The explosion had flipped her onto her back, and had stripped off a good deal of skin. Adelina looked down at her exposed ribs. She’d seen them so many times as she’d relived this day that she’d become desensitized. She reached up slowly with her left hand, the one that still worked and pulled the Saint Christopher medal from her shirt, placing it prominently on her chest. She’d tried other “changes” in the seconds before her death, crawling, pleading, cursing… they had come to nothing. Adelina struggled to stay conscious, lay her head back on the street and waited. It wouldn’t be long.
She breathed in and out, each breath a struggle. She heard German voices approaching… A woman in a gray green uniform stepped up to Adelina, who thought, “Come on… Come on, see it!”
The woman stopped and knelt down on one knee. She reached for the necklace. Adelina smiled.
She thought, “This has to work. And why wouldn’t it?” When she had first found herself on a cobblestoned street in WW II Italy, she had thought she was having a nightmare or a hallucination. After what seemed an eternity she had realized the truth and had decided to fight… to win.
With every ounce of energy she had remaining, Adelina reached up with her blood covered hand and grabbed the woman by the wrist. The woman started to pull away but Adelina had her in a death grip, literally. The woman pried at Adelina’s fingers, breaking her pointer at the knuckle. She turned her head from side to side looking for assistance. Adelina grew excited, though her heart could beat no faster… she could feel it happening. The woman looked into Adelina’s eyes and screamed, a long blood curdling scream. An SS soldier ran over, hobnailed boots loud on the street and brought the butt of his rifle down once, twice… into the lifeless body. Adelina breathed in a full breath of air, a breath without pain, and pulled the fingers from her wrist. She turned to the SS soldier and said, “Danke. Diese Partisanen sind ermüdend. (Thank you. These partisans are tiresome.)”
As the words left her lips, a voice in the back of her mind screamed out, the same scream Adelina had heard a moment ago. Adelina did what she had done before; she took control. The voice faded to an annoying buzz. Adelina thought, “I’m free! Free!” She wanted to shout, to dance.
The soldier reached down and offered his hand. She took it and stood slowly, her knees weak. The amount of respect the soldier showed her meant that she must be a person of some importance. Looking at her shoulder, she saw the rank insignia of Detektiv Inspektorin, Weibliche Kriminalpolizei’ (Detective Inspector, Women’s Criminal Investigation Division). Adelina thought, “A police woman, I can work with that.”
What format is this book in? eBook
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