Disclaimer: This story is not meant to support nor represent political movements of any kind. It is a work of fiction and I claim all rights to it.
"There is a roar like thunder's peal, of crashing waves and clang of steel!"
"Son, will you turn that TV off?"
My dad was right. After all, school would be starting soon and dad did promise he would drive me there for my first day. I wouldn't want to disappoint him after all, so I silenced the television with a click of the remote and went up to him to at least acknowledge his command. Dad surprised me when he looked at me and cracked a smile.
"Look at you all grown up and getting ready for your first day at school," Dad said as he ruffled my hair, this time his smile only became wider and warmer. It was genuine and I naturally returned the smile with my own, "C'mon, Bill, it's time for school."
The car ride was silent, and I unconsciously had my eyes fixed at dad. He never noticed me staring at him as his eyes were firmly focused on the road. My mind wandered and wondered, that for the past few months, my dad was always 'busy', and mom always told me that 'it was with business with very important people, the type of people you often see in the television'. I didn't like it, as this 'business' has always made dad quiet and very distant to us recently, the nights where he warmly greeted and spent time with us when he returned home from work had been extinguished. Deep down, I know he still loves us, but the times where he actually shows this to us has been few and far between. My daydreaming ended when dad stopped the car, getting out to get the door open for me. We had arrived at school.
Amazingly, dad smiled again at me, "Get outta there and show 'em what you're here for, kiddo."
It was rare to see dad happy, so I appreciated his words and hugged him tightly, despite dad towering over me. Naturally, he kneeled down to allow me to do so as he patted my back softly a few times to return the hug.
"You'll be there when school ends, right, dad?"
"Of course, Bill. But before you get inside," Dad went to the trunk of the car and I curiously looked at him, my face scrunched up in confusion on what he could be doing. The object he pulled out from the trunk only doubled my confusion, but I nearly burst into joy when I realized what it was. It was a large-sized paper cone, but inside it was really what mattered to me. I could see stationery of all kinds popping from the cone, a jumbled mix of pencils, erasers, and notebooks hidden within. The smile on my face was huge, maybe even stupid, as it elicited a hearty laugh from dad. It was music to my ears.
With one final wave to him, I entered the school. Practically bouncing to my class, I knew that I was supposed to be in the A wing of the school, room A102. The school was big, but navigating it was extremely easy with signs hanging in every turn of the hallway. The directions given were ridiculously helpful, that I had my eyes firmly focused on reading the signs only, and without even looking at where I was going, I had finally arrived at room A102 and soon found myself entering it. Inside were a few other students, but there were empty desks indicating there were still more to come. The students looked at me, some giving a small wave, but others had curious stares as if they were studying me. However, I could not miss the only adult who was in the room, obviously the teacher.
"Good morning! Let me guess, William Miller, yes?"
I was taken aback by his correct guess and blurted out a response, "Yes sir!"
"At ease, private," the teacher jested, "Take a seat, William, or is that Bill?"
"I-It's Bill, Mister…?"
"Mister Fischer, Bill. If I may ask, your father is Joseph Miller, right?"
At the mention of my father, I immediately beamed a smile at Mr. Fischer. I noticed some kids immediately turned their heads to look at me at the mention of my father. I wasn't surprised, my dad is well-known in town, and it was probably part of the reason why the teacher made yet another correct assumption, "Yes, Mister!"
"His name carries weight in this town, Bill. I'm sure you know that?"
"Of course! Dad's the best soldier in town, and I'm sure everyone in this town knows that too!" I boasted to Mr. Fischer, ignoring the present stares at me, "I'm proud of him!"
I saw Mr. Fischer looking at me with a blank expression after that before he nodded at me, "Go ahead and take a seat, Bill."
I complied. It took a while, but eventually the classroom was filled with other students, and they all had arrived on time. Mr. Fischer checked the clock that hung on the classroom wall, it was exactly 8 A.M.
"Now kids, I want all of you stand up before we can start with our introductions," The entire class stood up just as I did as we heeded Mr. Fischer's instructions. I saw him smile as we listened to him and stood up in record time, "I want to teach you the most important thing that we will all have to do everyday when we arrive at school, the pledge of allegiance. For today, I will be leading the pledge, but I want all of you to memorize this pledge by heart and I will eventually ask one of you to lead the pledge for us, have I made myself clear?"
I answered with the rest of the class in a loud chorus, "Yes, mister!"
"That's what I'd like to hear! Now put your right hand over your heart and look at the flags," Mr. Fischer rotated to face the flags hanging on the wall, while I had my eyes firmly fixed at them already, "And repeat the following words after me: I pledge allegiance to the flag…"
"I pledge allegiance to the flag!"
"…of the United States of America and to the German Reich for which it stands…"
"Of the United States of America and to the German Reich for which it stands!"
"…one folk, one reich under one Führer…"
"One folk, one reich under one Führer!"
"…indivisible, with unity and justice above all!"
"Indivisible with unity and justice above all!"
I had known the pledge the television. I was familiar with it, maybe I even had it memorized already, and I knew what was to happen next as I fixed my eyes on the portrait of the Führer between the flags of the United States of America and the Greater German Reich. As I expected, Mr. Fischer shifted his stance to facing the flag to facing the portrait of the Führer, and his right hand that was previously held over his heart had extended and straightened into the air in front of him, the response was automatic and needed no command as we all followed suit, the words that came out of our mouths this time came in unison with Mr. Fischer.
"Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil! Sieg Heil!"