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Rated: ASR · Short Story · Biographical · #1644416
No party, only pain. A birthday never to be forgotten...
The Party's Over

I didn't get a party for my forty-sixth birthday, so there were no streamers, no balloons, and no cake.  I really hadn't expected a party.  After all, I was away from my family and temporarily stationed with the Army in northern New York, and it was highly unlikely that the Command to which I was attached was planning any sort of celebration to commemorate my having completed another year.  I hadn't made a point of mentioning it, and it was probable that most of the unit's staff was totally unaware.  No one would forget the day, though.

As I entered the Orderly Room and took in the scene just outside the commander's office, I was certain that it wasn't going to get mentioned today.  I, for one, wasn't going to bring it up; trying to jump-start a birthday celebration just wouldn't have been appropriate.  The television was turned on and everyone present was staring at the picture in disbelief.  It was a live shot of the southern end of Manhattan, a little over three hundred miles to our south-southeast, and the northern tower of the World Trade Center was burning.
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