The small girl giggled merrily hopping from puddle to puddle not caring that her white floral dress was smeared with mud or that she should have been home almost a half hour ago. She sang a cheery childhood song as she kicked waded-up papers out of her way. She squatted down mustering up strength for her next big leap when a massive explosion in the distance shook the ground. She toppled forward landing face first in the mushy mud, the fall was hard, causing a nasty gash splitting her knee. Clutching her now oozing wound, she wailed out for her mommy and scanned the now panic-stricken sidewalks with tearful eyes searching for her. Another explosion, this one closer, blared in the distance, charred debris rained down littering the crowded streets. The remains of a singed doll landed in the puddle beside the her the glowing hot embers fizzling out when it sinks into the water. Thick black smoke rolled throughout the air and flames blazed ferociously as it greedily consumed the small helpless homes. The people of the town fled down the streets carrying their children; running, shouting, screaming, warning others to run, but no one seemed to notice the small girl crying in the middle of the street. Then came the sounds unfamiliar to the girl, a strange popping noise or a bang, contentious and loud, she didn't like it. Soon the streets were quiet, unsettling. That is when she saw them. Down the filthy streets marched rows and rows of men dressed identically, carrying these long shiny metal pipes which she realized was the source of the weird noise. The men paraded with a group of townsfolk of all ages some, the older men and young boys, had their hands behind their backs. Most of them were crying and being poked with the pipes by the men forcing them to continue forward. The uniformed men shouted brutally in a foreign language, their eyes were piercing blue and hidden under those hats. One of them spotted the girl and run over to her, holding down his hat as he ran. Pointing his pipe at her with an expressionless face he spoke to her in that rough foreign language, she only sat there unsure what to do. He spoke again even harsher, but it only made her cry. He knelt down, removing his hat revealing his almost white blond hair, and patted her hair. He took a white handkerchief out from his pocket and hastily tied it over her knee. He helped the girl up and held her hand as walked together back to where the men still stood waiting. They walked down the town, the men searching homes, breaking down doors, and smashing windows collecting more people as they when. The girl watched as flames spread destroying the only town she had ever known. The men laughed and drank from small shiny containers they stowed away in their pockets. It wasn't long until she saw where everyone had gone. Big black trucks with more uniformed men were stuffing the trucks full of people and there was one empty one waiting for their group. One by one they were shoved into the storage unit of the truck until the girl was the last to be loaded. The man who had helped her lifted her up gingerly, like her father once did and placed her inside the crowded truck. Before the large metal doors were shut and locked she caught a glimpse of a red band around his arm with a white circle and strange black symbol in the middle.
April 7, 2012