Chapter 2 4

The Invasion of Tycho Crater (Four)

I remember waking to birdsong.

Stupid right?

Birdsong in the middle of that din, fire and confusion.

The shell had hit somewhere behind us and the blast had thrown us forward into the road. I kind of remember the moving shadow and the slow motion realisation that the building was toppling.

Toppling on us.

We’d scrambled forward a few feet. A few crucial feet I reckon. There was a dull thump and the rush of air as the entire face of the warehouse hit the deck. The blast of dust and air knocked me across the road into the line of parked cars. A sharp pain in my shoulder. The hot chalky taste of dust. Blackness from the edges. I can hear someone shouting my name, but it’s muffled as if by the roar of wind and white noise.

Blackness.

Then… Birdsong.

And that’s all I can really remember before I woke up to an unfamiliar ceiling and the smell of fresh linen.

All I remember… except for seeing those three guys and a girl jumping into a knackered old ice cream van and screeching off towards the front line.

But I’m guessing that’s just a side effect of the PTSD.

I prefer to remember those birds.

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