I saw a blinding flash of light before I hit the ground. The smell that greeted me was unlike any I had ever smelled in my entire life. It was the smell of burning rotting flesh, of mud, and of sweat. Before I was even able to think straight, two burly men in gray suits forced me to my feet, which to my horror were carrying deadly looking machine guns. At first I couldn't think straight...what could have gone wrong? "Think!" I slowly thought to myself, "Try to figure this out." As I was being dragged to a dirty looking building, I caught glimpses of men...if that's what you could call them, for they looked nothing like men anymore. They were starved...it looked like they had not eaten in months. Between the rows of small shacks I saw tall rows of barbed wire fence, with more of the guards in gray suits walking along them. At that moment a very frightening thought occurred to me...but it couldn't be.... it just couldn't! I slowly turned my head to look at my captors. The fear that ran through me at that moment is unlike any I had ever felt...the patch that was sewn onto their jackets left no doubt in my mind. These were Nazi soldiers...and I.... I was in one of their "concentration" camps.
As we reached the dingy building, one of the guards kicked open the doors. As we entered, I saw a tall, well-built man wearing a clean and pressed suit sitting behind a rickety desk, sipping a dark burgundy liquid from a small wine glass. He looked at me with an inquiring eye... like someone who is seeing something for the first time. I quickly realized that the black T-shirt and faded blue jeans I was wearing as well as the large hiking backpack I carried must have looked quite strange to him indeed. He started questioning me, and to my amazement I understood every word.
"Who are you? Where did you come from?" he spat at me. I stared at him blankly trying to figure out how I could understand this man when he was plainly a Nazi solider. A sharp blow to my lower side awoke me from my thoughts.
"The general asked you a question!!" said the soldier to my right. One hand clutching my side, I looked up at the general. I had no idea what I was going to tell this man. I had heard of the cruelty of the Nazis', and I knew that if I said one wrong word I could be shot without them giving it another thought. I could lie...but what could I tell them that would explain how I was dressed and the fact that I appeared out of thin air?? Telling the truth would most likely result in the same effect...after all, how could they believe me?
I was again brought out of my thoughts by a blow to my side, which when added to the first hurt even more. As I regained my breath, I stammered, "I'm a traveler, and I seem to have lost my way."
Despite my confusing answer, the general continued. "A traveler you say? You don't have the look of one of our prisoners to me...yet you carry no symbols of the Nazi party. Again I ask you, who are you and where do you come from?" He asked me over the top of his wine glass. "You would not believe me..." I replied simply. He stared at me for a moment before he signaled the man to my left to come forward. The soldier obeyed and walked up next to the general, and he whispered something in the soldier's ear that made him smile, which did not seem like a good thing.
"Maybe some time in the pit will loosen your mouth," said the general as the solider made his way back towards me.
Much to my dismay, they began searching me. First they removed my backpack, and then began emptying my pockets. Once I had been relieved of all my possessions, they led me to a dark room where they stripped me down, and clothed me in the white and black barred uniforms that the rest of the inhabitants here had to wear. After all of this, they walked me across the yard and into one of the ramshackle huts that housed what looked to be at least 60 men, all gaunt and distorted with sunken eyes that showed the horrors of their time here. Everyone made way as I was, not so lightly, thrown into the hut. As I got to my feet again, I heard the low murmurings of tired voices. For a few minutes, nobody would look at me...I wondered about this for a moment, before I walked over to a bed that seems to be vacant.
I sat on the edge of the bed, trying to imagine how I was going to get myself out of this. I took stock of what the soldiers had not removed in their search. They had taken all of my equipment and weapons, but I had tools at my disposal that even they couldn't take away. First off, I had my psychic abilities...which I guessed were the cause of my current dilemma. Second, I had my cerebral computer, which stored all of my memories, as well as other useful information. And lastly, I had my knowledge of the future...which had to count for something. I decided it best to sleep for now; I could only imagine my treatment would be none too nice tomorrow.
I awoke the following morning to the sound of a siren. A young boy quickly ran up to me and rolled me out of bed. "It's time for roll call, if you're not outside, they'll beat you...or worse!"
I quickly got to my feet and followed him out the door. I lined myself up along with the rest of the prisoners, and allowed them to conduct their head count. Meanwhile I studied the guards. Most of them seemed like the typical soldier...lean and mean, though I noticed that most of them seemed to be rather skinny and probably didn't eat much better than the rest of the prisoners.
"Dismissed!" yelled the soldier who held the primitive megaphone. At this point a guard came into our hut and yelled at us to get ready for work. I didn't know whether I should follow or not. "Don't think your too special boy! You go to work with the rest of this scum!" the guard yelled at me.
'Well I guess that means I'll be working today.' I thought to myself. It turns out that they had an ammunition factory about a few hundred yards from the camp that the Jews were forced to work in. Once inside the warehouse, I was forced onto a small metal stool where a guard showed me how to fill empty gun shells, and cap them off with a bullet. After showing me what to do the guard walked up some stairs where he could monitor the whole room.
With a smirk on my face, I searched my memory for details on the specific making of these shells...particularly ways to make them malfunction. I can safely say that not a single shell I was forced to make that day was capable of firing.
As I sat making these shells, I felt someone's eyes upon me. It was a woman, about eighteen years old from the looks of it. She was really quite beautiful, despite the lack of body she had from not eating. Her blue-green eyes were still bright with emotion and feeling, unlike most of the people here. I stole a quick glance at her and as I glanced my cerebral computer analyzed what she would look like normally. She would have long wavy thick brunette hair and her body would be a perfect hourglass shape. I must admit, it was hard to keep my mind off of that portrayal of her.
As I looked at her, she smiled warmly. I can't ever remember a smile that made me more welcome than the one she gave me that day. "What is your name?" she asked quietly.
"Andrew" I replied, "Yours?"
"Casey" she answered with another smile.
"Nice to meet you Casey," I said as I returned to my thoughts. I couldn't help but wonder...what could happen if I were to free these people? With planning I could easily do it...but I couldn't risk creating a time rift...
"Are you a Jew?" Casey asked with a curious look on her face."No... I'm afraid I'm not." I answered. By this time, everyone in the room was listening to our conversation.
"Then why have you been brought here?" she asked.
I took a moment to think of an answer that wouldn't tell them too much. "I was not brought here...but came here by accident." I answered. She looked confused, but thankfully didn't ask for details. As I watched her sitting there, I felt something that I can't rightfully explain... "What is your last name?" I asked.
She looked puzzled at first, but after a moment, she answered, "Teller". At this point I ran a mental search of my memory banks. I had all of the knowledge up till my time period and beyond stored on my cerebral computer, and I ran a search of the people that had not survived that massacre. Her name was on the list!! She was not going to survive this... I looked up to find her staring at the floor. I could save her...she leaves the timeline anyway! I put that thought to the back of my mind...I had other matters to deal with.
"Has anyone ever tried to escape?" I asked.
She looked up sharply her face displaying her unease, "What are you thinking?!"
"I'm thinking that I'm not going to stay here." I answered.
She grabbed my arm, and said, "You can't try to escape, you just can't! The guards would kill you before you got even ten feet from the fence!"
"Casey, you don't understand, I can't stay here." I said. As we spoke I was drawing up plans to the camp from my memory banks. With the maps came building schematics, which didn't help me due to their lack of escape routes.
'I would have to do this the hard way', I thought to myself. All I needed to do was get to my backpack...then I could get us out of here......"Us"? I was already thinking it...I was already planning to take her with me...but what would that mean? I knew what could happen if I changed the timeline...but how could one doomed girl change the timeline? Perhaps her name on the list was a confirmation that I was to take her with me. As I looked back up at her, I saw the frightened look on her face. "Everything will be alright...I promise." I said quietly. She went back to looking at the floor, as I began planning my escape.
Later that evening after soup (if you could call it that) we shuffled back to our hut, Casey caught up and walked next to me. "What are you going to do?" she asked me. "I'm not entirely sure yet...but I want you to come with me..." I said. She looked frightened, but I assured her nothing would happen to her. "I have ways of getting past guards, before they can even get a single shot off at us." I said. She looked at me questioningly, but again didn't ask.
"I hope you're not afraid of working, because that is all we do here" she said as we reached the door of the shack.
"I figured you might say that. I heard that they put you to work in these camps." I said.
"You knew about these camps before you came here?" she said.
"Of course, the Nazi Concentration Camps are common knowledge." I said without thinking.
"You speak of these camps...as if...as if they were a thing of the past rather than actually happening." she said to me in a downcast way.
"That is because...to me...they ARE a thing of the past." I whispered.
"I knew it...I couldn't believe it at first, but it must be true...your not from this time...are you?" she said silently. "I saw you appear in the courtyard...I was lying in bed staring into the darkness like I usually do at night when you appeared. I've never anything like that before...the bright light...your clothing..." she said slowly.
"Your right...I'm not from your time, though I seem to have landed here." I replied. "If you are serious about running away, I would like to come with you." Casey said quietly.
"I can't promise I'll be much help, but I will try. When where you planning to try...?" she asked.
"Tonight." I replied simply. She then quietly disclosed to me where to find her after hours...
Later that evening after lockdown, I set my plan into motion. After everyone was asleep I stalked my way over to the door to take a look at what I was dealing with. I counted...three guards...only one of which was able to see me move across the courtyard. With a few whispered words the door was open and I was on my way. From where I was it was no problem to make my way over to the barracks where Casey was forced to stay. I placed my hand on the door and whispered several words, then heard the click that told me the door was unlocked. I crept over to Casey's bed and woke her up with a finger over my mouth to tell her to be quiet. Together we quietly made our way towards the door.
Once back outside we slowly made our way down the stairs and past the guard who was sound asleep. As we walked across the courtyard, trying to make use of the shadows, I felt Casey's hand tightly squeeze mine. We hid underneath the edge of one of the other huts for a few moments while a guard walked by quietly patrolling his designated area. I looked back and saw the fear in Casey's eyes. I smiled in order to reassure her that everything was ok. She smiled back, and stopped squeezing my hand as hard. As the guard turned a corner and walked out of sight, we moved on until we reached the General's quarters where Casey broke her silence. "What are we doing here?" she asked in a frightened whisper.
"I have to get my belongings...we'll never make it out of here without them." I silently replied.
"Wait under here." I whispered as I helped her under the stairs. Once more whispering with my palm on the door, I unlocked to it and entered the room they had used to interrogate me the night before. Only two doors were present in the room, the one I came in from and one tiny wooden door at the back behind the general's desk. Only one guard was on duty that I could see and he was close enough to sleeping that it didn't take a lot of prompting before he was subdued completely. I very gently opened the door to reveal a long corridor. I slowly made my way along it, and as I passed a door, a guard walked through it.
There was nothing for it...I punched him as hard as I possibly could in his stomach, and he fell backwards into the room which he had come from. I jumped on him as he took a steadying breathe, clearly intending to yell for help. A few more solid punches to his face left him completely unconscious.
I waited a few moments, expecting alarms to begin sounding...but I heard only silence. I got up and continued moving silently along the corridor until I reached a door clearly labeled, "General Teufel". I used my cerebral computer to enhance my vision so that I could see through the thin wood that made up the door. I saw all of my things, piled in the corner opposite the general's bed. 'Good, he hasn't tampered with anything' I thought to myself. I slowly opened the door and made my way over to my things. I quickly changed into my normal clothes and put my backpack on.
As I turned towards the door, I heard movement behind me. I slowly turned back around to see the general standing behind me with his Luger pointed at me. "Somehow I knew you'd try to escape." he said simply. "I was hoping you'd give me a good reason to shoot you."
"Go ahead and try, you damn Nazi ass!" I threw at him. My taunt did nothing to ease his anger. I slowly raised my hand and held it before me and closed my eyes, and started whispering furiously.
He simply laughed, "Am I supposed to be afraid?" He advanced a few steps before he fired...a dull click is all I ever heard from his gun. He looked down at his pistol astonished that it had not fired. Before he could even react, he was laying on the floor stunned. I stood there, still holding my stunner. Upon reflection, I could easily have killed him...and maybe I should have but something told me he had a part to play in history that I had better not interfere with.
Not wasting anymore time, I raced back down the hallway, past the guards that were still lying in slumber, and back outside. I grabbed Casey and pulled her into the middle of the courtyard as several guards ran towards us. Several shots were fired, but none ever went more than ten feet, before falling harmlessly to the ground. I hugged Casey close to me and in another blinding flash of white light the Nazi's would never see us again.