Leary kneeled in the ditch, listening to Ferdinand’s men attack on the town. When the shots died down a bit, he stood up and began walking forward, holding his camera. His feet stumbled in the mud then found a trail that led between the gray and brown squat adobe buildings, the line of their roofs outlined with a flickering light of distant fire. When he edged out from between the buildings he heard gun fire erupting again, staccato, and men shouting. He stepped out into puddled road that ran through the town, raised his camera and focused at the end of the street. Men crouched, Ferdinand’s men, guns aimed at a building at the end of the street. As he focused on the building, gun fire flashed from the windows. Sandinistas fighting back? He pressed the shutter, knowing the film wouldn’t capture anything publishable. Why waste film? Nervousness? Or well reasoned fear? It made no difference, Leary needed to get closer.
He edged down the street, watching the battle ahead, and looking down by his feet. It wasn’t a simple walk in the night. Small foot high mounds were strewn here and there about the size and weight of feedbags with arms and legs attached. He stepped over them, moving slowly towards the fight, until he found the men crouching, and shooting up at the building. Leary kneeled, trying to make his large English body as small as the men he was standing behind, listening to them shout insults and fire. He looked for Walsh and found him on the other side of the street. He held the camera tightly, ducked and ran, then stopped by the door. Walsh was standing to the side of an open window where he was trying to direct a man, who crouched below the window, holding a long rifle with a telescopic scope. Walsh pointed to where he should shoot. Should be easy. Barely fifty yards away, but the man didn’t want to stick up his head, crouching, clutching the rifle as Walsh explained, but whatever Walsh said, didn’t convince the soldier to stand up and fire. Something else caught Walsh’s attention and he shouted, “Noooo!”
Leary stepped ducked out in the street, just in time to see Miguel take two steps before lobbing a metal canister toward the open window of the building from which the Sandinistas were firing. The canister tumbled through the air into an open window, a perfect strike, there was an explosion, not loud, a pop. The inside of the building erupting with the blinding light of a newly formed sun as thousand of grains of white phosphorus ignited burned at more than 2000 Celsius. The shouts of the men in women in the building turned to shrieks of pain. Walsh shouted for them to stop, and they did stop, just in time for a woman to emerge, covered in flame. Leary kneeled in the muddy street, raised his camera and framed his picture. The flaming hair, clothes and skin, illuminated her perfectly.