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A Yankee Flier in Italy by Montgomery

_For_

AVON KIRKS

CONTENTS

CHAPTER PAGE

I FAREWELL PARTY 1

II SPECIAL TASK 13

III REUNION 23

IV BEACH-HEAD 38

V PRISON SHIP 52

VI FIRING SQUAD 75

VII REST CURE 90

VIII ESCAPE 98

IX HOMEWARD BOUND 110

X LONE EAGLE 127

XI RESCUE 140

XII SALERNO 162

XIII NIGHT RAID 184

XIV NIGHT FLIGHT 200

A YANKEE FLIER

IN ITALY

CHAPTER I

FAREWELL PARTY

The party was about to break up. It had not been very successful. Lieutenant O'Malley had devoured only one blueberry pie. This meant he was feeling far from par. He sat sprawled in a big chair that once had belonged to a Moslem prince, his skinny legs elevated to the top of the mess table.

"Sure, an' you fellows are skunks, beatin' it off to do a soft stretch in Alexandria," he growled.

Lieutenant Stan Wilson, United States Army Air Corps, grinned at his Irish pal.

"They need brains in Alexandria to tell them what to do." Stan sipped his coffee and continued to grin.

March Allison leaned across the table. Allison was British, slight and neatly dressed. There was always a mocking smile lurking at the corners of his mouth.

"I say, old fellow, you should be crowing. You are now a flight commander and I understand you are to rate nothing less than a major."

"'Tis not the stripes I want," O'Malley muttered. "Sure, an' I'm told this Colonel Benson who is to be in command is a spalpeen of the worst sort. Niver did I care fer brass hats an' now I am to be near one all the time."

"I understand Colonel Benson holds to a strict diet, no coffee, tobacco, or pie," Stan said gravely. "He expects his men to follow his example."

O'Malley snorted. "Sure, an' I'll be after eatin' pie right off the top o' his desk."

"He is said to be the best-dressed officer in the Army." Allison had his gaze fixed upon O'Malley's sloppy uniform. The shirt was open at the neck to allow O'Malley's huge Adam's apple to roll up and down, free and unencumbered. O'Malley's cap was wrinkled and sagging as it attempted to cover his shock of wild hair.


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