Comrade: Chapter XII (Finale)

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We’ve reached the final section of Comrade! Thank you so much people, for hanging in there and giving me so much encouraging words as I’ve published this. I hope you enjoy this final instalment. I’ll be handing out tissues and hankies at the end for all who need them.

***

XII

“You are here on charges of treason…”

Simeon held his head high. He did not flinch as the long list of his charges were read out. He wore civilian clothes, but he held himself with a military bearing, shoulders back, eyes front, heels together. Two guards stood on either side of him.

Nurse Carter and Dr Roberts testified against him, though he saw tears on Nurse Carter’s cheeks. And regret in the doctor’s eyes. He glanced once at them, recognised them, and did not look at them again.

“Benjamin Simeon, are you or are you not, guilty of these charges?”

His voice was clear and strong when he answered, though he heard his own voice through a fog. “I am guilty as charged.”

“Benjamin Simeon has pleaded guilty to all charges laid against him. The punishment for treasonous action is death.”

Simeon marched out of his trial, his shoulders still back, eyes front and heels together.

His head still held high.

 

***

Epilogue

Twenty years passed before I saw England again. We were on the eve of another War, following in the wake of the War to End All Wars, but I found my way into the country, holding the hand of my wife and daughter.

At the military hospital, I found Dr Roberts—an older, greyer Dr Roberts—still working tirelessly at the bedsides of broken soldiers. Still attempting to heal the hurts wreaked two decades ago.

He told me two things: One, that Elaine Carter had moved on once the war was over and most of the soldiers had been brought home. She had become a regular nurse and had served faithfully until an ex-captain had swept her off her feet and proposed to her. Dr Roberts had not seen her in nearly as many years as I had, but he thought he’d heard that she now had several children and was happy.

The second thing he told me made my heart heavy. Benjamin Simeon, he said, had been put on trial for treason, and sentenced to death. He had gone to his execution with his head held high, refusing a blindfold and looking death in the face with a courage that few had ever seen. The chaplain had prayed for him, Simeon had prayed for himself, and then it had all been over.

I cried as Dr Roberts told me this. All I could think of was his simple words…I owed you fellows one.

But he hadn’t, I had told him that. He hadn’t owed me anything. He had given his life for me simply because he cared. He had cared in a world that had lost the ability to care. He’d had compassion, courage and…hope.

Whatever that suffragette had thought, he was no coward.

He did nothing to earn that white feather.

So how was that? Have a hanky. Would you like to see another serial in the future? Longer or shorter than this? Who was your favourite character? Have I convinced you to be slightly more proud of your old works?

12 thoughts on “Comrade: Chapter XII (Finale)

  1. Ouch!! Ahh, that one hurt but it was so, so good! Seriously, such a good novella! My favorite character was probably Wolfe but Simeon was awesome too; I came to like him more and more at the end of the story!
    More serials would be really cool; haha, I think we’d all just love to read more of your writing!
    Again, a huge round of applause for this one!! Yikes, this was awesome!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah, NO, BENJAMIN SIMEON. I saw it coming, of course, but it’s still tragic. I like how the tragedy is mixed with hope though. Those are the best kinds of endings- Simeon died but Wolfe got a chance for a future because of what he did. It’s so wonderful!
    Well done overall! I would definitely enjoy another serial- possibly about this length or shorter -but maybe not longer- would be my preference. 🙂 I love getting to read your works!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. AHHHHHH! Oh my. This was a great story! You did an excellent job of bringing hope and redemption in tragedy. I also love that this is from the perspective of a German soldier, a perspective most stories of this nature don’t tell.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you so much! I had a lot of fun experiencing this story again with all you guys and I loved your encouraging comments. They mean the world to me!
    I’ll definitely think about doing another serial next year 🙂 I suppose I’d better write one first though 😛

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you so much! Your comment made me so happy 😀
    Yes, personally my favourite thing about writing this story was bringing the German perspective to it. So many stories gloss over the German soldiers or ignore them completely, but I’ve always had an interest in them and in telling their stories to the best of my ability.
    And again, thank you for your lovely comment!

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  6. Oh my goodness, Chelsea, I just went through and read all the instalments and….this is wonderful. Just wonderful. That last line–“He did nothing to earn that white feather”–ouch! What a great conclusion! Endings are SUCH a crucial part of a story, and you nailed it. I love how realistic it is–I feel like a lot of writers would’ve brought Wolfe back to England to marry Ella Carter, but this was perfectly satisfying. I love it.

    So happy to have found your blog! 🙂

    Megan Chappie
    meganchappie.blogspot.com

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you so much for that comment! It made my day so much brighter 🙂
    I’m glad you liked the ending. Endings are one of those things that I’m never quite sure whether I got it right or not, so it means a lot for you to say that enjoyed it (and better yet that you thought it was well written).
    Ah yes, I wanted to steer away from that cliche sort of ending as well, though I admittedly did consider it.
    Thank you so much!

    Like

  8. Ahh… I just stumbled across your blog via…Jenna’s I guess?…I’ve since forgotten! XD I tracked down and read all of the installments of “Comrade,” and wow! I definitely think you should flesh this out into a full-length novel. At first I wasn’t sure about it, being from a German’s perspective and all…sounds rough but yeah…I’m still not sure how I feel about Simeon giving his life for Wolfe. BUT…wow. Just, wow. Love your enemies, right?? And all the emotion you showed through Wolfe—I love it!
    https://soldiergirlstories.com

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thank you! I’ve definitely thought about fleshing it out into a novel! I’d love to do it one day soon.
    I’m glad you liked it! This is one of my passion projects and I’ve been working on it for years, trying to get it as good as I can. 😀

    Like

  10. It has such a neat theme! And I loved that it didn’t take a romance twist. 😉 Keep up the good work!!

    Like

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