POT: Two Young Soldiers By Sally Madison

Word: POT
Words: 429
Two Young Soldiers
Sally Madison

The soldiers had fanned out to search the property and the barn. It appeared that only a few people lived in the household and all of them had been in the root cellar.

Peaking out of the root cellar, one little blond boy whispered, “Now’s our chance,” to another little boy of his same likeness, who was coming out from hiding in the tumbled pumpkins. Everyone’s attention was drawn to the bedroom window to see what the mammy was yelling about. He instructed, “Crouch down, but run as fast as you can to the barn. They already checked there. Run like the devil is chasing you, because today, he really is.”

Once in the barn, the two young soldiers headed for their secret hiding place. “We’re soldiers now. We need to find Pa.” From a big old suitcase, they pulled out two old blankets, two sacks, two bandanas, two knives, two canteens, two fish hooks with string, two tin plates and spoons, two sling shots, one pair of broken binoculars, one compass, one dry container of matches, one small cooking pot and two pounds of beans. Quickly they packed their sacks, but spilt the matches and a few beans in their haste. “Don’t loose those matches, we’re gonna need them,” one boy said. “Too bad we left our map in the house. Now, you be the scout, and I’ll be the messenger,” says one.

“No, I want to be the messenger,” says the other.

“Ok, we’ll both be scouts and we’ll both be messengers. Ready? Let’s go, but quiet now, we don’t want the enemy to see us. Crouch low, and follow me.”

Following the gun fire at the root cellar, the corporal had carried the woman, who had been shot in the crossfire, to her bedroom and then returned to the yard. Taking inventory of the soldiers and the household occupants, he questioned, “Are the grounds secure?” Confirmation was received. “Where are the youngsters? There should be at least two youngsters also. Check the barn again.”

“I swear Corporal, that board was not out like that when I checked before,” said the private.

The corporal discovered the young boys’ secret fort. Scratched in the wood on the wall was a map of the property, marking the house, barn, chicken coop, stream and root cellar. On the floor, he found a match and a few beans. In the corner, was the old empty suitcase, that to a child, it could be a military foot locker. Yes, they had been here alright. Their father taught them well, thought the corporal.

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