[Summer of my German Soldier Alt. ending. Anton doesn't die and Patty goes with him.
I saw or felt it coming – my chin tilted up as my eyes closed. Then our lips touched, lingered together briefly before going their own separate ways. When I opened my eyes Anton was gone. For a moment I stood there, lips tingling and heart racing. Then I realised what I felt was real and I couldn't let this chance slip away. I scooted down and out into the moonlit yard. Grabbing my bags from the grass I raced through the darkness towards the train tracks. I saw Anton's silhouette up ahead as he swiftly crept through the grass. Silently I ran after him and paused several feet away, wondering if this was the right thing to do.
I thought of my father's face and hesitated, knowing that one more step forward and I'd never know whether I could become good enough for him. But then I remembered Anton coming out of hiding, risking everything to protect me from my father's beating. My mind was made up and I bolted forwards.
"Anton!" I called and I saw him spin around in fright. I stopped in front of him and saw confusion in his eyes.
"Patty, what are you doing?" he hissed. "You have to go back."
"Never," I said forcefully and saw his eyebrows fly up in surprise. "I'm coming with you Anton, and there's nothing you can do to stop me."
"P.B., it will be far too dangerous," he said firmly. "I thought I made it clear that I want you to be safe."
"Anton," I said, more calmly than I thought I could manage. "You saw my father's beating. I've had worse, and many times too. You honestly think I'll be safe living with him?"
I watched Anton's face and could see all sorts of thoughts running through his mind. Then, so small I might have imagined it, he inclined his head in a gentle nod and turned, walking steadily towards the tracks. I took a deep breath and followed, terrified that he'd change his mind and tell me to go back. Then he surprised me by reaching down and taking my bag, carrying it for me like a true gentleman.
I wasn't sure how much time had passed but it had to have been almost an hour since we'd leapt onto the moving train and not one word had been spoken in all that time. The silence was starting to worry me.
"Anton?" I whispered, sidling closer to him. His eyes were closed and I wondered for a moment if he were asleep.
"Where will we go?"
"I do not know P.B.," he said with eyes still closed. "But if you want to go home, it is not too late. It's never too late."
"You are my home," I said softly and at that he opened his eyes, looking at me carefully with a small frown.
"P.B. I cannot promise you that we will be able to find a house, be safe, comfortable, any of that. We are on the run. But I can promise you that wherever we end up, whatever situation we are in, I will do all I can to protect you."
"Anton," I said softly. "I… Thankyou."
"No, thankyou, Patty Bergen."
His words gave me confidence; the way he said my name with such love and affection. I drew in a deep breath and smiled at him. "Anton, I love you."
He gazed deeply into my eyes and I felt as though he was staring right into my soul. I felt a shiver run down my spine. "I love you too P.B.," he said, placing his arm around my shoulders and drawing me in closer to him. I snuggled into his warmth and smiled as he pressed a gentle kiss on the top of my head.
After a moment Anton shifted slightly and tilted my head up to look at him. Warmth spread through my body like fire as, for the second time that night, I felt Anton's lips on mine and this time he let it continue. The lonely sound of the train's whistle blew through the night air, and at last I was content, safe in Anton's embrace. I may never know my father's love, but now I knew the feeling of true, undying love. At last we broke apart and I sighed happily.
"We're going to be okay, aren't we?"
He smiled down at me reassuringly. "Yes Patty, we're going to be just fine."