Summary: Six months after the raid on the Bismarck. Peter is in a concentration camp, and Thomas is there. I'm trying to be fairly historically accurate, so if you have any information that I don't, please pass it on!
Edited for character mistakes.
Peter's frail body ached as it never had before. His torso was covered with deep bruises, and the cuts were so numerous on his limbs that he appeared striped. He had now been in Neuengamme, a concentration camp near Hamburg, for six months.
This particular day had begun with roll call before dawn, and stretched on with so many hours of labor that Peter had forgotten when he'd started. It was now late at night, and he was lying in the bunk he shared with two other young men, wide awake. He yearned for sleep, but his mind would not turn off. Thoughts spun like dervishes in his head.
Were Willi and their mother doing all right? Where was Evey? Had she been captured? Had she even been at the Bismarck that horrific night? He couldn't remember. And where was Thomas? Had he realized the truth that Peter had tried so hard to impart to him? Peter prayed it was so.
Peter did not sleep that night. Instead, he prayed. He had become a Christian shortly after imprisonment, from a man named Johann in his barracks. Johann had hidden Jews in his home ever since Hitler's reign of terror had begun in 1933, and had been arrested a year before. He now spent all the time he could witnessing to everyone and anyone who would listen to him. Peter had been led to Christ by Johann, and Peter was so thankful. He didn't know what his life would be like now if he hadn't surrendered it to Jesus.
"Jesus, I know you're here with me tonight, and with Johann, but Lord, please be with Thomas. Let him know that I'm alive. Let him know that I'm not going to give up. And, Lord, please let him know You. He needs You so much, Lord." Peter then fell into a restful sleep, for a few hours, until roll call.
Miles away, in Hamburg, Thomas was awake, too. He wondered where Peter was. He'd heard months before that most of the swing kids had been taken to Neuemgamme, but he hadn't been able to secure a post there. He laid his heart open, but to whom he did not know. He just talked into the night, not caring who heard. "I'm sorry. Sorry that I turned in my father, and sorry that I hurt Peter. I'm so sorry." Just saying the words made him feel much better. And somehow, he knew that Peter was alive. He just knew. This comforted him, and he promised himself that he would try as hard as possible to get a post at Neuemgamme. He had to.
A week later, mostly through the work of Herr Knopp--the Gestapo man who was now married to Peter's mother--he had his post. He swallowed hard as he entered the camp. He had to find Peter.
Peter was sluggishly completing his tasks, praying that he would move quickly enough to please his overseers, but slow enough that he wouldn't pass out from working. His parched lips cracked, but he pressed on. The Nazis were watching. He turned toward his overseers to report on his progress, and was shocked when he saw a familiar face approaching. Thomas?
Thomas spotted Peter's weak frame instantly, and almost ran to his former friend. He held himself in check. Instead of running to Peter's side, Thomas reported to his superior, who assigned him to watch over Peter's group, as training. Thomas couldn't believe his luck! He marched to the overseers, saluted, and watched Peter. The tears in his eyes almost gave him away, but he forced his face into a contorsion of anger and ridicule.
This was the expression Peter found on Thomas's face when he looked up. Anger. Ridicule. What had the Nazis done to Thomas? Was he truly as hardened as he appeared? His heart sank as he realized that Thomas hadn't changed, but instead continued down a path of destruction, littered with memories of friends and family betrayed. That was the moment Peter began to weep silently for his friend.
This is only the first of many chapters (hopefully) to come, and I would appreciate feedback!