Beneath the glory of every war there is the drudgery of evil; beneath the glories of the decorated soldier is the terror-etched face of the civilians of sacked cities and razed village: the underdwellers and victims of all wars.The night sky was brilliantly clear in the country, like the inside of a globe, dotted with stars. It was warm in the early autumn, the air filled with that smell that marked the brilliant picture of yellow-gold surroundings so well. The road was old and narrow, a single car could hardly travel along it, and the surface was pockmarked and rutted with age. Hardly a few feet of clear ground—grass covered in a light layer of leaves—separated the way from the thick forest surrounding it. On both sides were high embankments, and above them the dark boles of the silent trees looked down upon the boy as he half ran, half stumbled along. To him, the dreamy atmosphere of the lovely night was utterly lost, his eyes bearing the hunted look of an animal. His ragged sneakers padded softly on the pavement, but he heard it not. At every footfall the heavy tramping of boots replaced his steps in his mind. His breath became the terse shouted orders, the sound of jingling equipment. His uncut dark hair fell across his eyes partly, shrouding the world from him, leaving his memories better entrance as his senses were blocked. The world around him was burning, the world about what filled with screaming. The boy scrambled about disoriented, trying to grab the nearest possessions in his ragged tent. Smoke filled the air, and the sound of guns rang out constantly. Spurred by blind terror he fled the tent, rushing into the main grounds of the sprawling camp built into the beautiful countryside. In the war torn land, refugee camps like these were all too common, as was the practice of burning them. He began running towards the edge of the forest, so temptingly close. Behind him he could hear screams and shouts, while in front of him there was only silence, deceptive silence. He twisted around to look back, and could see others running in the same direction. And behind them… He paled more—if that was possible—and pushed himself more, even as shots rang out closer, the more ordered forms of soldiers shooting down the stragglers without mercy; ahead the calming dark of the forest yawned larger, in sharp contrast to the horror behind. The boy was gasping for breath as he stumbled about the first tree-boles, a carpet of leaves replacing the grass and dirt of before. His headlong rush ceased at length almost ten minutes when he collapsed, utterly spent, but free. His running cleared the hair partly, and the boy snapped back to the present, reaching with a hand to wipe tears and hair alike out of his face. It was then that he paused like a rabbit realizing a human was watching it: the small road he was on was behind him, but where he stood was on a main road it had joined to. He looked ways, and at the right started back, eyes wide with terror. Voices he heard coming from the dim shape of a check point. Running feet he heard, their booted clump drowning out his as he turned and fled, stumbling even more as exhaustion overcame the spurt of terror. Gun shots rang out, a bullet hit the pavement next to him, and he cried out silently as the next entered his leg: his stumbling became a fall, preserving his life as another bullet flew over his prone form. But even as he dragged himself off the ground into a crouch, he saw the black figures of his hunters in front of him, and his eyes closed in surrender as another shot rang out.
Another body enters a faceless grave, a fragment of rock caustically stuck above. Another corpse rots beneath the splendor of the Autumn night, blighting invisibly the beauty of nature.
Edited by Zarayna, Nov 19 2012 - 06:03 PM.