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Soaring

I lived to fly. I thrived as my wings sliced through the air and I sped over the Earth so fast it was all a blur. It was all I ever wanted to be as I grew up. It’s what my father was, my grandfather was. I was born and bred to be a pilot. Yet… nobody ever prepared me for what I had to do. I murdered millions of people in a split second. I wish I had just killed myself. I can never forgive myself.

I was disposable. They didn’t think I’d survive the mission, they didn’t care of course. All they cared about is that one casualty, my life, would be worth the millions of Americans that they would end. Men, women, children, disabled, or blind, who cared, they were Americans, they were animals. They deserved to die. At least, that was what they told us. But as I flew closer and closer to the city, I had second thoughts. I thought about my wife, Dana. I thought about her belly, round with my baby. My commander had assured me that, heaven forbid I would die, that they would be well taken care of. Somehow, that didn’t make me feel any better.

Surfing the air, I was approaching the drop point. I took a deep breath but shuttered. I was alone in the plane, alone with nothing but my thoughts and nausea. I was at the edge of the city, riding through the air. I could see the ground swarming below me. Were those… people? So… so many people. I shuttered, closing my eyes and taking another deep breath, my sweaty palms clutched around the controls. I could see my wife, her soft, smiling face, and her gentle brown eyes that were always smiling at me. I wish I could be with her. I wish I could be anywhere but here. I got closer to where I was supposed to drop the bomb.

Suddenly I flinched, as my radio exploding with yelling.

“Now! Now! Go! Drop it!”

Before I could register what I was doing, or change my mind, my hand had pushed the button.

As my plane jerked up thanks to the heavy load dropping off, I quickly flew away, leaving it all behind. I stared into the clouds, feeling suddenly… alone. I heard the explosion but I just kept flying. I felt no pride.

Hours later I landed a hero.

As people shoved cameras in my face and congratulated me I simply pushed them away and started running. I ran away from the mob, the people. I walked off and didn’t look back.

I never flew again.



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