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At least it wasn’t as hard as we thought it would be. The enemy continued to try to break through the walls, using a variety of techniques. They would drive their tanks up, and at this point we would quickly try to get away, and someone would hurl a grenade at the tank. They would try to climb up the walls in mass attacks, but it was not hard to repulse these wall climbings. Once again Toby and I were up for our wall duties, and we stood there, ready to move at the slightest disturbance. The night was still and dark. There were a few stars here and there but they were not bright. Meanwhile, we could also see the enemy camp, which was set about a kilometer or two away from the wall. They slept in tents and they erected a wooden wall of their own, and from here we could see their campfires.
“You know, it’s a bit like one of those medieval scenes.”said Toby, chewing a sandwich. I was starting to wonder where he got all his sandwiches from. “There’d be knights guarding the castle while the enemy knights rest in the night. Then, there would be a night attack by knights. It’s more like a knight attack!” Toby laughed at his own joke.
“Hilarious.” I commented. It was corny as hell. “Let’s hope that modern troops won’t do ‘knight’ attacks, at least now now that we’re on duty.”
“How’s Anne, by the way? Were you the one who went to check on her today?”
“Doctor says she’s getting better, but the wound still hasn’t healed yet. She probably won’t be out in some time.”
“Mhm.” Toby said. “This peanut butter and jelly sandwich is good.”
“Peanut butter and jelly? Are you crazy? That’s the word filling you could get!”
“Better than your favorite chocolate paste.”
“No, that’s the best. Better than stupid peanut butter and jelly.”
“Ew! No way!”
“Don’t shout so loudly!” There came the commander’s shout. We both shut up immediately. We knew better than to continue arguing.
* * * * *
3 AM. There was still no sign that that the enemy would be attacking today. Still, we had to stay on guard. For some reason the councillors were expecting that a possible night attack would be done sometime soon, and so the level of security was increased.
Still, sleep was important…
Could I simply tell the commander that I needed to sleep, because of the fact that as much as an army needs to march with a stomach, a wall defender needs to get enough rest?
Well, no. I’d simply get myself into big-time trouble with the commander and get whipped for that. Better be sleepless but safe than sorry.
Toby yawned. I guessed that he was feeling the same way and going through similar thoughts. I continued gazing into the distance.
Even the enemy campfires were starting to die down. The city councillors must be too alarmed about this.
At least that was my thought when suddenly I saw an enemy soldier climbing up the walls. I swore loudly and Toby gazed down. He quickly took out his knife and cut the rope that the soldier was using to climb up, but then we saw that there were many more.
“How the hell did they get here?” I shouted.
“How the hell am I supposed to know?” asked Toby. “Sound the alarm! Ring the bells!” I took the bell that was sitting on the walls and shook it heavily, but there was no need to. Enemy soldiers were climbing up all over the place and there were not enough defenders to hold the walls.
The commander was quickly rushing around. “Hold your positions!” he shouted, but already the defense was being broken. Enemy soldiers were climbing up the walls, and people were jumping back and running towards the inner wall. Sounds of gunshot sounded all over. Toby and I ducked behind the walls, but that was only a temporary respite for us; the soldiers climbed up quickly and soon we had to be defending the walls once more.
The different people still holding their positions shouted in desperation at their fleeing friends also looked back as if to see if they could return to the safety of the inner walls too.
Then came a command. “Retreat to the inner walls!” The town councillor in charge cried out, and at that moment everything was dropped and we quickly ran back to the inner walls. The gates were briefly opened up so that we could rush in, but the enemy soldiers were also quick and they were closed just in time.
“Damn, that was close.” I said to Toby as we ran up the inner wall’s stairs.
“It’s still close.” Toby replied. “They’ve probably overcame the rest of the defenders still on the outer wall now.” The words were true.
When we finally got to the top of the walls, we saw that the soldiers had poured through. Suddenly there came a loud noise and we saw from the walls that they were trying to break through the gates.
“Well, here we go again.” Toby muttered. The citizens were already trying to block the thumping at the door. As we were about to run down from the stairs, however, we saw something truly alarming.
A tank was coming up close to the walls. I silently cursed. The soldiers think of everything.
The tank let out a bang, and soon the gates went down collapsing. I ducked behind the stone walls but it seemed as if there was an earthquake. Screams went up and it was like hell. I gritted my teeth. How could the Great Leader claim his title if such is the way he wanted to get his people to submit to him? The tank let out another explosion and dust filled the air. I coughed and spat out sand.
I glanced back to see if whether the defenders had already broken, but instead what I saw was an organized regiment coming into the breached walls. They all wore military uniform, but they were clearly fighting against the enemy soldiers. It hit my mind who they were. They were the division originally sent to garrison Greyville but had switched sides. Hope was still with us.
Toby and I ran down the walls and threw ourselves into the breach. We were determined to defend it. We did not know where our guns had went, but we still had the trusted bamboo sticks that had saved our lives countless times and we used them efficiently, knocking the enemy soldiers. Explosions rang out in the sky as people on our side threw hand bombs back at the soldiers, but the tank also shot mercilessly and more and more soldiers poured in.
“All’s lost!” I heard someone shout. “This is the fall of Constantinople replayed!” Others grimly tried to hold the soldiers, but this was all in vain. The soldiers had come into the city.
Toby and I ran out of the breach and up the walls once more and looked at each other. “What are we going to do?” I asked.
“What is there to do?” Toby asked back. “There’s no way we can do anything.” We looked blankly as the soldiers continued to rush in, killing the defenders.
Then came the sound of a trumpet. I glanced back. What was that? I soon got the answer to my question. Mayor Philip was here. A bodyguard of at least thirty people was surrounding him and the mayor was holding up a flag of the nation. “Defend your liberty!” he screamed. He then pointed the flag towards the enemy. “At them. At them. At them!” The defenders who had been panicking just a moment before was already rushing back to the walls, not least by the fact that the mayor’s bodyguards were pushing them back. Toby rushed down to join the fighting and this left me alone on the wall. I was not there for long. I quickly jumped down. We formed a rectangular formation and managed to finally stage an effective resistance. Mayor Philip continued to cheer us on as we slowly pushed the soldiers back. At such a close range they were unable to use their guns and people threw grenades in at them. Soon the soldiers were out of the wall and we pushed them out from the outer wall as well.
“That was…quite a fight.” Toby said, wiping his forehead. I nodded, too exhausted to say anything. Toby added, “I’m glad we survived. The odds were against it.” He laughed. Meanwhile, the people cheered at the victory.
Mayor Philip grabbed a loudspeaker and spoke. “Citizens! You have staged a brave and heroic defense today. You have fulfilled your duty in defending your freedom and liberty.
“However, it saddens me that we should be losing so many lives each day while the enemy surrounds us. Therefore, spread the word: we shall be launching attacks against the enemy camp soon.” The cheering was even greater than before. Mayor Philip held up his hand to ask for silence and it was given. He continued to speak.
“We shall strike back at them. They shall not be the only people harming us. If you have been a part of tonight’s defense, please come and see me tomorrow. I have something to talk to each of the groups here individually.”
With that, the old mayor walked away, followed closely by his bodyguard. Toby and I looked at each other once again. We understood the thoughts going on in the other person: the soldiers have been the predators for too long. Now it was our time to exact revenge.