Child of Atom

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic


Memoirs of a child living in a bunker due to a presumed nuclear war.

Submitted: December 14, 2017

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Submitted: December 14, 2017

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December 1st, 1950

I’ve always wondered how flowers looked. The wonderful, wild flowers you get to see during the spring and summer years. Oh how I envy the people who’s skin have touched the cold air of winter, perking their hairs up, people protecting their ears with hats made of wool. Little girls and boys running around the snow, ignorant of the world around them. My father always said to me, “don’t fret little girl, one day we’ll survive and live on and you’ll be able to wear that olive green wool coat during the winter amongst the bodies of the fools who stood above ground.” That was back when father was happy. He was optimistic, wearing his pale blue suit and holding on to his smile for dear life. That was back when mother could walk and both would get into arguments because of how salty mother’s soup was. I just hope I’m happier when time goes on. This bunker seems…colorless, emotionless. No way to express yourself – other than pencil and paper.

 

December 7th, 1950

End of the week here in the bunker. We’ve survived for 1 week now. It seems to me that the food would last us a little more than a month. I struggle to write this as the light’s grow dim during the nighttime. Good news though, father brought with him a flashlight. It lights up my room with enough brightness that it may annoy father. That’s fine, though. He’s usually too busy taking care of mother. She wants to eat, but can’t express it. She’s a vegetable. Funny how that is, huh? Being the one thing that you need right now. I think that’s called…iron-irony? I’ve been reading books here, there’s so many. Father brought them with him saying “we need to re-educate the earth once this all ends.” I asked him when will this all end? And he looked at me. He seemed angry and it’s because he didn’t know. He didn’t know when all of this would end and that got me sick to my stomach. I didn’t want to live in the bunker for all my life. I wanted to go out to the snow, meet the snow angels and pray to them to keep it snowing. Make it snow forever.

 

December 8th, 1950

Something happened last night while I was sleeping. It was father. I sneaked into his room after hearing a loud yell. He was moving around a lot on his bed, he looked like he was sweating. He was still sleeping though, or at least his eyes were closed. He was scratching himself all over and groaning loudly enough that the bunker would come to life from echoes of his voice. I was scared. I looked at mom who was beside him. She was staring into the ceiling, probably imagining of a better time up above. Wishing this would all end.

 

December 10th, 1950

Father was okay after that other night. He seemed tired and uneasy but he had enough strength to talk to himself. “Damn Reds”. Reds this and that. I didn’t know what Reds were. They’re not a color since father corrected, assured me and told me they are a “threat to this country”. That, “without this bunker, we will all be dead.” I didn’t know how serious this was. It was scary to think that the Reds up above were messing about, killing people, burning down houses. I’m starting to question my father as there were no loud booms, sounds of gunfire. Maybe we’re too deep underground to hear the screams. I guess we’re lucky then.

 

December 11th, 1950

I wonder, do the Reds have families? Do they struggle to eat like us? Maybe they kill to keep their kids fed. I’ve always wondered that about the other side of the war like, they must have families and little kids that I might’ve befriended if I was born on the other side of the fence. My father believes we will win over them. I guess we’re lucky then.

 

December 14th, 1950

This is the day that my mother passed away. I must write this down and remember it because it happened fast and it was a meaningless death. My father called me over to his room today to see mother. He was holding her head, her blonde hair bundled up in his hands and he closed her eyes for the last time. That was it. I sat on the bed next to her and kissed her on the cheek. She wasn’t cold yet, her warm life blood was still coursing, waiting for the reaper to take it. My father grabbed something from the nightstand; It was a gold pocket watch. He opened it to check that the clock had stopped working. “3:15pm” he said. “She would always start making that soup of hers.” I told him how much he hated it and he smiled at me but not with any sort of pleasure. It was a soft smile, not meaning anything. Mother died in this bunker. We were probably next to go.

 

December 14th, 1950

I can’t sleep. I would dream of mother and I would forget how her voice sounded and how it soothed me in times of need. I would dream of how she would worship shows like The Twilight Zone and me and her would stay up all night trying to solve the mysteries. The smell of her pillow whenever she got up to go to work and came back to go to sleep without taking a shower. I’m crying right now and I’m trying to catch the tears before they ruin the paper. I can’t sleep.

 

December 16th, 1950

Today was strange. Father was screaming random nonsense at the kitchen early afternoon. He was peaking around the corner as I was coming out the shower. I saw him crouching down, swiveling his head around like a bird and he caught me. I went over to see what was wrong. He glared at me with those big eyes of his and said, “I thought I saw them.” I asked who was ‘them’ and he looked back at the kitchen, “A Red was here” he said. I embraced him. Hugging him tightly, never letting go and he didn’t say a word. Just kept staring into the kitchen. I’ve heard of a strange science called psychiatry or psychology – whichever it is. They study the mind and brain and crazy people. Many other scientists though, think psychology is actually run by crazy people. Maybe it’s both. Or maybe we are all just a tad bit strange.

 

December 17th, 1950

This morning my back started hurting I was just sweating randomly. I saw blood running down my legs, staining the dress that I wore and I got scared. Father was eating cereal in the kitchen and called him over to see what was wrong. He panicked as much as I did which made me panic even more so he told me to “calm down” that “it is only natural”. I wish mother was here. Father gave me something to calm me down. It was a snow globe. He said that it was an anniversary present that he gave mother. In the middle of the snow globe was a couple holding hands, wearing winter coats and Christmas hats. Funny how I didn’t see the snow angels. I thought they came during the winter. I wish mother was here.

 

December 20th, 1950

Very loud banging noises were present this morning. Were they the Reds? I saw my father stare up above at the ceiling. He was nervous, his hands were trembling as he was holding a gun and I can tell that this was something bad. He dragged me to my room and told me to “stay put and be brave”. I did just that but nothing ever happened. The loud banging stopped a couple minutes later. My father came inside my room and sat on my bed and hugged me. I think it was the Reds. The menace up above was trying to find us. Father said that this bunker was hidden and that “we are safe”. I believed him because there is no one else to believe.

 

December 21st, 1950

They came in the morning while we were asleep. A loud explosion shook the whole bunker without warning and I sprung up to look out my door. It was them, the Reds. They’ve found us. They came pouring in by the dozen all dressed in black and holding guns. I saw my father who was standing in the kitchen pointing a gun at them and shouting, “I won’t go with you Reds!” and various other curses. The Reds were trying to talk to him while pointing their guns at him. I couldn’t make out what the Reds were saying but they seemed agitated. My father suddenly lunged at them, and the Reds shot him. Each bullet hitting a major body part; covering the kitchen cabinets with the crimson red that reminded me of my stained dress not too long ago. They started searching around the bunker and right before they came looked my way, I closed and locked my door. Seconds later they knocked it down. A handful of Reds were in my room pointing guns at me but they suddenly stop pointing. They didn’t want to hurt me and one of them bent down and reached out his hand to grab mine. He said, “You’re safe now.” I asked if they were Reds and he looked at me puzzled and said, “We’re the good guys. There are no Reds here.” He took my hand and he tried leading me outside. I grabbed my diary and snow globe before I left my room and before I went outside, I looked over at father who was face down in the kitchen. Wearing a blue dress shirt that has become pink. I stood outside and it was snowing. I thank the snow angels for letting me live as I held onto my diary and snow globe as tightly as I could. Warm tears started to roll down my eyes as I looked above where the snow was falling from. I guess I’m lucky then.

 

 

Two investigators were standing outside the bunker which was partially covered in leaves and snow and its doors blasted open from the entry explosion. A police squad was moving in and out of the bunker, analyzing the scene.

“She’s crying.”

“Yeah, I know. That looks rough.”

“Living in a bunker? With all that food? I’m sure they were fine.”

“But the father though, what a nut job and the woman who I guess was the mother, was dead in one of the rooms.”

“Yeah, poor girl. Probably went crazy. Not sure how they managed for almost a month.”

“What now?”

“Let’s talk to her. She’s the only one left.”

The investigators walked over to the girl and gave her one of their jackets, “My name is James and this is Doyle. We’re both investigators and we want to know what happened in there during the time you guys moved in. Care to help us out?”

The girl reached out her arm and showed James her diary, “Read it. It’s all my writing.”

“A diary huh?” Doyle looked at James and nod his head to signal him to take it.

As James tried to grab it, the girl pulled back her arm and said, “Promise to give it back?”

James smiled at her and said, “Promise.” He grabbed the diary and led the girl to a nearby squad car and sat her in the back, “We’ll have your diary back in about a day sweetheart, don’t you worry.” The girl nodded her head. Before he closed the car door, he peered into the backseat one last time and said, “By the way, what’s your name?”

The girl looked up at him and with a trembling motion opened her mouth and spoke, “I don’t know.”

James looked at her and nodded. He closed the door and looked at the diary. The cover read THE DIARY OF A SURVIVOR.

END.


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