"The Waiting Graves!": Sergeant Bill Craig is having nightmares. The sergeant, a veteran who is now fighting in his second world war, remembers a time during the First World War when, while he was back at the field hospital being treated for an bullet wound to his arm, his tank crew vanished on
- Only soldiers who experience combat could understand what sometimes happens in that twilight world of reality and fantasy. Yet, it's so personal, they'll never want to speak about it.
Appearing in "The Waiting Graves!"
- World War One Tank Unit
- Rivière du Diable
- The Haunted Tank
- Stug III Ausf G Sturmgeschutz (Assault Gun)
- Panzerkampfwagen Buzzard
- U.S. M1917 light tank
Synopsis for "The Waiting Graves!"
Sergeant Bill Craig is having nightmares. The sergeant, a veteran who is now fighting in his second world war, remembers a time during the First World War when, while he was back at the field hospital being treated for an bullet wound to his arm, his tank crew vanished on the battlefield without a trace. They were listed as "missing in action", and declared dead. He believes it is his fault, for not being with them when they needed him the most. He blames himself for their deaths, robbing them of the promising lives that could have been. Jeb Stuart is worried about him, and speaks to his ancestor who explains to him that Sergeant Craig is having a soldier's nightmare, one that even the Sarge will never admit to himself.
The Haunted Tank is on their way to a new mission - the get to the bridge at Riviere Du Diable before the enemy can, and seize and hold the bridge at all costs. On their way they pass the forgotten trenches of the first World War, the sketetons of the dead still caught within the barbed wire waiting to be retrieved. Nearby, Jeb spots a US tank under fire from the Germans near an old bombed out farmhouse. Craig notices that it's the same farmhouse from his nightmare, and freezes up. At the same time, Gus and Rick discover that none of the weapons on their tank will fire, and the tank stalls as if they've hit an invisible wall. Jeb orders all out of the tank with any hand weapons they can find.
Craig runs towards the old World War One tank that was under fire, realizing that it is his old crew's. He finds his friends, Vic, Issac and Willy, alive inside as if they've never aged a day. Craig orders everyone to fire into the farmhouse, hitting their ammo supply and destroying the farmhouse in a great explosion. He turns towards his friends, but only finds a very confused Jeb, Rick and Gus standing next to the rusting heap of an old World War One tank. It was all a nightmare.
Later, they continue on with their mission as they finally reach the bridge at Riviere Du Diable. But they can't take the bridge without a fight. A German assault tank sits on the other side. As the Germans begin to roll across the bridge towards them, Jeb orders the tank to fire knocking the assault tank off the edge and tumbling down into the river below. But their victory is short lived as another German Buzzard tank has moved up behind them. Trapped on the bridge, they're a sitting target! Out of nowhere, the old World War One tank appears, ramming into the rear of the German Buzzard. But the bridge can't hold the weight of two tanks, and both the Buzzard and the WW1 tank fall to their watery graves. Jeb and the others are baffled, but Craig knows the truth. It was real, just as the farmhouse was real. And Craig will never be haunted by the nightmares again.
Appearing in "No Allies in Death"
- Sergeant Ernie Brooke
- The Mayor
- Town (Unnamed)
Synopsis for "No Allies in Death"
Within a small French town occupied by the Allied forces, Sergeant Ernie Brooke has fallen in love with a beautiful French woman named Renee, the daughter of the town's mayor. Renee is worried that Brooke will have to leave soon with his unit continue the fight in the war, but Ernie assures her that after the war he will return to marry her and take her back home to Ohio. Their peaceful walk is interrupted by the sound of gunfire nearby, and the US forces in the area regroup to defend against a counter-attack from the Germans. Ernie orders Renee to stay inside until after the fight. The U.S. force is able to easily defend against the German surprise assault, but Operations receives word that a battalion of German troops are moving up to reinforce the attack. Severely outnumbered, the U.S. troops withdraw from the town towards the western outskirts before the enemy arrives.
With the forces retreated, the Germans seize the town without opposition. That evening, Ernie discovers that command has orders to level the town with an artillery barrage at dawn before the U.S. can move back in the next morning. Knowing that the barrage will result in a great number of civilian casualties, Ernie slips out of camp under darkness to return to the town hoping to smuggle Renee out before the artillery begin their onslaught. he makes in back into town, but is spotted by a German sentry and captured. He attempts to escape, grabbing one of his guard's rifle. He is able to subdue his captor, but takes a nasty blow to the head. Ernie stumbles into the shadows before falling to the ground unconscious.
He wakes up as dawn begins to break, with only seconds before the U.S. artillery begin their attack. Ernie runs through the streets towards her house as the shells begin to find their range. Renee and her father are still alive, along with the other townspeople, and Renee tells Ernie to follow them as they run towards the wooded hills and safety. As they enter the tree line, the mayor yells as the others to cut the ropes. The town had been prepared for such an invasion, and had set up a trap for the Germans. As the ropes attached to the trees are cut, they fall down across the road effectively blocking the Germans and their tanks from following them. As the U.S. artillery barrage takes care of the remaining German forces within town, Ernie realizes that he needn't worry about Renee and her town. He'd come back to protect her, but it was the Germans who needed protection from them!
Appearing in "Hellife by Night"
- Private Eddie Maples
- Sergeant Collins
- Captain Sloane
- Panzerkampfwagen VI Ausführung H (Tiger I)
Synopsis for "Hellife by Night"
Private Eddie Maples is a klutz. he can't seem to do anything right, and is always taking heat from Sergeant Collins. During the battle at St. Malo, where their company is under fire by the constant barrage from the German Panzer tanks, Private Maples is unable to hit even the largest target with a bazooka. Having never fired a bazooka before, his shots soar well over the heads of the Germans. Many of the men in his company are mowed down by the constant surprise attacks, and during one Eddie is spotted high-tailing it away from the fight. He soon returns with a behive in hand. Sergeant Collins puts him up for charges of desertion, but Eddie explains to the Captain that he has a plan and the beehive is part of it. That morning, when the next German Tiger tank appears, Eddie sneaks up and tosses the beehive into the tank's hatch, surprising the German crew inside. The bees attack, and the tank blindly drives right into a nearby shell hole! As Eddie is awarded a promotion to sergeant, he explains to Collins that back home he's a well-known apiarist - a beekeeper!
Appearing in "A Soldier Like Me"
- Two unnamed U.S. Medics
- Unnamed German Infantryman
- Willys MB U.S. Army Jeep
Synopsis for "A Soldier Like Me"
Private Eddie Craig felt like he was on a treadmill in a deserted hell, but he staggers on, clinging to the bloody figure on his back. He is alone, separated from the rest of the crew when a landmine knocked out the Haunted Tank, carrying an injured German soldier. He reaches the road, finally coming across a disabled medic jeep and its crew who were on their way back to the field hospital with their wounded when the jeep blew a tire. Eddie asks the medics to take care of the German soldier and when they refuse, he threatens them with his rifle. He gives them an ultimatum - if the German dies, then they die.
Eddie explains to them that as he was wondering through the woods, he stumbled across the young German soldier. Without even thinking, Eddie shot him without even giving him a chance to surrender. The medics begin to understand and agree to take care of him, loading the young German onto a stretcher and strapping him across the hood of the jeep. One medic asks why he went through all that trouble just to save a Kraut's life. Eddie tells him that he's a soldier, just like he is.
Appearing in "Killer in White"
- Professor Whitney Elgood
- Dr. Anderson.
- "Mission: Star Wars" Surface-to-Air missile
- S.S. Pandora
- U.S.S. Thomas Jefferson
- The Red Star
Synopsis for "Killer in White"
Just after dawn in San Francisco, the Mercenaries watch as a group of men in a carpet van ambush another man in the early morning fog. As the assailants are rolling his unconscious body into a roll of carpet, they catch sight of the Mercenaries and fire at them, wanting no eyewitnesses. During the firefight, one of the Mercenaries bullets ruptures the fuel tank on the jeep, causing the van to explode and killing the men inside. As the Mercenaries approach the man in the carpet, they are ambushed by three CIA agents. With some quick thinking and a few wrestling moves, they are able to put the CIA agents out of action.
Helping the man out of the carpet roll, he introduces himself as Professor Whitney Elgood who explains that he is being pursued by agents from both the CIA and the KGB. Elgood offers the Mercenaries a job as his personal bodyguards, to travel with him on a secret mission to the Antarctic. Pulling some strings in Washington, Elgood is able to get the Mercenaries clearance to travel with him, provided they'll be on their best behavior.
They fly by plane as far south as they are able to, then take a helicopter into the Antarctic to the "Pandora", a heavily-armed ship anchored off the coast. There the Professor explains that real reason for bringing the Mercenaries there is for them to be the Pandora's bodyguards, and prevent her from falling into the hands of the enemy. They are introduced to Dr. Anderson, who explains to them that the true mission of the Pandora is top secret. Only minutes after they arrive, a Soviet recon plane flies overhead, reporting their position back to its base. Then, Professor Elgood reveals the purpose of the Pandora - it contains a payload of ship-to-air missiles - and demonstrates one by launching it off. He then invites the Mercenaries to watch by telescope as the missile leaves the Earth's atmosphere and reaches its target, a spy satellite! Dr. Anderson states that with weapons like this against the Soviets, there will be no more need of mercenaries.
Their testing complete, Professor Elgood orders the Pandora to return to the mainland. But after launching, the ship strikes an underwater iceburg, immobilizing it dead in the water. The Pandora sends out an S.O.S. distress signal to the nearby U.S. naval vessel "Thomas Jefferson", but the signal is also picked up by the Soviet battlecruiser "Red Star" who demands that the Pandora be handed over to the Soviet Union. The Mercenaries order Elgood, Anderson, and the crew to abandon ship in the lifeboats, while they set explosives to destroy the ship. Elgood argues with them, stating that the ship is unsinkable, but Gordon has a plan. After all the crew are safely on board the lifeboats and launched, the Mercenaries turn the ship towards the largest of the nearby iceburg it's drifting towards. They plant explosives throughout the ship, and when it drifts close enough to the iceburg detonate them. The explosion creates an avalanche of ice that falls onto the Pandora, sinking the ship before the Russians can get to it. The crew of the Pandora find the Mercenaries floating alive in the water, having jumped ship just before the explosion. After everyone is rescued by the U.S.S. Thomas Jefferson, Gordon asks Dr. Anderson if they were still obsolete. She tells him that she's learned never to underestimate a mercenary!
- No special notes.
- No trivia.
- World War II Recommended Reading
- Adventures in the Rifle Brigade (Volume 1)
- Adventures in the Rifle Brigade (Volume 2)
- All-American Men of War (Volume 1)
- All-Out War (Volume 1)
- Blackhawk (Volume 1)
- Blitzkrieg (Volume 1)
- Capt. Storm (Volume 1)
- Four-Star Battle Tales (Volume 1)
- G.I. Combat (Volume 1)
- Men of War (Volume 1)
- Military Comics (Volume 1)
- Our Army at War (Volume 1)
- Our Fighting Forces (Volume 1)
- Sgt. Rock (Volume 1)
- Sgt. Rock (Volume 2)
- Star-Spangled War Stories (Volume 1)
- Unknown Soldier (Volume 1)
- Weird War Tales (Volume 1)
Links and References
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