War and Peace by Chris Jenone

War and Peace  by Chris Jenone
 Vivian Locke was a 25-year-old American pilot who was in charge of the bomber B-29 in 1945 during the Second World War when the American bombers bombed Kumagaya, a Japanese city.
At that time Kenjiro Arai was a 11-year-old Japanese boy in Kumagaya who was running for his life along with his mother, grand mother, and two brothers. His father and elder brother stayed in their house to protect it. Before the American bombers could stop their bombing after Japan’s unconditional surrender, the whole place was in ruins. Luckily, no one was killed in Arai’s family. 
          Nearly fifty two years after this incident, the 87-year old Vivian Lock and the 73- year old Kenjiro Arai become friends through ‘e mail’. Arai playfully signs off ‘Ken Arai- an old chap’ in his ‘e mail’, while Lock signs ‘Fly boy Viv’.  Lock remembers that he did not like the Kumagaya expedition, but he waited eagerly for the retiring signal from the American Head Quarters. Unfortunately, America’s acceptance of Japan’s unconditional surrender was too late to prevent their bombing. Arai remembers that he and his family were in a state of tension at that time. His mother was crying because of the Japanese emperor’s   surrender. He also remembers how he packed his school bag that night, getting ready for his flight at any time.
           It is arranged that both these old men should meet at a hotel restaurant near Lock’s home town.Both are very excited and happy. They spend their time in jovial talk, boating, and sharing various aspects of their ideas. They speak of their children, places they have visited, and the lives they have lived. Their final meeting in Lock’s living room is very touching. Lock feels very sad over the death of so many innocent people, including the Americans who missed the chance for a full life. While feeling happy that no one in Arai’s family was killed, he accepts his responsibility for the death of so many other Japanese people. Arai comforts him, saying that it was not his fault. Lock brushes aside his tears, when he shakes Arai’s hand for the last time. He feels that if all the people in the world behave like them, there won’t be any war at all, and the world will be a better place.

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