Poland: 1941 late afternoon

Ned and Ben had seen war and destruction before; they had lived thru so many centuries fraught with battle and danger, they had seen Nelson at Trafalgar, seen Sherman lay waste to the south, and had seen the bloody trenches of the Great War, but nothing could compare to the destruction and chaos of the Nazi Blitzkrieg.

Two years had passed since the Germans invaded and the city of Warsaw was still in ruins, bombs had leveled buildings and set mass fires, panzers had smashed their way thru neighborhoods, and bullet holes from machineguns riddled every wall, all along the street German soldiers patrolled with rifles, the atmosphere was dismal, food was scarce and happier days seemed a distant memory.

"The city has seen better days, eh pal?" Ned passed his thought to Ben, Ben nodded, "I remember those days, Poland was once a proud country, now look at them trodden down and humbled." Ned wagged his tail, "I can see why we're needed here, but the question is where do we start?" Ben looked around spying a pub, "That looks like a good place to start."

"Good idea I'll wait around back, they might not like dogs." Ben entered the café inside were several German soldiers he could tell by their gray uniforms that they were Wehrmacht, German regular army, there were several locals in the pub too they didn't look to happy, but the thing that caught Ben's attention the most was the two men in the corner table, they were both smartly dressed in matching suits and fedoras, a single word flashed across Ben's mind; Gestapo.

There were a few waitresses in varying ages, a few were being accosted by some of the more rowdy soldiers, one passed by Ben's table, she looked to be 16 or 17, she was a pretty girl with curly black hair, fair skin and long eyelashes, "What can I do for you?" She asked, looking into Ben's blue eyes. Ben flashed her a smile, "I'll take whatever your special is today and a glass of water."

"Soup, that's all we have tomato soup, we can barely stay in business what with the rationing going on." Ben thought for a moment, was this why he was here? Or was this just the start of something? "That's fine beggars can't be choosers." Ben said, "Coming right up." The waitress said, Ben stayed for a bit observing, only one thing caught his interest, the bartender slipped away from the bar carrying a tray of food and slipped into a side door, nothing unusual except the way he did it, he opened it as little as possible, he could just be taking his break but he had more than enough food for one person, peculiar.

A thought struck Ben he looked up to where the two Gestapo were sitting, they were gone! If Ben had thought that man's behavior was strange chances were so had the Gestapo, Ben cursed himself for not paying attention as he headed out the door.