A cold and sunny morning. Assigned to ferry Chris to the frontlines for artillery spotting. This was my first such mission but fortunately Chris is an old hand at it and I am just his chauffeur. Second Lt. Carwin (a.k.a. Krazy Kaleb) would accompany us in an FE2b for protection, and Captain Davis would be in the area hunting enemy aircraft in his Bristol Scout. If an enemy scout was seen my instructions were to NOT run for home but to stay close to Carwin and let him protect our tail.
As it turned out, we saw no other aircraft on the entire 70 minute mission. The only noteworthy occurrence was some engine excitement. During our climb to operational height (5000 ft) the engine began to make several disturbing noises; a steady knocking, a jangling of some loose metal bracket, and an intermittent 'fart' sound. We could see no errant oil leaks and the oil pressure remained good, while the engine maintained rpms and power. We pressed on and the engine, despite the cacophony of clunks, did it's job and got us home.