She had seen the trail from the distance.
She understood that the town was burning. There was a little hope for anybody to make out of it alive.
But mother's heart can beat even on an iota of hope.
And so she had covered the arduous miles on foot. And so she had reached the burning town.
And what a sight greeted her there. Everything was burnt to cinders ... reduced to ashes. She found it difficult to breathe in the stifling heat.
Her heart was heavy with fear and she longed to see her son. She saw a posse of officers ... going about their duties. She edged closer and waited for an opportune moment ... if only it could be called opportune. They heard her approaching and bowed their heads and took off their caps.
She had known it all along ... ever since she had seen the trail ... but had been afraid to admit it to herself. The fear was gone now ... an empty hole remained in its place ... a void that will never be filled.
She turns to walk away when they say "He saved every one he could."
"I am sure he did."
And she walks away ... cold, proud and pained.
Submitted for Trifecta Week Eighteen challenge ... the word trail in no less than 33 and no more than 333 words.