Crickets chirped in the starless twilight. The natural sounds of nature murmured its words into the stillness. A breeze blew, cool and soothing. I followed my brother toward a narrow, trash littered street. A flickering beam of light illuminated a dingy red door. I glanced over my shoulder to make sure we weren’t being tracked. Jason whispered something, his breath steamed in the cold. I shook my head at my identical sibling. Leaves crunched under his feet as he dashed to a tree. I pressed against the rough bark of the maple I was beneath.
My heart beat faster. My gaze darted. Voices rose, loud and angry in the night. Footsteps sounded near by. The dark shape of my brother moved. His green eyes snapping a warning. Wet greenery darkened my patched blue jeans. I crawled across the space. Placing a finger to his lips, he nodded at the figure walking diagonally the grass. We stared at his back as he left. Jason ducked below the barrier. I heard him take a deep breath. Gravel crunched beneath the worn soles of his hand- me- down army boots. He rapped his knuckles on the door.
He gestured at me to follow. I waited until the tips of his trench coat disappeared through the opening before I jumped the hurdle and slid in after him.
“You had no problems getting here, I hope?” our youth preacher questioned.
“The Nazi’s are swarming the park, we almost didn’t make it,” Jason answered.
“Come down and join the group.”
We edged along the mud splattered walls. The floor was worn from the steps of many people. whispers of friends drifted up around the rusty pipes on the ceiling. Metal chairs were scattered about the dirt covered floorboards. Our pastor sat before us. He started out by asking how everyone was. An older woman reported that her husband had been shot for praying at work. She began to cry. Women tried to comfort her. The minister delivered a short, whispered message. Several of the teens asked questions. Hot chocolate was passed around along with some stale cookies.
Boots pounded the ground outside the entrance.
The room tensed. We prayed.
The access shook.
A fist punched at the entry.
Jason’s eyes widened. He grabbed my arm. I gripped the pipes above my head. Jason pushed me through the passageway. Flecks of rust decorated my bare arms. I reached down for Jason.
The door shattered.
Panic rushed through my body. He grabbed my hand. His feet thrashed at the walls. His grip was like iron. I pulled.
The Nazi’s flooded the room.
I yanked him toward me. A Nazi raised his gun. He shot. My twin screamed. His left arm went slack. I jerked him all the way through the whole.
Blood ran down his arm.
He passed out.
I dragged him down the length of the hall. I veered into a room. The ground vibrated. I crouched behind a writing table. From under the desk I watched a Nazi enter the area. He slowly crossed the room. Heart pounding, I clasped my hands and prayed.
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