by Frank Nitkiewicz


I see your desire to be a soldier. A hero in battle, defeating enemies in death. A common desire among boys your age. But you have not yet experienced the other side of it. The reality. I am familiar with the passion as I too had the same desires. Until the day came that changed me for good.

We were notified to abandon our fort, as we were unable to be protected and left vulnerable. The air began to grow from preparation to concern. The packing by families began to speed up slowly to a frantic frenzy. Then a faint, thunderous sound in the distance began to grow. People stopped to identify what it was, and my heart began to race. Too young to know exactly what it was, but instinctively my fear rose.

The thunder grew…slowly…loudly. Voices from faint concerns rose to terrified screeches as the Indians trumpeted their war cries.

All my desire, fantasy, pride, all dreams of being a soldier washed through and out my body. When I saw the ax and flesh meet and draw first blood.

My dreams of heroism betrayed me as I watched men and women beheaded. Fear filling the air, I was breathing. All I could think of was escape. Not helping all………..

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