Today's sortie was an unmitigated disaster from the very beginning and I am fortunate to being writing this report. We had the pleasure of having an escort of a lone Fokker, so I felt that we would manage to complete our mission without interference from those damned French and their Nieuports. We had just arrived at our patrol sector when two Nieuports arrived which sent our escort scurrying for home. I was completely shocked at the cowardice of the man and sent some choice phrases his way as he fled the scene. I signaled Koehler and notified Hans to get ready. While I was watching the French approach, a brilliant idea came to me. When they were almost in range, I quickly turned toward them as if I were attacking them. My sudden move threw both Frenchmen into confusion which actually allowed Hans to fire a couple of bursts into the Nieuport that dove under us. Hans must have hit him hard because he immediately disengaged and headed home. After dealing with the first Frenchman, I quickly surveyed the sky and saw the other one was chasing Koehler. I was shouting "Turn" as loud as I could, but to no avail. In no time, Koehler's machine burst into flames and they plunged earthward. The Frenchman turned towards me wanting seconds, but he wasn't expecting an enemy so aggressive. I immediately turned towards him which once again confused him and that gave Hans the opportunity to start firing. From that point one, I was the one chasing him and eventually Hans hit his engine. He was able to pull away and crash landed just on the enemy's side of the lines. I filed a claim, but I don't have much hope in it being confirmed because Hauptman von Schoenebeck was about a kilometer away.
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