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In a galaxy far away past all the stars and meteors, there is a planet where everyone is the same. On this planet, they do not believe in war, or killing, or profiling. This was the beginning of a bedtime story my mother started to tell me after the war started. She would crawl in bed with me as we heard the bombs and guns go off in the distance. I thought about this story as I sat on the cold cement, with my arms in the dirt ground, playing with the harsh soil. As I dug deeper I let drop all my hopes of escaping, the only thing the small hole lead to was a tiny black ant that crawled up my thin dirty arm. I pulled up my sleeve and let it crawl.
'I will call you Freund' I whispered to my friend, my only friend. I watched Freund crawl up my arm, and I also watched him stop and read the numbers tattooed on me.
'Neun, f'nf, drei, sieben, vier' I whispered it for him for he looked a little lost on how to read my name.
Yes, this was my name now, nine, five, three, seven, four.
'Yes it used to be Ingrid, but I think the Nazi's believe we should not have names.
Freund looked disappointed in my answer, I thought that possibly he did not know what a Nazi was, or maybe he did not speak German. What if Freund was from an American solider? If he had landed with some soldier, if God had sent him for me, from America. Considering all this, I spoke to him in what little English I knew.
'A Nazi Freund.' I had no plans of changing his name I felt that it fit him. 'Is a person who follows a man named Hitler, a Nazi believes that I am a bad person.' his face seemed to contort slightly. 'I do not know why I'm the bad person Freund; I just know that's what they believe.' I hoped that answered his question. 'I do fear the Nazis Freund, more now then when I could hear the guns and bombs. Would you like to know why.' he seemed to nod his miniature head slightly. 'Mother is missing, and no one will tell me where she is, and the Nazis seemed to look a little happy when they stare at me.' Freund curled on my arm and I laid on the hard ground. Freund let me talk to him about everything, and though he did not talk much he was a good friend. The best kind of friend the friend that would listen.
Freund was the closet thing to a conversation I had since I was stripped of my dress and my mother. I stared at him on my arm, smiling when he opened up to my arm. But I winced as quietly as possibly as I could when he bit me.
'why freund?' I asked so hurt that he would betray me so deeply.
But he did not answer me in usual way, there was no nod or look. He just began to crawl off my arm and past the many sleeping prisoners. For some reason I got off the painful soil and walked with him. I could see him with no difficulty though the night was darker then ebony. Without even a hint of fear I walked out of the stoned container. There was no one around, it was so quiet I could hear Freund shuffle rocks and shift leaves as he walked. The large wired gates where even cracked, that was when I realized that I was dreaming. The Nazis would never leave the gate open, there was never even the slightest chance. This place was for us to die, it must have all been a trick. I began to walk slowly back away from Freund, my dream this trick. Fear over whelmed me the more back I began to go. Soon Freund noticed I was no longer following him. He turned and whispered my name my real name, Ingrid follow me Ingrid. I listened and walked out of gate into the soft grass of the outside.
A light shinned into my eyes. 'Thank you God' I said for that's what the light had to have been. A voice came from behind the light. 'Patient nine, five, three, seven, four is having hallucinations. Very vivid hallucinations' the light faded.