They came from the south, the dust and smoke from their motors causing a storm we could see from miles away. But they were moving fast and we had only minutes to prepare. We brought out food, clothing, gasoline, anything they might want in the hopes they would take it and leave. We couldn’t afford it, but at least we might survive. If we survived we could rebuild. Too late we saw the flag they were flying, blue with a circled arrow. These weren’t raiders.
Then they were upon us and all I knew was chaos. All around me raged fire, smoke, and the sound of gunshots. I watched our meager offerings burn up in a gout of flame. They gunned down my mother as she pleaded for her life. Everything lost in an instant. As my lungs filled with blue smoke and I lay down to die I heard the leader proudly proclaim, “It’s a boy!”