"Do you believe in ghosts?"
It wasn't a question to anybody in particular, just one of those questions addressed to the mess hall. It broke the mysterious silence that heaved its way like a fog among all the doctors and nurses of the 4077th. This question wasn't uncommon. In fact, it crossed somebody's mind every day, especially when a soldier died at one of those cold operating tables.
They wondered themselves, if those ghosts haunted their OR, or their tents or their mess hall plotting any type of revenge on their doctor who could not bring them back home. Would the purpose be to torture their doctor's minds until full insanity took its toll? So that way no one could have any more eternal peace after this war? If one soldier could not live, why should the doctor live with clean hands forgetting that whole situation?
That is one way to look at it. That thought haunted everyone in the camp, which is perhaps the ghosts purpose. Such trickery at work.
At the same time, the members of the beloved camp also wondered if death was peaceful. Would those soldiers be grateful that their misery on this Earth, particularly the war be over and done? That is perhaps the only thing to be grateful for in greeting Death. At the same time, they would have to walk amongst the living unseen, unbeknownst, and alone until they are reunited with their loved ones again. To the dead, that must be the worst kind of pain and torture than any hell can give.
Although no one said their thoughts out loud, some of them wished for some kind of peace away from all this. Sometimes those thoughts came to death. There would be no more blood, hurt, pain, torture or the undying fact that doctors and nurses are not gods. Sometimes, the answer is no. That part of the job is the hardest to remember. But for some reason, no one ever goes through with that dastardly deed. Partially because this unit is a family link. If one falls, they all fall. As the Civil War buffs say "once divided, united together" or however that saying goes.
To bring devastation to others is not in their power, because sometimes they have to give it. And the overbearing agony of that news never really goes away.
That lingering question "Do you believe in ghosts?" can come to one conclusion: Yes, yes they believe in ghosts. No matter the religious aspect of it, every human being of the 4077th believes in some type of spirituality. Because they've seen it with their very own eyes as a force of their own haunts them every day.
Although they wished that ghost would not exist.
Drinking and chewing of food commenced on after that mini-thought for most of the doctors and nurses while for others that thought and question will never leave their minds because there is no escape from something like that. And it never will.