The rain matted her hair damp, causing it to slump in unwanted directions. She pulls back a strip of wet auburn and sighs. She hated the rain. She had seemed to begin to hate everything recently. Especially war. She didn't understand why people would like it anyway, but somebody must, she thought, because it was happening. It was in her home, all around her, destroying everything.
She had just been to the market for rations, slamming the door shut behind her, and welcoming the warmth of the nearby fire. She slumped off her poncho, now dripping wet with rain, hanging it on the stair banister. She set the brown paper bags full of carrots and potatoes on the wooden table, in the hall. "Mum, I'm home" she shouted, appearing in the doorway of the main room. It was dimly lit, the blazing fire the only illuminating source. She slipped out of her boots and headed for the old couch, cushioned but ragged.
"Mum, Esther" she called to her mother and sibling, but there was no reply. She ignored the silence and turned on the radio. An interrupting buzz startled her, portraying only a muffled communication, and not the usual rushed voice of the reporter, unable to understand the speech she turned it off. She sat there, in silence. But the peace didn't last for long. A deafening siren, what she recognized as only a warning for danger. An air raid was coming.
The dim lit air outside was reflected only by the nearby streetlamps, neighbors and black-out guards rushing up ladders to blow them out. "Mum" she shouted backing away from the window and taking the stairs two steps at a time. "Essie" she moaned checking every room quickly. They were no-where to be seen.
She assumed that they had went out, had already heard the warning before hand and arrived safely in the Andersen shelter. She slumped to the ground in her room, closing the door behind her. She knew that wasn't true. Sweat leaked down her forehead, blending with the newly found tears on her cheeks. That was when she noticed it, when she noticed that all of her draws were open, all of her belongings gone.
She stood up, what was happening? Rushing past the landing, and heading for the bottom of her garden. Then the blast, the heat melting her skin, the beads dripping down her damp hair as she is knocked to the ground. She lay their silently, her ears popping, the numbing sound overtaking the roar of the sirens. The explosion had hit, the bomb dropping far away, but not far enough, just far enough.
She moves her fingers first, clenching her teeth and gripping the hem of her dress. Her feet were warm, the stockings protecting them, her clothes a mucky brown, rusty with ash. She stood up ducking, fire surrounding her, she ran up the stairs.
Before she even knew it she was in her room again, door locked, sitting on her bed, shaking violently. There were no tears left. Her hearing coming back into focus, yet as soon as it returned she had shut it back out again. She runs to her window, glad that it was there that she stood, facing the grass, sparkling in the mirror of the flames.
She stood out, her feet on the ledge, her head looking forward, this was the window closest to the vines. She clenches her eyes shut, taking one last glance at the ruined earth beneath her. She could see the town from up there, only a flash of orange in the distance, a blur of neon blaze.
She swings to the right, her hand just opening in time to grip onto the green string of vines. She opens her eyes, screaming. She places her dangling feet onto the roots, wrapping her legs around the loose leaves. And then she starts climbing, repeating the whisper of her mothers voice in her head from their first air-raid 'Shh, keep calm, its going to be fine, your alright, your going to survive, always, your strong, just keep going, not long now', yet she wasn't completely satisfied until she jumped the last part, where the vines ended halfway up the wall, her bare feet hitting the grassy ground with a sharp thud. A pain shooting up the back of her legs, paralyzing her for a moment until she fell to the floor.