- Published: Sep 28, 2007
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- Category: Short stories
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- Number of Story Views: 16
Abraham knew the end was near. Every day the Roman lines worked nearer the walls as the ramp neared completion. Tomorrow would see it done and most likely the storming of the city as well. Even now there were people being killed by arrows and other missiles coming over the walls. All food was gone and with it the water. Surely God had turned his face from them. Even a small amount of rain would refresh the defenders and slow the Romans but it was not to be.
The Elders met in council and decided that the hated sons of Rome would win only an empty victory. When they entered the city they would find only the dead. There would be no one to parade through the streets in victory and the name of Masada would live as a lesson to others oppressed by the eagles of Rome.
Abrahamís heart was heavy as he made his way home. Life had been good, he had a loving wife and three wonderful children before the legions came. Now it would end. Already his only son had perished when a huge bolt had crashed through the roof next door and a falling beam had killed the boy.
Sara was waiting as he entered and one look at his face was enough to bring her to tears. Her tears became sobs when he told her of the councilís edict. As was their practice the girls had already eaten what little food was available and had said their prayers before bed. The grieving couple prayed over the Torah and held each other for a while as they discussed how to obey the council. Knowing what witnessing the death of her children would do to Sara Abraham had already decided on a course of action.
The two removed their robes and held each other. Sara was drawing strength from his quiet acceptance of their fates. She had closed her eyes and just lay with her head on his chest. Then the knife he had hidden slid into her chest and pierced her heart. She had only time to look at his face and see the loving sorrow there before she died.
After covering the body of his beloved wife he went to each of the girls beds. A long last look and a thrust of the knife. Martha was his youngest, just six. She died with only a small gasp. Sara was named after her mother. Just coming into beauty she was a young woman any father would be proud of and any man happy to take as his wife in the few years it would take her to grow into the honor of wifehood. But it was not to be.
In her room was not the sleeping girl her father expected. Instead the black eyes were open and watching. One look at the knife told her the stories she had heard that day were true. Without a word she bared her chest to allow her father a clear thrust. A gentle kiss blocked her view of the blade entering the smooth skin. She hugged him close to her as her heart was penetrated and held on tight until it was all over.
After dressing the bodies of his family in their finest robes he laid all three together and lay down next to them before sheathing the blade in his own heart. He had protected his family and the next day the Romans were to find only a city of people that had chosen death over Roman rule. Forever the name Masada would stand for a determination to never submit to slavery.
Although the names of Abraham and Sara and their children and the names of all their neighbors have been lost in the sands of time what they did still shines as an example for those who love freedom.
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