‘Bombardment’ by Rebecca Rimmer

Mark sat in the helicopter, looking down at the water below. A small, rocky piece of land loomed before them, not far from the actual village: the target.

Mark watched as the helicopters got into formation. They were nearly at the village. He couldn’t see anyone so he guessed that the villagers were hiding from them in some sort of shelter or bunker.

He could now faintly see the mountains. The closer he and the others got, the clearer they became. He could also now see the houses situated on the beach. They would be the first ones that would be attacked.

The atmosphere around him was tense. No one said a word. Mark and the rest of them were waiting for the inevitable. He could only watch with an increasing sense of dread that what he and the others were about to do was wrong. It was a feeling that he could not get rid of, no matter how hard he tried.

When the helicopters finally got to the village, he pushed the feeling to the back of his mind so he could focus on the job at hand. He looked at Owen and their eyes met for a moment before Mark turned away from Owen. It was time. Moving over to the machine, he watched, and soon they were close enough to start shooting. As Mark looked over the village, he could see that the Vietnamese were either very poor or they were primitive compared to the Americans. The houses were made of wood and mud and were very simple, with very few rooms, maybe even only one. There were wooden walkways and other makeshift structures.

As the bombardment continued, people dropping like flies. Mark and the other Americans were relentless. They wouldn’t stop until they were told to.

Once they were finished, Mark glared at the devastation that they were leaving behind. There was no sign of life. Had they killed everyone? Was no one left alive? As the flames and smoke spiraled, they left behind a scene of utter death and destruction.

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