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“Ha! Checkmate! When will you learn?”

The sisters lay on their basement floor playing Chess. Christine was winning.

“I’m 9, you’re 11. I just need practice”

Christine admired Sophie’s belief that one day she’d win, and they’d always be free to play.

Christine wasn’t so sure.

Rumbling punctured the silence. Then a distant flash.

“Did you see that?”

“It’s ok, Soph.”

Christine walked to the window, knowing their father was out there fighting for their freedom.

She closed the curtains praying their army would succeed, that the war would end, and Kyiv would still be standing when she opened them tomorrow.

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