December 24, 1974
The atmosphere was filled with laughter and excited chattering from the people around. It was the Christmas Eve. Our relatives arrived since the 20th. This time was looked forward to by all the families in town.
From the coloured candles and bonfires to the delicious aroma of food wafting from the kitchen, it was a time of bonding and relaxation for all.
The food was served and soon it was time to retire to bed. The plates were cleared and the chattering reduced to muted conversation for the adults alone and the children were sent to bed.
Suddenly there was a shrill scream and gunshots were heard. The men immediately at alert hands on their rifles. " We are under attack!!" The men reached out to fight but it was already too late, we were out numbered. It was a planned attack.
"Stella!!!" Magdalena shouted as she reached her room " you know I love you right? I wish things were different but as it is now you have to run, run as fast as you can away from this town and be safe. You will always be my darling" with a final pat on the head Magdalena pushed Stella out of the house.
The little girl couldn't fully comprehend the situation all she heard was gunshots and people groaning which made her shiver but she did as her mother told her and ran as fast as she could. She ran through the farms, hills and the woods until she was exhausted but she kept on going the words of her mother echoing in her ear.
She ran all her body drenched in sweat, tired and hungry but she had the will to live.
Finally she stopped her legs shaking and scared, she burst into tears, cried until her strength was drained. In a haze she collapsed unaware that she hit her head in the fall.