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Apathy, Chapter 20 Distracted Justice

April 4, 2019

Back in the darkness, a coup was forming. The neighborhood that once watched our main character’s house burn to the grounds was looking for retaliation. Just a few hours before the electricity would return, word went out from home to home about an apparent need to remove “these monsters” from “our” neighborhood. The faceless people spoke over hedges and fences expressing such a disappointment in what was thought as a neighborhood watch. After that meeting, the distrust spread across the homes. First, it was a distrust from neighbor to neighbor, but once the house lit up, it was apparent. Thoughts of murder surfaced, and the once civil community felt a distracted sense of justice. Words would exchange, and nothing would happen for many days until the violence reoccurred.


Disdain and remorse for the once great America was the cause for the discontinued journey for the ever decreasing sense of the Manifest Destiny. Marco sat back as Malcolm pontificated.

“Look, I’m not racist, I mean people just don’t see eye to eye. Like you! You’re what? A Mexican?”

Marco responded, “Sure.” He was not Mexican.

“The world has our quadrants, we belong with our kind. It’s not racist, it’s just human nature. When you were in school, who hung out and played basketball? It’s nature.”

“I played basketball during recesses and lunch.”

“There are exceptions,” Malcolm paused and continued. “Humans are more like species of animals. Yes, we’re all humans, but you’re Mexican. You should be with Mexicans making more Mexicans.”

Marco squinted with suspicion of idiocy as he nodded with a feign agreement.

“Look, I know what you’re thinking,” Malcolm said pacing back and forth in the candlelight. “I told you that I see it. But it’s not that you’re Mexican, what it is is that you’re like us.”

“Us?”

“You see that the world runs on hate and self-indulgence. You’re more of my species than Mexican. We’re either soulless or damaged.”

“That’d be a good punk band.”

“Damaged Souls? Yeah, it would, but I’m talking about cleansing the…” Malcolm continued, and Marco attempted to pay attention, but what he was preaching made little sense and was more of an expression of Malcolm’s ignorance. “I’ll tell you about my first murder. It was right before all this weird world shit started. I knew a guy in High School, and I hated him so much. He was entitled. He came from a wealthy family, and he wasn’t even smart, what he was was destined to succeed because of his family’s excess and influence. I watched him for two days. He didn’t even have to go to class. His future was spelled out at his birth. Something that most of us lack, that’s what’s wrong with America. The bourgeoisie will always triumph.”

“You followed a guy for two days?”

“I did, I was in the bar that he was drinking at and didn’t even recognize me. So, I followed him outside, and when he wasn’t looking, I shot him in the back of the head. I couldn’t live in a world where that kind of entitlement would exist. So, we’re doing our part, especially in these dark times, to rest the wealthy and raise the consciousness of the proletariat!”

Marco raised his hand like a kid in class and asked, “Wait, wouldn’t that make the middle class rise up into the place of the upper class? Then we’d be the enemy, especially after a few generations of exclusion from the lower class.”

“What?”

Scared to what the response would be, Marco said, “Huh?”

“Nothing, let’s go meet up with likeminded people.”

“I’d like to drink.”

“We’ll do that too.”

“I miss cold beer.”

“Me too.”


As the men returned from their pharmaceutical adventure, a police checkpoint stood at the foothill of the mountain. A few cops stood around as another cop clopped around on a horse. The car came to a stop, and Jim rolled down the window.

“Where you boys coming from?”

Jim, annoyed, said, “We just went to the pharmacy.”

The cop looked in the car and said, “You boys mind getting out of the car?”

Ronnie asked, “Why do you need us to-”

The cop yelled, “I said get out of the fucking car! Now!” A cop talked to Ronnie, and another one talked to Jim, but Albert was taken into questioning by three cops away from the two. Ronnie and Jim told about their pharmacy run and were allowed to re-enter the car. An hour later Albert, frustrated, reiterated his story.

“I was with my daughter, and we were attacked.”

“That’s how she got the blood all over her?”

“Yes, we were traveling, so we didn’t have the best hygiene, but-”

“Where is your daughter?”

“She’s at my friend’s house. Up, up in the mountain.”

“You ever hit your ‘daughter’?”

“What? No!”

“Sir, you’re getting hysterical.”

“Look, ask Ronnie and Jim. My daughter is with a woman named Daisy up-”

“They said that you don’t have a daughter.”

“No, they didn’t!”

One of the cops took out his nightstick and hit Albert in the shoulder as hard as he could.

“You calling us a liar?” Another slug from the nightstick came down on Albert.

“I’m telling you the truth!” Albert yelled in pain.

A cop crouched down to Albert’s height on the ground and said quietly in his ear, “So, you telling me that a couple of niggers came through our parts and killed a couple white men in self-defense? I say you people have a proclivity to murder. What do you say about that? Don’t matter if you have a daughter. I have a couple friends that are dead in a ditch not more than a few miles away, and I’m sure you are responsible.”

Albert looked at the man in the eye and didn’t say a word. He had been in this situation before, and he knew that he didn’t have any power…

A different cop walked over to the car where Jim and Ronnie were and said, “You guys best get going.”

Jim asked, “Where’s Albert?”

“You fellas ‘ought to make better friends. Now go before I find something to obtain you for!”

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