a cup of coffee. He sat down at the table with his men. He looked at Kinch.
"I gather no messages came in from London," he said taking a sip of the hot brew.
"Not yet, Colonel," Kinch replied, reshuffling his cards. "Baker's monitoring the radio. He said he'll let us know if anything comes through."
Hogan smirked. "I guess we'd better enjoy our enforced vacation while we have it," he replied. "It's quite possible it could come to an abrupt end without warning at any time."
As if on cue, the lower bunk in the corner of the barracks raised up and the ladder dropped. Hogan glanced at Carter. "Carter, watch the door."
Baker climbed up the ladder and stepped over the lower bedframe and into the barracks. He tapped the hidden mechanism and watched the ladder rise and lower bunk drop before walking over to the table and handing Hogan a folded single sheet of paper.
"Message from our underground contact, Colonel. They want you to attend a meeting with one of their operatives from town, code name Skyhawk, at the bombed out ballbearing plant on the outskirts of Hammelburg tonight at 2400 hours. Says he has important information and will only speak with Papa Bear."
"Want one of us to go along with you, Gov'nor?" asked Newkirk, who was always suspicious when the Colonel was asked to go someplace alone.
"No thanks, Newkirk. But I appreciate the offer. If the underground trusts this contact than I don't foresee any problem." He handed the note back to Baker. "Contact the underground and inform them Papa Bear will be attending."
"Yes, sir. Right away." Baker accepted the folded paper from Hogan and returned to the bunk and hit the hidden mechanism.
"I don't like the idea of you going alone, Colonel," said Kinch. "You really should let one of us go along just in case."
"I'll be fine," Hogan assured him. "Besides, we've received info from Skyhawk before that's proven very valuable to the Allies. But I promise I'll be extra careful." Hogan checked his watch before taking another drink of coffee. "Who knows?" he said with a grin. "Maybe our enforced vacation might be over after tonight."
"Not that I couldn't get use to this relaxation, sir. But there's such a thing as too much of a good thing," chimed in Carter.
LeBeau allowed a smile to appear. "Oui. And doing nothing is too much of a good thing if you ask me."
"Okay, fellas, knock it off," Hogan ordered before finishing his coffee. He got up. "I'm gonna return to my quarters and read for awhile. Try and stay out of trouble, will ya?"
"Don't worry about us, mon Colonel," said LeBeau. "We will be on our best behavior. We promise."
"Uh-huh," Hogan muttered knowingly as he headed in the direction of his quarters.
Watching the door to the Colonel's quarters close, Newkirk reached in his inside jacket pocket and pulled out a deck of cards. He began shuffling. "Carter, LeBeau. How about some gin rummy?"
Carter shrugged his shoulders. "Sounds okay with me."
"Play with your deck, Newkirk? I don't think so."
"Of course it's my deck, Monsieur LeBeau. Exactly what are you implying, mate?" Newkirk asked as he dealt out the cards to Carter and himself. "Are you saying you don't trust me?"
"Oh I trust you, Newkirk," LeBeau replied with a playful grin as he climbed up on his top bunk which was located above Kinch's. "I just don't trust your cards. So there."
(1) The opening scene and following dialogue between Hogan and Metzger are from the closing scene of "The Collector General."