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Always the same Seen in a dream

#1 User is offline   Swampthing 

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Posted 21 November 2010 - 04:42 AM

It was a bright day, and the weather ws nice too. I remember i was really glad for that. I've read tons of war stories, where people had to do what we were doing, but in the darkness, not seeing anything, in the cold mud worsened by even colder wind.
When a bomb fell just next to us - sinking in the mud so deep you couldn't see any of it, leaving a neat formation that looked like a huge mole hole over it, and fortunately not exploding - i realized immediately realized what it could be. Really! Of course i wasn't sure, but i saw the potential immediately. So i stopped dead (oy, bad wording), slipping and falling backwards as result, got half-up and ran back, to where the hole was. I stood up on top of it, but the next moment i realized my little brother wasn't by my side, and that was a problem. I looked around and saw him clearly: he had ran off to stand among the tall trees lining the road, as if these could protect him. His fingers were in his ears, his eyes shut tight. He was always afraid of loud noises. Like, really afraid. Until that moment, i was so proud of him for not snapping while we were escaping the air strike, but now i guess he did.
I carefully got off my hole and sprinted madly to where he stood. I hugged him. Tried to talk to him (i don't remember the noise being much of a factor in this, strangely). "Come on, it's a shortcut!", i whispered to him, "Just ten meters and it's all over! It's nothing like the six hundred you were ready to run for a maybe-safety! Just a few steps, come on! So close!"
He answered something at one point, but so quietly, not even looking up; and bombs were so loud, even though none of them were falling very close right now. I don't know what he said. Don't think it mattered.
I tries to lead him, stooping, putting one hand around his back and holding his elbow with the other, leading him like a blind man cause he wouldn't take his fingers out his ears or open his eyes. It was way uncomfortable, but the hole was so close...
He wouldn't move. I never thought he could be so strong, or so heavy, or whatever. I couldn't even budge him. A bomb exploded in the air, but way close to the ground. Pieces flew all around. One landed just two steps from my hole, splashing it with mud. I almost stopped breathing entirely! But no, the hole's shape didn't change. The new mud just kinda slid into or around it. "Come on! Ten steps! And it's all over! The noise is over, the-- the memories, EVERYTHING! Come ON!" I made a wild attempt to push him from behind, my feet just sliding uselessly in the mud, then tried to find a way to pick him up but he was like a rooted tree trunk: his knees wouldn't fold, his legs wouldn't part and he wouldn't even lean. Another bomb could fall any moment. I ran.

I was gonna jump right onto the hole, but thought better: my inertia and weight could ruin it. I fell down on purpose, to avoid that in time, then got up and climbed onto the hole carefully. It's hard to do things carefully, when things explode around you, when your little brother is standing unsheltered from them and unmoving, and when you know what's at stake, but knowing what's at stake also goes both ways. I clambered onto the hole, stood up straight and looked to the north. And i stood.

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to be continued

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