This scene of havoc and destitution left Joe and his platoon little to hope for and much to fear from their flagitious Captor, a cross between an over-manipulative Scrooge by preference and an ultra-controlling Machiavellian by policy. Joe and his platoon, on the other hand, come nearer to correspondence to that of Charles Dickens’ Cratchit in circumstance and a Washingtonian by emulation−so be it; but in the case of their pure and proper humanity having so recently been re-established on the looming ruins of their Captor’s ill-fated despotism, the duties of their former occupations and employments did tremble precariously on the edge of a precipice where it was impossible to recede, dangerous to stand, dreadful to fall. Although the manifold inconvenience of their daunting responsibilities were aggravated by the sublime character of the love they had, but could not embrace, respecting their grieving families and steadfast friends, they nevertheless resolved to adhere to their moral and religious principles rather than to be drawn within the lineaments of their Captor’s evil doings, at any price.
In all their perilous events, they absorbed with unheralded dignity the exponential costs that suffering brings; and counterwise, rejected out of hand, a slew of temptations that were intended to compromise one against the another for mere relief or advantage. If Joe were to recount the all too regular stories exampling their impervious integrity, the circumstantial parallels would be a tedious repetition of the same causes and effects. Joe explained to me that though he remained conscious of his office, and considerate of the expectations of his fellow comrades, he could never be seduced from the standard of his integrity to register the unbowlderized litany of abuses sustained by himself and his band-of-brothers. His reasoning was that he did not want a misconstruction put on the telling, because it might act as a subtle solicitation for glory−or worse, work as an importunate plea for the repugnant notion of sympathy or its damnable relation, pity.
After many intolerable years of having to endure an all-consuming captivity that comprehended the fairest parts of their livelihood’s, and with no little apprehension, and with almost as many years of planning, they achieved the daunting prospect of an incomparably daring escape from their Captor who imprisoned them to his will. Since their escape, Joe’s venerable psychologist unequivocally denominated both the categorization of their Captor as a “psychopath”, and the frightful predicament of their captivity as a “modern-day concentration camp”; based on Joe’s candid summarization to him, wherefore Joe described in plain terms their episodic ordeal. Like the protagonist in Homer’s “Odysseus”, they too returned home bewildered strangers to their families, after they have suffered the slings and arrows of their outrageous fortune, and no less their own, is for them, the most painful shock that their flesh was ever air to. They have much to protect, enormities to salvage, horrific memories to erase and even more to fill, forgotten bridges to rediscover, sad conditions to improve, confusions to enlighten, their children to re-ingratiate, filial bonds to repair, marriages to reconstruct, and they can ill afford a question to themselves as whether “to be or not to be”: never to shuffle off their mortal coil upon their own permission. Their families’ sufferings during the forced interregnum of their domestic life, which occurred during the span between the vitality of our stolen prime and the milestone in-sight of their respective jubilee’s, has been commended to the hallowed scales of law and equity for its recalibration, and their overdue rectification. Withal Joe and his band-of-brothers shall abide the determination of law, and at the same time fight for the dearest of human rights, freedom and property; and as for the enmity of his former Captor, he shall never again exclude his band-of-brothers, or anyone, from the universal benefits of peace, toleration, and respect.