Lou, you wouldn't believe how the weather could affect the outcome of a mission. Just read on! Hasse, glad Julius is out and about. Can't wait to read about his experience in the Fokker. Too bad for Hermann. He'd better look out for those French planes above his head Carrick, I see that shoot and scoot is your name of the game. Keep it up and you may just survive yet!
The turquoise sky was unbelievable. It was almost impossible that such colour could exist in nature. Voscadeaux was admiring these clear skies while following Ltn. Dagonet, who was commanding the 'B' Flight as Gaston had no experience leading a large group of aircraft. Gaston had never flown in a 5-ship formation. The Command must be desperate if such a large force was needed to protect one observation aeroplane on an arty spotting mission over enemy front sector in the St. Mihiel salient. After following Cpl. Soumagniat in his N12 for what seemed like 23 minutes, he made an abrupt turn toward west and the Dagonet gave signal to attack. All planes dove on a pair of Eindeckers that were rather favoring their odds. Gaston kept back as he knew there would be shoving and pushing to get first in line to get to the Hun. The engagement was very tame with neither side attempting a proper attack. The Fokkers stayed on their side and the Nieuports on theirs. Gaston got fed up with all this pussyfooting and crossed the line. He dove and caught up with the enemy as the rest of 'B' Flight looked on. The pair of monoplanes did not expect this at all. Gaston took position behind the trailing Fokker, aimed and squeezed the trigger. The burst hit the Boche engine and streams of smoke erupted from the surprised Hun’s machine. Another burst and a spray of tiny blood droplets hit Voscadeaux's goggles. He had him! Gaston quickly looked around for the leader but there was no sign of him. He followed the trail of smoke to finish what he’d started but there was no need. The monoplane made a spiral and as it disappeared behind Nieuport’s top wing, banked on one wing and dove into the ground. Gaston could only see the quickly dispersing trail of black smoke that followed. There was too much ground clutter to see the crater. The lead Fokker was nowhere to be found. This worried Gaston and he crossed the NML as quickly as possible. As he rejoined the rest of the ‘B’ Flight it occurred to him he had his first Hun. He let out a war cry that no one else could hear. He couldn't wait to get back to base.
"Take the cylinder out of my kidneys, The connecting rod out of my brain, my brain, From out of my arse take the camshaft, And assemble the engine again."