His hand quivered on the trigger
And the other stared blankly.
They say, the first time
Is the hardest,
And he couldn't help it,
As a million questions burned at him,
Ones he couldn't answer.
And the world erupted
In flames around him.
Setting the canons, drawing the grenade ring, pulling the trigger, those were no problem. In practice. He showed promise in training. So, when he was sent to the field, the encampment, he had been proud to serve his country for the first time.
But standing here on the battlefield, while his comrades fired aimlessly, he couldn’t pull the trigger. The enemy soldier lay down, the crimson blooming through his uniform bound to kill him anyway. But as his opponent looked back at him, shaking with his rifle, he couldn’t help but wonder if he could really take a life. Did those bleeding hands once hold a child? Did those blank eyes look into those of a lover? Was this matted hair once ruffled by a sibling? Why did he care for the enemy?
His army lit canons after canons, and through the corner of his eye, he could see sprays of blood, dust blowing, and dirt erupting with the screams of bodies. Tears rose to the corners of his eyes. He begged himself to do it and then run away to the infirmary for shrapnel wounds. But the pain in his limbs was unparalleled to the pain in his head. The rifle shook violently. He stared blankly at his victim.
He heard another gunshot ring clear and true and searing pain spread through his back as his knees weakened, and he came crashing down onto the field.