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A Fallen Warrior
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A Fallen Warrior
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|AUTHOR'S OTHER TITLES (1)
Here I Am. With No One (Poetry) - [116 words]
A Fallen Warrior
“Pick up that weapon, now!” The tall figure kept bellowing at him, the spit spraying from his moist lips.
The boy, trembling so deeply, had already wet his pants, but the rain that thundered down could not hide the yellow stains.
This was obviously the first time the boy held a rifle, the captain had to position his hands for the stock’s grip.
The weight of it seemed too much to bear but in comparison to the task that was set before him, the burden was an easy task.
The river of blood that emerged from the nose of the prisoner who fell to his knees before the boy was now a thick waterfall.
He was to be executed for no transgression that had been committed.
“Do it now! Kill him!” The captain swiftly removed his sidearm from his holster, pressing it to the boy’s temple.
It was as if all the yells of pain had faded when he scrunched his face, closed his eyes and pulled the trigger.
The recoil from the weapon sent the hot bullet to the face of the captive.
The boy’s face turned red with the man’s spattered blood and he fell to his knees, and threw up. The captain laughed and fired three more rounds into the defenceless body, just to make sure the boy’s father was dead.
He turned the pistol to the boy and with one short discharge, the boy joined his father. Life was hard in the depths of Cameroon, and the rebels made it harder.
The remaining council members held a gathering during the aftermath. The cries were still freshly drifting across the valley. The group did not hide their arguments,
displaying full emotions towards each other.
“We must warn the other tribes!” The eldest of the council declared in their jungle lingo.
He was the one they called Soldaat, which transcribes to ‘soldier’ in their native tongue. He was wise and had been in many wars and killed many men.
Next to Soldaat was a tall man, youthful in appearance but aged in warfare. He ran as fast as the wind and bore many scars. He was named Haastig, ‘swift one’.
“Indeed. I will go.” Haastig turned making south-east his path.
”Now, we must gather the dead. The suffering will stop here and now!”
Soldaat was seen as a leader, although he was never ordained as such. Every man there had killed his lion and had proven himself worthy.
“Wait!” cried Tier, “No, we cannot let them walk away from this! Our troops will be home at midday. We can attack them at first light.
They are clumsy and leave trails.”
“Clumsy? They are no white man; they are our brothers, born and raised from this land just as you and I were.”
Soldaat replied still clenching his staff that aided his walk.
“There has been enough bloodshed this day. We will clean our home and bury the dead, and forget.”
With sorrow weighing heavily on their hearts, the council parted in their different directions.
The rebels had moved in swiftly and had delivered their blow into the soul of every weeping woman collecting her dead. The clouds hung ever so low upon the small village and the cries of pain lasted till nightfall.
With every breath that Soldaat took he gathered more hatred for the hands who delivered this damage. As he limped down the muddy tracks,
his eyes absorbing the blood stained wooden walls, Soldaat noticed a small gathering in a hut. Moving closer he could faintly make out soft whimpers from the noisy crowd.
Soldaat entered the hut and all eyes turned to him.
“Let it not be so.”
Before long the only sound that could be heard was the weeping of Soldaat, confronted with what lay before him. There lay his wife covered in a lagoon of her thick blood. It was too late.
Her arms had been severed from her torso leaving flesh and tendon clinging onto her shoulder. The drenched clothes are all that prolonged the inevitable. Soldaat knelt down beside her,
wiping the tears from her quivering face.
Her distinct fragrance to which he had fallen in love with was now diminishing from its usual abundance. He reached out for her, pressing her crown of soft curls upon his chest.
With a soft cry she fell into darkness in the arms of her lover. All who were present fell to the ground and cried out. Soldaat whispered his last goodbye into her ear, and then rose to his feet.
His eyes were filled with rage.
When Haastig returned he fell into the mire, gasping for breath, as he was exhausted as a man could get. All who noticed his arrival ran to him, alerting those who were unaware.
“I have warned them. The Shoka tribes are preparing for battle. They have sent for aid in all directions on all paths for their numbers are small and cannot withstand such a force as the rebels.”
“You have done well, young one,” replied Tier, lifting him from his muddy dwelling.
“Wait! The murderers, they …”
“What? They have what? Speak!” Tier repeated until the saddened gaze from Haastig’s eyes lifted ever so slowly.
“They have reached the next village. I heard the screams of innocent children on my way back. The sharp cries pierced my ears.”
“Do you see now?” Tier warned Soldaat, who was making his way to the commotion.
“They will die, and we will sit here and do nothing!”
“Lower your voice Tier. My eyes have now been opened. We shall prepare for battle.” With the last word departing from Soldaat’s lips, all were scattered.
At midday the tribe’s forces gathered in the town’s centre. The soldiers were tired as the sweat ran from their bodies.
“My brothers…” began Soldaat, “I ask of you a task which I deeply regret, but what I speak of must be done.”
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"Heys! Can I send you an email regarding this short story? I would like to elaborate on some parts of the essay.=]" -- Cherie, Singapore, Singapore, Singapore.
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© 2005 Byron Tuckett
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