The Informer: Aftershocks (Pilot Episode Tag)

by smithcrafter

Disclaimer: I do not own Hogan's Heroes. To the best of my knowledge, they still belong to CBS . No copyright infringement is intended, and no money is being made from this story. It is published solely for the entertainment of Hogan's Heroes fans everywhere, and is dedicated to the fantastic actors of the series, many of whom are no longer with us.

Author's note: This is my first attempt at writing fanfic for Hogan's Heroes. I intend to attempt tags for various episodes, but will post each as a stand-alone story, because I've no idea how frequently or how many I'll be able to post. Wish me luck. Each tag will include a quick summary of the episode it represents.

Author's Additional Note: Well, you all caught me out. When I first posted this, I had Carter in the barracks after everything was all over, when LT. Carter had actually been hidden in the dog truck as it left at the end of the show. Oops. Can I blame it on having a miserable head cold while I was writing? Anyway, I'm reposting and just changing the name of the speaker. It's now Olsen who comments his surprise that the plan worked. That one sentence is the only change.

Episode summary (The Informer): The Germans brought an undercover agent posing as a new American prisoner (Lt. Wagner) into the camp. He passed Hogan's normal security "tests" for new prisoners, and by the time they realized he was a plant, it was too late. He had found out about the Traveler's Aid Society from a downed flyer (a Lieutenant Andrew Carter) who was being "processed" through the camp, and was calling Col. Burkhalter (by the next episode, Burkhalter is a general) to tell him about the underground operation the prisoners were running right under Col. Klink's nose. In a desperate attempt to discredit the spy's information, Hogan decided to show him the "whole operation" … with a few substitutions for what they were really doing. They blindfolded the spy and took him into the tunnel, letting the spy overhear LeBeau mention that the entrance was under the water tower (NOT!). After a few other bits of misinformation, they sat back and waited for Burkhalter to show up the next morning, praying that their deception would discredit the spy. It worked. After the spy had dumped a water tank full of water over Burkhalter's head, almost shot him with the "cigarette lighter" that was actually a loaded Luger, and let loose a truck load of killer guard dogs, the Germans decided their spy was an extremely unstable imdividual. Burkhalter apologized to Klink and promised that Wagner would soon be headed for the Russian Front. The episode ends with Schultz ordering the prisoners back into their barracks.

"Back, back, back, back, back, baack! Back into the barracks!"

Col. Robert Hogan grinned at his men as the 280 pound teddy bear (also known as Luftwaffe Sgt. Hans Schultz) herded the allied prisoners back into the rickety building that served as their "home away from home" during the frigid German winter of 1942, flapping his hands like a mother hen shooing her chicks along with her outspread wings. The men's lighthearted mimicking of Sgt. Schultz's entreaties even sounded like a flock of chickens clucking noisily at each other as they disappeared into the building.

Hogan gallantly bowed Sgt. Schultz into the building ahead of him after the other prisoners had all entered. Then, instead of following Schultz, he pulled the door shut and leaned nonchalantly against the outside of the building, waiting for Schultz to realize the Senior Prisoner of War had not followed him into the barracks. It didn't take long. Schultz blustered his way back out the door, glared at Col. Hogan as he pointed him inside, rapidly pulled the door shut behind Hogan, and walked away with a muffled "Hmmmph!"

The instant the door shut behind him, Col. Hogan was mobbed by the excited prisoners. He was repeatedly pounded on the back and loudly congratulated for carrying off such a crazy, brilliant plan.

"Boy! Colonel, sir! I can't believe the Germans actually fell for it! I never thought it would work. You guys are unbelievable!" Sgt. Olsen had been sure they would all be cuffed, chained, and headed for a Gestapo interrogation cell right about now.

French Cpl. Louis LeBeau added his own congratulations. "Oui, mon colonel. I thought sure we were going to be standing in front of a firing squad by the end of the day. When we overheard Wagner calling Col. Burkhalter, I thought we were all dead men! But your plan was magnifique.

"Blimey, Gov'r. Did you see the look on Wagner's face when 'e opened the back of the vet's truck and all those real live dogs started flying out at 'im? Ah thought 'e was goin' ta 'ave a 'eart attack right then and there!" British Cpl. Peter Newkirk laughed loudly as he took a puff off his ever-present cigarette.

Col. Hogan grinned back at his men, cocked his hat jauntily to the side of his head, and leaned back, bracing himself against the rough wooden planks that served as a dining table for the prisoners. "Why, you sound like you didn't trust my plan, boys. Don't you know me better than that? When we put our heads together, we can out think the Krauts any day of the week."

He snickered as his men laughingly agreed with him. "Listen, we had a long night getting ready for that little display. I don't know about you guys, but I'm tired. Now that roll call is over, I'm going to hit the sack until lunch time. Try to keep the noise down to a dull roar out here, will you?"

With that comment, Col. Hogan headed into his private quarters and closed the door behind him. His men continued their celebrating for quite a while longer … a bit quieter than it had started out. They shared jokes about the panic they'd seen gradually coming over the spy's face as each of his revelations of underground camp activites backfired on him and left him looking more and more like a madman. The laughed at the expression that had come over Col. Burkhalter when he was drenched with five hundred gallons of water Wagner released from the water tank, thinking he was opening the entrance to Hogan's hidden tunnel. They laughed even harder at the way Burkhalter had looked when Wagner had literally shot a cigar out of the Colonel's mouth with what he'd thought was a gun-shaped cigarette lighter. (Cpl. Newkirk did make one wistful comment about how nice it would have been if the spy had actually shot the German officer, rather than just scaring him half to death.)

The men had no idea what was going on in Col. Hogan's quarters while they were bragging to each other about their CO's military genius and ability to out-think the entire German army. As Col. Hogan reached the privacy of his office, the cocky grin disappeared from his face. He staggered over to his so-called desk and fell to his knees in front of the empty bucket that served as his wastebasket, struggling to keep the meager contents of his stomach where they belonged. He failed.

"Dear God, I don't know how you did it, but thank you for keeping my boys safe. Again. Thank You for closing Burkhalter's eyes to what was really going on out there. Thank You for guiding me through that crazy, desperate plan, and thank You for not letting my men see just how terrified I was that they were all going to die today. Amen."

The End