In one easy motion Ogowa swings his right leg into the office, foot automatically resting on the pedal, both arms support himself, and the other follows.
The checks come quickly, circle the stick, kick the rudders, flaps out, in, set. Trim, mix, brake...a glance at the ground chief, contact!, the blade hesitates, swings, stutters, the explosive bang of first cylinder firing, the blade vanishes into the blur, and everything begins the mad vibration that will live in his bones forever.
Diogowa, dust billowing taxi's past...Ogowa smiles, the barsted is yes, eating again, gods knows what.
Eyes back to the few instruments, manifolds, oils, temps, climb and bank indicator
All is good, the great radial beats its discordant dance, the stick rests easily in his right, the flaps, the throttle in his left.
Manilla rumbles, dust and exhaust.
The ground crew, still faithful, still doing their duty, line the taxi ways, and wave them away
Now the strip lies before him, diogowa on his left, Oda, his right.
The familiar excitement rises in him.
So much power.................
The rumbles rise to a roar, to a bellow.....
In the streets of Manilla, they have been waiting for the Americans to arrive for months now, ever since the word of the landings at Minando.
The Japanese are leaving, the streets say, they are finished.........gone forever.
Snarling, eagle after eagle races overhead, shadows racing across street and home.
Windows rattle, cats howl, a hundred thousand faces turn upwards
Eagle after eagle, after eagle..after eagle .
If they are going, soon to be gone, Ogowa will give them a memory they will never forget..............