An Unexpected Return
An Unexpected Return6 mins 6.2K 6 mins 6.2K
They knew that this day would come. They had known it all along. But they didn’t know that they would be there to actually witness it and that it would come soon, so soon that it would devastate their lives forever.
‘And the next name is Noah Stevenson. Congratulations Noah on making it to the list of those selected for the army. Now off you go to join your colleagues’, the officer screamed into the mic and then continued to announce the further selected candidates.
Noah was glorified. His eyes twinkled with pure happiness. It was his dream to become a soldier in the army and someday maybe a captain or a lieutenant. Since he was five years old, he had imagined himself in the stiff, camouflaged uniform of the armed forces and a week after his nineteenth birthday, his dream finally became a reality. He wanted to serve his country, to save the people from destruction and in some way or the other, be a part of something which gives helps the people sleep peacefully at night. Noah wanted to give back to the country which had done so much for him and when the opportunity knocked on his door, he accepted it with the most grateful heart. Even though it meant he had to leave his family. And his home.
His entire family went to drop him off at the train station. They had extremely mixed emotions. On one hand, they were excited that their son would be a part of something so great and on the other hand they were filled with fear that they might never see him again. After all, a soldiers life is always uncertain, whether he will return home or not. With a heavy heart, they parted their ways and Noah went off to his duty to the border, to become a soldier for his country.
It had been nearly seven months since Noah was stationed at the border. He was terribly homesick and was eagerly waiting for another month to pass so that he could go to his home. He regularly talked to his family and friends back home but there is another joy in actually seeing them in person. There had been a few terrorist attacks at the border during his tenure but thankfully those battles were won every time. Noah had played an important part in them and in some way or the other he became a local celebrity among his friends and a wanted dead soldier for the soldiers. There had been some major and minor injuries but everyone had eventually recovered.
A week and a half before his departure, Noah and all his colleagues heard a deafening blast at night. Scurrying out of their tents, they saw there surroundings on fire. Bodies of three senior officers were ablaze. Guns clicked and firing began. Emergency evacuation was called for the injured soldiers.
There were ten terrorists they had to capture and it was not going to be an easy task. The clash took place for about ten hours straight. Two terrorists were left and the rest were killed. Blood oozed out of dead bodies, some were even beheaded. Another man was shot. Now only one was left to defeat. Spotting the last devil, Noah crawled on his knees behind the thorny bush. He aimed his gun at the last terrorist and pressed his finger into the trigger.
Suddenly everything around him fell dead silent. Why did he hear two loud and simultaneous gunshots when he far away from the rest of his troop? And then his body racked with pain and he fell on the ground.
He along with a few other soldiers were airlifted to an army hospital as soon as possible. His pulse was faint but there was still a little hope of him surviving. A brave soldier from birth, Noah fought the most important battle, the battle of his life, for two days but he could not succeed. With a painful heart, he was declared dead. His family was informed and they, poor creatures, could not believe the news. Who can bear such a heart shattering news after all.
Noah’s body was handed over to his kin and a funeral was held. He was honoured with two medals, one for bravery and the other for loyalty. If only he was there to see them himself.
Yesterday was Noah’s tenth death anniversary. A small ceremony was organised to commemorate his death. Wreaths and flowers were ready to be placed on his gravestone by his family and friends. Even after ten years, they have not even started to recover from the loss of their precious son. Just as Noah’s father was about to place the bouquet, he heard a voice, a voice he dearly loved and yearned to hear every second of his life. He turned around and saw a husky man with broad shoulders.
He didn’t recognise him at first with all his long coat, cap and shades. But when the man removed them, his hands shook and the flowers fell on the green grass below. The mouth of every person in the ceremony was left hanging open. They were unable to believe their eyes. Standing on the threshold of the cemetery, was the last person whom they would have ever imagined to see.
It was Noah.
When Noah went forward and hugged his father was the time when everyone realised that this was not their imagination but a reality. Noah was very much alive. His family cried when they exchanged their greetings. Their happiness was beyond expression on having their supposedly dead son back after ten years. They asked him for explanations and were even angry at him for causing them so much pain and sorrow.
Noah told them that after he had been declared dead for security reasons at the border. He had recovered from his injuries but was forced to go into hiding to escape the members of the terrorist group, the leaders of which he had killed. The footage of him being shot revolving around the internet had given false hopes of victory to his rivals. And they in their pride had become overconfident. So when the country sent a disguised Noah as a spy into the terrorist group, they did not suspect him. They considered it a mere coincidence to have a man who resembled another one whom they had seen die nine years ago.
Noah, having gained the trust of his fellowmen over the years, helped his friends in his home country in planning an attack which took place just a month before his tenth death anniversary. The plan was very well executed and all the terrorists on the camp were killed and he returned to his home, his country with flying colours.
Noah then told his family that he was no longer required to be stationed at the border as he had served his time well. He was given the duty of a ground officer and had been promoted to the position of a captain. They were all extremely happy, happy to have their dead son back.