(Please keep in mind english isn't my native language, feel free to voice your opinons and tell me what you liked/disliked)
The trenches were dirty and muddy from the rain, our officer stood by the ladders with a very grumpy look on his face. – Prepare for a full charge, every man who comes running back to these trenches will be shot without hesitation! We all know there was no way of retrating, too many times had we seen our own friends getting shot down by our own officers because they retreated. It was basically a choice between getting killed by enemy fire, or getting killed by friendly fire. As usual the fluetis arrived and positioned himself next to the officer while playing the German national anthem. I looked down on my ring one last time and thought about my girl. The last team we had seen before i went off had been in the forest under a tree. It was a sunny and quiet morning and we were both sitting there, silent. She looked at me in the kind of way that always made me blush. A rabbit ran past us just a few meters away, she didn’t even blink or turn her head in surprise; she just kept looking at me. ”Sweetheart” I said almost crying, ”I’ve been drafted, I’m going out to fight in the war”. Her eyes opened wide and for quick moment she looked at me as if i repulsed her. – you have to? She asked as if she didn’t already know. ”Yes, the kaiser has declared that every third man over the age of 18 and under the age of 35 is getting drafted”. I won’t allow you to do it!” she said with desperation in her voice and tears dripping out of her eyes. ”There’s nothing you or me can do about it, the kaisers word is beyond any of us” i replied knowing it wasn’t gonna comfort her one bit. ”Screw the kaiser!” she stood up and shouted. ”Lets run away, just the two of us, leave Germany” she said as she started crying even more and fell on her knees. ”You know we can’t do that” i said with a certain bitter tone in my voice, running away really didn’t seem that stupid thinking about it. ”Promise me you’ll come back” she said still crying. ”I promise you I’ll come back” I said with a certain doubt in my voice.
Peter tapped his gun on my shoulder waking me up from my dream. – You alright Hans? He said while looking at me with his green cat like eyes. – Everything is just fine Peter. I replied as calmfully as i could. –Shouldn’t be long now until the charge. He said desperatly trying to start a conversation. – No it shouldn’t. I replied while distantly looking up in the air. The sky was full of clouds and smoke coming from the various fires the artillery barrages had created. Peter gave me on last look before turning around and went back into his formation. I realized too late that I perhaps should have given him a hug, or at least some kind of comforting pat on the shoulder. Peter had no sweetheart waiting for him at home, not even a family of any kind. I cursed myself for my selfishness and looked around to see if there was any way of making a path up to Peter to actually give him some comfort. All the men ordered to participate in the charge had been gathered up and placed by the ladders. This made it all way to crowded for me to even get near Peter. The flutist took down his flute and grabbed a trumpet, it was time. He placed the trumpet to his mouth and blew for all what it was worth. As he did that the officer raised his sword and shouted –Charge! The men behind me started showing me forward as I grabbed the ladder with my right hand while steadily holding my rifle in the left. As I got out of the trench I could see Germans falling all around me. Arms, legs and torsos were literally ripped apart as the British machine guns hammered down on us. I could hear a distant bagpipe playing as the British charge got visible a few 100 meters away. I started running as fast as I could, just ran forward. Hoping a bullet wouldn’t find its way to my head or my torso. There were no things I could take cover behind, nowhere to hide, just a big field. People were constantly dying next to me only to get quickly replaced by people just coming up the ladder.
The British countercharge was no close enough for me to be able to reach them with my rifle; I aimed my rifle at the nearest Brit and fired while running. I couldn’t see where the bullet landed but quite obviously didn’t hit my target. A guy a few meters behind me with a funny mustache took aim of his own and shoot the Brit I had aimed at in the neck. The Brit fell down on his knees and started to cough blood as he slowly faded away into the unknown. I didn’t stop to reload; I continued running towards what I knew eventually would be the death of me. I spotted a British slowly reloading his weapon and dashed at him with my bayonet. I caught him off guard and shoved my bayonet into his lungs before he could even look up see his attacker. The British soldier mumbled something in English I couldn’t understand and fell to the ground, dead. As I prepared to start running again, something hit me, something hard. I fell backwards by the sheer power of the bullet and ended up lying on my back. I had been shot in the stomach. Blood darker than the blood I’m used to poured out of my stomach coloring my uniform red. I gave one last thought of Dusseldorf and my girl before closing my eyes and accepting the inevitable. I was dead.