- For Teachers
This is the third part of my short story War. Please, would you proofread it.
After about twenty minutes ride on the almost empty road, but for a few dusty military vehicles driving fast, we arrived to the entrance gate of the iron mine. Some of my neighbours had worked here just about two weeks ago, and then suddenly they all were dismissed only because they are Muslims. Now they were watching their former workplace with the mixture of disbelief and fear. It could be that some of their former workmates were now working as the prison guards, beating and torturing their former colleagues.
As we were waiting, a tall, burly guard appeared at the entrance. He wore camouflage fatigues and dark sunglasses. He was so big that the AK-47 in his hand looked like a toy. If he hit anyone, I thought, he could kill a person with a single punch. “Go back!” he shouted waiving his gun. “We are full!”
Our driver swore quietly and muttered to himself, but the figure of the guard was intimidating, and he would never dare to question his words. He turned the bus around, and we were on the same road again, going through the same villages and the same scenes we had witnessed some minutes ago. The old man was still lying in the middle of the road and the horses were galloping towards the stables which had disappeared in flames.
I thought that if some of our guards became tired of shuttling between prison camps, they could simply pull over the bus and kill us all. They had a free hand to do whatever they wanted, whatever was in their imagination, and probably nobody would reproach them for killing the prisoners and in that way making more free space for those who would come after.
Before we reached the city centre, the bus turned to the right and we arrived to the site of the ceramic factory. To the right, there was a simple building which was a reception, and about twenty meters from it, a low, long, rectangular building of the factory. It was surrounded by the metal fence, on top of which there was a barbed wire. Even before we had been ordered to empty the bus, I could see a machine gun nest at the entrance facing the warehouses. Two large metal doors were open and I saw a few men sitting on the floor and peering outside, the rest was covered in darkness.
We were ordered to stand in line, face the wall, spread the legs wide and put the hands on the wall. I could feel a soldier’s hands touching all over my body. He turned out my pockets asking me if I had a knife or some other weapon hidden in my clothes. My answer was negative. I glanced at him and noticed that he was still a teenager. He wore a military uniform, but on his feet he had a pair of white Adidas trainers.
Probably just last week he was playing football on his street and commenting on the girls in short skirts walking by, and now he could do to me whatever he imagined. I anticipated a welcoming party to start, as it is usual in such places, my only preoccupation to protect my kidneys and head, knowing that these body parts are always the most popular targets of torturers all over the world. However, to my surprise they did not hurt me, or any of other people in my group. I could not fathom the reason for their kindness. Or could it be that they simply wanted to save us for some special occasion. After all, they had the time of their lives
TO BE CONTINUED