They attacked in the dawn. Despite the mud, the rats, and the near constant shelling, my men were well trained and were at station. It didn't matter. One of the Germans took a five second barrage from one of our guns and he merely got back up and started again.
I heard Perkins scream, "Franks! It's bloody Franks!" I ordered him silent, but he was just stating allowed what we all could see. No one knew what the German term was for this new soldier. They were sheathed in rumor: they had the strength of ten men, they ran across No Man's Land quick as lightning, and they were damn near impossible to kill. And all wore gasmasks making them less like men and more like monsters. And now they were coming for me and my men.
I ordered the men to deploy bayonets and moved to the phone to inform HQ and one of their grenades hit. I should of anticipated that their supposed strength would increase the distance of the thrown grenades but even I was a bit panicked by the Franks. I was instantly buried under dirt and wooden planking. Half dazed and half buried, I could do nothing to watch my men be butchered. In my concussed state, it seems like a nightmare, but I knew it was real. I saw the Franks pour over the lip of the trench. They didn't even bother to use small arms or bayonets. They tore Perkins' arm clean off. Young McGregor who had lied about his age to serve was decapitated by a Frank's bare hands. I will never forget the sounds of bones breaking with the screams. None of my men's bayonets and even rifles at point blank range could stop these demons.
Because of my buried state, the Franks thought I was already dead. So they allowed their true nature to come out. They removed the gasmasks. In all the reports and rumors, none had ever seen one of the Frank's faces, looked his enemy in the eye. At first, they would too far away from me to see any detail, but I could see that their skin was sallow and looked more akin to a corpse than a healthy soldier. Could they have been administered some from of opium or morphine can produced their enhanced state but at the cost of their general health. But then they started… to eat the flesh of my men. I felt my sanity start to slip. The Franks grunted with pleasure as they gnawed on arms, legs, and torsos.
One of them came close to me to retrieve an arm and I saw his… its face. It was wrong. One eye was a normal brown but the other was blue with a milky cataract over it. The jaw was too big for the rest of his face. One side looked as if it was missing its cheek bones. The face had several stitches running across it, seemingly holding the amalgam together. But it what was behind those mismatched eyes that scared me the most. I could sense intelligence but it was not human. Only then did I truly wonder if the men were set upon by demons. They retreated after getting their fill and I receded into black bliss.