Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Microstory 1552: Fire Store

I broke into the store, as one does in the middle of an apocalypse. The shelves were nearly completely empty. All I ended up finding there was a box of rotten fruit...

...that nobody wanted, and a lone bottle of gas that had somehow made its way into the frozen food section. I poured the gas into the mouth of the nuclear bomb. Then I lit a match. It didn’t take long for the entire store to catch fire. I escaped with a few of my comrades, and we fled into the desert. I later learned that the whole thing was a controlled action. The peaceful protests that I had witnessed before had been staged in the hopes of making the current government pay. I had left behind two of my friends, who, having stayed behind in order to “protect the people” were taken as prisoners by the terrorists. They were held in what we would later learn to be a torture chamber, along with about thirty or forty other protesters. The rest of us were made to stand in lines in the blazing desert sun as the soldiers gave us a speech about what we were all doing wrong. “This is no way to live,” one of them said, as he pointed to his own bare foot. “Your life belongs to the state. You are here to serve it.” It was...

...the most humiliating day of my life, but I will also make it the most important for the movement. We were galvanized into action, to put right what is wrong, and make the world a better place. Nuclear war is not the answer, and I should have known that. We have to show them that they cannot break us, that we will continue to fight, but will not do so with guns, or sticks and stones, or even our fists. We will fight them with words, and turn hearts to our favor. Not everyone will join us, but enough will, and those remaining will lose in the end, not just because there will be so few of them left, but because nothing will come of their actions. We leave the desert, and regroup in the tunnels under the city. A rival faction of rebels has heard what happened to us, and meets us in the neutral zone. They’ve decided they want to help, and that maybe, our goals aren’t as misaligned as we once thought. They don’t want the terrorists to win either, and if we can come to a compromise, and formulate a solid plan, they won’t. Our first order of business is to declare someone leader, after our last one was executed to prove a point to the rest of us. Someone anonymous nominates me, and even though I don’t want the job, I can’t protest. Our ways prevent nominees from campaigning one way, or the other. I realize that no one is going to actually vote for me, but someone wanted to shut me up, and keep me from swaying minds to the woman I know is right for the role. A man from the rival faction is elected instead, and the rebellion fails, for good this time.

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