The sun rays are shining down on the streets of Rotterdam, to be precise piercing through the debris, to strike the blood doused ground. Not more than 23 minutes ago, the Dutch troops had everything under control and were defending their port from the German forces. Buildings were reduced to ashes and the bombings had set the sky ablaze. Human remains were left scattered, thousands were dead in a war they weren't fighting. Amidst the commotion, a lad of 19 years, with cobalt teal colors on his chest was crashed against a collapsed bookstore.The badges on his uniform were slightly visible as the blood gushing out of his arm was drenching him, he could breathe for only a few more minutes. Those around him were all dead, he knew the air in his lungs wouldn't be enough to take him miles in search for help. He was bound to breathe his last, and what broke him more was that he had orders to be delivered to the navy regiments to hold their fire till further directives. The river of Meuse was now in red, he recalled his captain's unwavering words,
"Till you catch a glimpse of your nation's flag high up in the blue yonder, don't let your guard down."
those words made him want to fight till the last beat. He had no enemy around, no army to fight, no strength to pick himself up, yet he wanted to fight. He was helpless, clutching on to a piece of crippled paper, with most certainty held his last command. No longer could he hear the air raids, or the emergency sirens. He wanted to ask forgiveness, he wanted to apologise to his mum for not being able to return home to take her out to the annual fair, in the nearby town after the war. As a young child, running in his grandpa's barley fields, searching for the perfect apples to take home for the supper's apple pie and listening to the old tales of Lange Wapper were what made him wonder if he could too cross towns in a leap. He wanted to become a baker and start an outlet to make his mum's stroopwafel recipe famous.
Appointing time:14:30, 8th May 1939, Amsterdam
were boldly written in the letter, he received just a month after his 18th birthday. He was called to defend his country in the world war 2. He was given a Dutch mannilicher, a service riffle to take down anyone who went against the colors he wore. Horror struck he was, the day he killed a man who tried to save his nation. Though Netherlands was neutral in the war, it didn't stop the Germans from invading, the war became intense and even barracks were attacked. Thousands of civilians dead for the aspirations of a few, who were oceans away from the mayhem.
*the last bomb was dropped to destroy the Dutch naval base*
The loud thudding of the ground made him shudder and he let out a faint cry. He could feel his body getting stiff and numb, he coughed to let the oozing blood out of his throat. He leaned his head back, his eyesight was fading and a tear rolled down his cheek. His eye caught from afar a group of soldiers running towards the ruins, the heart of the city was in. Slowly a few started running in his way. He clutched the paper tightly in his fist, though it was of no avail, he knew he would discharge the duty he was given. He slowly closed his eyes. A week later, his mum got a letter about her dead son, Ruben who died on 14th May 1940, in an air raid by the Germans on Rotterdam.
A memorial for those who lost their lives in Rotterdam bombings is found even today in Netherlands. Millions of teens who lost their lives in both the world wars might have had dreams of their own.
My dear papa, Ever after I was born, you were my second mother after mom. You loved me so much,protected me and I don't think I can pay you anything better for all your services.
When I was small, I had a thought that you are the most intelligent person in the world and no one can defeat you. I thought that you are my best friend who never breaks the bond of friendship even if I do a fault.
I still remember how I called you a clown when you made me laugh. I laugh when I remember the time when you tried to defend me from my mother. Whatever the situation maybe, you used to bring even a small toffee for me when you return home from work.
I'm craving for those stories which you used to tell me before sleeping. Actually I thought that you are ' 10 feet tall and bulletproof '. I thought you to be the most important person in my life. Now too, you are the only person whom I think is '10 feet tall and bulletproof'.
You know that feeling when you love someone and they love you too and when you're with them it's all so beautiful. No worries. No care. You become kids together... enjoying every single moment. You complete each other's sentences. Silences are never awkward. It's a dream come true and you wonder how on Earth you got so lucky to find them and have them in your life. But days pass by... things remain fine. A blissful monotony creeps in. You now sense the burdens you both carry... The darkness of your widely different worlds that has been lurking in the shadows all along. And you see how you both have been pushing all the worries aside just to be with each other and enjoy a fairytale moment in this world of painful realities. It becomes evident how both have been striving and struggling to juggle and balance everything in your own lives... in ways, the other has no idea about. And you see that the love you two share, has been a beautiful escape, a beautiful distraction for each. But when it comes to merging these two worlds into one... it's an uphill task. You find yourself weighing the pros and cons. Listening to your heart and mind... the varying opinions... of logic and feelings. And you're already tired... of the struggles of life... and afraid of the risk, that merging these two worlds entails... but you also lack the heart to let them leave... So you just exist... In the shell of a beautiful relationship... and let it whither on it's own... as no one makes any effort, to either save it or let it go.