Disclaimer: I do not own M*A*S*H or any of the characters in it. I am only doing this for fun.
By Ann Sulo
It is 2 pm on a warm, spring day in Korea. Hawkeye and Charles are in the swamp concentrating on a chess game, and BJ is reading one of Peg's letters when they hear a voice on the PA system announcing, "Incoming wounded! Incoming wounded! Please report to OR!"
"They always know when we are having fun," Hawkeye says.
Hawkeye and Charles get out of their seats and leave the game on the table. BJ puts his letter face down on his cot. They all leave the swamp and join the others who are attending the wounded that were brought to them by jeeps, ambulances, and helicopters. Potter binds the wounds on one of the patients that came in a jeep.
"Put a tag on him and take him into post-op," he tells two orderlies.
The orderlies put the patient on a stretcher and carry him to post-op.
Potter walks toward Hawkeye who is examining a very badly injured patient lying on a stretcher on the ground.
Hawkeye calls out to Klinger and Goldman, "Klinger, Goldman, get this man into OR Stat!"
Klinger and Goldman carry him to OR. Hawkeye stands up and faces Potter.
"I hope we get the new nurse soon," Potter tells Hawkeye, "we haven't received any since three of them left here, and we're beginning to get desperate."
"I hope so too," Hawkeye tells Potter.
Hawkeye walks toward Father Mulcahy who is talking to a patient in another jeep.
"Don't be afraid my son God will take good care of you, and so will these doctors and nurses. You have been sent to the best M*A*S*H unit in Korea. Here is a doctor now," he tells the patient as Hawkeye approaches them. Father Mulcahy blesses the patient, says a prayer over him in Latin and leaves.
Hawkeye examines the patient.
"Will I make it doc?" the patient asks him worried.
"You'll be fine," Hawkeye tells him, "unless you ate from the mess tent."
The patient laughs.
They are in OR about 2 hours operating on patients or assisting the doctors. BJ's patient starts to hemorrhage.
"Hawkeye! I need your help!" BJ pleaded.
"Close for me," Hawkeye tells Kellye.
Nurse Kellye closes the patient while Hawkeye walks over to BJ's table to give him a hand with his patient.
"Clamp," Potter tells Margaret.
She gives him the clamp.
"Do you know when my new nurse will arrive, Colonel?" Margaret asks.
"Soon I hope," Potter answers.
At that moment Klinger enters OR followed by a beautiful new nurse who is about a size 11 and has an olive complexion. A few strands of chestnut brown hair are peeking out from under her hat. She pushes the strands back in.
As soon as the new nurse enters OR, Hawkeye looks at her and quietly tells BJ, "She is gorgeous."
Klinger introduces the new nurse to Col. Potter. "Col. Potter, this is Lt. Rose Marshall."
"Welcome aboard Lt. Marshall!" stated Potter enthusiastically.
Potter looks at Margaret then at Rose. "Rose, this is Major Margaret Houlihan, head nurse."
"Welcome aboard," repeated Margaret, "You will be working with the major," she gestures toward Charles' table. "Able take a break!"
Able walks away from Charles' table and out the door while Rose walks toward it.
Charles politely introduces himself to Rose. "My name is Charles Emerson Winchester the third. You may call me Charles."
"My name is Lt. Rose Marshall," she tells him, "you may call me Rose."
"Nice to meet you Rose," Charles tells her.
"Nice to meet you too Charles," she says.
"Forceps," Charles commanded.
Rose gives him the instrument and he uses it on the patient.
"Where are you from?" she asks Charles.
"I'm from Boston Massachusetts," Charles answers her.
"I use to live in Boston," she tells Charles.
"Have you ever tried The Boston's Fine Seafood restaurant?" Charles asks her.
"Yes I have," Rose answers, "I love their octopuses."
"I love them too," Charles tells her, "they are among the finest foods I ever ate."
Rose says: "I ate ribs at, 'Adam's Ribs,' restaurant several times when I lived in Chicago. Those were the greatest ribs I ever ate."
"I don't care for them that much," Charles says.
Hawkeye joined in the conversation. "Two years ago, Trapper and I ordered ribs from that restaurant because we wanted to eat something different. Just as we were ready to eat them the wounded arrived."
Hawkeye and BJ are back in the Swamp. BJ is drinking gin and Hawkeye is sitting at the chess table waiting for Charles to return so that they can continue the game. Charles enters the Swamp. He sees Hawkeye sitting at the chess table but he doesn't join him.
"Aren't you going to continue to play Charles?" Hawkeye asks him.
"I don't have time right now, Pierce, I have more important things to do," Charles answers. He starts to shave and hum a Mozart tune.
"Are you going to see that new nurse?" BJ asks him.
"As a matter of fact, I have a date with her now," Charles answers him as he splashes water on his face.
"Where are you going to take her?" Hawkeye asks.
"To the VIP tent for a candlelight dinner," Charles answers. He picks up his phonograph and walks out the door.
Charles and Rose are in the VIP tent sitting at a table facing each other. On the table is caviar, a pheasant, a bottle of cognac and two champagne glasses. In the middle of the table is a lit candle. A Beethoven Symphony can be heard from the phonograph.
"Would you like some cognac, Rose?" Charles asks.
"Yes please," Rose answers as she hands him her glass.
Charles pours cognac in her glass and his own.
"What do you think of opera Rose?" he asks as he takes a sip of cognac.
"I love it," Rose answers, "I especially like listening to Bach, and sometimes I play a Beethoven's symphony on the piano."
"Are you a good piano player?" Charles asks her.
"Yes I am," she answers him, "Are you?"
"Unfortunately no," Charles answers her, "but I know at least two people who are talented pianists: my mother and a patient who was here a few months ago. I'm glad you don't need musical talents to listen to opera. Listening to opera takes me away from the realities of war."
"And you can listen to opera anytime. I'm glad we share this interest," she says as she smiles at Charles.
A few weeks later, outside the compound you can see people doing different things. One man is sitting on a lawn chair, another man is looking at Radar's animals, a couple is walking hand and hand toward the Officers Club, and several people are playing basketball. When they see a man in unkempt clothes and tousled hair walking toward Potter's Office, they stop what they are doing and stare at him. The man ignores them and continues to walk to the office.
The man enters the door and sees Klinger instead of Radar typing daily reports. Klinger (who sees and recognizes him), stops typing, gets up out of his seat, and gives him a hug.
"Welcome, back Henry!" Klinger shouts, "It's so good to see you again!"
"It's good to see you too Klinger!" Henry says as he hugs him back. "What happened to Radar?"
"He went home a few months ago. He received a hardship discharge."
Henry looks disappointed, "Oh," he says.
"I would like to see Burns," Henry tells Klinger.
"Frank isn't here anymore," Klinger says.
"Can I see your new commanding officer?" Henry asks.
"Sure," Klinger answers.
Klinger knocks on Potter's door.
"Col. Potter, there is somebody who would like to see you," Klinger calls through the door.
Col. Potter opens the door and steps into the outer office.
"Col. Potter," Klinger say enthusiastically, "this is former Col. Blake."
"So you're Henry Blake," Potter says as he offers his hand for Henry to shake. "It's nice to meet you."
"It's nice to meet you too," Henry says to Potter as he shakes his hand.
"Come into my office with me," Potter tells Henry.
Henry follows Potter into his office, and Klinger sits down at his desk and resumes typing.
Potter sits at his desk and offers Henry another chair. "Take a seat Henry."
Henry sits down.
"Where are you from Henry?" Potter asks.
"I'm from Bloomington IN," Henry answers.
"I have a cousin who lives there," Potter says.
Henry asks Potter, "Where are you from?"
Potter answers, "I'm from Hannibal Missouri. It's a great town."
"What do like about that town?" Henry asks.
"For one thing, they have great rivers where you can fish for trout," Potter says.
"Do you like fishing?" Henry asks Potter.
"Yes I do," Potter answers, "it's one of my favorite activities."
"Fishing is one of my favorite activities too," Henry says, "I remember one time when I was here I caught a fish, stuffed it, and gave it to a friend."
"I heard that you use to command this outfit," Potter says to Henry.
Henry replies: "Yes I did command this outfit until I was granted my discharge. I never made it home though because I was captured by the North Koreans. I barely managed to escape from them. I've been out there running for my life for days. That's why I'm a mess."
Klinger opens the door.
"Col. Potter, Igor wants to see you."
"In a minute," Potter answers.
Igor enters Potter's office with this urgent message. "Col. Potter, a little girl about 10 years old just arrived in an ambulance. She's in shock! They need your help! Hawkeye is prepping her for surgery!"
"I'm coming," Potter says.
"I'll go with you," Henry says.
"You look worn out," Potter tells Henry.
"I'm fine Potter," Henry answers.
Potter, Henry, Igor, and Klinger rush out of the commanding officer's tent.
Hawkeye is in OR operating on the patient's chest, Margaret is assisting Hawkeye, and Potter is doing the anesthesiologist job while Henry, Klinger, Igor, and Father Mulcahy look on. The little girl's mother is watching from outside the door.
"Do you need any help Hawkeye?" Henry asks.
"Yes I do," Hawkeye answers, "Control the bleeding near her heart while I irrigate her wounds."
"Lap sponges," Henry commands.
"Here are some lap sponges," Margaret answers while she gives him several lap sponges.
Henry uses the lap sponges to control the bleeding while Hawkeye cleans her wounds and does other necessary surgical work on her chest.
"How did she get injured?" Henry asks.
"She got injured when she was playing in the mind field," Hawkeye answered.
"Too bad this war didn't end yet," Henry says with feeling.
"It is taking too long," Hawkeye answers. He gets especially upset when an innocent child is injured in war.
"What's her pulse Colonel?" Hawkeye asks.
"170 over 80," Potter answers.
"That's good," Henry says.
"Let's close her," Hawkeye tells them.
After they closed her, Potter orders Klinger and Igor to take her to the post-op. They put her on a stretcher and carry her out of the OR. The others rest for a minute.
"We did it!" Hawkeye says excitedly, "we saved another life!"
"I'm glad we did," Henry says.
"I'll go tell her mother the good news," Mulcahy says enthusiastically.
He starts to walk out of OR. When he gets to the door he turns around, smiles and says, "Welcome back Henry!"
"Thank you father," Henry answers.
Mulcahy, pushes the doors open and leaves.
"Henry! Welcome back!" Hawkeye says as he gives Henry a hug.
"I'm glad to see you too!" Henry says as he hugs Hawkeye. He lets go of Hawkeye and hugs Margaret.
"Welcome back Henry!" Margaret says.
Henry lets go of Margaret.
"We're so happy to see you again," Hawkeye says, "we thought we would never be able to see you again."
"What do you mean?" Henry asks.
"Well it's like this," Hawkeye says, "we received a telegram stating that you died in an airplane crash a few years ago."
Henry says: "We never made it to the airport. Some enemy soldiers shot at us. We were forced to land. When we did, they captured us and took us prisoners."
"So, you've been a prisoner of war all this time?" Margaret asks.
"Until I escaped," Henry answers.
"How did you escape?" Margaret asks.
"I'll tell you later," he tells Margaret.
"Hawkeye, why don't you give Henry a thorough check up," Potter suggests.
"Good idea, Col," Hawkeye answers.
Everybody leaves OR.
Charles and Rose are on another date. This time they are sitting side by side on a mat in an abandoned hut with their arms around each other. A bottle of cognac, two half filled glasses, and a book are on the floor. They are enjoying a Mozart symphony.
"I'm so glad we are alone here together," Rose says.
"So am I," Charles agrees, "I have never felt so comfortable than when I am with you. Rose, may I read to you my favorite passage of this book?" He holds up a Shakespeare book titled, Romeo and Juliet.
"Yes," Rose answers delightfully.
Charles opens the book and reads to her the scene where Juliet meets Romeo at her window. While Charles reads it to her Rose leans against Charles arm.
When Charles is finished Rose sighs, "That is so beautiful."
Charles puts the book down. He turns around and faces Rose. They look at each other for two seconds with love in their eyes. Then they put their arms around each other for about 30 seconds and kissed. Their kiss was delightful. They didn't want the moment to end. They let go of each other and sit once again side by side putting their arms around each other and listening to Mozart.
Hawkeye, BJ, and Henry are back in the swamp drinking gin and conversing with each other. This time they remain sober.
"I miss Radar," Henry says, "He is like a son to me."
"You'll see him soon," Hawkeye assures him.
"We received a letter from Radar this morning," BJ says, "Would you like us to read it to you?"
"Ok," Henry says, "I'd like to know how he's doing."
Hawkeye goes into his footlocker and takes out Radar's letter. He reads it out loud.
"Dear Hawkeye, BJ, Potter, Charles, Father Mulcahy, Margaret, and Klinger, How are you? Thank you for sending us the Korean farm boy. He is a good helper. My mom is glad you sent him here to help us. Last week we planted corn together. Yesterday we (the whole family and the Korean farm boy) went to a fair. We entered our sow in the contest. She won first prize. Too bad uncle Ed couldn't be there. He would have loved to see his favorite sow win. I miss him so much, I also missed Henry Blake. Henry Blake was a great guy, he's the closest person to a father I may ever know.
That's all for now.
Walter Eugene O'Reilly, (Radar)"