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Erotic Death Tales by Hitomi
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"The Sacrifice" "Ghosts Story"
There were thirteen of us.
I can still remember their faces, young, brave, smiling faces lined up for the photo shot. I can only
remember a few names: Cam, Thi, Xuan and of course, our platoon leader Anh. I remember these as
they were from the same hamlet I came from. We had shared so much in the growing up years: working
in the fields, learning to swim in the stream that ran not far from the village, going to school and learn
about something called “war”. We laughed together, cheered together when the party cadre
announced to us another victory won against our latest aggressor: the Americans. We had so many
aggressors in our history: Chinese, French, Japanese. Then the French returned, until we beat them
in their own game at Dien Bien Phu. After the French left, the Americans came and we were fighting
It was a long war, full of sufferings and death. My father went south along the Ho Chi Ming trail to
liberate our southern brothers and sisters from the Americans. He never came back.
Perhaps it was such long struggle for being free that made us a tough people. Even teenage girls,
when hearing the sound of approaching aircrafts, would dash to the nearest anti-aircraft gun
placement and start shooting instead of diving for cover. I had been one of them. Death was a regular
visitor here, making calls at the most unexpected hours, tapping the shoulders of the least deserved.
I lost my elder sister Phuong when she was caught by strafing fire as she raced across a rice field to
get more ammunition. The sight of her young and lithe body bending backwards as her chest was
riddled with red holes was burnt into my mind and there it would stay for the rest of my life. They
called her a hero of the people and told me that I should be proud of her. I was. But still, in private, I
wept and felt a part of my life ripped away from me. I used to hate the Americans, who took away my
father, my sister and some of my childhood friends. So, when we finally won the War of Independence
in 1975, there was much rejoice that our arch enemy had been humbled.
Now, I am wiser.
Peace, for a Vietnamese, is rare commodity.
Within a few years, we found ourselves in war again. I was about to be married to Van when he was
called up to go to Cambodia.
“I go to make our country safer, to make you safer.” He whispered to me on the night before his
I wanted so much to believe him. He was everything to me now. My mother had died the year before,
body and heart broken by her losses. I kept telling myself that I would understand, that he would
return to me, to love me and take care of me. But as he held me in his arms, he could feel my body
tremble against his.
“Don’t be afraid, Mia. It is going to be alright.”
His lips sealed onto mine. I did not resist him when he began to unbutton my blouse. I knew the risk
involved. If I was made pregnant, I would be punished and held in disgrace. But I no longer cared. To
be with him, even for one single night, to offer my body to the only man I loved was more important
than the most severe doctrine and social norm. He was gentle and my body eased against his
embrace. I guided his hand over my exposed breasts, to let him fondle what should have been
formally his if there had been no war to take him away. When he sucked at my nipples, I moaned
quietly, careful not to utter too loud as to attract attention. I parted my legs for him and he entered me,
calling me his love and his wife. It was the most beautiful night in my life, and the saddest.
He was gone the next day.
I awaited for him in my hamlet, praying for his safety and early return. When at night , alone in the dark,
I thought about the danger he had to face in the jungle paths of Cambodia fighting against the Khmer
Rouge, I could not sleep.
Little did I know that danger was more close to home than we all thought.
It was really an irony.
The Chinese, who had given us great help defeating the G.I., had become our bitter enemies. When
the immediate danger of American aggression was removed, our own camps split. We followed the
Russians while the Chinese allied with the Cambodians. From comrades, we became deadly foes.
Two months after my Van went south, the Chinese massed an army of over 300,000 men with tanks and
guns along our borders and in one cold February morning, they attacked.
We only had our Militia units to oppose them. Our best divisions were all deployed in the Cambodian
theater of war.
I was called up together with girls of my age and formed hastily into a fighting unit. There was no time
for training and since we had handled weapons before, they thought there was little need for it.
Before we departed the hamlet, we took that photo together. I was handling the camera to take the
shot and was supposed to exchange place with Xuan after taking the first shot so that I could be in the
photo too. But there was no time and we said we could do it after winning the war.
We should know better.
We forced march on foot at night. Our battalion commander told us that the Chinese had smashed into
our land and with only so few men holding the line, every man and woman who could use a weapon
must dedicate body and life for our fatherland.
Our unit was to reinforce the hard pressed 314A Division, which was a border unit, at Lang Son. When
we arrived at the outskirt of Lang Son, we were shocked to find the town had been practically
flattened by heavy bombardment by the Chinese.
Charred remains of houses were giving out long columns of smoke. There were bodies everywhere:
dead, wounded, and many nobody could be sure alive or dead.
In the distance, big guns thundered. Shells landed here and there, sending debris flying in every
direction. Officers shouted orders which no one could understand amid the deafening bombardment.
A short distance away, a make-shift ambulance exploded into flames as a mortar shell found its mark.
A nurse was thrown out by the blast, an arm less. The wounded man inside the wreck climbed out and
staggered, his clothes in roaring flame, before collapsing in the middle of a mud-pool.
“What are you standing there for? Take them to the block over there and hold it!”
The officer barked when there was a short pause in the barrage.
“Come on, girls, follow me!” Anh pulled out her pistol and led the way.
We followed, dazed.
I knew everyone was afraid. Death was so close and we were all too young. This was not the same as
standing in the field with an anti-aircraft crew shooting at some passing planes. This was death, cruel,
merciless, and it would not just fly away!
We stumbled into the half wrecked building which should be a former primary school. Student desks
and chairs had been piled up at one end to make some sort of barricade as there was not enough
sandbags. Almost like a robot, I helped Cam set up the light machine gun which was our heaviest
weapon. I had a tommy gun, a relic from the time when my parents were fighting the French.
The barrage had stopped now.
There was such an eerie silence.
We knew what it meant.
The Chinese were about to attack.
“Are we going to hold this place on our own?” Cam asked me.
I had no way to know but got the feeling that we were terribly exposed, our flanks were not in the least
“Do not worry. They would not leave us here and just need time to send reinforcement. I will be here
and we look after each other.” I tried my best to reassure her.
Cam nodded. I did not know how confident she was of my assurance though.
And then they came.
Sporadic mortar fire paved the way for their infantrymen advancing rapidly directly towards our
“Hold your fire until I give the order.” Anh gave instruction down the line.
I nodded and was suddenly aware that my palms on my gun was covered with sweat.
“I will survive.” I told myself. “I want to see Van again, to marry him, to carry his child. I will not die.”
The self-made promise somehow calmed me.
I pulled back the loading lever and braced for the onslaught.
“Now!” Anh shouted.
All at once we were firing down the line, spitting fire at the men whom they told us were our enemies
and should be destroyed.
I saw the first men mowed down, bullets ridding their chests making them dance before falling like
rice-stalks. I did not know if I was instrumental to some of such slaughter. I emptied my magazine and
then reloaded, emptied it again. That was all the ammunition I had. Putting down the gun on one side, I
pulled out the two grenades and tossed one over the barricade. The sound of explosions, of firing, of
dying men filled the air. And dying girls too. I heard Xuan scream and turned around to see her
stabbed by a bayonet in the chest by a young Chinese soldier. Anh immediately shot him dead. There
was so much blood oozing out from Xuan’s wound.
“I don’t want to die…I don’t want to die…save me…” she was crying.
And then she stopped writhing.
The enemy had retreated. Anh ordered me and Cam to carry the body of Xuan to the back. Three other
bodies had already been lain there, young faces with open wide eyes staring at an unmerciful sky.
Anh gave me the rifle that had belonged to Xuan.
“Back to your posts. They will attack again, soon.”
It was then that I noticed the uniform of And was torn badly in the fighting. Fortunately, she was not
wounded. She took note of that too and took the thing off. Since we were not issued with underwear,
I found myself gazing at her proud breasts.
She chuckled and put on a white blouse taken from her knapsack and had the front tied into a knot,
the cleft between her proud breasts still visible.
“What is the problem? You have not seen me naked swimming before?” She jested.
“You were only seven, or eight then. The view was not that spectacular.” I said.
We both laughed, which sounded so odd but it somehow calmed our nerves.
We went back to our position.
The only sound we could hear was the beating of our hearts.
Then they came.
That strange, frightening squeaky sound.
Our faces went white.
We had only light weapons.
But there was no time for us to take in our terror.
A boom and then the wall behind us crumbled into dust.
“Fire!” Anh shouted.
Bullets traced the air, ran into men, bounced off the armor of the metal monster.
The enemy was firing back too.
A shriek from the far right announced the death of a comrade.
Cam had both her hands on the trigger of her light machine gun and was still pressing when the
ammunition belt had run out of bullets. Her body was shaking, and so were her hands.
“Cam! Take up your rifle! Shoot!”
She turned towards me, uncomprehending.
“Shoot! Please shoot!” I shouted.
She recovered, picked up her Ak-47 and fired shot after shot.
I fired and dropped another enemy.
Then I heard a dull sound to my right and turned to see Cam sprawling across the floor in a pool of
blood. There was a red hole right in the forehead.
I rolled to one side, biting my lower lip to stop my weeping over Cam and then a sudden surge of
anger took over me and I rose and climbed over the flimsy barricade and started shooting running.
Anh did the same with her Tommy gun, and was soon followed by all the remaining girls.
We knew we had no chance to destroy the tank this way but we were determined to take as many
enemies on foot at the back of the monster with us. The turrent turned along with us and its machine
gun spat out murderous fire. One girl was literally shot to pieces. Anh and I did not stop but kept
running and firing.
“It is fun, right?” She called out loud.
I nodded, tears in my eyes. Yes, I knew I would not see Van again but I felt so proud to be able to run
and fight along-side this remarkable woman.
Anh shouted back something but the rumbling of the tanks tracks drowned all sound.
“I said. Don’t get captured. They would rape you!”
I felt cold sweat running down my spine. I had not thought of that. But what should I do? Should I save
one last bullet for myself?
Then I noticed the tank getting close to Anh.
It was trying to run her down!
Perhaps the commander inside did not want to waste ammunition on her and chose the cheapest way
to finish her, under the tracks!
That proved to be their big mistake.
Agile as an antelope, Anh made a jump and caught the barrel of the gun, which was of the short type
which permitted her to swing along and loped a grenade down it.
“Jump!” I shouted out my warning.
She jumped, but not fast enough to escape the blast of explosion.
I saw her land a few feet from me, her back split open by shrapnel.
I rushed over and turned her over.
The knot which tied her shirt together was undone and once more I saw her beautiful breasts.
Her face was as white as her shirt once was.
“Do not…. let me be… captured.” She gasped in pain.
I pulled out her pistol and aimed at her heart.
“Good bye, Anh. I am proud to serve under you.”
She managed to smile.
The battle was almost at an end now.
The platoon was almost completely wiped out. Young bodies littered the ground, flowers that
withered in the fire of war.
I saw two of the survivors being marched by enemy soldiers to the rear.
“Do not get captured.” Anh had said.
I had used up the ammunition in my rifle magazine.
I looked at the pistol in my hand—Anh’s pistol.
I cocked it and put the muzzle against my temple and pulled the trigger.
No pain came.
It was an empty chamber.
Before I comprehend what was happening, I was seized by strong hands.
I was made a prisoner of war.
Anh was wrong though.
I was not raped.
The PLA had better discipline in treating prisoners of war than the G.I.
Lang Son fell but the Chinese failed to lure our forces out from the capital to destroy them. After a
month of stalemate, they withdrew.
Both side claimed victory.
I was exchanged as a prisoner of war and went back to my hamlet.
I was neither treated as a disgrace, nor as a hero. I never saw the other two captured girls.
Two months later, I was informed that Van was killed in Cambodia.
I also learned that I was pregnant.
I gave Van’s family a son, a baby that I loved so much that I was willing to give my life to protect him.
Van’s brother, a war veteran who had lost a leg in the War of Independence, took care of us. One day,
he took a photo of me kissing my baby son and gave the photo to me later. I carried it with me in my
pocket, even when I went to work in the rice-fields.
I went to the stream sometimes, thinking about Anh, and Cam and Xuan and all the others in my unit
and of the photo I took for them before the battle, a photo without me inside.
I only wish he would grow up in a war without the sound of guns.
Mia was killed in battle in April, 1984 at Lau Cai when another serious clash again broke out between
the Vietnamese and the Chinese. Mia, now as a platoon leader of female militia, fought bravely and
died together with twenty five girls under her command when the position was overwhelmed by a
strengthened company of PLA soldiers. They found the photo of her with the baby son in her breast-
pocket and a dairy in the backpack.
The Vietnamese and the Chinese are disputing over border territories and islands in the South Sea
Whether Mia’s dream for her son will come true is yet to be seen.
PS: The photo was taken from the web. The real Vietnamese woman soldier kissing the baby was
actually killed in action later. The photo was found in her pocket by Chinese soldiers.
The names in the story were fabricated.
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Comment from: Othello
Date: November 28, 2011
Such a unique story, Hitomi. The mood is one of such stark reality...and the
emotions and experiences of war are portrayed in so much depth. The fear, the
bravery, the desperation...the pride and the horror. Even the sensuality of the story
seemed like flashes stolen, ever so briefly, out of the grasp of overwhelming
destruction. Your portrait of these women soldiers is powerful and moving. The
almost documentary-like statement of Mia's ultimate death in battle carried
haunting echoes of her life in it...right down to the photo of her child in her pocket.
I admire you for searching the heart of darkness as you do, for the dignity and
courage, the hopes and dreams of your characters.
Comment from: Hitomi
Date: November 29, 2011
Yes, I like this story very much. The first time I saw this picture and knew that the
mother was later killed in action, I felt so sad. The picture was found by PLA
soldiers in her pocket after a battle.
I do not support any kind of war, except those being imposed by invaders and there
was no choice but to defend one's land and family.
Patriotism is simply an excuse for governments to get power over the people.
Thanks for putting this up.
Comment from: Nastassja
Date: November 29, 2011
I agree with you about war and patriotism, Hitomi. I am so weary of government
tactics of fear as means toward power...wrapping it in a flag (any country's flag) so
often seems like a way to justify any kind of horrific act.
This was a very intense story. I identified with the women fighting for some kind of
decency in their lives, and was saddened by the death and loss that gets sown
everywhere in war. I was unaware that this kind of conflict continued in Viet Nam
after the end of American involvement there.
I applaud you for writing with so much conscience, Hitomi. Thank you.
Comment from: Hitomi
Date: November 30, 2011
There are so many injustice and suffering in this world. I know a person can only do
that much but I must do what I can.
All governments are liars. The most common lies about wars are "if you do not fight
for your country, you become a traitor", and "if we are defeated, the enemy will
rape and kill you and your family members."
I think the idea expressed in the famous book "Catch 22" speaks very well for this:
my enemy is anyone who tries to get me killed. (And frankly speaking, I fear more
what our own governments do to us than what our "enemies" will.)
At least, I am yet to be told that our enemies can kill us for simply telling the truth!
(As the next story may illustrate).
By the way, my new novel "The Satomi Chronicle" is out.
If anyone is interested, you can
purchase it HERE, if you reside
in the USA.
If you are living outside the USA,
it is available HERE.
Comment from: Nastassja
Date: December 3, 2011
Congratulations on your book, Hitomi! I have just followed the link and ordered my
copy. I can't wait to read it!
Comment from: Hitomi
Date: December 12, 2011
Hope it will not disappoint you.