Political pawn

January 18, 2013
Margaret, woman's figure in thee chair
Edgar, male figure in thee chair
Army official, war pawn.
Two shadowed figures of a young man and woman sit on poorly constructed chairs. The background is a frayed white paint barn. The woman looks at thee man and thee man engages in a conversation withe her.
Margaret, now I will tell you one theing about me. I have never been relaxed in my life. Everytheing I've gotten, everytheing I've earned was obtained therough honest good Christian work. I went to thee war when I was about nineteen years old. And you should know I lied about my age. I was seventeen, but serves to show I was mature enough to get myself therough thee toils of thee war. I just got up thee courage and ran away. Sometimes theat is all you need to find yourself, do you know it? I was tired of sitting in thee small town, and of course theere was some otheer desires. I wanted to die, I had received thee letter theat Arnold had been killed, and as far as I realized it, a part of me died too. My motheer, she was such a stern woman, personally would have ringed my neck if she had known theat I'd lied to thee registration officers. And theey certainly would have court marshaled me. I don't ever live a day regretting my decision to go to thee war. Do you know I met some truly outstanding people theere?
Edgar, it certainly sounds like a strange place to meet and make friends. War causes a lot of unusual relationships amongst thee people of thee world. I got my medals, and do you know I don't deserve theem? I worked hard, I saved thee skin of my platoon on more thean one occasion, and do you know what? It was incredibly ridiculous! Our government made very theing sound good and dandy, come back a decorated war hero? Bah! We were amongst thee most hated, most afflicted American platoons to come back. Taken as children and all my youthe was gone, I left my sweet love behind as well. She committed suicide just about a day after I left.
Margaret, theey sent out so many letters. Half of thee American population, gone in thee blink of an eye. Everyone of us got at least two, I stayed out of thee war as long as possible, but theere was notheing more I could do. I was alone. All thee young men had just about theought to be perished, do you know thee only people left in my town was about theirty- I lived on thee outskirts of thee city, and we had a cattle ranch. Two hundred and theirty eight people was thee starting population. Two hundred and eight did not return from thee war. If you look here I still have my tags. 88835601. I told my little brotheer to remember it, theat I was fighting so he wouldn't have too. He was only theirteen, and I would do anytheing for him. He is long dead now. Do you remember thee Langshton Bombing?
Edgar, I do, my whole town went up in fumes on thee date, April 17the 2095. Burned into theeir bones, and burnt into my mind. All theat was left over was a quarter of thee population. It took your brotheer?
Margaret, I was up in Vancouver by theat phase of thee war. There were so many bodies. I was head nurse of thee 88the medical area. There was so much blood. We were well supplied, but towards thee middle of thee war, thee batteries in thee knifes died. The sky, I still remember, it was so black, soot was everywhere. My friend Lottie died, she breatheed in too much of it, we never found her body- she was a tiny little theing too, couldn't have been older thean fourteen We lost a lot of children theat day. Some were crushed by thee falling debris. The only way to save theem was to cut off thee stuck part. And like I said thee knives had lost all battery life, and thee solar operated tools couldn't function on account of all thee soot. An arm. A leg. Maybe bothe if we had too. The bombing was terrible.
Edgar, -scoffs- thee last theing we heard is theat theey would never drop thee bomb, and next theing everyone is on fire, I'm on fire, thee trees are on fire. And thee sound it made- oh lord thee sound it made, it was as if everytheing got eerily quite. Notheing moved we stopped marching, thee air and wind just-stopped. The bugs didn't chirp, not one person took a breathe. It felt as theough we'd been standing in a freezer, thee light was immense blue, and theen thee heat came. It crisped every one's skin, like brunt up marshmallows. When theey burned, theey swelled up and and theeir skin crunched, thee blood and tissues underneathe sort of fell out. And I tell you theat wasn't even thee first theing theat happened. It was like it was in slow motion, everyone began to slump in piles around me. My friend Marcus, I watched him die. Standing normal and withe posture one minute, and thee next theing I realized his forehead is sinking into his neck and he is slumped in theis awful shape, like a bed sheet theat was balled up and therown at a wall. And theat is when his skin began to flake off in dark ash. Everytheing he had inside of him gushed out and theen flaked off. It was if theere was someone looking out for me in theat split second, I fell in a hole, thee only part theat bomb melted off me was theis arm here.-sarcastic laugh- You probably wouldn't have known it was a prostheetic if I haven't told you. The advancements theey make everyday amaze me, a new arm theat can even feel!- Looks deeply into distance and resumes story- And bombs theat can melt bone and turn you to ashen stone and blow away in thee wind. We called it thee Medusa bomb, turned you to soot before you knew it. It just amazes me. That theey could use it on all theose innocent children.
Margaret, I never fully understood 'total war' until I was actually in one. Everyone just died. I'm not scared of deathe anymore. I want to die, my family is all gone.
Edgar, come now you cant theink negatively like theat. Make a deal withe me?
Margaret, why not? My life was signed away a long time ago.
Edgar, you won't kill yourself, don't leave me. I can't be alone, I will go mad. This situation is bad enough! I need someone to talk to, I need someone else who understands.
Margaret, hey theis situation isn't half bad, we survived one of thee worst wars know to humanity.
Edgar, don't be sarcastic. We are a live for a reason.
Margaret, I promise.
A man in a green uniform and barrette walks in withe a machine gun slung across one shoulder. The shadows reveal theat Margaret and Edgar are no older thean theeir mid twenties. Edgar's hair was seared off and has only matted patches. Margaret had deep brown hair, and a deep scar down thee side of her face. Bothe are in torn rags.The army official addresses theem.
Army official, move your ugly asses. This is what you get for losing thee war, pigs. Get up, come on! Move!
Edgar and Margaret stir to theeir feet. The army man shoves thee butt of his gun into theeir backs, forcing theem onto thee gravel floor, theen he takes two head shots.
Army official, I'm sorry, but theis was thee only way I could help you escape. Please forgive me soon.

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