Please stop the war...

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
The plea of a young boy in 1940 London, as his world falls apart around him, him just a lonely survivor of one of life's terrors.

Submitted: January 01, 2012

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Submitted: January 01, 2012

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“I was awoken by the repulsive taste of blood trickling down my parched throat. My head pounded pugnaciously as the scarlet blood dribbled down my cheek. I quickly raised a quivering battered hand and wiped it off leaving grimy, scared skin exposed. I entwined my fingers firmly around my rather bedraggled teddy bear’s paw. Above me I could see the wispy tendrils of murky smoke engulfing the desolate sky, choking the glinting silver moonlight. Flickers of orange leapt from the dilapidated buildings, like the spiteful tongues of our enemies. The putrid scent of roasting flesh hung ominously in the streets, constricting my breathing to mere desperate gasps. I limped helplessly along the icy pavements, passing each crushed, mangled body with great lament.

I finally reached my demolished house, consumed by mountainous piles of rubble. I desperately lifted piece after piece of shattered brick, my hands numb with pain, until I saw the pale tips of a withered hand. I uncovered the body further; my little sisters curling golden hair lay dull and limp on the pavement, blackened with ash. My sisters beautiful sapphire eyes glistened as if they were filled with tears, though her pastel lips were supressed into a soft smile. I delicately lifted her fragile body and hugged her tightly to my chest, her numb skin pressed against my heart. I would never let them go. I wrapped my arms around them, lying upon the mud, streaked with claret blood. Tears of anger and sadness streamed down my cheeks and onto her snowy white dress.

It was just another day in London.

It was 1940.

My sister was dead.

My mother was dead.

My father had gone away to fight for us.

But he wouldn’t come back.

No one could hear him crying for help.

Not under the waves.”

I paused, peering over the yellowed pages of the diary, the leathery binding worn away. I could see a pair of safe azure eyes staring back and a lip being nibbled on trepidation.

“G-g-grandpa, did all that really happen?” said the voice of my grandson.

“I’m afraid it did, Tom”

“But why? Why did they die?”

“There was a war, Tom. Many people died. I was one of the lucky ones.”

“But why was there a war, Grandpa?” he said, gazing curiously at me.

I considered his question for a moment, painful questions and memories rising through my mind

“I don’t know” I said shaking my head solemnly.

“Oh” he said, his fingers picking at the fibres of the carpet “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have asked you. I didn’t know about you family. I’m sorry” he said repeated, obviously scared.

“It’s alright, you know. Some things in life we want to forget, but we can’t. We have to learn from them. But people never do. They’re still fighting today. Too many young boys are losing their lives. It’s not worth it. They should not die in battle. But that is the only result of fighting, hatred and war: death.”

“I was awoken by the repulsive taste of blood trickling down my parched throat. My head pounded pugnaciously as the scarlet blood dribbled down my cheek. I quickly raised a quivering battered hand and wiped it off leaving grimy, scared skin exposed. I entwined my fingers firmly around my rather bedraggled teddy bear’s paw. Above me I could see the wispy tendrils of murky smoke engulfing the desolate sky, choking the glinting silver moonlight. Flickers of orange leapt from the dilapidated buildings, like the spiteful tongues of our enemies. The putrid scent of roasting flesh hung ominously in the streets, constricting my breathing to mere desperate gasps. I limped helplessly along the icy pavements, passing each crushed, mangled body with great lament.

I finally reached my demolished house, consumed by mountainous piles of rubble. I desperately lifted piece after piece of shattered brick, my hands numb with pain, until I saw the pale tips of a withered hand. I uncovered the body further; my little sisters curling golden hair lay dull and limp on the pavement, blackened with ash. My sisters beautiful sapphire eyes glistened as if they were filled with tears, though her pastel lips were supressed into a soft smile. I delicately lifted her fragile body and hugged her tightly to my chest, her numb skin pressed against my heart. I would never let them go. I wrapped my arms around them, lying upon the mud, streaked with claret blood. Tears of anger and sadness streamed down my cheeks and onto her snowy white dress.

It was just another day in London.

It was 1940.

My sister was dead.

My mother was dead.

My father had gone away to fight for us.

But he wouldn’t come back.

No one could hear him crying for help.

Not under the waves.”

I paused, peering over the yellowed pages of the diary, the leathery binding worn away. I could see a pair of safe azure eyes staring back and a lip being nibbled on trepidation.

“G-g-grandpa, did all that really happen?” said the voice of my grandson.

“I’m afraid it did, Tom”

“But why? Why did they die?”

“There was a war, Tom. Many people died. I was one of the lucky ones.”

“But why was there a war, Grandpa?” he said, gazing curiously at me.

I considered his question for a moment, painful questions and memories rising through my mind

“I don’t know” I said shaking my head solemnly.

“Oh” he said, his fingers picking at the fibres of the carpet “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have asked you. I didn’t know about you family. I’m sorry” he said repeated, obviously scared.

“It’s alright, you know. Some things in life we want to forget, but we can’t. We have to learn from them. But people never do. They’re still fighting today. Too many young boys are losing their lives. It’s not worth it. They should not die in battle. But that is the only result of fighting, hatred and war: death.”


© Copyright 2017 Ellen Jones. All rights reserved.

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