Inspired by Dir en grey's 'dead tree' and the references to the 'girl in red'.

an: i wrote this for an english class, and no longer have the final edited version. Which means this is not beta read so I'm sorry if there are any mistakes

dead tree

Cold metal came, forced against flushed skin, awkwardly poised with evil intentions at the hands of foolish youth. He could see it in the deep blue eyes before him, the lies festering just beyond reach in the deluded young mind. 'Love' they called it, 'a better world' they promised, but all he could smell was death, all he could see were tears. Reality was growing darker the longer he watched.

Resignation flooded his veins as he stood, staring his fate straight in the face. Harsh words pass between virgin lips, the ill-intentioned knife whose rusted edges infect and decimate in one fell swoop. It's the realization of every fear that had dwelled inside him, every fervent whisper passed between unconscious conspirators in his presence, this boy at his door.

The fever of realization brings the smile forth before he can quell it, the red to set off the bull in soldier's uniform. The resounding crack of truth echoes through him, causing the whole world to shudder, to weave in and out between reality and make-believe. Dirt fills his lungs and coats his mouth, the blurry thought that he needed to find a new maid to sweep the stoop flitting over his confused consciousness.

Noise, drilling against his eardrums in a cacophony of bees and bells brings him back to the here and now. He coughs, spitting out the bits of the ground he'd inhaled, then turns a searing eye on the officer, red band standing out starkly against the monotone the world had taken to.

Commands, written in gibberish and yelled by a man only fluent in follow the leader, it all meant so little to him. Infantry men roamed the street, the cause of an escalation in outcries as people were beaten, shot, thrown into trucks.

It was the color that caught his eye, bright red like the flags and badges and blood shamelessly flaunted, this little girl's coat. She stood, still and weeping beside the bodies of her mother and father as a gun was held to her head, the barrel nestled in her golden curls. There was no emotion on the face of the monster as he did his job, no sign of remorse as the small body hit the ground amid the echo of the handheld explosion.

Emotion swelled in his chest, forcing him to look away and back to his own hell in time to see the weapon swing from him to the doorway, to see the flash and flare as it went off. Warmth covered him, encircling him slowly as the hole torn by the bullet spilled forth anything that would flow, the ragged breathing behind him slowing with each cycle. He knew without question who lay dying behind him, the hair brushing against his fingers all the hint he needed.

Muscles strained as he fought against gravity to find ground on his knees, blood not his own slicking his hands. Only a glance did he give the body beside him before turning, head reeling. The heated barrel again at his head, he gazed up into its sinister smile, all the things in his life flashing before his eyes.

Warm summers spent as a youth in his uncles orchard, his first love, his wife and children…So many memories and regrets filling his head, but only one truth remaining: he would die here, on his improperly cleaned stoop beside the body of his dead wife. The only little source of comfort he gleaned was that his children had already been safely tucked away from prying Nazi eyes.

The click of the pistol being cocked sent all thoughts from his mind. There was no mercy today. Inhale, his eyes closed and his arms spread. Exhale, the deafening violence of a fingers twitch tore swift and cut clean. All the world went dark, and somewhere a baby cried….