“I’m helping. Just shut up!” I snapped.
“Go home, you’ll get yourself killed!”
“I’ll be fine! Butt out!”
“Damn it! Are you insane?”
He groaned and turned his attention back to the enemy. I saw father walk forward to talk to the leader of their group. He spoke to them in a different language, Arabic, I think.
“Danny, Danny!” Greg whispered.
I turned around and gave him a look. “Don’t you dare!” I turned forward.
“Danny!” Greg said, a little bit louder.
Danny turned around, looking annoyed, then angry. “Rachael, what are you doing here?” he snapped.
“Don’t worry about me, pay attention.” I told him.
“Go home, that’s an order.”
“You can’t tell me what to do, I’m not in the army.”
“Which is why you shouldn’t be here.”
“I’m already here, and I’m staying.”
“Greg, take her home.”
“Bad idea, you need him.”
“Go home, now!”
“Ugh! You are in so much trouble!”
“I don’t care! Now pay attention!” He gritted his teeth and turned back around.
Then there was a gunshot. I looked over to see father had been shot. He fell to his knees, to reveal it had been in the chest. “Father!” I screamed. Heads turned to see me, then quickly looked back at the now approaching enemy. I felt angry now, and I was definitely ready to fight. I felt tears fall down my face.
“Charge!” Danny shouted, and everyone started to run forward.
It was like a dream, a nightmare. I ran with all my might. I shot the gun, and I killed people. And I didn’t care. I saw Danny kill others; I saw some fall down next to me, from being shot. People I knew well. Some I didn’t know at all. And it made me even angrier. I saw someone was about to shoot Danny, and I shot them, and they fell. It was over before I knew it. Even though it had to have been hours. And somehow, we had won. It didn’t feel like winning, because I saw dead friends all around. I stumbled over to where father lay.
I fell to my knees. He was dead, I could feel it. I was an orphan. I sobbed onto his chest. I didn’t want to believe it. But I knew it was true. “I’m sorry.” I cried.
I felt a hand on my shoulder. “It wasn’t your fault.” Danny whispered.
“I’m sorry I disobeyed you.” I whispered to Father.
“I know he’s already forgiven you.”
“I have no family.”
“You have me.”
“Yes, I have you.” I agreed then sniffed.
“I’m sorry Rachael.” Danny said and tightened his grip.
“It wasn’t your fault either. Where is he?” I asked between my teeth.
“The damn bastard who shot him.”
“He’s been taken captive. We’re going to hang him tomorrow.
” “I want to pull the lever. I want to kill him.”
“It’s not your job.”
“It should be. Let me do it.”
“It’s not a job for a young girl.”
“I guess I’m going to an orphanage now.” I mumbled.
Danny shook his head. “No, were getting married, you’re staying here.”
“I think I should go to an orphanage.”
His brows pushed together. “Why?”
”That’s where orphans go.” I replied almost incoherently.
“I don’t understand. You want to go?”
“No, but I should.” I was speaking gibberish really, I didn’t know what to say. He picked me up, and I hugged him. I cried into his shirt as he carried me back. He took me to his tent and lay me down in his cot. I just couldn’t grasp it. He was gone. I was never going to see him again. It didn’t make sense. Father had always been there. “I want to go away.” I said after a moment.
“Anywhere. I can’t stay here anymore. Take it off.”
“I know you have a key. I want to go, now. And I want you to come with me."
“I can’t leave-”
“Fine, then stay.”
“I can’t leave until I get a discharge.” he finished.
“So do you want to come or not?”
“Of course I do. Do you want to get married? I’ll take care of you.”
“Who will sign the papers?”
“Your father already did, this morning.”
“Oh. Then yes. When?”
“Whenever you want to.”
“If that’s what you want.”
“I love you.”
“I love you, too.”
© Copyright 2016 Cherie Arlavine . All rights reserved.