She knit with what she thought was yarn but really sinew. Jewish sinew. They had somehow made her believe that she was seeing and touching and working with a softer wool for yarn.
She looked down at her pale hands, looked in the mirror at her Germanic, Aryan features and hated them, hated how similar she looked to those who made her do such things through cruel trickery. She didn’t look anything like the non-Aryan Jews she saw shuffle through into those pathetically dirty and small buildings barely fit for dogs. The German ones, the officers, could barely fit their wider, taller frames into those hovels.
She could see, if she really focused enough through the Veil of misperception, the lampshades already made of their skin. These were not people, not the dead ones that came in, some barely alive, but the ones doing these things. She hated it when they brought in the ones that were barely alive because they would “liven them up” before they killed them. She hated those moments when she could hear their screams of pain and terror. It was nicer, the Veil, for that reason. But it wasn’t the truth.
In moments when she could hear herself think enough, she would think how these people deserved to have their truth out, to have it witnessed, as gruesome as it was. To bear witness to a loved one’s pain one can do nothing about is to carry their final message to others: “don’t let this happen to them.”
She didn’t even know what they fed her, but refused to eat anything that contained meat since she’d heard screams earlier and smelled no smells of animals being cooked. They were forced to let her eat the only things she could: oatmeal and grits. She wanted only water in them, not trusting any butter to be just butter instead of fat, not trusting any milk or cream not to be runnier fat.
It was the part of her brain she tried to think with, the right middle to front part. It felt as though a needle kept poking into her mind whenever she tried to think beyond the Veil, as though she needle were keeping that Veil in place.
She was somehow their favorite. She had no recollection of who she’d been before, that led her to this place, but she must have been a fighter because some instinctive and visceral part of her kept fighting the Veil, their influence, the needle, what was happening to those people, the bodies and the ones that began alive.
There was one other favorite, though in a different way. She came in pregnant, barely alive, still staying for the baby. She was blond and blue-eyed and looked rather similar to her. But the baby she saw that was cut out of the pregnant favorite was not her. She knew she hadn’t been there since childhood. The baby was cut up and put into a stew since it was brown-haired and green-eyed, which was around the time she started mistrusting the food they wanted to share with her.
The funny thing was that neither of these people was Aryan, and yet they did not kill and eat themselves or each other. Even the one who came in lugging those people, dead, barely alive, was not Aryan. He had brown hair and brown eyes and looked like a bear of a man who still somehow acted like a boy.
She’d hear their conversations sometimes where she sat knitting at the time with actual wool. They’d complain of feeling different and oppressed themselves by this leader of theirs, but in how he treated them. From what she understood, he wasn’t even Aryan himself, but insisted on treating everyone but him who wasn’t as though they were a lesser class of person even if they worked for him.
One time, they noticed it had grown silent, commented, then began looking towards her, then directly at her with anger in their eyes, then everything went blank for her…