Just a story I thought of and it really means a lot to me.
Summary: Anna's brother made a promise to her and he never broke one of his promises. A Holocaust story.


You Promised

I was young and I was scared. I was a lot of things in the war, but the one thing I wasn't was stupid. I knew from the beginning they were going to kill us, or at least try to kill us. For me, I guess, I'm one of the lucky ones. I made it through World War II. Not many 17 year old girls can say that. I lost many friends in the War, friends I can never replace. The strange thing is we didn't start as friends we started as strangers to one another.

Fear is what they used on us. Fear is what gave the Nazis their power and control over us. I was scared; I was a young girl of 12 when I was put into a ghetto with my family. My family was Jewish, that's why we were sent there. What is so bad about being Jewish? I never thought it was a bad thing and I still don't. Everyone should be proud of what they are. I went to the ghetto with my father, mother, and my older brother. He was 16; he too knew we were going to die. My father and mother knew it too, but they never let it show, at least not in front of us.

My family lived in a tiny house with two other families. They had children, and we became friends. No, we were more than friends, we were sisters, we were family. Then the Nazi's separated Kaylee's family, Rachel's family, and my family. Kaylee, Rachel, and I were in the same house, we shared a bed together. Kaylee's brother, Rachel's brother, and my brother were living in the house next to us. My parents were separated from one another also.

I would see Jakob more than I saw my mother or father. Every time I saw him, he would always tell me to never lose hope. He still told me that even though he knew we were going to die. It was 1943 and it stayed like this for 10 months. Then the trains came.

The Nazis had separated the sick and the healthy. They had made us run naked; they laughed and mocked us. Rachel, Kaylee, and I had made it into the healthy group. Jakob, Peter (Rachel's brother), and Adam (Kaylee's brother) made into the healthy group too. Our parents, however, did not. The men and women were separated onto different trains and taken to Auschwitz.

In 1944, Rachel, Kaylee, and I were 16. We were young, scared, but not stupid. More trains came and all the people left in the ghetto were being sent to Auschwitz. Like always, men were on one train and women on the other.

As soon as we got there, they cut our hair, made us get naked, and pushed us into a shower. Rachel and Kaylee clung to me crying. I wasn't crying, I was too scared to cry anymore. I thought they were going to kill us. I waited for the gas to come, to have it all end, but the gas never came, instead water came out. After the shower they took us to a house. The men went into the showers after us. I prayed they would have the same fate as us.

They did. I saw Jakob, Peter, and Adam very few times over the next 5months. Rachel, Kaylee, and I ended up getting on a train with other women, we were being sent to Bergen. Before we were sent away I saw Jakob, one last time.

"We will see each other after the War ends Anna! I'll make sure of it," Jakob had told me.

"You promise?" I asked. The Nazi's were coming and they grabbed me, I fought and Jakob fought too, but I was being taken away from the only blood family I had left.

"I promise!" Jakob yelled.

The train ride was hard. That was the first time I had cried myself to sleep in a long time. Rachel and Kaylee were crying too. We ended up at Bergen after a 3 day train ride. I was still lucky, I was with Rachel and Kaylee, but that didn't last long. In November of 1944 we were separated, they were taken to the gas chambers, while I remained in the camp. I was healthy enough for them, but my friends, my sisters were not. I felt snow flakes on my head, but when I looked up to the sky I realized it was the ashes of my sisters.

I truly felt alone. I had no one. Months went by and soon it was May of 1945 when we heard news that the War was over. The Nazis left the camp and Russians came and took us away from that place of death and hatred. I was barely 17.

I remember the promise Jakob and I had made. Jakob never broke one of his promises to me. Jakob would be 21, and we could leave Europe and go to the United States. We could finally be free!

I searched and searched for my brother for weeks, but I never found him. I did find someone though, it was Peter, he looked grave, and so did I. We hugged so tight and for a long time.

"Rachel's dead, Peter, they took her to the gas chamber with Kaylee. I'm so sorry," I cried in his shirt.

"Anna, I have bad news too," Peter said, wiping the tears from his eyes. The second he said that, I knew.

"Jakob is dead. He died saving me," Peter said, holding my shoulders making me look into his dark, dead eyes.

I just nodded, throwing my arms around him crying, just crying. Jakob and I knew we were going to die. We died different ways, but we still died.

Peter and I became really close. We ended up getting married, even after everything that had happened. Every day I look up to the sky and think of my friends and family, but most of the time I think of Jakob.

"You promised, Jakob, you promised we would see each other again!"