"... diving down, I noticed that the running progress of the battle had brought me over London again... a Dornier 17 sped right across my line of flight, closely pursued by a Hurricane and right behind it came two Messerschmitt coming slightly toward me. They had not seen me. It was perfect. A kick at the rudder and I swung in toward them, thumbed the gun button, and let them have it. The first burst was placed just the right distance ahead of the leading Messerschmitt. He ran slap into it and he simply came to pieces in the air. His companion, with one of the speediest and most brilliant 'get-outs' I have ever seen, went right away in a half Immelmann turn. I thought that I had missed him. As I turned I had a quick look round the "office" [cockpit]. My fuel reserve was running out and I had only about a second's supply of ammunition left. At that moment some instinct made me glance up at my rear-view mirror and spot the Messerschmitt closing in on my tail. Instantly I hauled back on the stick and streaked upward just in time as I saw the tracer streaks pass beneath me. Just when I started flicking into the climb, I felt a terrific explosion which pulled the control stick out of my hand. In less than a second, the cockpit was ablaze. Instinctively, I tried to slide the canopy but it would not move. Completely terrified I tried to force it back and I suddenly found myself dropped back into the seat grabbing the stick in desperate efforts to turn the plane on its back... devouring flames, unbearable heat, there I was, trapped inside a bubble of fire, literally being burned alive... another explosion... darkness..."

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