It was a perfect day in December, beautiful as could be. But that was also the day that Hannah died.
I don't think that either of us were expecting it, really. Everyone else was dying, but I thought if one of us were to go, it would be me, not her. Never her.
And yet here I am, whispering a hasty prayer under my breath amid the bustle of New York City. The date was December 6, 1941, just a few years after the Great War, though this one seems to be worse. Father hadn't been recruited in the first one, but now he's gone and so is mother--she died of starvation. That was a year and a half ago.
Father said that he would be back a few months ago, but we hadn't even received word from him. The last time he wrote to us was three months ago,saying that he was stationed on Pearl Harbor (a place in Hawaii, wherever that is), but he would be coming home soon. Hannah had refused to believe what we both knew to be true, and now this denial was the only thing keeping me on my feet.
After mother died, we had been taken in by out estranged uncle who was very old and bald. He lived alone (except for us), and when he was home, which was rarely, all he did was shout and smoke. Occasionally he would come home drunk, and we knew to stay out of his way.
It's a beautiful day in December, but I can't enjoy it. Not with Hannah dead. The doctor had said she died of influenza, but he didn't save her. Damn him.
Word had recently come to me that we had nothing to fear but fear itself, but that doesn't make much sense to me. Or maybe I'm afraid of so much that now fear is my life.
I had been afraid when mother died, afraid when we were forced to move in with our crazy uncle, afraid when Hannah died, and now I was afraid that father is...
No. I refuse to believe that. Denial keeps me standing.
Finally, I close my eyes and tilt my head upwards taking in the blue sky, lined with puffy white clouds. Everything is always to beautiful in December. It hasn't begun to snow yet, but the weather is just cold enough. Hannah used to love it, which means that now I hate it because it reminds me of her.
People are bustling around me, and it seems like everywhere I look are posters asking for volunteers for the army. Father wasn't a volunteer, though--he was drafted. Damn it.
I hate this war. I hated the other one, too. I hate my life.
This morning, in the papers, I read a headline saying "Pearl Harbor bombed--few survivors."