The Rescue- Part 1; a Rat Patrol Story. All right to the characters and story of the Rat Patrol belong to its creators. The storyline. It's been two years since the North African Campaign. The Rat Patrol are in France, attempting a rescue of an officer that was part of the July 20th plot to kill Hitler. In the process run across an old friend.

France: July 24th 1944.

The patrol watched quietly from the woods. They had been following the S.S. convoy since dawn. Their orders were to rescue the prisoner that the S.S. was transferring to Germany for trial and execution.

Sgt, Sam Troy quietly spoke. "His name is Paul Von Thoma. He's a Major from the 11th Panzer Division. He was arrested 2 days ago for being part of the plot that nearly got Hitler."

"Pity they missed." Tully Pettigrew drawled. The rest of the patrol could only agree.

"Sarge, what is so special about this guy?" Mark Hitchcock asks. Troy nods toward Jack Moffitt, his second in command.

"Von Thoma was part of the conspiracy. He helped set up the plot in Paris, that captured all of the S.S. detachment there without firing a single shot. Moffitt paused "After the plot collapsed in Berlin. He was arrested and now being transported to Berlin."

Troy finished "And as an added bonus, Von Thoma was one of the main developers of the new Mark VI Tiger B tank.

"The King Tiger?" Tully asks

Troy replies "The one and the same." As the patrol returns to their hiding spots. There is activity on the road. They had fallen some trees in the middle of the road to stop the S.S. column when they arrived, and it seems that their plan was working to perfection as the grey column came into view. There were four vehicles. A kubelwagen in the front with 6 men with SMGs in front, the truck contain their prisoner in the middle and two more kubelwagons behind with more guards. They reached the Rat Patrol's improvised roadblock, and came to a stop. They quickly dismounted and looked around expecting that the Underground were responsible for this. When no imminent attack came, they relaxed. Some of them started to work on the roadblock and the others relaxed taking in the sun. The officer in charge gestured to the back of the truck. Two of the S.S. men climbed in back one of them tossed a man dressed in red prison garb roughly to the ground. The patrol watched on as he slowly got to his feet. The man appeared to be in his late 40's. Silverish hair. Even from there they could tell that he had been badly beaten.

"There's our man." Moffitt said.

Troy nodded "Let's go calling." As they prepared to move, Tully noticed something else another occupant in the truck was tossed unceremoniously to the ground. Tully watched as the man struggled to his feet. This was a tall man, much younger then his companion. He too had been badly battered, but still drew himself up with dignity. Tully tried to get a better look and then a cold chill ran down his spine.

"Hey guys!" he whispered gesturing to the column on the road. "You are not going to believe this." The other three men came rushing up, Tully gestured to the taller of the two prisoners. "Is that who I think it is?"

Troy took a look for himself. He watched for a long moment then brought the glasses down. "Hello Captain Dietrich."

End of Part 1