In the previous chapter, Isaac Jacobs was explaining to the world how his life was affected by the Nazis during the years of the communistic ethnic cleansings in Germany. We don’t yet know why Isaac is holding the crowd hostage, but we are about to discover why. Rose has asked for permission to visit the lady’s room, and is there now with Miss Kincaid.
Rose and Miss Kincaid were washing their hands and preparing to return to the foreboding lobby. As they dried their hands, they both were dreading to leave their sanctuary. “So, how far along are you?”
Rose looked up at the ceiling and tears welled in her eyes. “I am six months along.” Her voice faltered as she spoke.
“Oh dear, what’s the matter? Are you okay?”
“It’s just that, well… I don’t know what to do.” Rose held tissue to her face. “Miss, Kincaid, I…” she stopped speaking and began crying openly.
“Please, call me Marsha. What is it Rose? Is there something wrong with the baby?”
“No, its just that, well, I was raped six months ago. Every single day I think about the baby. Every day I think about, well, I think about…”
Marsha nodded sincerely. “You think about having an abortion, don’t you?”
Rose nodded and started crying again. “Well, you certainly have the right to do so. It is your body and your choice.”
Rose exhaled slowly. “But is it really? My choice?”
“Oh dear, of course it is. Women have suffered and sacrificed all over the world to ensure that you have the freedom to choose.”
“Have you ever?”
“Ever had an abortion?” Marsha stopped a moment and considered her answer. She paused for several seconds before answering her in a subdued voice. “I was fifteen. I was from a small town and it still wasn’t acceptable for unwed mothers to have babies. I was scared and I made a decision.”
“What about your boyfriend?”
“He never knew. I never told him. In fact, I never told anyone, until now.”
“But what if your boyfriend had wanted to keep the baby?”
“It wasn’t his choice, it was mine.”
“But, it was his baby also.”
Marsha shook her head. “No, that’s not right. He wasn’t the one who had to carry it around with him all day. It was my choice alone.”
“But he was the baby’s father.”
“Look, Rose, its not a baby until its born. Until then its only a…”
“Lump of tissue?”
“Well, this lump of tissue is moving around and has a heart beat. How do I harden my heart enough to follow through with what I want to do?”
“You just remember the women who suffered and sacrificed to give you the choice.”
“And that was enough for you? You never thought about your baby again?”
Marsha hesitated. “Well, I thought about her. I mean, once in a while. But not much.”
“She was a girl?”
Marsha’s face was stone, and she spoke too quickly. “It was tissue. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have killed…” She fell to the floor and sobbed. “Oh my God! I killed my baby!” Rose gathered around her as she mourned the life that never was. After a few minutes, Marsha sat up and leaned into Rose. “I was always reminding myself that I was a strong woman and that I didn’t need anyone or anything. However, at night, I would hear a baby crying, in my dreams that is. I would see a new mother holding her child, smiling and playing. Now it is too late for me.”
Rose shook her head. “No, Marsha, you are still young enough to try again.”
Marsha bowed her head in shame. “No, I can’t. The abortion left me unable to carry a baby. I can’t ever make up for my mistake.”
“Oh, Marsha, I am so sorry.” Together the women cried for a moment. “It was Isaac. He loved his children so much and he was so sorry that his kids were killed. I had decided to go to the clinic today. That is why I was here. I was making a withdraw to pay for the abortion. But he said that only a monster would kill a baby and never give it a chance to live, only for convenience. How selfish would I be to kill my baby just because I didn’t want it?”
Marsha stood up and stretched out her dress. “Well, Rose. You have a chance to make up for the wrong choice I made.” She helped Rose brush off her sweater. “Isaac made a very strong argument, didn’t he?” They walked back to their seats in the lobby and everyone wondered at their red, swollen eyes.
Isaac paused his presentation while the women were absent. “Are you ready to continue, Rose?” She nodded yes and the reporter stopped filling in for the down time and prepared to listen. “The day my wife and daughter were killed changed my life forever. I swore an oath to my God that I would find their murderers and bring them to justice. I have to admit, I didn’t hold myself to my oath, because I came to realize that my God never existed. What kind of God would allow the holocaust to occur? Nevertheless, I am committed to stay my course. After many decades of searching, I have finally found my wife’s killers.” He pointed over at the Heinz brothers who were still kneeling on the floor.
Chief Gray pulled off his gag and asked. “Is that true? How can you be certain?”
Isaac nodded. “Finally, you say something that matters.” He walked over to the two old men. “The two killers had a special mark on their shoulders, a tattoo. Not just any tattoo, but the tattoo of the Nazi storm troopers, complete with swastika.” He pulled a knife from his boot and held the knife menacingly at them. Rose gasped as he grabbed their shirts and cut them from their bodies, exposing their backs. Each of them bore the tattoo of the Nazi storm troopers. The cameraman leaned forward and zoomed in on them.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the two of the three killers of my wife and daughter. One of them held their arms while another shot them. The Blitz Brothers.”
“But they are the Heinz brothers.” Chief Gray interjected.
“When they fled Europe after the Allies destroyed the 3rd Reich, they changed their names and started over. All along, you never knew that there were killers in your midst.”
Cato held up a hand. “You said that there were three. Who is the third?”
Isaac waved a dismissing hand at him. “Don’t concern yourself with that. I found the three of them hiding in Argentina, amongst all the Jewish refugees, trying to blend in with the very people they so hated. When I finally tracked them down, I found Ruben at Pan de Azucar, a small mountain village near Cordoba. After I presented my evidence to the village, they hung him in the tree on the square. That was in ten years ago. David and Adolph fled to the United States and have been in hiding until today.” He turned his attention to the chief. “I understand that you are friends with these killers?” Chief Gray swallowed hard, but couldn’t find an answer. “Don’t worry, Hans Goldbaum, I am not looking for you today.”
“Hans Goldbaum? Who is that?”
Isaac turned to face the question. “Miss Kincaid, that is the real name of Chief Gray. He changed his name when he came to the United States. He was only a boy, but he aided the Germans by trading them information for food and lodging. He was one of the Jews who betrayed my family and our hiding place.”
Chief Gray had nothing to say. His face was ashen and for once, he was unable to speak. He was acutely aware that the TV camera was focused on him.
Cato spoke again, breaking the awkward silence. “So, what do you intend to do?”
“Oh, I intend to bring them to justice. They will meet with the death penalty today.” He walked over to the brothers and held up his pistol. “Do you have any last words?”
The Germans spoke to each other in Spanish and then spoke back to him in German. Issac nodded. “Ah, so you choose to remain the swine you are. Very well, have it your way.” He pointed the gun at David’s head.
To Be Continued...