Jinx – 27

Written by: Jack Orman; Watch Now: – Sorry, not available on Amazon

[Another very complicated JAG plot]

JAG officer Bud (B) answered his cell phone while flying with Harm (H) in his stearman. Mac (M) asked them to meet her and then told H that Lt Tess McKee had been killed when her F-14 hit a flock of birds during a low level flight practice mission and had spun into the ocean. McKee had held on long enough for her RIO, Lt Peter Ayers, to eject. She had been recommended, by several members of congress, to be appointed as the first female member of the Blue Angels.

After this death, Ayers was now the last surviving member (out of 8) of the Howler squad, who had accidentally blew up a mosque in gulf war. SadDAM claimed that 100 were killed; but, intel later confirmed that a radio link to the missile had unexpectedly shut off and that SadDAM had parked a SAM missile truck right in front of the mosque.

Harm visited Annie Pendry and Josh, wife of deceased pilot friend Lucas Pendry and helped her around the house. Josh had his arm in a cast from a hockey injury. A reporter came to Annie asking about a supposed “Jinx” of the squadron and seemed to know information about the mosque, about which Luke had sworn her to secrecy. Bud “ticked-off” H by buying into the “bad Karma” of the unit, so was assigned some “busy work” in a brusque manner. Later he asked H if he was “still mad at me,” and H said “I was never mad at you B, it’s M who is always complaining about you.” Staying at Annie’s, H had a dream of being in a bar and talking with his old friend Luke who told him that it was alright if he wanted to “be with” Annie, but to “not start anything that he didn’t intend to finish.” H’s long time feelings for Annie began to come to the surface and they kissed several times. She was offered a transfer to the Baltimore area but didn’t know if she was going to take it. She finally told him that she had decided to “go for it” to get her life back on track. She said that she would call H when she was on her feet.

Ayers was assigned on a mission with pilot Lt Vanderway and panicked going through a storm, then was hit by lightening which started a fire. They landed ok but Vanderway told the captain he didn’t want to fly with Ayers anymore because he was a jinx. The captain told him to not talk of it again because “this stuff feeds on itself, and becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.” Harm bristled at an obnoxious reporter trying to find a “scoop” over the Jinx aspect so told M that he was going to “take a couple of days.” He stayed with Annie fixing up the house and pursuing their relationship. She wondered to him if Luke would want her to have another relationship, “especially if it was with you.” Mac appeared at the house and caught them kissing.

Mac informed H that Ayers had turned in his wings when he was asked to fly the missing man formation the next day for McKee’s funeral. Bud tailed him to a mosque where H caught up with him. Bud calculated that of the 7 Howler crashes since the Gulf War, 6 of them were on Islamic holy days. The funeral was on another Holy day and “I wouldn’t want to fly either,” B said. Harm finally convinced Ayers that it was up to him to “put an end to this or it will destroy the Howlers.” No one would fly with him, so H said that he would. Harm pulled the missing man then went for the “standard” refueling practice. During the refueling the basket hit and broke the Plexiglas canopy wounding and partially blinding H. Ayers was panicking and demanding to eject but H ordered him not to. They diverted to El Toro and Ayers had to talk H down reading out the instrument values to him. Harm landed “blind” and afterwards Ayers found that a Plexiglas shard had fouled his ejection mechanism and his seat wouldn’t have fired anyway; so, Harm’s seat ejecting “would have fried him in his seat.” Harm told him that he would fly with him anytime because he was “untouchable.”

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