London bombingThe capital lie in ruins, smoke seemed to billow up in large plumes as black as night from almost every direction. Where there were once streets that Henry had walked down enjoying the spring Sun as the days warmed up and the city came out of its wintery slumber, there were now only trenches were the rubble didn’t rise so high or craters as the roads were the first to be bombed.

And there were bodies too.

There were more bodies than Henry wanted to count, and so he didn’t. He simply walked along as best he could, eyes constantly down cast onto the ground doing his best not to look around and be witness to the horrors of war.

He walked past the infirmary which was one of the largest building to be hit in the bombing run two nights ago. It was full at the time of the strike. As best he could tell yesterday as men and women tried to rescue those still alive inside, their cries eventually dying to silence as the rescue effect failed to move massive amounts of ruble, was that the walls simple collapsed inward, driven so by the concussion waves of the exploding bombs that were falling around it at the time.

The most striking part of the war, Henry had noticed during one of the few times that he actually shifted his gaze from his feet to the surrounding collapsed building, countryside and even the Sun, which struggled to peek through the black smoke filling the sky overhead, was the art of war. Buildings had collapsed, taking with them paintings in art museums or stained glass works of art from churches, leaving them half buried in the rubble or worse.

Down the street, Henry came to what used to the Wiemhier Art Museums were for the last time he was lucky enough to get a final viewing of one of his favorite paintings. The painting was a simple one of girl no older than his sister is – was, if survived last nights bombings, she would turn eight next month. The girl sat on a hillside which overlooked the ocean, she was still wearing her nightgown and watched as the Sun crept up, peeking over the distant horizon. The painting itself was simple, but the color of her skin and the look on her face – even the detail that you could see on the folds of skin of her toes – made this painting look more like a vividly colored photograph then a painting.

This morning, Henry sat in front of what used to the Wiemhier museum, trying to control his sobbing for fear that some of his fellow soldier might see him and poke fun at him for crying over a museum. But placed there for all the world to see on top of the rubble, on a pile that must have been several dozen feet high was the painting. Only now the clear blue sky depicted on that clear morning was now ashen and the skin of the girl was now black, black like the future of the world to come.

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