It is the year 1919, barely a year after the war has ended. Living as a German in post-war Europe has been a struggle to say the least. The lands are destroyed, the buildings crushed, and spirits are broken. Buildings are being rebuilt, brick by brick, but our souls are still shattered, and no brick will fix them. I have been forced into poverty for the sins committed by my government. I was brainwashed into believing what I was doing was for the good of my own country, and now the memories haunt me every sleepless night. How am I to deal with this? I am not capable to pay for my children, to sleep safely at night, or to visit my family in surrounding countries. I have been disowned and everything important to me has been ruined. Millions have lost their lives, but I have been unfortunate enough to have survived, leaving me alive but empty. I am hopelessly floating through time, waiting for a day where World War I will not tarnish my heritage as a German. Even now, there is talk of renewing the war, though it is unlikely. Will this day ever come?
When the war ended last year, our country was forced to sign the Treaty of Versailles. The League of Nations invented this to ensure that we would be held responsible for our actions. We have gone into what seems like an eternal debt, over 30 billion dollars. In the end, over 37,000,000 people lost their lives. This includes soldiers (some like me), citizens caught in the crossfire, and even children. As a person with humanity and disgust, my stomach churns every time that bone-chilling fact arises. I understand full and well that we deserve every ounce of debt, every second of suffering. We are responsible for a war that not only killed millions, it killed the beauty of our planet and the art of coexistence.
The buildings and towns are desolate. I wish that I could assist with the reconstruction, but I am far too busy. There are plenty of helping hands already, will they not be enough? I am too much of a mess to help anyone, much less those whose lives were ruined by a war I partook in.