In that year of 1944-and bleeding into the beginning of 1945-I bounced from Dachau to Buchenwald to Gross-Rosen to Sachsenhausen to Fuhlsbuttel to Bergen-Belsen to Flossenburg to Mauthausen, experiencing the best each camp had to offer in hard labor and cruel punishments for homosexuals, occasionally get picked back up for new experiments they wanted to perform on me. However, as 1945 wore on, I could finally sense the end was coming. And nothing made this more prominent in my mind than when the news of camps being liberated by the Allies came, and the death marches began.
The SS would come in the barracks in the middle of day or night, rounding everyone up from inside, joining them up with more prisoners from other barracks outside of them, and then-gun butts used to shove and beat the men into walking-we would march to the next nearest camp, further inside my country, away from the advancing Allies, who were liberating concentration camps as they came, and were seeing all the things the Nazis had not had the time to burn and erase from the earth like they had done at Belzec. Their horror and disgust grew with each death camp they came across, and they relentlessly pushed on to find more.
However, it was not until early May-about a week after Hitler had committed suicide, and four months after mein bruder should have been freed if he had stayed in Auschwitz all these years-that the Allies finally caught up to my group.
As soon as the guards had seen them coming of course, they had opened fire on those of us left marching. Amid all the chaos that followed, one of the people I was nearby was shot and fell to the ground, falling on top of me and sending me to the floor as well. Too weak to muster energy to stand, I lay underneath the corpse as soldiers ran by me.
As the Allied Forces overran our captors-forcing them to turn and flee-I was met with the sound of two very familiar bickering voices; America and England came running by, wielding guns they used to mow down any SS men still in range.
I was possessed with enough of a sense of awareness to lift my head slowly, and puzzle out that I should recognize the pair of them, and that I was saved at last.
And then, I was filled with urgency, pushing myself to my feet in one swift movement, screaming for all I was worth that they needed to turn themselves around in that instant to come help me.
I had an Italian to rescue.
They looked confused for a moment, pausing in their mad dash around the area and their 'killing any SS man in sight' war tactic. They halted and exchanged a look, gawking at each other, locking eyes for a moment until they both turned around to stare at me.
"Germany…?" England questioned softly and unbelieving.
"Dude!" America shouted, running over to me animatedly.
"Man, we've been looking for you!" he exclaimed excitedly, leading me back giddily to the British man, though seeming to notice I was… 'changed', and allowing me to take measured steps instead of rushing after him.
"Yes, old chap, you gave us quite a fright," England added. His eyes traveled over my skeletal, diminished frame, and I saw them widen just slightly as they came across what little he could see of my extensive injuries through my tattered clothes. When he found me gazing tiredly at him staring at my body however, he very hurriedly looked away, an embarrassed and ashamed look clouding his face; I only managed to shrug, turning back to America.
"How soon can you get me to Northern Italy, Rossi di San Sabba?" My tone was demanding and short, but Alfred peered into my eyes and read all the panic I was barely suppressing inside of them.
"A-actually," he started nervously, "We know that Italy's awful boss-that Mussolini guy-he is dead, and just a few days ago actually the Northern part was liberated. But, uh, Germany-" I cut him off, already stumbling towards the nearest car.
"I need to get there, now," I muttered fiercely between clenched teeth, trying to force my legs to continue working despite all they had had to do during the march of the past few days. "Italy needs me."
"How fast can a plane get here?" I quipped.
"I should have been there days ago, Feliciano has been all by himself, and I've-"
"GERMANY!" I finally stopped my pitiful attempts at movement, only about halfway to the car that was just several yards away from me to begin with. I turned to look at the American who had shouted so loudly for my attention, but instead he nudged the Brit beside him, who spoke up as I turned my piercingly frustrated gaze to him, and actually causing him to flinch before he began.
"You should know, Germany, that Italy was not at Rossi di San Sabba when his country was freed. Instead, we, uh, found him at Bergen-Belsen, shortly after we liberated it."
"Really?" My heart fluttered, stuttered, then began beating overtime, out of excitement at the fact it could be at ease-a total oxymoronic moment. "Well, where is he? Let me see him, please, I'm begging you!"
They swapped another look, then wordlessly beckoned for me to follow them.
I struggled to keep up-though they were hardly moving fast, while I was at the same time pushing my crippled body as fast as it could manage to go before I would break down. We wound through the cars they had rode up in to overtake our marching procession, at last getting inside of one-to my extreme distaste, I had to be assisted in hoisting myself up into a Hummer-and we rode off once more, leaving behind a large number of soldiers to help the few men who were still alive from the march.
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Homosexuality was forbidden under Paragraph 175 of the Nazi Reich-Germany and Italy must pay the price of their love in blood and tears within the concentration camps as punishment. **Picture not mine, it is off deviantart or Google images :)