I'm sure many of us doodle in the writing arts. Most of us are not professional writers so post constructive criticism and positive comments but please don't bash.
Let's see your short stories. Here's one of mine.
The Executioner’s Love
The job had never really bothered him before. It wasn’t glamorous by any means, especially when compared to frontline duties where anyone had the chance to win medals and reputation so that the entire country would remember one’s name. Yet being a member of a firing squad had its perks: he was able to stay in his native country rather than leaving to fight in a foreign land, the food was better, sleep was abundant and physical difficultly rare. And while his squad was part of an elite unit most members were older men or soldiers rejected for frontline duty, causing the standards and regulations to be more relaxed. It was not an easy life but was better than most lives at that period in time.
Being a member of a firing squad is dirty business. Shooting a person, bound and blindfolded, at close range is a difficult task and requires specific employees who will not be overcome by emotions or thoughts. He was one of these. His stern feeling of duty and inhuman personality, combined with a steely uncaring for his victims easily overcame his gentle side, though it had not always been so. He had seen much during his lifetime and though he was not old he had seen too much for his age. Any age.
His frame was slender and tall, not muscular by any means but he was strong enough to fulfill his task. Years of war, bombings and partisan attacks had taken their toll on his physical being. Scars scattered about his arms and legs, adding a rough texture to his already over-aged skin. He had been on the frontline for some time but was relegated to firing squad because of his wounds. He would not accept a medical discharge; there would be nothing for him to live for outside of the military. Knowing his eagerness to fight and his thirst for blood the leadership placed him on the firing squad. To him is was a much needed vacation.
He had never been interested in politics or religion, though he tolerated the two subjects since they were great traditions in his country. So was a young man’s duty to serve in the military, which is why he joined the army before the war. He didn’t necessarily agree with or support the government but his father and grandfather before him had served and therefore so did he. He was resigned to that fact, never struggling against it.
The day began like most others; there was no reason to suspect the coming events would disturb his world. An execution had been scheduled for the day, the criminals being partisans who had been actively disrupting military communication and transportation within his native land. He had executed dozens of partisans before and had gained the reputation as a dead-eye within his unit, using on average only one bullet per target while most other executioners used two or more to finish the job. But, of course, execution isn’t very sporty.
He loaded five rounds into his rifle and looked up from under his feldgrau steel helmet as the prisoners were led out. A bound and blindfolded woman was placed directly in front of him and pushed up against the bullet-riddled wall. His interest perked when he saw this, as he had never seen a woman partisan before and especially since she seemed so familiar to him. It was not until he ardently focused on her face did he recognize her as a former love.
They had met years before while skiing in the southern mountains. She was very similar to him in appearance, though slightly shorter than her male counterpart. They met in a resort; he had fallen and badly cut his face while skiing and she helped him patch the cuts. She was a natural judge of character and personality and could tell he was a loving and deep person when given the chance, which he never had been. He was a loner, skiing by himself while all the other men had women by their sides. Then again perhaps she was also a loner, skiing alone but occasionally chatting with the local gentlemen. At the resort, as his bloody face dried, he stared out the grand picture window at the looming mountain scene. She secretly stared at him from afar, ordering drinks for the two of them. A pang of sadness sank into her heart as she quietly stared…
He firmly gripped the rifle as he remembered their first meeting, anger and fear churning his soul. He had been in combat, seen friends and yes, even family killed and brutalized by the destructive nature of war. Friends lost their minds as well as arms and legs. Entire units were wiped out. Inhuman crimes committed. Yet he never felt such desperation and emotional poverty as he did in that moment, when he saw her against the wall. It was her, that human, that lump of flesh and blood and soul that blindly stood before him that he had at one time loved and wanted to spend his life with. But that was long ago, in a time that was largely forgotten or locked away in his mind.
She said she loved him and she really did. But another love soon dominated her life. Education took her away to another land in the west, one of opportunity and promise. Her thirst for knowledge garnered her attention and love, leaving him behind even though she had promised him her heart. Their last meeting was shortly before she left for school in the new land; she told him she could not have two loves. The promise of knowledge, the new land and travel outweighed her then fading love for him. A bittersweet meeting, it had stayed with him up until his military service when it died with his civilian identity. They hadn’t communicated since that last meeting; he still loved her but was upset with her handling of the situation. But the sting that had haunted him since soon ended when the war began. And seeing her standing there stung him again, even deeper than before.
All of the prisoners were lined up and the squad moved into their positions, roughly twenty feet away from the gray stone walls and their targets. She did not move, no, neither did she cry like many of the others. She appeared content, at peace with her fate at the hand of her former love. He was glad she could not see him through the blindfold, for that would have been too much to bear. As the officer gave orders he wondered what action he should take. Should he execute this woman, whom he had loved and still loved? Should he object to his commanding officer and pay the price for his dissent? The thought even came to him, though for only a moment, of turning his rifle against the other members of the firing squad but quickly ignored it as he only had five rounds and there were ten other squad members. Should he run? No, doing so would have only left her to be executed by another man, he wanted it to be quick and painless and he could to it best. Although his love for her was still great his loyalty to the native country was greater, as the eagle on his left arm announced to him as he frantically looked about, thinking of what should be done.
“Squad, present arms”. Looking at his victim, now shivering in the cool spring air, he decided his course of action, straightened his back and raised the rifle to his shoulder. The metal butt cupped his shoulder through the thick wool tunic, the wood stock felt cold in his rough hands. With each passing second his hands grew weaker, the rifle becoming heavier as the muzzle slowly quivered about the target. “Aim”. He placed his cheek against the rifle stock, the cold wood numbing his face and seemingly spreading to his soul. Beyond the steel sights was another human whose life was behind her. In a few moments her physical existence would end at the hands of a man she once knew in what seemed to be a former life. Yet she did not know. “Fire”.
A tear fell from his eye as his shaking finger slowly squeezed the trigger.