The battered stairway had seen plenty in its lifetime. It remembered the debut of its life and the young couple who had first stepped onto it. They had been exhuberant, full of hope. The years had slowly eroded her joyfulness and brought with it disillusionment. The children had skipped up and down the cement stairs, turning into adults with their own young trailing behind them. The first family had long ago left this place. Now foot traffic hardly passed down these stairs. Architects had come by, planning a new building. Its life was over and it passed with no regrets.
The Learjet waited on the tarmac, engines running. The officials hurried into the plane, eager to begin. The task? Flying to hot spots around the world in an effort to gain support for their subversive programme. They had been told that without these signatures, the project they had been working on would not materialise. The plan? To become, once again, a true patriarchial society. The tides had been changing in the last few decades and women needed to be subdued. The men sat in their seats and decisively snapped on their seatbelts. First stop: London.
The abandoned costume told its story of disappointment and disillusionment. The audition had not gone as expected. Instead dreams and hopes had been shattered with the cruel words of the decision makers. Months of hard work and late nights had been crushed by their mockery. Tonight would be one of self-pity – it was allowed. But tomorrow would be another day and, with it, the abandoned costume and dreams would be picked up and cared for again. Auditioning was not easy and yet, when accepted, one more step is taken towards achieving the Dream.
The cliffs were awe inspiring and made her problems seem small but she could not stop thinking of her involvement in the catastophe. She had thought she was doing some good, not realising that her “friends” were planning a break-in with the aim of destabilising the Organisation. Walking along the beach, she listened to the soothing sound of the water crashing on the shore. She wished to lose herself in the serenity of her surroundings yet her guilt would not allow her to escape her thoughts. So many people had died! And all for nothing.
Area E48 had been cordoned off, preventing curious bystanders from discovering the truth. The middle-aged woman had been taken quickly and effortlessy. All that remained of her presence was an unmatched shoe and her hysterical daughter.
“Aliens took her! Their long arms pulled her into their ship!”
“Yes, ma’am. I am sure that is what you saw.”
Those at the top of the city’s bureacracy knew there was truth in the woman’s hysterical ramblings. The alien presence on earth was a long kept secret which they intended to keep. The daughter would be dealt with quickly.
The oncoming lights flashed by quickly. She began to feel a sense of desperation. Why would nobody stop? She looked over the edge and saw his head bobbing in the water, knowing that soon he would lose the strength to stay afloat. She continued to wave her hands frantically at the cars moving by, hoping for a good Samaritan. He had thought himself invincible and now look where he was – at the mercy of a stranger who may stop too late! She regretted bitterly the decision to join him tonight. She preferred the serenity of a life without mishap.
The building rose four stories and housed an ecclectic group who had lived all their lives in this neighbourhood. The one who drove the group lived on the top floor. Her age was undetermined and her eyes shone with the wisdom of her years. She counselled the young, encouraged those who wished to give up on life, and reminisced with the old. Her advice guided many actions in the neighbourhood and change in the area had to pass her approval. They brainstormed on how to get her on their side, not realising that she had forseen the need for change.
The nurse walked down the corrider, passing the sealed doors that housed the test subjects, the detritus of human life who offered nothing to society. They had been given the opportunity to contribute something meaningful to mankind’s future as the experiments being conducted on them would result in the knowledge needed to protect humanity against the invaders. Humans needed to adapt and evolve – the outcasts would help with the knowing of how. The nurse entered a cell, needle ready. The girl inside turned, magnificent in her added height and strength. She no longer needed the treatment.
The mural on the wall was a grim reminder of the past: the immense sea had been home to delightful water creatures. I have heard that they were friendly towards humans. Too trusting. Our forefathers disregarded their need for a clean environment and safe haven. Now it was too late. All that is left of their beauty are photos, paintings and video clips. And yet, even now, the leaders wish to destroy these reminders. For our own good. So that we no longer yearn for the past and look forward, instead, to the future. A bleak future filled with concrete.
How would you describe a world in which there are no sea animals?
The clouds shifted, allowing a bit of moonlight to shine through. Scrabbling through the undergrowth, Maddie was glad for it. She tried to move faster when she heard the dogs barking in the distance; she had to complete her mission before dawn broke. Maybe she should have asked Dean to help – but one person in harm’s way is better than two. She approached the clearing and saw the aging cabin clearly in the moonlight. She knew the imprisoned dogs were at the back, caged in small enclosures and mistreated until they could breed no more. She was determined that after tonight, they would no longer be imprisoned.
What are your thoughts on abuse of dogs for profit?