D for Dropje

“How old are you Willem?”

“I’m 14. How old are you Dropje?”

“I’m 16. Thank you for hanging out with me.”

“Sure, I see you waiting by the banks everyday on my way back from the school.”

“Yes, I wait for the daily newspaper from our postman. He has to bring it from the town across the river on a boat to our village.”

“Why are you interested in the newspaper?”

“Don’t you know? War is upon us. Nazis have invaded Netherlands and it won’t long before their hold extends to our village.”

“That is concerning…”

After a few weeks

“There is a small revolutionary movement against Nazi, Willem.”

“How do you know that?”

“Our postman is part of it. He is also acting as a messenger for the movement by discreetly passing on messages for the movement right under the Nazi’s noses.”

“Sounds dangerous Dropje. Please don’t get involved in this.”


“Promise me!”

A month later

“I’ve decided to join the revolution.”

“What? Are you mad? You will be killed. How can a 16 year old fight against the Nazis?”

“I don’t know but I have to try.”

“I won’t let you do this.”

“Willem, you have to understand! I have to do something.”

“No, Dropje. I can’t let you do this. ”

“Then I don’t have to listen to you Willem. Bye!”

That Night

“Willem what are you doing here?”

“I knew you were going to skip town tonight, so I waited by the river. I see a boat on the distance. Is that the people here to take you away?”

“Yes! now don’t stand in my way. I am in no mood to listen to…”

“I’m not!”


“I’m not here to stand in your way Dropje. I know you’ve made up your mind. I just came here to give you this.”

“A Dropje (Candy)?”

“You know I keep calling you Dropje cause you gave me one the first time you met me right?”

“Yes, I do”

“This is to remind you that I’ll be waiting here when you come back, my dear Dropje.”

With a kiss on his cheek she departed. As she made her way to the boat, one of the revolutionaries held out his arm for her to climb the boat.

“Who was that, Maxima?”, he asked her.

“A reason to fight. My reason to return.”





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