A very distressful day. Captain Trevelyan and I were tasked with a recon mission to scout for enemy movements near Lake De Blankaart (an area we are getting to know well!). As per new RFC tactics we were escorted by two additional BE2c's and a Bristol Scout.
Apparently we have been too often over this area as the Jerries were on hand to break up the party. My first encounter with the dreaded Fokker monoplane, and there were two of them.!
Bloody Buckminster flew on in his Bristol and didn't even see the enemy. Damned incompetent! Our three BE2's were in deep trouble against two attackers. I stuck close to Miller and we tried to use our mutual arcs of fire to drive off one of the Hun; a very persistent chap that was not easily put off. He seemed to have us dead-to-rights several times but only managed to hit us with a few rounds before giving up. A rookie pilot perhaps? Nonetheless, the bugger wounded both Treveyan (he says to call him Jimmy, but dammit, he seems too serious to be a Jimmy) and myself. 'Jimmy' got a nick on his scalp and I a bullet gash through my leg-calf.
We made it home pretty shook up and scared half to death. The Major sent us both off to Poperinge dressing station for wound treatment. The other fellows all made it home OK, but also pretty shaken by the encounter. Hunt and Marshall had to fend off the second Fokker alone and are lucky to be in one piece.
January 26: Arrived back at Abeele after lunchtime. Will not be able to fly for a couple of days. Lt Mcnaughton and 2nd-Lt Millar were killed in action today, which is a great loss for the Squadron; they had 4 kills to their credit. If they can be downed in a Fee, then what chance do we BE2 pilots have?