From the Gods’ Hollow journal of Duncan Blood.
April 6, 1930.
I came upon the dugout late in the day, and I smelled the corpses far sooner than I saw them.
The air was tainted with decay and the burning sting of nearly spent gas.
War, it seems, had come to Cross, though not to my Cross.
They were Germans, these dead men, and they had died badly. A section of their trench had been destroyed, the high explosive artillery round destroying their dugout and throwing dirt around the bodies. I don’t know how long they were there, in the April sun, but none of the insects had found them, nor had any of the scavengers.
I recognized the uniforms and the weapons, and why wouldn’t I? I had fought the Germans for the better part of four years, throwing them first out of France and then from Belgium.
And here they were, having landed in some other when.
I sat down on the edge of the dugout and considered the corpses for some time. My mind followed the trail of how it might have occurred. Perhaps France had capitulated, or Britain had. Maybe Canada had turned against Mother England and allowed German troops passage down into New England.
The possibilities, like realities, were endless.
Finally, as the sun eased towards the horizon, I stood up and gazed down at the bodies. Beneath my feet, I could hear the sound of shoveling, and I wondered if any of the Germans buried alive below me would see the light of day again.
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