Post by simon darkshade on Oct 13, 2020 12:25:52 GMT
A New Jerusalem Part 1
March 10th 1945
How the mighty had fallen.
The shattered wreckage of the Reichstag rose from the broken and rubble-strewn streets like the smashed skull of a giant. The scorched scars of dragonflame and spellfire stood out amidst the devastation wrought by bombs and artillery. Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich had lasted barely a dozen years, not a thousand, yet its ruins had a nature that was more akin to that of giants than humanity; not that humanity was a quality that would be associated with them in any case.
The rays of the wan afternoon sun provided but little warmth, but none of the Allied troops found themselves in need on this day. For, after so many long years of pain, of toil and of suffering, they had victory. A Dreadnought slowly rumbled into the broken square of the Konigsplatz, brushing aside the rubble almost effortlessly as it inched on its way towards the Tiergarten and dwarfing the other tanks, even the hulking Cromwells, which now stood stationary, their war won. Oh, the fighting itself continued beyond Berlin, in the last spasms of the monstrous beast after its wicked head had been severed, but it was only a matter of time before the remaining German forces surrendered and there would be peace once again.
That much was the meaning of the huge red and white flag which now waved from the broken roof of the Reichstag. It was extremely fitting, thought Colonel Stanley Barton, that the Poles won that particular honour; the first victims of Nazi Germany sealing their fate had a grim symmetry to it, not to mention justice.
The big guns were silent as well and long may they remain so. Soon the surviving civilian populace of Berlin would hear that and the other signs and start to find their way forth to a new world of capitulation. Their luck could be worse, though. He had heard of some of the things the Russians were said to be up to out to the east; whilst the Allies had no love for the Germans after this long and bloody war, there was an ocean of difference between that and the other business.
He turned to see his adjutant, Captain Halford, making his way up through the wreckage of battle.
“Ah, Halford. What news? Is it true then?”
“Yes sir. The German garrison have surrendered, unconditionally. It’s over.”
“What about the other rumour? Did they find anything?”
“It was a hell of business even getting across Unter den Linden; the Thirty-Sixers really gave it a plastering and there is nothing but a crater where the Brandenburg Gate was. I couldn’t find out anything for sure, sir - the Commandos and the Yanks have the whole area around the bunker locked up tighter than Fort Knox.”
“Very well. Get my Land Rover; I’m going back up to brigade. Make sure the men are fed and well watered - they’ll want to remember this day for a long time.”
Barton looked out over the ruins of war and ground his teeth as he scowled. Victory was here, but at a terrible cost to all. Even nature itself had been damaged by the horrors of this latest Great War. There had to be something else - there had to be a new world born out of the ashes of this devastation and terror.
And then he had a wonderful idea.
March 10th 1965
Strange to think of how much had changed in two decades. He never thought then that he would be back here, once the war was done, let alone under these circumstances. The view from inside the Reichstag was rather different from that of the square, which was to be expected.
“Prime Minister? They’re ready for you.”
“Right, lets get this over and done with.”