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  1. Gannon

    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

    Jan 15, 2007
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    Manchester, England

    Short Story Contest 62: Theme - "Being A Nazi Officer" - Submission & Details Thread

    Discussion in 'Bi-Weekly Short Story Contest Archives' started by Gannon, Feb 8, 2010.

    Short Story Contest 62
    Submissions & Details Thread
    Theme: "Being A Nazi Officer"

    Open to all, newbies and established members alike. Please post your entries as replies to this post. At the deadline I will collate all entries and put them forward for voting in a seperate thread. The winning entry will be stickied until the next competition winner. Sadly, there is no prize on offer except pride.

    Theme: "Being A Nazi Officer" (courtesy of member Davylove 21). I think it goes without saying, but any piece that is overly violent or insensitive will be removed due to the site's PG13 nature and intolerance of purposefully inciteful or inflammatory material. Perhaps think along the lines of conflict, both internal and external, rather than the grizzly horrors of war and of racial hatred. This said, open interpretation is valid providing the above caveat is followed.

    Suggested Wordlimit: 500 - 3000 words.
    Deadline for entries: February 22nd 2010 10.00 am (UK local)

    There is a 10% word-limit leniency at both ends of the scale. Please try to stick within the limit. As below, any piece outside of the suggested limit may not be entered into the voting.

    The next contests will be themed "Voyeurs" (Twisted Inversly) and "Fictional (Auto)Biography" (LordKyleofEarth) respectively. If you would like to prepare an entry in advance for these contest you may, but do not submit an entry for these contests until instructed to do so.

    There is a maximum of 20 entries to any contest. If there are more than 20 entries to any one contest I will decide which are entered into voting based on adherence to the suggested word limit and relevance to the theme, not on a first-come-first served basis.

    Try to make all your entries complete and have an ending rather than be an extract from a larger one and please try to stick to the topic. Any piece seemingly outside of the topic will be dealt with in a piece by piece manner to decide its legitamacy for the contest.

    Submissions may not have been previously posted on this site, nor may they be posted for review until voting has closed. Only one entry per contest please.

    Please try to refrain from itallicising, bolding, colouring or indenting any text to help avoid disappointment. These stylistics do not reproduce when I copy-paste them into the voting thread. You may use visible noparse BB code to preserve style if you wish by placing [ noparse ] and [ /noparse ] (without the spaces) around the entire text.

    Please remember to give your piece a title and give its word count in brackets at the top of your story.

    If there are any questions, please leave me a visitor message or PM me. Please do not clog up this, or any other thread, with your questions.

    Thanks and good luck.
  2. MoonWriter67

    MoonWriter67 Member

    Jan 5, 2010
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    Regret (460)

    Regret (460)

    I spot some intimidating boats on the grim horizon, my stomach churning. I clasp the gritty handle of the MG while the Grenadier standing next to me loads a strip of bullets into the dirt smothered gun. Placing my helmet firmly onto my head of tangled blond hair, I take a moment to think about what I'm about to do while staring into the depths of the grey sea.

    This isn't right. I shouldn't be doing this.

    I ask the Grenadier if he thinks the same. He says he doesn't care, and that he thinks of is his family back at home. I try to think of my own but a lump appears in my throat. I bite my lip to stop the tears releasing themselves onto my skin, then a massive thump sounds from above and the ominous concrete bunker which we occupy trembles. I see the shell hit the water, forcing a boat to manoeuvre into another vehicle. The officers next to me laugh from behind their machine guns. I feel guilty.

    I just want these boats to turn back so the soldiers can go back to there own wives and children so this damned war can just end.

    Another shell is launched from the top of the bunker, followed by the eerie, teeth rattling vibration. I am scared. So scared.

    But they must be as well.

    The boats are flowing through the water fast now, I can only just see the troops retching onto the deck, shaking in their soaking olive uniforms. I was correct, they are nervous. I search through the pockets of my own bland outfit until my fingers find the hilt of my Hitler youth knife. I bring the the steel blade up into my eyes and glance about my reflection.

    A skinny, nervous wimp stares back at me. I look stupid in my oversized helmet and high buttoned shirt, a vile excuse for a Nazi officer. I had always the duffer in the squad, always last in the languishing obstacle courses that we'd been forced through in basic training. I'd only been assigned to the post of MG gunner because I had a great aim. I still wasn't up for the job.

    Trying to keep my mind off the awful subject, I place my knife away, and ready the M.G as the impending boats close in on the shore.

    I'll regret this.

    I aim down the steel sights of the weapon as the ramps begin to lower. I tense my muscles and pull back on the trigger.

    I hate the damn army. I hate Hitler.

    And in the next second, all hell is let loose.
  3. MCWhite

    MCWhite Contributing Member

    Jan 22, 2010
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    Child of God (1471)

    Dear Mother,

    I wonder if you and fellow countrymen are aware of this army’s actions. If you can guess the source of the ash in the air. And if you are aware, whether you can by proximity rationalize it, dilute it, relegate it entirely to the world of dreams. Because that is the quintessential ability of the human mind: to tame reality, transform it into a weaker paradigm we are mentally able to perceive and endure.

    I can tell you mother, the human mind is a fragile thing, a reflection of the vulnerability of life. It was not made to witness the act of genocide. And genocide is what I have been a part of. I, soldier of the Third Reich, herding innocent people into chambers that turn them from beings into ash. How is that a testament to the immortality of our species? What benign God would watch as his creations were burned alive and not come to their aid? Their screams are heard for miles. Surely they aspire to the heights of heaven.

    Those screams reverberate through these walls and within my mind, spectral and immutable, affirming what I believe will come to pass should Germany prevail. One day on earth there will be held a funeral where all witnesses to the burying will be ancient and themselves half-buried and there will be no child’s whisper to break the grey dawn. Because genocide has no end apart from apocalypse. It can only spread like some virulent plague. Today it is Jews. Who might be included tomorrow? What race or culture or religious group? And who next? Already there is no discrimination in age. There are bodies that stood no higher than your knees rotting in the graves here. How does the mind even begin to fathom the reason in that? At some point everyone becomes a minority and we will all die at the truculent hands of hate; men, women and children alike. And to Hitler such ending of the world might be perceived as the zenith of his empire, the final solution.

    I put a knife in a prophet yesterday. He used to be our neighbor. You would remember him were I to write his name. He was a kind man; a Jewish man. He asked me to hasten his life. In such simple terms too. We stood there parted by barbs, feigning readiness for an act immune to preparation, seeing each other and knowing in those quick glances that our positions on opposite sides of the fence were not the end result of our actions but fate, like the unraveling of a vast tapestry into which we are all threaded in finite strands, unknowing and therefore not unwilling. His hands, delineators of the better life he hadn’t lived, striae and dry like paper, gripped me through the wire as I forced the blade into his concave belly. He did not cry out, did not utter so much as a whisper. Just looked at me in a gaze peaceful and somehow unaffected by what was happening around him, to him. A slow cataclysm of death, an event unreal even as he bled down my uniform in clotting gouts and into the pale earth to nourish the weeds swaying there in the stale air like mournful specters. At once his life relegated to a sanguine mire at the fence’s edge. The gentle dampness there and the hollow shell curled and steaming at my feet, antipode of is.

    I had never before seen the eyes of a man after life has fled them. Hollow and gaping for whatever reason might flit before them among the flies stirring the rank air and landing softly on the pooled lenses. They would not close. I wanted to whisper to him, there is no reason, that reason is not what is needed to be at peace with mortality. I didn’t and the eyes kept up their vigil.

    Those intransigent orbs resurfacing now in my memory, veined reminders, as if in passing minutes I might have forgotten what I had done. Father said the world contains within it neither right nor wrong, just actions. I wish I could ask him what this is if not wrong. Is murder only an action? Something more? Something less? Nothing at all, mere reflection of its finality?

    I wonder what restitution I owe Him whose child is now a memory and a stain. Can the dead be called as witness to the defense? For he told me God would not begrudge me this act, that he had served his purpose and this would be my final gift to him. Not malice but mercy. I asked what gift could there be in death and he said, a gift that is everlasting and unreckonable. He told me his purpose had been to see me through this. But I am not yet through this. He said, you are. You are.

    After it was done I had to report to my commander. He wanted to know what I had done. To account for the life lost. I told him I was disgusted by that pig and he smiled and said we all are, that they are the enemy and I had done well for the country. I felt sick.

    Later I met with the Fuhrer. I thought I was in trouble for killing the Jew that way. He told me I needed facts but disciplined ones, as though fragments of knowledge were children to be tamed. And by whom? By him, breathing colander of all I might come to know, filtering out the true from the less true and the untrue and he never wrong because facts are absolute things.

    He asked me about father and what he learned in life. My father? Yes. I don’t know. Saying I don’t know to Mien Fuhrer. I don’t.

    He said my father learned but that he could die and as a result did die. Before me this replacement father with stained hands dressed in red and black and khaki and everywhere the four points that meant death to Jews. That my father could die but I, I something more, soldier and servant of the third Reich who might now be ready for the terrible truth. That my father didn’t know? Yes, he said. That the Jews are the reason, the reason, and he is screaming this now in his excitement, speckling my face with spit in his blind fervor, and who could have had the courage to ask, Reason for what, Mien Fuhrer, like a naïve little child. I could not. I could not and I am sorry mother.

    He promoted me to lieutenant. In this army you murder a good man and are promoted. And now I know what I must do. Because he is wrong, we are wrong, this is all wrong.

    A man can be immured in his own life. I am proof enough of that. Often at nights I have wondered aloud whether this might be a test from God, a test I have failed. Or it might be that this is Hell; this my punishment. Father would not believe that. In that final letter to me he spoke of religion: We tether ourselves precariously to an elusive God with a brittle chain called faith that one day may shatter violently or slowly crack through the years. But I believe, in all our hearts, there is a tiny kernel of truth that recognizes, we really are alone, that there is no deus ex machina to resolve our terrible plot. Giving ourselves up to God means drawing away from reality and contributing to the root of the problem, which is, and always will be, deceit, to ourselves and our cruel existence. He wrote this before he committed that final act, an act I believe was catalyzed by this loss of faith. I realize now I never asked you what you believe. It is too late for such a question. I only hope you still have the solace of faith to guide you in these latter days and that you will not mourn what is necessary. As for myself, I do not know what I believe. It may be that I am following in father’s footsteps but not his philosophy.

    If death is prearranged is it still death? Or something else? Can you hold a meeting with it to dictate the terms, the how and the when? I have attempted to do so. Please forgive me, mother. It is for the prolonging of love that I must do so, that I might die with untarnished memories of you and father and my childhood still in my heart and there untouched, un-maimed by what I have seen and done here. To endure any longer in this place is not possible. I love you always,

    Your son.
  4. InkDream

    InkDream Senior Member

    Oct 26, 2009
    Likes Received:
    the Evergreen State
    The Stain (541) some violence

    The floorboards will be stained forever, I thought to myself as I stared at the body. I felt my lips curl into what must have been a snarl. It was senseless. My father had taught me to be a rational man, to think for myself, to be strong. Not for the fist time, I felt shame imagining what my father would say to me if he were still alive.

    “Get him out of here.” I snapped to the two remaining men. They moved quickly, wrapping up the corpse in a white linen sheet and loading it into the trunk. It was a courtesy that we didn’t just leave him there to rot like a dead animal, many would have. That was how we were taught to see them--as animals. Subhuman.

    I had the burden of seeing them. I wasn’t supposed to, but when we lined them up for selection I saw the humanity in them. I saw the fear in them. And deep in my soul I ached for them even as I pulled the trigger.

    It took a little piece of my soul every time. The weight of my actions made my shoulders hunch a bit and drew lines across my otherwise youthful face. If I must watch them suffer, if I must witness such horror, I will not cower from it. I face it as they must. Though it will surely haunt me the rest of my days, I watch the light go out of their eyes and send up a prayer to whatever God will hear the prayers of such a man as me.

    My thoughts were dark as I got back into the car. The other two soldiers, Von Schak and Leschke were silent, sensing my belligerent mood .

    It was Von Schak that shot the old man, I heard his body rolling in the trunk with every turn and it made my stomach clench. “He had it coming.” Von Schak said smartly after a few moments of pregnant silence.

    Von Schak was the worst sort of Nazi. He was the sort of man that history would remember--he reveled in abusing those he deemed weaker than himself. He strutted about as if the Fuhrer himself would take notice, stomping on everyone he could along the way.

    After Leschke and myself failed to respond to his comment, Von Schak continued from the back seat, “The way he was trying to hide those stinking Jews, it’s disgraceful to the German man. He deserved to be shot.” he sniffed, indignant.

    I shifted uncomfortably in my seat, fingers twitching. The thought of having Von Schak in my sights was a pleasant one. I wondered a moment what God would think about me killing a man like him. Surely it would save lives, to have that kind of evil gone from the world. But then what kind of God could allow someone like Adolf Hitler to spread his plague across half the civilized world?

    That was all the justification I needed. Smiling pleasantly, I pulled my Luger from it’s holster and turned around, aiming right between the eyes. “You are disgraceful to the German man.” I said and pulled the trigger. It was the best I'd felt all day.
  5. Perfection

    Perfection New Member

    Feb 14, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Officer in charge

    (633 words)

    Soldiers screamed and dived for cover as their bodies were torn to shreds by the exploding bombs. The trucks filled with prisoners toppled over and spilled their mangled cargo onto the roadside. A woman in a nearby building slammed her window to keep out the noise so that her baby would not wake up. Children ran to the scene to scrummage through the pockets of the slain while the planes circled for another run. In the market place people carried on as usual & bought their eggs & milk as if nothing unusual was happening.

    In the coffee shop the officer in charge of the town stared blankly at his orders, seeing only the face of his beloved fraulein in his mind's eye. He had been ordered to leave the town by sunset and head for Trimblock, which was a large town 30 kilometers away. His objective there was to round up all citizens without the proper papers and hold them for interrogation. But he could think of nothing else besides his beautiful blond fraulein Monica and the way she had walked straight past him when he called her name at the station. She was more beautiful than any woman he had ever seen and his heart could not live without her. Was there a kind reason for the way she ignored him, or was she trying to get rid of him from her life? He reached for his coffee and seeing it was empty barked an order for the maid to come and refill it.

    Joseph Normans was high above the town in his state of the art bomber and he knew he only had one bomb left before he headed for base. Something kept telling him that he had missed the officers with his other bombs and that they would be lounging in the restaurants and coffee houses. He gazed down at the town seeking signs of social gatherings and spotted the seven vehicles parked outside of a white stone building in the main street. That is the target he must hit he thought as he swung his craft into position and began the descent.

    Monica sipped her wine as she looked out onto the main street and noticed the officer's car parked at the coffee shop. She thought of the way she had ignored him at the station and how that was sure to make him want her all the more. She called for the maid to bring her coat and boots and hurried for the door. This was the day she would surrender her love to the officer and finally ease his pain.

    The officer folded his orders and slipped them into his side pocket where he kept his cigarettes. It was time to inspect the damage from the bombing and instruct his men to prepare for the move to Trimblock before nightfall. He checked his Luger to make sure it was loaded and began to stand up just as the coffee store door swung open and Monica strolled in holding her white mink coat. She looked at him and smiled as she handed her coat to the doorman. The officer was entranced and stood up bowing to her with obedient eyes and then stumbled when he saw her magnificent form walking towards him. He was unsure of himself in the presence of such beauty and was uncertain of what to do next.

    Monica walked to his table and sat down facing him and said "Sit". She placed his love note onto the table as she gazed into his eyes and said "I accept your proposal and would be happy to marry you".

    The officer smiled back and reached for Monica's silken hand just as the bomb struck the roof of the building and turned it to rubble.
  6. whiskeyjameson

    whiskeyjameson Senior Member

    Feb 24, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Reading, PA
    Between the Trees Lies Realities (~ 1000 words)

    Heinrich pulled in deep on his cigarette, let the smoke sit, and then exhaled. He couldn’t tell when or where the smoke leaving his lungs turned instead to his cold breath. Smoking seemed a formality among several of his fellow officers but it was unlike him. He’d never smoked before. What would mother think? Thoughts of his mother turned him back to his cigarette, finding solace in the calming affect it had over his nerves. All around him things moved and buzzed; chaos in his mind. When a chorus of gunshots rang out he had jumped and then cautiously looked around making sure no one had seen. A half-track squealed by in front of him, tossing a nasty concoction of blood, water, and mud onto his boots. His nose wrinkled and the sides of his mouth dropped. The boots were new, shinier than the marksmanship badge on his chest, and now this. He was lost in the glory of it all. The cherry at the end of his cigarette flared.

    A young sergeant made his way to Heinrich. His jaw was the most stunning feature on his face, large and square, a fighter before the war maybe. The eyes were a sharp crystal blue that seemed to be at home amidst the snowy mess around them. His hair was blonde, though Heinrich was unsure whether the darker shades were from genetic disposition or war grime. The sergeant’s uniform was not as clean as his and slung around his left shoulder was a well used looking Kar98.

    He came to attention and saluted, “Heil Hitler!”

    Heinrich tossed his cigarette away.

    “Sturmführer, all the bodies have been collected and set to be burned,” the sergeant said.

    “Good work, thank you for the report sergeant…”

    “Sergeant Diefendorf.”

    Heinrich nodded and Diefendorf saluted once more before turning and running back to the other soldiers. Hundreds of uniformed gray bodies working in unison in front of him to destroy humanity and he supposed if he were fair he was one of them. Before the smell of burning flesh had a chance to assault his nostrils he figured it best to try and leave the area. He called over his Senior Troop Leader, a man double his age and then some, who he knew could run things.

    “Sergeant I’m going into the tree line to do business. Take control of the area till I return.”

    They exchanged salutes and Heinrich began a lengthy walk towards the tree line. Closer to the tree line and further from the rumble of machines and grunts of humans he could more readily hear the snow crunching under his boots. The sky was closed up, gray from side to side, top to bottom. Each tree limb seemed weary of holding the weight of winter’s snow. The air was cold enough to dry his throat with each breath and to steal the moisture from his lips. Upon entering the tree line he was cast into an entirely different world as if a line of reality and fantasy had been marked. Although as he stood in the forest he was not entirely sure of which side he was on now. Was the forest the reality of it all, here before any of them ever were, or was it the fantasy, a place just out of reach of the war machine? Whichever it was he was thankful to be alone for a minute, free from giving orders, and free from death. The snow had left nothing untouched. When he was little he had always loved the way the snow added a pure beauty to nature. The scenery all around filled him with nostalgia. He sighed and began to undo the thick leather belt around his waist. A twig snapped in front of him, his fingers ceased, and his eyes scanned the thick trunks around him. Just off to his left in the distance were three barely distinguishable silhouettes. His fingers found the flap on his holster and unbuttoned it. The Luger’s steel sucked the warmth from his hand as he leveled the weapon and moved towards the figures. His heart was thumping hard against his chest and his breathing quickened. He snuck up behind them; when he was close enough he raised the weapon and shouted, “Halt!”

    The figures froze. They turned towards him, eyes widened in fear. It was a mother, a son, and a very young little girl whose short blonde hair was tossed all about her head. In another time and place her hair was probably very soft and smooth. On her face was a smudge of dirt. There was a familiarity in her face. She reminded him of his own daughter though his own looked slightly older. Did they look similar? He hadn’t seen her in such a long time. His heart sank a little when he reasoned that any little girl he ran into might look like his daughter. It had been long enough that the picture of her in his mind was fuzzy. One of her hands was busy holding onto what he presumed was her older brother; the other hand carried a worn brown teddy bear. He was surprised; the bear still had both of its button eyes. How long then had they been traveling? Heinrich eased the safety off the Luger and racked the slide to put a bullet into the chamber.

    “Move away from each other. Five feet.” He flicked his wrist from side to side using the barrel of the gun to reiterate his demands.

    Each of their faces expressed the same emotion. Fear. He kept the weapon on them as he approached the little girl. He squatted down and used his hand to push rogue strands of hair behind her ear. Her eyes were green, not blue like his daughters, but they had the same small round nose. He gently turned her head and was disappointed to see attached earlobes. He sighed and took a deep breath.

    “What is your name?” he said.

    The little girl looked to her mother, innocent, looking for her approval. Heinrich watched on in amazement at their silent discourse. Even in the present situation she regarded her mother as the highest authority. The woman nodded and she turned back to Heinrich.

    “Sabine,” a small smile crossed her face and he smiled back. He took another deep breath and exhaled as he stood up.

    “Go,” he said and motioned with the weapon. There was no hesitation in them to see if he were serious. The little girl’s brother grabbed her wrist and pulled her to their mother. He watched them disappear before holstering the weapon and heading to the edge of the forest. As he exited the forest Heinrich brought another cigarette to his lips and touched the end to a flame. He let the smoke sit before exhaling. As he walked back towards the camp an acrid smell was pushing its way past him; moving towards the forest. He hoped that the smell would never reach inside the forest and that it would remain as it were; whether that is fantasy or reality.

    BUDDY GORGEOUS Active Member

    Oct 20, 2009
    Likes Received:
    What dreams may come?


    'I recall a fly rubbing it's little legs together and supped on what little remained of the corpse. What scant flesh left on it's emaciated body to supply the fly's fill was questionable but it feasted with it's brother's nevertheless. The husk left on the floor by my feet was once a young and healthy man, no more than twenty years of age i'd assume, now no more than a bag of bones for the bug life to chew on. I wondered if he was old enough to have tasted alcohol or felt the warmth of a woman yet. I heared a cackle of laughter to my right that split the air like gunshot. I turn to my right to see what grim comedy is being played... and erm...'

    His words faltered at that point of recollection, the tongue playing dead in his mouth. When rain whispered on the window he peered out in to the dying light, looking at the trees clash and sway in the wind. Coburn looks at the old man with a face knitted up with confuddled thoughts and emotion.
    'Please excuse me,' Goretzer said, so quietly Coburn strained to hear him ' i just need a little moment, then we'll continue with the interview'.

    Coburn solemnly nodded and waited patiently with his pen poised over a notebook, awaiting whatever atrocity Goretzer's mind replayed and tongue so far denied. As Goretzer downed a throat full of water, Coburn scratched his bald pate and smoothed the silky worm of mustache under his nose, idly glancing down at his watch. Working for the History channel wasn't exactly a nine to five job. If an interview lasted three hours and leading well in to the night then, according to his unit manager, so be it. 'Get the fact's, jack. I don't give a damn how long it takes you!' He'd be told like an erring school child, ordered before the headmaster's desk. 'Get the fact's!'. Goretzer turned his glazed eyes from the window toward's the young man and rolled some spit on his lips with his tongue, ready to unearth more long burried secret's.

    '...I get little sleep, for a long long time now but it's nothing new. These event's have haunted my dream's since i was a young Officer, and rightly so. Retrospect is in 20 x 20 vision, and now all these many years later, i clearly see why they plague me night and day. I was appointed head of the Technical Disinfection Department of the SS, where my responsibility was to improve the efficiency of Gas chambers, a truly despicable job but one i continued to perform. I was arriving at camp Hadazgarer, Poland, to modify the chamber's during the winter of 1941. At the camp rowed allongside the long but squat brick buildings were four or five diesel trucks, connected to the chamber with fat snaking pumps, chugging away all evening. Carbon Monoxide poisoning is a lengthy process, anything up to 32 minutes for the last of the chamber's inhabitant's to die. So it was my job at the camp to replace it with Zyclon B, a highly Toxic prussic acid that would reduce the time by 10 minutes or so and was cost effective. Pathetic saying this now but I can cry all these years later, feeling sorry for myself and for the many of whom i helped tread in to the ground but it is simply cause and effect. I could very well have had my neck stretched at Nurmberg if i hadn't submitted every detail i knew of what we perpetrated. I deserved alot worse than the dead eating away at my sanity, or what little is left of it.

    I remember vividly the winding lines of Polish men and women being ushered in to the dark, blind to fate as cattle are in a slaughterhouse. Their frail and naked bodies pale as the paper in your lap Mr.Coburn, and colder than our heart's were at the time. A large, black clad soldier, almost shaped like a church bell, stood at the chamber door cupping his hands arround his mouth, informing these naked rank's: 'Breathe in deeply, it strenghten's the lungs! Inhaling is a means of preventing infectious diseases, a trusted method of disinfection! breathe in deeply!'. They would shuffle with their bare feet, Shiff shush shiff shush, in to the chamber, clutching tightly to anyone close. Some of those too apprehensive to enter were re-assured and encouraged. Eventually so many were herded in they would be pressed together skin to skin and nose to nose with, ironically, little room to breathe'.

    Coburn stopped writing and looked up at the old man, a little perturbed by this aging Nazi's i'll humour. But Goretzer's face bore an expression far removed from joy. The eye's, set in socket's so deep and dark they glinted like water in the belly of a well, roved at some scene that played behind his eyes.

    ' The chamber door would be shut with bang that rattled the teeth in my gums. Allongside the building, where the truck's were before their disconnection, two masked soldiers climbed the ladders to gain access to the re-sealable portholes set in the roof. Slung about their chest's were silver cylindrical pots, which they unclipped as they approached. The chamber would then be plunged in to darkness. Those inside, entered at first with hushed nervousness and sibilant little whispers, released a chorus of panicked screams that rumbled allong the walls like beating fists. '

    Goretzer raked at the silvery stubble on his face and slowly let out a deep breath as if every memory being resurrected were slowly suffocating him. Tear's welling in his eyes. 'The Bell like soldier beckoned me to have a look through the door's peep hole. I refused, shaking my head, feeling the day's lunch crawling it's way up my gullet. The soldier pressed his eye to the glass, a beaming smile spreading across his ruddy face. ' The Jew's are weeping as they do in the Synagogue,' he said dead-panned, as if it were the most normal thing in the world. I doubled over at that moment, gripping my knees as a sudden surge of vomit painted the stones beneath me. Eventually the cacophony of noise diminished as the time drew on, it wound down from a frightfull Hullabaloo to a few timid yelp's and crie's. After 20 minutes there was only silence. After wiping the grease from my mouth i staggered to the peep-hole to, for some uncomprehensible reason, catch a glimpse of what we had done. I could see through the foggy glass as the bulbs were switched on, all those inside stood shoulder to shoulder like tower's of basalt.'

    The tears teatered on his lashes and streamed fat ribbons down the old man's face, scraping them away with the heels of his hands.

    ' Even in death you could tell who were family, still clutching each other's hands tightly till the blood stopped. They were hard to be broken apart. When the door was opened they would flop out in unnatural angles, jointless as rag dolls, their glassy eye's rolled up to the heaven's vainly hoping some passing deity would be punctual with their salvation. Soldier's would fish out the bodies and have them taken not too far from the chambers to large, 100 yard long trenches dug close to the woodland nearby. But before being tossed in to the pit, in their hundreds, they would be laid out ready for 'Processing'. Men and women in white coats arrived like Vultures circling the dead. Crouching down on their haunches they would open a mouth and hammer out teeth, bridges and crowns that were of any value. Rubber gloved hands, rooting arround the mouth of a slackened face, some riffling through the body orifices for concealed jewellry like wedding ring's and locket's.

    A picture can speak a thousand words they say, and no ammount of telling will equal the horror i witnessed. My heart was beating against my chest like a bird in a cage, so bewildering, so confusing it was. You see, we were told this was the right thing to do, drummed in to us over and over that this was the final solution. If you thought any differen't, no one would contest against you being dragged out before your family and shot. But i knew then, seeing it before me first hand, this was all so terribly wrong. But it's too late. When your hundreds of miles away with the camps out of sight the full reality of it's purpose is hidden away. How stupidly naive a bastard i am.'
    More tears dashed down his face but just as quickly they were dashed away.

    ' Laughter split's the air like gunshot to my right. I turn to see a captain, tall and wiry, his smile glinting like the sun on a blade. As he strut's about between the dead, he rocked a can in his twig like fingers rattling it's golden content's. He spotted me and worked his way over, the cape of his black rain coat flapping and curling about his legs. 'You look a little pale Goretzer. Haven't seen much of this first hand have you?' he mused aloud, amusing himself at my sallow features. I gave him no reply, my mind was in no fit condition to have a simple conversation whilst hip deep in murder. He barked out a laugh before saying 'Well, you'll get used to it sooner or later. Oh, before i go, how about giving us a smile eh?' whilst proffering me the can of teeth. I reeled back nearly stumbling over the boy's corpse, sick gurgling in my throat. He walked away, Laughing as he went. The bodies were burned with red fire that towered and licked the sky like demonic tongues escaping the earth. All these sight's, the smells, the sounds. They all haunt me. I know them better than my own reflection, better than those closest to me and my heart. Hound and torment me in my waking and my dreaming and will, im sure of it, continue to do so even when i'm a long time dead'.

    His voice trailed off, drowning in more choked tears. Coburn was entranced by the old man's account midway through, foolishly forgetting to write down this dictation. Though tales like these have been told innumerable times before, this account did not fail to efficiently affect him. The old man's head slumped down to his chest, pearls of tears falling from his wet face, but no ammount of wet works could assuage such a thing. And he knew that perfectly well. Coburn yanked a fistfull of tissue's from a box and handed them to this blubbering old man. Wiping his face dry, Goretzer turned to look out to of the window and in to the night, street lights burning orange between the branches, reminding him of flames in a pit oh so long ago, but never too far away. He couldn't help but wonder, whilst peering in to brooding night, what dream's may come?.
  8. Marcelo

    Marcelo Contributing Member

    May 8, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Sonora, Mexico
    Syn (1099 words)

    I never met my mother, but my father used to tell me stories about her, and about my birthplace. He said that I was born in Poland, just like her. He also said that she was beautiful, a woman that couldn't be kept in a kitchen or even in a house. She was of a wild nature, and my father had loved every inch of it.

    “But what happened to mama?” I used to ask him.

    “She was in love, son, in love with her country.” He always answered in a calm tone, followed by a smile. However, I knew it was only a mask. He never truly managed to hide the sorrow beneath that fake smile. He still loved her, and I was glad of that. I never asked further than that.

    My childhood and the years following it weren't out of the ordinary. When I finished school I was a young man who felt invincible and who loved his country without bounds. I guess that made me a patriot, and when the call of arms spread throughout the country, I didn't hesitate joining the army. It all seemed so glamorous; it was easy to think it was the right thing to do. Hell, it sure wasn't.

    To this day, I still wonder at the world's irony. It made me see it as a cruel stand-up comedian, making fun of its audience. Sure, everyone's tried to leave its comedy act unscathed, but the problem is that we our bound to our chairs. This is something I learned in the Nazi campaign in Poland, as we advanced like lightning into Warsaw.

    A week after crossing the Polish border, a heavy rain started to fall on the road. We were ambushed by some sort of Polish resistance, and after the rain had stopped falling as the bullets flying across the battlefield had, the sky was already dark. Me and my squad tried to find the rest of the company, but it seemed that the more we searched the more lost we got. Finally we decided to rest under a tree we had found, and ultimately fell asleep.

    The next day, we realized we were in some sort of valley. We had nowhere to go but forward, so we started walking. The sun and the moon came and went, and soon our supplies became but crumbs and droplets. We were six men with a low morale, with empty stomachs, with parched throats and next to no sense of direction. However, an opportunity presented itself. In the distance, someone in the squad spotted a village. We didn't even have the strength to run a quarter of a mile, but somehow we managed to run it—at least most of the way.

    [noparse]Bang![/noparse] We stopped short, and looked around. One of our squad members dropped dead, a bleeding hole just in the middle of his forehead. We took cover beneath some rocks lest they fired at us again, and looked desperately at each other. We still had our uniforms on, and no matter what we did they wouldn't receive us amicably. At this moment, we had two options: Either we turned tail and ran, leaving our lives to the mercy of luck, or we pushed forward and took what we needed by force. We pushed forward.

    It wasn't easy. We moved from cover to cover, making slow but sure progress. Occasionally, a bullet would whistle between us, and occasionally it would hit its mark. To this day, I can't remember how it felt then. Did I feel offended because of their hostility? Or did I feel angry, because of our friends' deaths? I can't tell, but I probably thought that since they'd opened fire, we should return the favor.

    Silence was as thick as mist in what had turned to be a battlefield. Every time we heard a bullet, my heart started beating twice as fast. After a while, for I had completely lost the sense of time, we hid beneath some trees only a half a minute's run from the village. We could clearly see their silhouettes in the distance, but we didn't dare open fire yet. Three of our squad members had been killed by then, and we counted about a dozen armed men in the village. However, we were soldiers, and they were not.

    [noparse]Cling![/noparse] A bullet ricocheted from my helmet as I tried to see them clearer. I fell to the floor, dizzy. One of my squad members popped a smoke, and we quickly set to arming our rifles with bayonets. I remember I was the first one to charge in, and was closely followed by the others. We entered the smoke, only hearing our footsteps and the whistling bullets, hoping to hit targets they couldn't see. As soon as we were out of the smoke, we attacked them with all we had.

    We fired at them with out rifles, blew them to pieces with our grenades, and stabbed them without our bayonets. And weary, hungry, thirsty and depraved of sleep as we were in that moment, we didn’t stop at the dozen armed men. Lust for blood took over our bodies, and we wrought the same punishment on everyone who crossed our sight. We pillaged the small houses dotting the village, and ate and drank as if there was no tomorrow. When I had taken my share, I went outside.

    My knees trembled, and my eyes were filled with tears as I saw the massacre in front of my eyes. The piles of bodies, the blood stains in my uniform. I don't know why, but I tried hard not to drop my rifle. At that very moment I felt broken, I felt insane.

    A tender hand touched my shoulder, scaring me out of my wits. I looked at it from the corner of my eye. It was a woman. “Syn,” she said soothingly, and lifted her hand to my face. I turned, angry because of all and no reasons at all, and stabbed her with my bayonet. And as I saw her, realization shook my entire being. She was a beautiful woman, who could be compared with the wild flowers that grew in that valley. As life left her eyes, she fell to the ground like a rag-doll, and I just watched her, devoid of all emotions. I later learned that syn means son in Polish, and to this very day I still wonder if she was my mother, and if so, that I had killed her.
  9. THX-1138

    THX-1138 Member

    Dec 31, 2009
    Likes Received:
    In my body
    Do Good Things

    Do good things (2508)

    I drank my coffee slowly. Letting the sweet taste of the sugar rest on my tongue before swallowing. To have sugar again after so many weeks of black coffee it was like a dream. I had told the lower enlisted to secure for me five pounds of the sweetener when the new shipment had come in. One of the perks to being an officer I suppose. I didn’t feel bad that the inmates here weren’t getting enough sugar, or chocolate or any of the other luxuries of the outside world. They were prisoners, to be dealt with like animals.
    I stared through the grime and dirt of my office window into the yard where the inmates spent their days. It was early morning and the sun had just begun to rise reluctantly like a man from a dream about a beautiful woman. The grounds were barren and lifeless at this hour. Once the men had had their breakfast and morning hygiene the dirt tracks and odd shrub would again have company.
    The compound where I was currently stationed was far from civilization in the outskirts to the east of the great city of Berlin. My home it had been now for almost five years. When I arrived I was nothing more than executive officer, filing paperwork and inventorying the men who came through these gates. After several months of extensive cataloging and mind numbing forms the Fuhrer himself saw fit to promote me. I received my double bars nearly four years ago, and now I wanted out of here.
    This place fell heavily on a man’s spirit. Like a cage even to those who were fortunate enough to run the place. I wanted out of the steel fencing and corrugated steel. I wanted to be back in my home in Berlin, drinking coffee and discussing Nietzsche with my friends.
    The war had brought me to this place. Hitler had decided my years spent at the university would make me an excellent officer for his army of perfection. That with my knowledge helping the fight, the Arian race could wipe out the Jews of the world. Make it pure again. I did not care for this war, it was not my choice to be leader of anyone. I would have been a writer, if not for Hitler. I despised him greatly, although I never told a soul of my feelings towards our great and mighty leader.
    A knock at my office door stirred me from my thoughts and I set my coffee cup on the table. When I opened the door a young private was standing at attention, his hand shooting out in front of him suddenly.
    “Heil, Hitler.” He said stone faced.
    “Heil, Hitler,” I agreed. “What is it private?”
    The young soldier dropped his arm and stared blankly over my head. He was tall and thin with a jaw cut from granite. His blue eyes brighter than the afternoon sky, and his hair the blinding blonde the Fuhrer loved best.
    “Sir,” He said. “Your morning briefing is here, sir.”
    I put out my hand and grabbed the folder from the man. Only a single envelope sat snugly in the crease. It was thin and white, like that of a banker’s envelope. I dismissed the young man and turned back into my office.
    I closed the door and returned to my coffee. I took a sip, but it had begun to get cold. I set the cup back on the hard wood table and sat down heavily into my chair. I opened the folder and pulled the envelope from its dark brown crevice.
    No return address anywhere on the white rectangle. Just my name, rank, and location with the word Urgent spelled out in red letters. I opened it hastily, perhaps my orders had finally come and I would get to leave this place.
    A single sheet of paper was all the envelope contained. The standard header was used, but it was hand written, not typed as orders should be. I felt my heart sink. I read.

    Hauptmann Kortig,

    It is with some dismay that I must inform you of the current situation regarding the establishment you and your men have built. We have received word of a raid targeted at your camp. We have been working tirelessly to apprehend the American forces heading in your direction but they are being aided by the soviets. We are sure you are quite capable of escaping with your men to the safety of Berlin, that is why we have sent no troops to bring you out. The OberFuhrer has decided that to rectify this injustice you are hereby ordered to terminate the lives of all the prisoners now being held within the walls of your camp. You will be given further instructions tomorrow.

    Oberst Heinrich, Berlin

    I sat for a moment re-reading the last two lines of the letter. I felt my heart sink even further. I had wanted no part in this murderous tyrants plot to rule all existence, and yet I sat now facing a decision I could not make as a moral human being.
    A moment later there was another knock at the door. I opened it to see my lieutenant standing with his arms tucked behind his back. I welcomed him inside and returned to my seat.
    He removed his hat went to the pot of coffee sitting on the two burner gas stove. He poured himself a cup and poured more sugar than two men would need.
    “Spare that.” I scolded mildly.
    He looked around at me and laughed.
    “Is there not enough for you here?” He asked.
    “I recall several weeks of acidic coffee.”
    “Hording then.” he replied. “Much nobler.”
    “What do you know of nobility?”
    He turned to me, the top of his cup steaming from the fresh liquid, his eyebrows furrowed. I rubbed my head, suddenly it began to ache. My tone had not been familiar.
    “I am not myself at the moment,” I told him. “Forgive me.”
    “There is no need for forgiveness, sir.” He moved to the chair on the other side of my desk. The steam from his coffee lazily tracing a line to the ceiling.
    I tossed him the letter I had received and watched intently as he read. His face changing with each new line of script. I could almost hear his thoughts, not unlike my own I presumed. He, like myself, had been recruited from college and had no real interest in serving in the military. He was a good man, a just man, never coming to anger in the four years I had known him. Surely he too would see the injustice of the situation we now found ourselves.
    He finished reading and sat silently for a moment, his eyes scanning the last bits of text on the sheet of paper. He looked up to meet my eyes and only shook his head. The letter was placed back on my desk and a heavy sigh followed.
    “What does this mean?” He asked. “What are we to do? We can’t very well kill every man in residence. Can we?”
    He rested his cup on the arm of the chair and lowered his head. I knew that neither one of us could morally do what they had ordered us to. We would be facing certain death if we did nothing, by the hands of American soldiers or by our own government for treason. A rational man would have run.
    “What can we do?” My lieutenant asked solemnly.
    “The only thing I can think is to surrender to the Americans.”
    “They’ll hang us for sure!”
    “I don’t think they will,” I told him calmly. “The Americans are kind, they will take pity on us. Besides, we have been good leaders, never condemning men to death or punishing for no reason. The prisoners here might help in our cause.”
    “This is ridiculous,” He spouted. “How do you know the prisoners won’t be the first to murder us?”
    I shook my head at him. I didn’t know, but it was better than taking innocent lives or dealing with an angry Fuhrer. Surely, God would intervene on our behalf.
    “I’ve already decided this lieutenant,” I told him. “We will surrender to the Americans, leaving bodies wearing our uniforms to be found by the SS. It is the only way either of us can peacefully go back to our old lives. With this raid we have a chance to go back home and restart our lives.”
    “Home?” His indignation stunned me. “You speak of home? Home, now is controlled by an evil tyrant, we will be found out for sure. You know better than anyone what they do to deserters. Let alone traitors. Which is what we will become if we help the Americans.”
    “I am aware of the risks, lieutenant!” I shouted. What was becoming of me? “We have no choice in the matter. Either we face the judgment of a mad man or that of God himself. Which do you think is worse?”
    He sat quietly for a moment. His face sagging with grave thoughts flowing across it. Finally he spoke. Words I was asking myself.
    “What do we do?”

    That night as the roving guards made their rounds and the gunners in their towers shone a spotlight on the camp, my lieutenant and I systematically called the guards to my office. We told them there was an important briefing concerning a company of American troops heading our direction.
    We planned to lock them inside the office and set it on fire. We would have to murder our own country men to save the lives of innocents, but it would not be easy. We told ourselves we were doing God’s work. It did little to help my guilt.
    I crossed the main yard of the camp and made my way to the front gates where two men were standing with rifles. Laughing and joking they passed a cigarette between them. The one facing me took a long drag and upon seeing me approach threw it away and snapped to attention.
    “Hauptmann,” He exclaimed, smoke pouring from his mouth. “All quiet here, sir.”
    “I’ve come to relieve you men of your post. Head to my office and stay there. There is an important briefing.”
    They looked at each other slowly, then decided not to argue. Away they went into the shadows of the nearby dining facility.
    I looked around and saw that the four towers had been abandoned, the six roving guards were now inside and that I was the only man left in the yard. I moved quickly to my office and grabbed two cans of gasoline sitting next to the generator. I poured the entirety of the two cans along the outside, splashing the fuel into the gap between the ground and the floor of the building.
    I threw the cans away and searched for my matches. As I reached into my pocket I heard a voice. An American voice, speaking English. “Do you smell gasoline?” It inquired.
    I moved to the small window at the corner of the office and peered inside. The shadows of the men wore no helmets or slung rifles. It was full of prisoners. I ducked down and turned back into the yard. I was stopped by a familiar face.
    My lieutenant stood before me, his mauser pointing at my chest.
    “I’m sorry, Hauptmann,” He said sternly. “I can not allow you to dessent.”
    “What are you doing, lieutenant?” I shouted in rage. “I order you to put down the weapon and carry out the plan.”
    At that moment all the guards appeared around the side of the dining facility. They aimed there rifles at me. “What is this?” I shouted.
    “Mutiny, sir,” one lower enlisted man said.
    “I told the men about your plot after we had our little talk,” My lieutenant approached me slowly. “I told them you planned to kill them, and free the prisoners so you could see your family again. What about their families Hauptmann? It seems unfair to convict so many to death with no remorse or empathy.”
    “And what of the Americans? Is it unjust to let them die?”
    “You think to much of the vermin sitting in that office. Mere rats compared to us.”
    “You’re a coward,” I told him. “God will judge you.”
    “Until that day,” He said. “I will be making the judgments. And today, I have decided that you, Hauptmann, will carry out the orders given to you by the Oberfuhrer, and exterminate the Americans currently hiding inside your office.”
    “And if I refuse?” I asked. I looked around now at my situation. I was surrounded with nowhere to go. I could not fight all these men, and I could not run from them.
    “You will,” He told me. “If you want to see your family again, you will.”
    His eyes glared bright blue and even through the darkness the black iris could be made out. I dropped my eyes from his and reached into my trouser pocket. I found a book of matches and a small piece of paper. I unfolded the paper and read the words scribbled there by my daughter.
    ‘Do good things, papa’
    I lit the matches and as they burned I thought of my wife, and daughter and knew what I would have to do.
    I flung the burning book at the guard nearest to me and rushed him. He sent up a hand to block and I was able to quickly disarm him. I took his rifle and fired two shots at the two men standing by my office window, one dropped. A bullet whizzed by my head, near my left ear. My lieutenant was running for cover and firing blindly over his shoulder.
    Suddenly, something like fire tore through my shoulder knocking the rifle from my hands. One of the guards had dropped to the ground and began firing. His shots were clean and two more ripped through my upper thigh. I fell to the dirt.
    I breathed heavily, the air struggling to pull into my lungs. I lay on the cold earth and stared up into the night sky. And at once a great flame came to life and ate away at the building to my right. It licked the wood and left dark black streaks against the dirty glass. As I lay, bleeding my life’s blood to stain the ground, I could hear the torturing wails of dead men.
    The screams climbed into the night sky as men burned. They screamed for God to save them, they screamed for their mothers, some merely screamed in agony.
    I closed my eyes and thought of my wife’s face. Her hair the golden yellow of the autumn fields. Her skin as white as the fresh winter snows. I stared deeply into the eyes of an angel as God called me to him. I would meet my maker very soon. I only hoped he would forgive me.
  10. Neoaptt

    Neoaptt Banned

    Feb 18, 2010
    Likes Received:

    You know what! Being a Nazi officer is no fun at all.

    Everyday you have to wake up at 6 in the morning. 6 in the morning! I mean really. If god wanted us to wake up that early he would have at least made the sun come up. But I guess god doesn't think of everything.

    After i wake up from this mess i find out that i have to salute this old guy with a ridicules mustache. I found out later that one guy actually laughed at him. Lets just say, he didn't last much longer.

    As for the salute, it isn't even a salute! It's just taking your arm out like a sword and yelling some nonsense. I didn't think it could get much worst then this. I was wrong.

    Not only did we do all this crap but we also had to kill people. Oh no, not just the men that came to fight us. We had to kill everyone! Just yesterday i went into this abandoned house and found about 30 children and one school teacher. I got order to shot them all. So i did.

    Every day it's the same and the same again. My troupes keep storming buildings and washing the streets. Killing everything in sight. I just don't think I'll have the stomic for it much longer. I just can't do this.

    Did you know that we are a world wide threat? Yeah, about three days ago i overheard some of the higher ups speaking in low whispers. They were telling the guy with the stash that he was a world threat and that the world has declared war on him. Do you know what he did? Instead of crapping his pants like any normal person would have done. He actually smiled. SMILED! This is a guy who just got the world turned against him and he's smiling. I don't really think this is a man i want to serve.

    You know what. I think I'm going to end this. I'm just going to go outside today and walk across the fields. I'll just wait till a mine explodes in my face. But then again, I also have the chance of not dieing and just suffering through the pain. Maybe I'll go and try to kill Hitler right now. I mean, it wouldn't be that hard. But then again, i just might be torchered to death by the guard if i was caught. This is hopeless.

    Aw man. My troupes are being called in again. I don't know what for. I mean we have already secured everything in sight. I don't know what more there is for us to do besides sit here and wait for the world to attack. But who knows, maybe I'll be the lucky one and service.

    Hopefully he'll gets killed soon. I really don't like him. He just isn't what he seemed to be when he was talking to Germany. But, everyone is a little crazy. Just some more than others.

    -End of journal.
  11. Wavanova

    Wavanova Member

    Feb 16, 2010
    Likes Received:
    To Revise a History (1133)

    To fight for one’s homeland and to guard against the mistakes of the past: this is the credo of any soldier, at any point in history, at any place in the world.

    All of the other officers stationed with Herr Hitler at least got some time with their families, some time to collect themselves. All that Herr Richter and Herr Hahn got were extra nights near his bedside, taking turns slipping in and out of wakefulness on night watches that seemingly went on for days. Somebody had to do it; World War I showed just how destructive an influential leader’s assassination can be to international peace. The lost sleep and lost livelihood was just a part of guarding somebody so important, and the two men would have to slowly grow used to the strain it was having on their minds and bodies.

    Having to be constantly alert for the slightest hint at an assassination attempt takes its toll on a man. No coffee bean of Colombia or sugar cane of Brazil could have put a hamper on that consequence. Not only was the need have all reflexes consistently on edge and ready to kill a man a drain on one’s mental faculties, but doubt in the man they were protecting was becoming more and more of a concern by the day. Both Richter and Hahn were growing morally uneasy. Several times a day, the sum of their accrued worries would lead them to consult their consciences for a verdict regarding their character. Of course, the result was always “innocent”, but they still couldn’t help but wonder.

    This was 1936, before Czechoslovakia was even touched by the Nazis, and long before even a single Jewish stomach felt hunger pangs in the confines of some abhorrent camp. Other Nazi officers did not have to deal with the same ethical quandary as Richter and Hahn, they did not see the things Richter and Hahn did; the bizarre machines, the assassins materializing from nothingness, the attempts on a seemingly innocent national hero’s life.

    Richter and Hahn would share their thoughts on the situation, and Richter and Hahn both agreed: they did not like this one bit. They could not abandon their posts, or they would face a court marshal. They certainly could not imagine try to find other officers to assist them in some sort of revolutionary strike against Herr Hitler’s government, or his life. They could wait for a Jew by the name of Einstein to examine the three points of entry, but it was still weeks until the man could be brought to Berlin. Richter and Hahn were unsure of how much longer their mental fortitude could supply them with sanity in such odd circumstances.

    “The next one of them that comes in tonight, I’m going to ask where he’s from and how he got here--before I ****ing kill him,” Hahn would scornfully whimper to Richter from time to time.

    He never would; he would always pull the trigger in surprise as soon as the clandestine figures would emerge from those points of entry. You had to be quick with them, as the men learned from Herr Klein. Herr Klein encountered an ashen end when he decided to try taking the assailant prisoner. His family promptly received his remains in a gorgeous golden urn, and did not have to worry about the cost of the cremation.

    Despite their intimidating demeanour, they were quite simple to dispatch: the points of entry were marked on the carpeting with stains from the odd gel that the men secreted upon arrival, so Richter and Hahn always kept an eye on these areas. The points of entry would begin scintillating a most lustrous white for a few seconds, and the men would advance to a closer range and cock their shotguns in its direction. Seconds later, the assailant would come forth from his cluster of light in a daze. Then Richter and Hahn just had to aim for the head and shoot, just like any other soldier they had crossed rifles with in their lives.

    From here on out, all events in this gel-soaked corridor are rather uninteresting. Predictably, these two men that constituted the whole of the secretive Nazi Zeitgarde force ultimately struggled through the same torturous ethical dilemma that their companions in the SS, Gestapo, Luftwaffe, and every other branch of the German military would in 6 or 7 years time. They endured silent questioning of their leader’s actions almost constantly, too afraid to speak out for fear of the firing squad.

    Herr Einstein eventually did examine the three points of entry. He had been doing some research regarding the consequences that a particle or object traveling through time would have on a localized region of spacetime and its gravitational forces. Upon witnessing the quantum phenomenon which he had theorized in a tangible form, the research led him to quickly devise an elegant device that Herr Hitler was ordered by the physicist to carry with him at all times—a device which disrupted supergravitational forces within several miles of it, preventing any sort of oddities in time flow.

    While Hitler initially wished to dabble in using spacetime technology for his gain, it was soon discovered that the functionality of the anti-supergravitational device could not be reversed without a massive amount of energy. According to Einstein, the amount of energy needed for such a machine exceeded the amount of energy existent in the universe. As such, Einstein’s blueprints for the machine were to be burned immediately after the machine’s completion. Einstein was sworn to secrecy and told to never research any spacetime phenomena such as this again, with the death of himself and his family being his punishment if any such knowledge was made available to the public.

    Richter and Hahn were silently executed in the dead of night, one sleep before they were to return home. They were viewed as expendable soldiers by Hitler, ones who had knowledge that could potentially be of great danger to the German state. Hitler’s claim that the watchmen were conspiring to assassinate him in his sleep was all it took for an SS deathsquad to march into the Zeitgarde corridors and bring forth a hail of bullets.

    Herr Hitler would travel everywhere with his device until 1945, when the device and its carrier were simultaneously crushed by debris in a collapsing Berlin bunker. Allied forces would never claim either the body of the tyrant or the shell of his bodyguard as spoils of war.

    The carpets in that corridor of the Chancellor’s Chambers were said to be stained with beer and wine. They were removed shortly after the death of Richter and Hahn, and replaced with a fine hardwood floor. The carpets remain in an anonymous German landfill to this day.
  12. sprirj

    sprirj Contributing Member

    Feb 2, 2009
    Likes Received:
    The Funeral (883 words)

    The weather equally matched the mood in the air. Wilhelm tried shielding himself, a task made harder by myself.
    “Come on Wilhelm, I’m getting soaked” I shouted out as my voice got carried and lost in the freezing winds.
    “It is William now, dad. How many times do I tell you?” He yelled back as he continued to push my wheelchair up towards the church building. I closed my eyes and let the rain lash at my face until I heard a female voice.
    “Get inside the pair of you. It’s truly miserable out there.”
    “Thank you Karen” Said Wilhelm.
    “Karin” I muttered under my breath. It wasn’t worth the confrontation, not now, not today. Despite what today represented my youngest, my beautiful daughter Karin looked well, she had aged dramatically in the past week, but still her 40 years did not show.
    “I’ll get you both a towel” She smiles at me. “You ok dad?”
    “Fine.” I smile weakly back, wiping the rain drops from my brow.

    I watch from the back of the great hall, as my grandsons funeral service gets underway. John was killed in battle in Iraq. My thoughts return to my own time in service. I wanted to wear my old uniform, Wilhelm said it was disrespectful. I still served my country, a decorated soldier. Me and my grandson; brothers in arms. This was about understanding. I still wore my medals, pinned to my black suit. The service was good. A lot of people were there, including Johns regiment.

    The black clouds had finally parted once the service was over, and we had all regrouped in The Rose and Crown for the wake. I observed mostly, tucked away in the corner of the room. I closed my right eye tight and watched Johns regiment standing at the bar. The Brits looked smart. There would have been a time; this lot would have been right in my sights. I made gentle ‘kapow’ noises as my imaginary rifle took each one of them down. I took some satisfaction from this, ‘for old time’s sake’ I said to myself.

    “I need a smoke.” I said to Wilhelm once he had sat down from his second trip to the bar.
    “It’s ok William, I will take him” Said Karin getting up. “I need the loo anyway.”
    This frail old burden was wheeled out onto the wet patio of the beer garden. “Least the suns out now dad.” Said Karin with a glimmer of hope in her voice. “I’ll be right back.”

    I pulled out a cigarette from my coat pocket and gripped the filter between my lips. I patted my pockets for my lighter, then a hand was offered and the flint struck in front of me. I dipped the tobacco into the flame.
    “Thanks” I said through pursed lips.
    “No problem.”
    I look up and am greeted by the big brown eyes of a young female. She forces a polite smile and lights her own smoke.
    “Did you know John?” She asks me as she looks out across the lawn.
    “He was my grandson” I inhaled.
    “But… Really?” She turned around to look at me in surprise.
    “Really.” I exhaled. “You don’t see the resemblance?”
    “I see it.” She smiles again, but this time it’s more relaxed and genuine.
    There is silence for a moment and dead leaves start to dance circles in front of me caught in the wind.
    “You go to school with John?” I ask.
    “He is…was my boyfriend.” She answers, her voice cracking slightly.
    It is my turn to look surprised.
    “I didn’t know. He is a dark horse.”
    “3 years steady, it is funny, but I never knew you existed either.”
    There was a further silence, I looked at her, and she was a pretty thing, with dark rolling curls of hair and rosy cheeks.
    “It was nice meeting you, I wish it had been before…before…., in better circumstances.” She said dropping her cigarette to the floor and stamping it out.
    “Take care my dear.” I called after her as she went back inside.

    “You finished Dad?” I hear Karin say as she comes up behind me.
    “Did you know John had a girlfriend?” I said looking up at Karin as she stands behind the wheelchair.
    Karin freezes. “Yes dad, he was my son.”
    “So why didn’t you tell me! You know I don’t have much in my life, a bit of news like that is important to me; I was starting to wonder… It slip your mind?”
    Karin gulps; and then silence.
    “She is Jewish dad.”
    “That’s why we didn’t tell you.”
    My throat suddenly dry. “And…she knows?”
    “No. She knows nothing; she doesn’t even know we are German. I shouldn’t, but I felt guilty for what the Nazis did.”
    “Nazis? You mean me!”
    “We told her you were dead. You died in the war. She assumed you fought on the British side.”
    I knew her lie was the right thing; this was the burden of being a Nazi soldier.

    The End

    Just a quick mention that Neoaptt(?) story was totally refreshing and I laughed all the way through. :)
  13. da_ardvark

    da_ardvark Member

    Jan 10, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Orders are Orders (550 words)

    Orders are orders. I’d been taught that ever since my first experiences in the military as a young recruit. Coming from a small rural village as I did, the military was the only way to escape both the economic turmoil unleashed after the big war, and also break free of the life I would be doomed to otherwise.

    I can clearly remember my first days as an enlisted man. The training was always intense and often brutal. The common theme in all this training, orders are orders and must be carried out. Without this principle, the entire system would break down into chaos. Over a period of weeks, I and my fellow conscripts had managed to endure. We became a small cog in a much larger fighting machine. The purpose of this mechanism was unknown to me as it was to each soldier.

    After basic training, I served with honor and distinction. In 1928 I was promoted from private to corporal. My pride was unequalled. Wearing the uniform gave me certain privileges not afforded an ordinary civilian. Chief among these were lodging and plenty of food. The economy was still in shambles and it was part of my responsibility to attempt market stabilization. As a young child I remember my father’s proud service in the Freikorps. It was his job to make sure safety was maintained in our small village. He served with pride. The same pride and loyalty to duty my father felt in his Freikorps, I felt as a member of the Reichwehr, and now a member of the Wehrmacht. The names were different, but the mandates remained the same. Orders are orders and must be carried out.

    All of my earlier teachings of youth could not prepare me the days to follow. Promoted to General shortly after Herr Hitler managed to subdue an entire country with his silver tongue, I still had no reason to believe that anything like this was likely to happen. Of course I’d heard some disturbing stories, but these rumors seemed too horrible to believe.

    Now I stand here at the side of a broad pit filled with lifeless bodies. Fighting the urge to retch, I now see the monster I have become. Not a monster of my own design, but a monster nontheless.

    What went wrong is beyond my capacity for rational thought. I found myself slowly lured into circumstance no man desires or deserves. I bore no ill will to the deceased, but orders are orders. The idea of disobeying my orders was as alien and outrageous to me as the thought of taking my own life. The system must not breakdown. The system must endure.

    Yet, looking at the outcome of my order, an intense pang of regret crept back into my being. Orders are orders, that cannot be denied, but there was something else just under the surface. Something was covertly neglected in all my military training. Something which was built into me as a child, and systematically dismantled throughout my military career was finally returning. The concept of right and wrong now came flooding back.

    Standing at the pit, tears streaming down my cheeks, I look upon the dead. I say a silent prayer and pull the trigger one final time. A single 9mm parabellum ends my pain.
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