I wonder why? I thought as I was running, but then my thoughts were pushed to the side as another bomb hit and I was thrown down by the force of the explosion. I lifted my body up as if I was a masterless puppet and pushed on. I am running from the German officers, my name is Katiana, it is October 5th 1939 and the war has just begun....
As I ran down Von Aldrecht Street, I thought of the day our house was bombed, I thought of Caris, Alexander and Silvia my two brothers and younger sister. My mind also happened to bring up my parents and grandmother. when the house was bombed I was downstairs, outside, and they were all insidetrying to escape, knowing that they might die any second. And at that moment it hit. The house crumbled and I lay under what was once my home, unconscious and unaware that my whole family had just been killed and were buried under our memories. And I am left alone.
I cleared my mind and tried to think of a place to hide that the Germans weren't already guarding. I saw two of the officers and I knew that they saw me, although I wished to heavens above that they hadn't. I tried to hide around the next bend but as I looked up to clear my surroundings they were there. I felt alone, out of place, I felt Jewish.
As I was carried away I tried desperately to fight my way loose but they were too strong for my weak body, I felt them put something or other on my ankle but before I could see it I was unconscious.
We were summoned outside by the loud, heavy voices of the German generals. We stood in a crows but it was not long until we were forced into a line. I drifted off, looking at a beautiful line of trees just at the end of the camp. And then I broke the silence in my head and carried on listening. they said to lift up our left sleeves. I was not looking forward to this, I already knew what they were going to do to us, but I wished I didn't know. As I looked at the other girls I noticed one, surprisingly gentle looking German officer, who was watching me. It was a relief to me, to see gentle but scared eyes and I could immediately see that he didn't have a choice in being there either.
The general took the branding iron out of the heated chamber and muttered something under his breath, in German, just so that the other officers could hear and we all watched as they laughed dangerously at what the general had said, only he didn't laugh. His name badge said his name was Heinz. I don't know why but every time I lay my eyes on him I felt a rush of adrenalin and reassurance.
I watched as the general walked down the row of girls, branding them. I knew that he knew that he was hurting them but in his eyes you could se that he didn't care who got hurt, just that they did. I couldn't image their pain and what made it worse was that my turn was still coming. As he pushed the iron into my skin I could feel the reaction of heat melting skin under the red hot sizzling surface. He lifted it off my skin but the pain lasted long after he had removed it.