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The Long Road Home. Chapter 25

"Save yourselves. Germany is finished. The Russians will kill...”

Krakow, January 15th 1945   From time to time, news came through about the uprising in Warsaw. The stories that reached Maria and Katarina horrified them. Young, Polish men and women had risen up against the Germans. The word was that they had been expect...

The Long Road Home. Chapter 24

"That poor girl was shot by her own bloody colleagues..."

Krakow, September 5thth 1944   Although Warsaw was the capital of Poland, Krakow was where the general government of Poland was located. Maria and Katarina had both noticed that the military presence was strong there. Soldiers were everywhere. In cars, tr...

The Long Road Home. Chapter 22.

As it turned back towards them, Katarina saw the red and blue circles stand out on the wings

Ostrava, June 08th 1944   Maria and Katarina had to wait a few more days before they heard anything at all about being discharged. They waited patiently and took the time to continue with the therapy but, more so, helped the other nurses with some of the...

The Long Road Home. Chapter 17.

She wanted to cry but there were no tears, just an intense pounding in her temples.

Innsbruck, December 20th 1943   The young woman opened her eyes. Where on earth was she? In the gloom, she could make out twisted and mangled pipes, many with steam hissing from the fractures. Loops of wires hung down from above and, worse still, the room...

The Long Road Home. Chapter 16.

“Scheißer, there's a bomb!”

Innsbruck, December 19th 1943   Apart from the thin shaft of light, Maria lay in almost complete darkness. Suddenly she began to feel afraid. Alone and afraid. What if no-one found her? Once more she tried to pull herself free from the heaviness which hel...

The Long Road Home. Chapter 12

“Il Treno,” she said, using up most of her knowledge of Italian. “Where is it?”

Brenner. December 15th 1943   For the first time in many months, Katarina and Maria found that they had a little time to relax. The Army began to dismantle the compound, beginning with the damaged huts at the far end. The first two huts remained in use. O...

The Long Road Home. Chapter 11.

“Are we in trouble, Maria?” Katarina asked quietly...

Rome. November 28th 1943   As the sun began to set, Katarina and Maria continued with the task of ensuring that the patients were ready for the big move the following day. According to their orders, ambulances would be provided at first light ready to beg...

The Long Road Home Chapter 9

“I have seen the letters after the address but I have not seen 'H'. Do you know what it denotes?"

Rome. November 03rd, 1943   The revelation that Staff Sergeant Lawrence T. Bowman was Jewish was a shock to Katarina. To her, it mattered not a bit but, for some reason, she had never really thought about the religion of anyone outside of her own world. A...

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The Long Road Home. Chapter 5.

“You taught me a lesson I will not forget, Matron. I am not a soldier, I am a doctor..."

Rome. May 19th 1943   Maria had been right. The camp, a compound comprising of ten, makeshift wooden huts arranged in two rows, was situated adjacent to Ciampino aerodrome for the very purpose of repatriating the more seriously wounded. It transpired that...

Kindred Spirits, Distant Hearts. Chapter 27.

She lifted the bottle to her lips but it was dry. The last of the water was gone.

Tripoli. February 03rd 1942   Maria stared in disbelief at the fuel gauge but it made no difference. She could stare at it all night but the fact of the matter was, the fuel tank was empty! Hanna and Anneliese came through the door, Hanna taking the empty...

Kindred Spirits, Distant Hearts. Chapter 26

“That's it then,” she said, with a great sadness. “Captivity.”

Benghazi. January 30th 1942   Maria sighed sadly as she took one last look at the bomb damaged port of Benghazi. The final First Aid Carrier was waiting at the end of the jetty for her and her colleagues, the last of the German prisoners, to board so they...

Kindred Spirits, Distant Hearts. Chapter 25

He stopped when Katarina put her hand up. “I can't hear you,” she said...

Tripoli. February 03rd 1942   Since having heard the conversation about the counter-offensive, Katarina was once more hopeful that all was not lost. She hadn't heard a single word about Benghazi since Christmas eve, however, more than a month ago and as s...

Kindred Spirits, Distant hearts. Chapter 24,

...he just rolled his eyes towards Maria. “She did it....” he croaked.

Benghazi. January 29th 1942   Maria stared at the men who had crashed onto her ward so abruptly. The officer she remembered from the incident in the desert but the others were not the ones who had assaulted her and her medic. “Was passiert?” she asked ner...