Highly Commended

The Forgotten Hero

By Sapphire Brewer-Marchant, aged 13

“Mummy, can we have one more story?” Pattie asked

“Yeah Mummy, what happened to Daddy?” said Rosie.

I have always tried to avoid talking about their father. Just thinking about him makes me cry. Maybe they should know the truth. Either way, they will eventually know what happened in Afghanistan.

“Your Daddy was and is a hero. This story is from his and my heart,” I said, trying to hold back the tears. It’s been three years now, why am I still crying?

“There was once a handsome young man called Jimmy – your Daddy. He was serving in a war-”

I was interrupted by Pattie: “Which war, Mummy?”

“A war in Afghanistan. Now will you listen to the rest of the story?”

Pattie nodded.

I took a deep breath and carried on. “Jimmy needed to save a hostage. He heard someone coming so he said to a random soldier, ‘Everything you have just told me is a complete and utter lie. Now tell me the truth and we might both live.’ He pointed a gun to the soldier’s head, so his friend could survive. He saved the hostage’s life by distracting the other two soldiers so he could escape -”

I was interrupted by Rosie. “Why would they both die, Mummy?”

Good question. “Your daddy snuck in to the Al Qaeda base. After someone heard the commotion they ran in and saw Jimmy with the gun pointed to the soldier’s head, then the angels saved him.”

I tried my hardest not to cry. I hugged both Rosie and Pattie good night then ran up to my own room and let my tears flow. But through the blurriness of my tears, I saw him, sitting there, at the end of my bed.

I rubbed my eyes quickly, but he disappeared.

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