For many, life went on during the war. Balconies were off-limits, beds were dismantled, valuables – buried. Offices ran at full capacity, spurred by the fear of being killed for missing days, as had been the case for many. Every day brought with it news singed with fear and loss, yet each minute was strung on with an iron fist. Military check posts were set up everywhere. Under this façade of normalcy, the only act of rebellion for the officers was the secret funding of the war effort. Envelopes under the table, in hidden pockets, spirited away into the frontline; a small role for many to play in the liberation of their country.
For nine months, everyone kept up this pretence of regularity, until the night Eastern Refinery was bombed. Seeking shelter under the stairs was no longer enough. The tremors ran deep, and within a day, the C Colony emptied itself of all signs of life. Their new refuge at Pahartoli bore dire news of a new threat; bad men were on the prowl, looking for chances to loot and kill. Nights were spent on patrol, torches in hand, sleepless, and with worry eating away at their sanity.
More people disappeared. Offices were shut down. There was no more pretending.