The Last Ditch

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: War and Military  |  House: Booksie Classic
When push comes to shove, what else can a soldier do?

Submitted: July 07, 2015

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Submitted: July 07, 2015

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Gefreiter Klaus Bauer of the German Wehrmacht was completely exhausted. He had spent the entire day digging a trench on the outskirts of Berlin. His weary muscles could take no more. He dropped his shovel and slumped to the ground in a shriveled heap.

"On your feet and back to work, soldier!" his sergeant commanded. "This is not a holiday picnic."

"Go to hell, Schmitt!" the lance corporal spat back angrily. "The war is lost. Any fool can see that. Look around. There are only two of us left. When the Red Army comes charging out of those woods, we won't last five minutes, so what's the point in fighting anymore?"

"What do you do for a living, Bauer? Are you a carpenter? Are you a cobbler? Huh? What?"

"No, I was drafted into the infantry before I finished school. You know that full well. Why do you ask me such silly questions?"

"There's your answer, Bauer." the sergeant said with an air of superiority. "You have no trade to fall back on. For that matter, you aren't even fully educated. If Germany were to give up now, you would have no way to support yourself. You and a million other slobs just like you would wander the streets aimlessly, starving to death, begging for handouts. Is that what you want? No, dammit. You're a soldier. That's all you know, so get off your lazy butt and act like one!"

Unmoved, Bauer fired back. "And what about you, Schmitt? What will you do after the war?"

"I'm a miner. There'll be plenty of work for me, but, since you asked so politely, I don't expect to survive the war, not here on the Eastern Front, not with the enemy practically within sight of the Reichstag."

Not in a mood to be placated, Bauer pressed the issue. "So what's in it for you, Schmitt? Do you just enjoy killing?"

Schmitt glanced off into the distance, gathering his thoughts before answering, "Every time I shoot a Russian, I say to myself, 'That's one more Soviet bastard who will never get the chance to rape my sister.'"

"And how many Russians have you shot?"

"I haven't kept count, idiot, but I suppose 50 is a reasonable estimate."

Right then, an artillery barrage came rumbling out of the overcast sky. The two men hit the dirt, hunkering in the bottom of their trench. It was an intense burst of fire. One shell in particular came in screaming. It would be a close one. The explosion ended the conversation.

For Gefreiter Klaus Bauer there would be no further conversations, there would be no worries about what he would do after the war, his life was over and done with.

The same shell mortally wounded Schmitt. He only had moments left to spare, but at least he got the chance to make his peace with God.

Less than five minutes later, the Valkyries came to carry the soul of Feldwebel Albrecht Schmitt to Valhalla, the hall of heroes, as the Soviet Red Army swept across the last ditch outside the city limits of Berlin. The winged maidens left his body beneath a pile of five more Soviet bastards that would never get the chance to rape his sister.

Copyright © 2015 W.C. Bell; All rights reserved.


© Copyright 2019 Whiskey Charlie. All rights reserved.

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