Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta dystopian. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta dystopian. Mostrar todas las entradas

sábado, 8 de agosto de 2015

On the rubble

   At first, the sounds were like thunder. Once and again they repeated themselves, a little bit louder each minute that passed. People were hiding in their basements or in any other structures below ground but were still very close to the bombs. They normally fell for hours, at least two, and then they would stop for another two hours until they came back. It was particularly awful at night, because people had no electricity and they feared something worse could happen in the dark, even worse that a foreign force dropping bombs on their heads. They just stayed there and prayed, if they believed in something. If they didn’t, it was a lot harder to imagine a way to go back outside alive.

 Every single person, even children, now knew that the world had been crumbling down for at least fifty years but no one had really noticed. That was until, all of a sudden, the most powerful country in the powerful got very extremist and started killing their own. People around the world saw it happening and they couldn’t believe their eyes. But as many times before, they did nothing, as they were scared they would get a blockade or some sort of attack just because they wanted to defend the lives of so many that had been massacred. And what the TV showed was only the tip of a very bloody iceberg. If people had known, they wouldn’t have feared, they would have done something. But that didn’t happen and it was only two years after that that the war starter. Ironically, it had nothing to do with mass murders but with a fishing boat.

 Since that happened, the world had seen five awful years of fire, misery and death. People talked about safe havens around the world but they all sounded so perfect, so ideal, that the general population thought they were only a fantasy created by those who didn’t want to realize what their reality was. They were prisoners in their own country, having to eat whatever they could find and surviving as animals, as rats. Some escaped to the countryside but things were supposed to be worst there because of the open spaces and the use of more horrible weapons that one could ever imagine.  The country was dead.

 Besides, they had been cut off from the rest of the world, so heading to the borders was useless as they were all under surveillance. And the truth was that even beyond those fences, life was exactly the same. So why bother in running, escaping and hurting the shitty body one had only to be in a place where things were exactly the same or maybe worst? People survived and they openly welcomed death, but on their terms. No one died of old age anymore but it was the objective of many to die that way. Most people died in the streets, with a shot to the head and probably not even fired by enemies but by other hungry people.

 Rumors were always heard. People had begun a rumor, maybe based on the truth, that a group of rebels had been working before the invasion had happened. You see, before the country was attacked daily, there used to be what people call a “puppet government”. A crazy military man, as they all are, had formed an alliance with the extremist nation that attacked them. He sold the country to them in exchange of letting him live and rule. And they did let him do that but only for some years until he was killed and the occupation really began. It was during that time that several “terrorist” attacks took place. It was them, the rebels.

 But now, it seems, the rebels didn’t existed anymore. Apparently, the government killed them all and then the government itself was killed so nothing remained from the past. News came every so often, from people that had managed to salvage radios or television sets. They said they had heard other countries been taken or an uprising somewhere very far. But even if all those things were true, people knew that they weren’t enough. Those things were happening so far away that they would never get any help. They just knew how their lives would end and they didn’t want to do anything about it. Why change what is inevitable? They just waited for the end and that was it. No more believing in miracles, or in any fantasy about rebels and war on the other side of the world. They were dead and that was the only truth.

 People survived eating small rodents that they found among the rubble after the airplanes had stopped bombing. There was no building standing and it made no sense for them to keep bombing them but they did it anyway. Some people believed that they didn’t want to use real soldiers in order to keep in line people that were already scared and enslaved, in a way. Another rumor was that soon they would come and build factories and that all those people in the basements would be made to work there, making uniforms, guns, helmets and so on. It was the normal thing to do by any foreign oppressive power, or so said the elderly. But no one knew and no one cared enough to think about it.

 A person’s day consisted of hearing the bombing all day, trying to sleep at least two hours and then go out of the hiding place in order to find food. That was it. There was no entertainment or time to be happy or joyful. Those things had died with the war. Any kid who laughed was severely spanked by their mother and learned, the hard way, that there was nothing to be happy about in this world. Some people moved around the city, trying to get more food and it sometimes worked. Some of the ponds and lakes still held water and some fish so it was only a question of how to get them. That would have been a nice way to spend an evening but these people saw it as a way to survive so there was nothing nice or good about it. It was just something they had to do.

 Suddenly, one day the bombing stopped altogether. It was not that they had decided to do less bombings; it was that they just stopped. People were scared then, more than ever. The invasion, the full scale one that they had feared for so long, was finally at their doorstep. Mothers decided to teach their children how to be obedient and how to lower their head before the foreigners. They wanted them to live, even if they had to be submissive and enslaved. Nothing could be worse than been a human rodent. They waited, and waited, and waited, but the invasion never came. They never saw a single soldier come their way but that didn’t make them calm down. Maybe they had decided to test a new weapon on them… Maybe they were going to be destroyed for good.

 But that never happened. A year after the bombings stopped, when the grass started to grow again, as the trees and crops, a battalion arrived to the ruined capital city. People were scared and ran away but they soon noticed those soldiers weren’t wearing the flag used by the extremists. They were wearing a white patch only which many remembered as a sign of peace. That week, five battalions arrived to help the people and teach them how to rebuild and feed themselves. The community was alive again and people, for the first time in many years, felt good about smiling and dreaming. The children were especially happy and their parents could finally have a calm heart.

 Many bodies were buried in huge mass graves. And it was then that they realized that their liberators were locals. Not all of them but many and they told them their story. Apparently, they were the ones called rebels back in the day and they had to flee the country before it went to shit. They said that many stayed behind but were killed. Those who remained hid in boats or planes bound for other parts of the world. Their stories were then so different and fantastic but they untied again at what they called the Big Battle. It had happened about a year ago and it had been the turning point for the war. The extremists were cut off of their resources and then their capital was taken. Their leader was hanged.

 That’s why the bombings had stopped. For all effects and purposes, the war was over. The rebels talked about the sacrifice that many had done in order to get their freedom back and that’s why now they wanted every country to stand up again and become a better version of themselves, to become something that people could look up to in the future. War had to be a thing of the past, something only mad men would think about and those mad men had to be put away, their freedom taken before they could take anyone else’s.


 The world had died but then, it’s heart started beating again. Will there be another chance? Will we survive again to our own demons and stupidity? Let’s hope this time it sticks.

viernes, 3 de julio de 2015

The last march

  After the Great War, the lone commanders of the Union that were still loyal to the ideals of their lost cause, decided to force thousands to march to the deserts. One would think people would rebel against this in a heartbeat but the truth was that they didn’t. They were all exhausted after having been prisoners and slaves for almost five years. They didn’t have any energy in them and the commanders were the only ones that, though deranged, still kept some integrity and ideals, even if they were twisted. The war had destroyed every major city and no government had remained after the last nuclear warhead had been either used or destroyed in the ocean. The world was no longer in chaos because humanity was broken and it would take a very long time for it to be fixed.

 The march went on for a year, by which the commanders had begun to show mercy to their prisoners as they were all in the same condition. As the climate always changed, everyone wore the same robes that were cool during the day, when the sun was specially harsh on the planet and were a bit warm during the very cold nights in the deserts. The people only marched and marched. Sometimes they rested, ate what they could find, mostly insects, small animals and plants, if they could find them, and they had all agreed to harness the largest amount possible of water and to share among the whole community of marchers. The commanders wanted a larger share for themselves but, in time, they stopped asking for special conditions.

After the first year was done, almost five hundred people had died from exhaustion or disease. Among those, many commanders, some of the hardest and cruelest among them, which explained why no one was being as evil as they used to be anymore. The commanders had always believed that their race was superior and that their values and morals were the ones that would make the world better. But now, the ones remaining secretly believed that to be just propaganda statements. In the desert, going almost completely mad, they understood they were not superior to anyone and that they are equally fucked by war and the decisions of men that weren’t there to be punished.

 Of the group that marched, there were not many children. People began to notice, after a while, that sexual desire had decreased after the war and that even when people had sex, children were almost never produced. The general belief was that many women had been rendered infertile by the radioactivity in the air. One of those cases was Yolanda, a woman in her thirties that used to have three children but now only had one and had been rendered sterile. The only child she had was now too skinny and his skin was a weird green hue. She knew he was going to die soon because of radiation and, when it happened, she barely even bury him. She had been prepared.

 Among the commanders, Rick Wolf was maybe the oldest one remaining. He almost forty years old and had joined the Union because he had believed it would lead to a better life for him and his family but that was proven to be false. He actually thought about it often during the long walks, and he had reached the conclusion that the most disastrous point of his life had been the one when he had worked for some of the mad men that had rendered the world into a barren dust ball. Even then in the desert, he had never felt guiltier and shocked that during the war, were officials were demanding to exterminate certain groups o for them to be examined. They had inspired themselves from the past because, he thought, humanity had always been rotten.

 Commander Johansson was much younger, not even reaching his thirtieth birthday and he was beginning to think he would never reach it.  The truth was that he was never too hungry and when they happened to capture a large animal in some large wasteland, he just wasn’t hungry enough to eat more than a bite. He knew it was the radiation that was eating him slowly. He probably had cancer but he did not want to know anything about it. He was kind of glad medicine was over because he wouldn’t be able to cope knowing what was going to kill him. He felt better like this, just walking without thinking and waiting for his death.

 Not all of them just walked. A man called Jeremiah had been named one of the leaders of the prisoners, which were no longer really prisoners, and he was the one that lead them and decided were to go next. In the morning, he was the first one to be awake and he would often go around the camp singing waking everyone up. The songs he sang were sad and very ancient but they made the trick: people were ready in no time and it was him who decided which way to go. He thought that they should go to Australia, a country that was rumored to be still full of life and only marginally affected by the war. Radiation may be present there but not in such large quantities like here so he tried to take them there but no ocean had been seen yet.

 No water bodies had been seen at all to be correct. All the lakes and large rivers appeared to have been vaporized in the war and the small amount of water they often found was the kind that poured from the mountains over rocks and that could barely be kept in any bottle or can. They just drank from it or licked the rocks and went on with their march. Most people had forgotten fast about the taste of the food that they had eaten before it all went to shit. They forgot about juices, about cooked warm meals and about water that you didn’t have to lick to be satisfied. Their memories were slowly dying and nothing could really be done to stop it.

 They all knew that, eventually, they were going to die. They also knew that it would happen much faster than usual and that the weak would go first. And so it happen during that first year when mostly children elderly people and the ones that had a proper disease just died stumbling down to the ground. Some people, the ones that still had any real feeling left, tried to bury them with sand or under rocks but they soon realized that was too much work and that they didn’t have the amount of energy to be doing that every time. So from then on they decided to just let the dead lay down on the ground and for the living to continue their journey in peace, or at least without worries.

All that could be seen on their walks was dead or dying. The few creatures that they had managed to hunt were skinny animals that were simply not enough for such a large amount of people. At first, when capturing an animal, they would let one of the commanders skin it and then cook it in some hot water they had found. But like burying bodies, that too proved to be just a waste of time and energy. With time, they began eating raw meat, which gave them the energy needed to keep going and live one more day. Because in the end, that was their goal, to just live one more day in this world that had been destroyed and that would eventually be empty and with no recollection that we, the humanity, had ever been here at all. All of our things destroyed, our individual stories rendered useless and forgotten in the abyss of time.

 People didn’t know why they wanted to keep living. But they did. Most of them still had hope that they could fin more people, maybe living like proper human beings, or maybe getting to that Australia place and live in peace for at least a couple of years. Some of the walkers still remembered the old world and they would often tell storied to the others, to keep them entertained. The commanders allowed this and they would too be enthralled by the stories of the man, who claimed men had walked on the moon and that they had created viruses to be weapons and how an entire country was blown up in a day by the forces of the Union before the war even started. Although most people thought they were just stories, it happened to be all true.

 People had forgotten who they were. Humanity was no more and just people remained, empty, like a shell that some animal has left in the ocean to be covered by algae and sand. People had no interests in the world anymore or on each other. Some were still more human than others but it was all the same because they all knew that they were the last generation to walk the Earth. Strangely, that didn’t make them nervous or crazy. They had just accepted it because they knew it had all happened because of them and now the consequences were upon them and not accepting them was not an option.


 The march went on for as long as ten more years. The last group, of no more than twenty people, finally arrived to what used to be the ocean. Now, it was a region of canyons and death. It was then when humanity disappeared.

viernes, 13 de marzo de 2015

200

   They descended from the sky, like rain. They didn’t fall hard on the ground but rather softly, walking slowly after landing. They looked like simple robots but everyone watching knew what they were: androids. The last generation that had been built in the Takashima factories, in what remained of Japan. They were the last remnants of technology as Takashima was the only company still spending so much money on technology.

 People didn’t like that and had tried, several times, to disable the factory. But that had proven impossible. The owners of Takashima had found out how to be independent, not relying on the energy generated by any of the public dams or energy plants. No one knew how although some speculated they had reactivated a nearby nuclear facility or maybe they were harnessing the power of the ocean waves.

 No matter how they did it, the androids were landing in small groups, all over the world. Takashima had been hired, in the midst of chaos, to ensure security wherever they could. Only fifty countries were chosen for the trial run and two hundred androids had been built to be the first to ensure the safety of the people. Those first hundred had the toughest job as humans did not like to be lectured or punished by what people in the slums called “inhumans”. And they called them liked that because they had no visible feelings, no remorse when killing or hurting someone.

 Their job was to protect people but in order to do that; other would have to be eliminated. For the next year, thousands of thieves, murderers, rapists, drug dealers and con artists, among many others, were arrested or killed on the spot if they had resisted. There was no way to escape one of the two hundred when they became angry, if that can be said. Because a machine does not become angry, it just enters another mode in it’s programming and responds only to those directives.

 The people that remained in the destroyed cities began to fear the robots. Small groups of rebels formed but they were always destroyed by the androids, not even having a chance at defying them somehow. On the other hand, the few governments that remained were very happy with these prototypes. They were behaving exactly as they had predicted and, in some time, the occupation of the now empty territories could be achieved with the help of a new generation of androids.

 Because, as always in the world, the powerful are the ones that really control all situations. It was them who paid Takashima Industries to build the robots in a time when money was not abundant. The needed that help because their rule was coming to an end and, effectively, the androids turned the tide in favor, again, of the powerful. The rebels, who were mainly poor and many more, had won several territory and were starting to colonize the remains that the war had left them. But the androids took that all from them in just a few weeks.

 The first two hundred were scheduled to be decommissioned after the first two years but that didn’t happen. Takashima assured the governments that those androids were still in pretty good shape and could serve as a support for the new generation of robots they were preparing in the factory, which had grown to the size of a small city.

 The United States invaded the “empty” territories shortly afterwards, when the second wave of androids was ready. They were another two hundred, better equipped for land and aerial assault. They were more military and had only one directive: obey the orders of their commanders. They did not protect civilians nor guarded for no one’s security. Although more evolved, they were brutes, cybernetic bullies at the service of the oppressor.

 The invasion of the territories was fast. Practically no resistance came from the few inhabitants that had remained, becoming slaves for the enjoyment of the new masters of the land. They formed several small states, each greatly relying in the strength and relentlessness of the new generation of androids.

The first two hundred, however, were removed from the colonies and returned to protect people in what became known as The Core. This was the most part of the northern hemisphere, where the wealthy of the new world were still settled. The androids there protect people, much like policemen and soon became loved by these inhabitants, which grew to like them and trust them. So much they did trust them that children even greeted any android they saw on the street and, as androids that they were, the artificial life forms began developing a relationship with the humans.

 That was not the case, at all, in the colonies. All artificial life was evil. That was what the native inhabitants knew and they were always very careful around them as any sign of rebellion was enough to be killed on the spot, it didn’t matter where it was. Their masters never cared, making the slaves clean the mess that the androids had caused. It was brutality at it’s best and no one dared to challenge the state of things.

 That is except the group that called themselves the Invisibles. No one really knew whom they were or if they were actually human. It was rather impossible they weren’t but slaves, in their quarters, loved to speculate that it was an advanced alien race that had come to save them from their masters. Of course, they were wrong. The Invisible were nothing more than people who had welcomed back their savage ancestry, behaving like animals and living in the woods and forests.

 Many territories of the world had not been recolonized after the war, so many of the survivors had gone into hiding there, slowly becoming more and more animal, losing themselves to nature and trying to forget the technology that they had used in the past. Not all survivors had taken this path and were now dead or enslaved. The Invisibles apparent goal was to be forgotten by the rest of the world, asking them to be left alone and leaving behind all trace of their disastrous humanity.

 The official of the Core knew about them but they regarded them only as intelligent animals, nothing more than a chimpanzee or a gorilla. But the Invisibles had not shed all of their humanity yet. They still had enough to seek revenge. And for many years they planned, away from everyone and everything. They sought to destroy the Takashima factory, once and for all.

 Although they did not speak that much anymore, they knew that this had been their target for a long time and the only logical thing was to proceed with their old plan. Once it had been done, they could go back to the forests and just live a peaceful life in the nature. They had no intention of breaking the rule of the Core, nor of liberating the many slaves of the world. They were a small group and they were going to use that only to avenge their deceased. That was it.

 Slowly, for some years, they travelled the wilderness until they arrived to the ancient country of Japan. That wasn’t the name the Core used anymore, changing the world so much, even the names, for people not to remember who they were. All of those all country names had ceased to exist.

 Takashima Industries was located on a small island, off the coast of Kyushu. The savages waited, scouting the island from afar, planning their strategy with care. The island could only be reached by boat and the place was heavily guarded. So it was best to do it at night. After all, they had dragged with them a secret weapon, which they knew would be essential to their plans. They stayed hidden for some weeks until they had a raft ready to sail closer to the island.

 On the raft travelled only two people: a woman, partial leader of the group, who used to be a scientist and a strong man, who used to be a military officer. There was a third passenger though. It was one of the first two hundred, an android that the Invisibles had defeated in battle, the only one that had ever fallen to them. They sailed the raft midway towards the island and then the woman pushed a few buttons on the back of the robot. The creature lit up and people on the shore could see their plan was working. The android was blind but functional. The man whispered a few coordinates to his cybernetic ear and then waited. The android then stood up and fired a rocket from his hand.

 The rocket flew up and this gave time to the raft to go back to the shore and escape with the rest of the Invisibles. Shortly after, the bomb fell on the factory, fully destroying every single piece of equipment on the island and killing hundreds of workers. It was the end of Takashima Industries as the Core decided to build new androids by themselves, even going as far as torturing the founder of the factory and making him give them all his research on artificial intelligence. Afterwards, he was killed by fire squad, falsely accused of treason.

 The Invisibles returned to the forest, with their android companion, and disappeared for years in the thickness of nature. But they would return again, very soon.

sábado, 24 de enero de 2015

Her war

  Alicia had just taken the lives of at least ten men. But she didn't care. She had learned not to care much when it came to do what she had to do. The past had taken the lives of many people she had loved, some way or another. Who cared if even more people were killed now? The world wasn’t one to care no more. And she, Alicia Hall, wasn’t one to feel sorry anymore. She just didn’t care.

 The fight had happened just outside of the many quarantine zones. This one encircled the whole city formerly known as Panama City. As many knew, even then, Panama had been a worthy ally to the Statian cause. So much that, during the attempt of the Confederation to take the south part of the continent, they built a parallel city on the other side of the Panama Canal to ensure their troops were properly supported. They had even built a large nuclear energy complex to feed both cities with electricity.

 But no one predicted a surprise attack; done by the Southies (slang termed the Statians used to call the people living on the other side of the canal) but covered up by the Statians, calling it a “failure” of the energy station. There was an explosion and everyone got evacuated. Many people died, though but no one ever knew about any of them. The place was rapidly turned into an exclusion zone for airplanes and the whole city was barricaded and put into quarantine. The people living beyond it were left to their deeds. In other words, they were left to die to the radiation.

 That had happened almost thirty years ago. The world today was very different: the war had ravaged entire regions. Food was hard to come by and countries were not as important as they had been before. The Statians had been reduced to a mountain range and many others had done the same. Technology existed, of course, but had been improved. All innovation had stopped. Anyway, people were more worried about feeding their families than about anything else.

 Alicia herself remembered her parents and brother often. It was true that she cried every night, thinking of them. She would always remember the day she had been taken from her home by a group of Righties. Righties were people that still believed in the superiority of one race or one group of people. They were loads, as people in fear always trust the wrong folk. They ravaged towns, raped women and killed innocent people, thinking they were Vikings of sorts. They also kidnapped women to be sold as sexual slaves and that’s what had happened to Alicia.

 But she had escaped. After an awful trip across the ocean, she had been sold in New Africa, the center of the Statians country. Strangely enough, the city was located by the sea. It was the commercial center of the country. Nevertheless, most of those folk lived inland, scared of invasion. Alicia then became the slave of a renowned politician and lived in his state for two years. Then, a storm broke out and there was fighting between the Statians. She took her chance and escaped the compound, unseen.

 But the day after, when she got up to a high hill, she realized they were following her. So began a journey of many days, even months, chasing through wilderness of all types to escape her captors. Eventually, they let her flee thinking she would die in the wild but Alicia was better than that. She learned to hunt and gather fruits in the forest. The young woman had even found useful things in more deserted cities: clothing, weapons, water bottles and food.

 The food was the best, by far. People everywhere were starving and there she was, having a whole city for herself, where she could pick up anything she wanted to eat. For example, Alicia had never had a spoonful of ice cream. The first time she had some, she laughed like a little girl and ate a whole bucket of it, tasting of vanilla. The stomachache that followed was awful but she thought it wasn’t a high price to pay for such a delicious treat.

 It was in that deserted city when she first killed. A group of men in military clothes walked in the center of the city and she saw them as they dragged two women along. The women looked foreign, like Alicia. She realized they were slaved. Rage ran through her veins and in that moment, she decided to do something bold. Without giving them the chance to say a word, Alicia penetrated their camp at night and killed the four men, with a couple of knives she had grabbed from a department store.

 When she was finished, the women escaped screaming like mad, looking at her as if she had done something horrible. But she knew she was right. All those men, all those people that thought were better just because they were of some color or lived somewhere, all of them, they had to pay. So, in her time in the city, she killed no less than a hundred men. She had trained herself, alone, to use every single weapon she found. Alicia had a small flat on the top of a small building and, in a case where she kept guns, knives, axes, arrows, grenades and other instruments to kill.

 But it was after some time that she realized she had to move on. Someone would get wise and would come to hunt her. And she didn’t want to give none of those people the satisfaction to do so. So, after gathering her things, she did a tour of various stores to replenish her stash of food and ammo, as well as some technology devices. These didn’t really worked well but she needed a GPS in order to know where to run.

 She wanted bad to go back to her country but she knew that was even more dangerous than facing a buck load of army men. She would have to penetrate the Statians territory and then, somehow, board a boat back the other side. No, that was a stupid idea, filled with things that might go wrong. Instead, after looking on a paper map, she decided that her best choice was to go south, through the old border and beyond.

 At the border, precisely, she met friends for the first time. They were indigenous peoples. Alicia had never seen people so beautifully dressed, not after the devastation of the war. But the indigenous women she met told her, in signs that they wanted to preserve what was theirs. War had torn them apart but they trusted that everything would get better. Alicia wasn’t as optimistic but shared a couple of days with them before continuing south.

 It took her months to cross through jungles and devastated cities. It was incredible to see how many people had survived the war, hiding in forests and going back to the lives lived by their ancestors. They were casual hunters and some had even started to grow food again. Many volcanoes made the soil a good friend but many people ran scared when rain came of when the wind blew to strongly. They talked about La Mancha, some sort of explosion that hey had seen and had destroyed, even more than war, the land were they lived.

La Mancha was no other than the horrible stain floating over the nuclear power plant that had being blown up by the Southies. Alicia heard of the story many times, by many people, on her way to the canal. But she noticed something else too: the more she traveled, the more Statians she saw. Some of them were taken as refugees by the locals but others were in occupation of small territories.

 After crossing lake Nicaragua, Alicia was arrested by one of these Statians. The man called himself a general and said they were retaking these territories “in order to protect them, as only us have the intelligence and power to do so”. They had killed several locals and threatened to turn Alice into a slave, again. But this time she knew better. She faked compliance and started giving them all a private show but when she was almost naked, Alicia took a gun from the general and killed him. Everything turned into chaos but the locals and Alicia prevailed.

 In the midst of the fighting, Alicia realized women where also members of the Statian army. They were not many, but they were there. She realized she had no compassion for them either, thinking of how low they had gotten. They were no different than the men. Alicia realized her struggle was not again the Statians alone; it was against every person that wanted others to do as they said.

 After the skirmish, the young fighter crossed more mountains and forest until she got to the exclusion zone. It was there where she killed ten more army men. She went through several papers they were carrying and realized they had been set to check the plant and retrieve something from it. Dead as they were now, they weren’t going to finish nothing and, hopefully, it would take some time before the Statians knew what had happened to them.

 Alicia then reflected on her being there and realized something: she was alive. She inhaled and exhaled several times and then stood still, as if waiting for something to happen. Nothing. Somehow, she could breath. Was that why those men were there? Then, she heard something she had only heard from afar and in television: a helicopter. It appeared just above her, flew a bit further ahead and landed softly. From the machine came out a gorgeous women, tanned and with short black hair. She neared Alicia and she was surprised by her question.

-       Are you all right?

 The young woman nodded. The woman told her to come with her. She took Alicia’s hand and they both walked towards the helicopter. Once inside, the machine started roaring again and rose above the trees and old buildings. Alicia didn’t say a word but saw the woman besides her give her a smile.

-       My name is Rosa. You might refer us as Southies…


 But Alicia was fainting. Unknown to her, one of the soldier’s bullets had gone straight into her right lung. The last thing she saw, before falling asleep, was Rosa pulling out  a needle from a case and yelling at her. But Alicia couldn’t her a word. She was pretty tired and just let herself go.