A tale of woe
It was a Wednesday in early June 1979 when the military police came for the town of Qui-Pan Cambodia. The army came for anyone who had not followed their orders. Everyone had to work on a farm. The cities were now outlawed.
The Mico family had tried to stay in their home and continue their lives as best they could. Of course Pol Pot, their benevolent leader, would never allow that. No one would be lucky enough to keep their homes, and for some their lives.
It was before sunrise and the small town was still cool from the dark night. Every here and there you could see lights in windows like splashes of paint on the dark grey of the little clay houses. In the Mico house there was light. Mother was running frantically through the four rooms of the house with tears running all across her face like cracks in an ancient statue. But, she was crumbling fast. Her children were terrified by the erosion when she came to wake them. That was not their mother. This trembling wreck was not the smiling woman who had put them to bed the night before.
Mother told the children to dress quickly and be quiet. She begged them through her sobs not to ask questions. As she hurried out of the room she tripped and fell into a crumbled heap on the floor spouting her fears like a fountain "NO! NO! NO! NO! THEY’RE GOING TO HURT MY BABIES! OH GOD NO! DON’T LET THEM HURT MY BABIES!" she wailed. The confused children stopped their hurried morning routine to stair at their shattered mother on the floor whining like a dying horse. Then Mr. Mico ran down the hallway and they saw him through the doorway as he yanked his tormented wife from the floor imploring her to silence in his strained whisper "quiet!" he said "hush" he said "they’ll hear you!" he said.
Mrs. Mico shook as if convulsing, witch she probably was, and stumbled off out of the horrified children’s sight. Their father turned to them and told them to get ready to leave. He told them they were to pack their clothes in a bag and put them by the door. The wiry little man turned away and trudged off out of their sight.
The children were horrified by the anguish in their fathers eyes, the slouch in his posture and most of all the tears on his cheeks. They had never seen daddy cry. Ever. What was going on? After a moments shocked silence the children got back to work, moving to the tempo of their mothers wails.
Then the soldiers got to the house. There were three loud knocks on the front door and father ran to open it. Rite before his hand got to the knob the door flew strait off its hinges and into the room with a bang and sent daddy spinning to the side gripping his mangled wrist. The two soldiers spilled into the room with their weapons raised, only to bring a new wave of vomit out of mother and so many more screams.
One of the soldiers ran into the rest of the house and went into each room to check for anyone hiding, while the other forced the children out the door with their father and mother. Mother wailed and fell to the ground at the soldiers’ feet. "NO! DON’T HURT THEM! PLEASE! NO! NO! NO!" she wept clinging to his muddy boots. The solider recoiled a bit at the remnants of a person that had been created by only a night of bad dreams. He bellowed his orders at her. He commanded her to get up and go out with her family. The children watched on in horror and pleaded for their hysterical mother to join them in vein.
The other soldier returned from the rest of the house and signaled to leave. Then mommy died.
The children gaped as the first soldier pulled a .45 from his belt and extended his arm. There was a loud bang and an explosion of gore from where mommies’ once smiling face had been. The children screamed and their father held them back with tears in his eyes as they reached out to her vermilion colored corpse. The soldiers turned and ran the children and their father out to the trucks at gunpoint to stay with the other families and await their placement on a farm. Just, as their loving leader had demanded. Who were they to argue?