Inside, the Sergeant glanced up at the eagle and crossed her hands across her chest in a sign of recognition. The eagle glared blindly down in the candlelight.
The Commissar gestured impatiently to the single chair. As the sergeant sat, she began to speak. “Commissar, the enemy have crossed the eastern trench and are entering the cit…”
A rise of fury washed across the Commissar’s sharp features, immediately replaced by the cynical mask of command. She glared at the Sergeant then turned sharply on her heel and strode across the room, sweeping up the files and hurling them to the ground at the Sergeant’s feet. White papers blossomed into the air and scattered - form after form, all scripted in the same bold hand and stamped with the eagle seal. The Sergeant’s face whitened, mirroring the scattered paper.
“Commissar, I can expl…” A raised hand cut her off. The Commissar stamped her metal heel down onto a form.
She repeated the gesture, her polished boot shining in the candlelight.
Kicking the largest file, she lowered her face close to the Sergeant, blue eyes narrowed.
The Sergeant stared back, mouth open and eyes wide.
“Disorderly conduct from YOUR unit. Uniform infractions. Rowdy behaviour in the canteen. Drunkenness. Poor drill. Sexual relations between soldiers.” A sneer twisted her crimson lips. “More disorderly conduct reports from your unit than the rest of this army combined!”
To be continued...