A trickle of muddy water ran along the bottom of the ditch. Some of Dog Company, thirsty from the long march in the heat of the afternoon, filled their canteens. The careful ones added halazone tablets from their C ration accessory packets. Others, eluding the watchful eyes of the platoon sergeants, drank the water raw. Later some of them would pass long parasitic worms, to the disgust and consternation of Dr. Goldberg, the battalion surgeon.
Bayard tried leaning back so that the grassy bank of the ditch took the weight of the pack off his shoulders. It was an uncomfortable position, so after a few experimental shifts of his seating arrangement, he slipped his arms free of the pack straps.