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Intermediate. Years 7/8/9

When I was a soldier

By Zachariah Alexander-Sloman, year 7, Elizabeth College

Bang! Swoosh! “Get down, get down,” ordered the sergeant. The bullets were getting closer, they were homing in on a startled helpless prey. Me.
“Help,” I sobbed, “help me.” I dived for cover and cowered in a hole.
“Get up you idiot,” the pain in my leg told me who it was, it was the sergeant major.
“Why do you shoot me?“ I asked.
“Oh, I don’t just shoot you,” he spat, “I shoot you in the leg, legs are for running you don’t run though so you don’t need your leg.”
The searing pain shot up my leg as I stood up and faced the enemy, I know I’m meant to shoot them, but if I killed them I don’t think I’d be happier.
“How are you doing?” I shouted to my friend. He didn’t have a name, we weren’t allowed names. He wasn’t really a friend either, I barely knew him. I could try to get to know him, but he’d die, they all did. I don’t bother anymore.
“I’m only a child,” I screamed to the wind, “why make me suffer through this all day and all night.” The shells exploded everywhere. I felt terrible. I was lucky to be able to even feel my own pain, some of us couldn’t do that.
“Advance.” We sprang out of the trenches using dead bodies as footholds and ran to our deaths. The air turned silver, not a shade of beauty but of death. My generations had done this. My father had died this way and my mother as well. My only comfort was one kid who was lucky like me. But out of the corner of my eye, he was banished from this world. I turned my gun around and didn’t wait. I fired…

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