Brother's Eyes

Climbing the small hill I can feel my entire body soar with energy, the kind of energy that I can only feel after fighting in a battle. There is something about the action that makes my heart soar, as if it is what I am meant to do all along. Part of me is terrified at times when the bullets are flying around me but I also know that I can not be a coward. My country depends on us winning the war and I am determined to help bring our goals to reality, no matter how hard it can be.

I wear blue, it is the only color that I would ever consider wearing because I know that it is the right color. No country should be divided over an issue like slavery or even the greater reason of states rights. Our founding fathers created our country to be united, and no matter the cost it is important that we keep the dream alive.

Some people look at me strangely for my loyalties as by birth I am a Southerner, from the state of good old Virginia. It is true that I feel loyalty towards my state as well but what I feel more is the loyalty towards my country. This whole war seems to be about loyalty to one thing or another and at times it makes my head spin.

By now I have climbed the hill and a landscape of dead and injuried bodies greets my eyes. It isn't a sight that makes me feel too good, but it is another part of the war. These troops are all rebels and have nothing to do with me, maybe it would be better to just turn around and pretend my eyes have never taken in such a horrid sight.

However, I don't turn around. Instead my feet carry me towards the bodies, many of them still alive and calling for someone to help me. I don't listen to anything they say, just keep walking, not even knowing what I am doing here. It is then that I hear one of them call my name. "George..."

In a second I have turned around, seeking the owner to this voice. It is them that I see him, a bleeding wound deep in his chest and pain reflecting in his brown eyes, eyes that match my very own. "Is that you James?"

"You know that it is me." James' voice is soft and I can barely hear it, all I can think about is that he is dying and that the last time we have to meet is here, on a messy battlefield, wearing different uniforms.

Kneeling by his side, I reach for his hand, the pain I am feeling trying to burn it's way out. I shallow the lump in my throat and look into my brother's eyes. "Why must it be here?" I whispered, not even realizing that my mouth was moving.

"Because it is the way of life," he whispers back, "The feeling of mixed loyalty."

"I am always loyal to you, you know that."

James shakes his head slightly. "I know in your heart that you are but we are also enemies."

"Look at yourself." My voice is louder now, and I let the pain work it's way into it, wanting him to know exactly how I am feeling. "Why are you talking this way? You know that you can't survive such a wound. Can't we just make up?"

Again he shakes his head. "We are on different sides, why should I lie to you."

"Because I still care about you. You're my baby brother, I've always loved you." I reach for his hand, squeezing it and James it too young to yank it away. He couches, gagging when the movement shakes his injuried chest.

There is more pain in his eyes and I close my own, wanting to block out the sight. "George..."

He says my name again and it makes my heart break. "Yes," I say, "What is it?"

"I'm sorry for what I've been saying, I'm just a lier."

The smallest smile escapes onto my face but fades in the friction of a second. "It's alright James," I say, "We all say things we don't mean."

"I love you," he gasps, his voice so weak now that I can barely pick up the words.

"I do too," I say but he has already died, his breath leaving his worn body a second before I can get the words out. My youngest brother, the baby of the family was dead and I was the only one there to here his passing. I can't decide whether this is all a dream. My army has murdered my brother just like we have killed so many other people. It isn't right, nothing about this war is right and yet is keeps going on and it will keep going on until we all learn that fighting doesn't solve anything.

My poor heart is breaking but I still have a job to do, the country still has not been reunited.