Snowflakes glistened, falling through the electric light. A blanket of innocence covering sin. The same as that night in Kabul.

The funeral had been mercifully brief. Another of the unit was gone, only I remained. Still no one suspected me.

The Military Court said we were innocent. I knew differently. I still see her pleading eyes. I had avenged her where I had failed to protect her.

One bullet left, tonight I will join my unit again and pray she has forgiven me.

© Sarah Potter

Written as part of the Friday Fictioneers challenge hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.


110 thoughts on “WAR CRIME

  1. Tragic, Iain. Saw in the press today there was similar true story, a soldier making horrific decision, skewed by battle fatigue and fear. You capture the despair so well. Well done

    Liked by 1 person

  2. There is so much detail packed in this piece. You really get a sense of place and character across so well. I hope for the protagonist’s success, even though I don’t quite know what happened.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is so topical, and yet war is always topical. Humans are capable of such wondrous acts of kindness and of evil. The decision to disobey an order is a tough one for soldiers. They almost need to be braver to disobey than to obey. It is good that most humans have a conscience — and I do believe it is most, although the few that don’t have a conscience are the ones we have to fear the most. Even some of the seemingly most evil people in history have had a conscience in a patchy sense of the word. They might love their family, or not dream of hurting their dog, but not think twice about torturing or sending someone to the gas chambers as part of their day job D:

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    1. I think the biggest mistake many of us make is to dismiss the people who commit horrific crimes as aberrations of some kind, as evil and somehow not human – they are people and human just like any of us and it behoves us to study and understand how and why a fellow human would act this way. Only then can we try to fathom a way to avoid it happening again. Thanks Sarah, always great comments from you, much appreciated.

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  4. Wow, what a dark story, beautifully written. I loved “A blanket of innocence covering sin.” That line gripped me.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. There is such a huge story here in so few words. It makes me feel ill they would do what they did to that young woman. I don’t believe two wrongs make at right but this soldier certainly does. Even enough to kill himself for not stopping what happened. No happy endings here wherever you take it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Afraid not, no redemption for him, at least he has accepted what he did and has done something about it, but too late. No happy endings in war certainly. Thanks for commenting Mandi

      Liked by 1 person

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