Last Words
Zoey Traner

Papa Bear Awards 20062006 Papa Bear Awards - Nominated
Best Comedy

Papa Bear Awards 20062006 Papa Bear Awards - Nominated
Most Unique Story

Papa Bear Awards 20062006 Papa Bear Awards - First Place
Best Short Story


How did it come to this?


Hogan checked his ammunition and fought down a wave of despair. He had enough for two, maybe three more shots. Not enough to keep back the force they were facing. Not nearly enough.


He looked toward Kinch, caught his sergeant’s gaze. Kinch held up one finger, indicating he was down to one shot. The regret in his dark eyes made Hogan’s gut clench.


It wasn’t supposed to happen this way.


Hogan swallowed, stared down at his ammunition. Even if he made all his shots, they would still not get out of this one.  Knowing he was only delaying the inevitable, he still decided to risk a look. Maybe he had missed something. Maybe he had missed something and there was another way out of their dire predicament. Cautiously, he rose up just far enough to peek over the rocks – and nearly lost the top of his head. He dropped flat to the ground and found himself staring across the moonlit distance separating him from LeBeau. The little Frenchman was hunkered down behind another outcropping of rock, slightly forward and left of Hogan’s position. Feeling his commander’s gaze upon him, LeBeau looked in Hogan’s direction. With a sorrowful shake of his head, he signaled that he, too, was almost out of ammunition. Hogan’s heart started pounding harder, yet he felt an almost surreal calm fall upon him.


I guess this is it. At least it’ll be quick.


They were outnumbered and judging by the continuing barrage upon their position, outgunned, as well. As if to underscore that fact, another well-aimed shot thunked into the tree to Hogan’s left. He ducked his head, then straightened with steely resolve. He was not going down without a fight. He signaled Kinch and LeBeau of his decision. They immediately signaled back, flashing smiles that briefly lessened the bitterness of the moment.


Loyal to the end.


Breathing deeply, Hogan gathered himself. To his left and right, Kinch and LeBeau did the same. Hogan glanced from one man to the other, caught their eyes for the last time.


Make every shot count.


One breath, two --- and the three men jumped to their feet and started shooting. Within moments, the last of their ammunition had been expended.


LeBeau went down first from a wicked shot to the chest. Hogan took one in the head and two in the chest and fell backwards into the snow. Kinch crumpled from a crippling, combined assault and lay, gasping on his back.


Snow crunched as footsteps drew closer. Newkirk, Carter, O’Malley and Olsen gazed down at their three fallen comrades with wide smiles.


“Guess that settles it, then,” Newkirk chuckled, tossing a snowball from hand to hand.


“We win,” Carter crowed down at them. “You guys have laundry detail!”





All the beautiful snow we’ve had inspired me. Well . . . that and I was trying to avoid doing the laundry.


February 4, 2005




Text and original characters copyright 2005 by Zoey Traner

This copyright covers only  original material and characters, and in no way intends to infringe upon the privileges of the holders of the copyrights, trademarks, or other legal rights, for the Hogan's Heroes universe.