by ImmodicusFuror

Copyright© 2004 by ImmodicusFuror

: A short story about one possible future.


Jonathan Hanover blinked back tears as he stared into the painful shimmer of the crowd around him. It was as if someone was driving hot needles deep into his pupils, rendering them unable to perform as they should. He wished that the women would put their clothes back on; the FCC standard implant was killing him. He was in the middle of a massive protest against the Federal Communications Commission, the branch of the government that regulated exactly what people could view and could not view and hear.

He slowly stepped up to the microphone in front of him, squinting his eyes to keep from being blinded by the "censor smears" as they had been dubbed.

"Ladies and gentlemen... a new day is upon us!" He began the speech with his normal flourish, rousing the crowd to cheer nearly immediately. "Do we want this new day's sunrise to shine upon a land where everyone sees the world through rose colored glasses? NO! We shall no longer let an executive agency rule over us, demanding that we deny ourselves every freedom there is to deny. When I enter bed with my wife at night, I become partially blind due to the infamous implants that this totalitarian administration has imposed upon us. I can feel only a small amount of pleasure, as even that is regulated. I sit watching carefully constructed moralistic cartoons all morning before I head off to work where everyone is careful with what they say and do. I refuse to live like this! Let me have my freedom back! I DEMAND IT!"

The crowd broke out in screams of agreement, raising their fists as one massive entity. John could feel the energy radiate from them. He knew what they were going to do before they did. They began moving as one, directly towards the massive FCC Headquarters Complex directly behind him.

Occasionally, a particular phrase or two could be heard over the roar of the crowd..."down with tyranny," "end the repression," "give me my freedom!" and so forth. Some of them produced illegal rifles from somewhere, and brandished them as if they could take down the entire complex with them. Others carried bits of sticks or sharp objects that they had found lying around. John himself had arrived a little more prepared, producing a grenade and a pistol from the inner pockets of his long black coat.

With one shot, he blew out the window closest to him. With a powerful throw, the grenade was inside of the room.

Less than five seconds later, it went off. Four panes of glass below outward, the orifices of the front offices belching fire towards the crowd. This only seemed to serve to incense the mob even further, as they somehow managed to shatter the supposedly shatterproof glass of the entrance, pouring into the building like a colony of insane ants. Shots were fired off everywhere, catching some of the few office workers that had not evacuated already off guard. Desks and cubicles were overturned and destroyed in the massive wave of people, computers smashed, and walls even smashed. Apparently, a couple people in the crowd had managed to bring sledgehammers. Unfortunately, most of John's view of the destruction was obstructed by the censor smears that were now filling his entire field of vision.

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