Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Microstory 1222: Ludvig Portillion

While the end of the phallocracy on Durus was suddenly brought about by a visitor from Earth who refused to accept the status quo, her arrival was not the only thing that brought the system down. Women had been living under oppression for over sixty-five years, and a lot had changed since the new rules were first implemented. For one, everyone responsible for the new world order was dead, leaving their descendants to decide for themselves whether they still agreed with their ways. For the most part, the system held up on its own. Anyone who disagreed with it feared retaliation for voicing their concerns, so they simply kept quiet. Active rebels were few and far between, but there were even more people who secretly supported them, and needed but a push to stand against the injustice. Ludvig Portillion was one of these people. He didn’t see women as inferior, but he also didn’t think he could do anything to help. He was born into a world that not only mistreated over half its population, but also into one that discouraged questioning the government, or coming to one’s own conclusions. It wasn’t tyrannical. Criticism—by men, at least—was usually met with dismissal, rather than explicit punishment, but it certainly wasn’t a democracy, and it wasn’t set up with sufficient change-making procedures. The truth was that Ludvig thought he was doing everything he could when he pursued a relationship with Loa Nielsen. Her father, Anchor was infamous for his understanding of the progressive Earthan culture, and thusly developed empathy for the female condition. Ludvig thought that, by courting a strong and independent woman, he was showing that he wasn’t afraid of female independence, nor would he attempt to take control over her. He also thought that being around both Loa and her father made him a better person. He never considered himself to be a bad guy, and the women who knew him didn’t either. It just took him too long to realize that, since he wasn’t really part of the solution, he was still technically part of the problem. He could have done more. Treating this one woman fairly, was the absolute bare minimum, and wasn’t nearly enough to demonstrate his goodness, let alone make the world a better place. Fortunately, he came to have an opportunity to contribute positively. After Hokusai Gimura came to the planet, and changed everything about it, Ludvig stepped up. He raised his voice, in support of progressive changes, and against any who would see society crumble back down to the way it was. And by his words, along with the words and actions of many others, the world did finally become its best self.

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