She was what they called an 'active subject'. From the very beginning, she had been present. They had noticed her first at the meetings. They had been small - secretive, almost - so it had been easy to pick her out of the fifteen or so people that were present. She stood out after all, with her pale, ghostly complexion and dark, midnight colored hair. Her clothing was always drab - greys, browns, sometimes black - and could always be picked out from the loud colors that dominated those who attended the meetings. She was silent and never took to any of the literature the way the other students did. When they read the literature they expressed their thoughts, shouted, got excited. But not her. She sat in her chair, furrowed her brow thoughtfully and then nodded slowly in agreement. She didn't take to the mob mentality that always swept the room when a commander stood up to give a stirring speech.
She was a phenomenon.
Once they had established themselves as a political party she registered. They knew this because they looked for her specifically. They wanted her more than they wanted any of the other youth who had professed their undying loyalty to the Party. She was not a part of it because she enjoyed radicalism or extremism or felt the need to rebel against some sort of authority. She had somehow, despite all their euphemisms and double speak, managed to grasp the full meaning of what they were about. When she looked up from reading a pamphlet or after someone had given a speech, it was there, in her eyes. She had managed to get to the heart of the matter. And she agreed.
When they had taken their ideas to the streets, she had been there. She stood in the crowd, a solitary immobile figure among first tens, then hundreds, and then thousands of enthusiastic and devoted people. Because she knew. Enthusiasm was not what they were about. Devotion was not what they were after. And she stared at the scaffold, at the podium, at whoever it was that was speaking. She stared with those dark eyes, looked straight at them, made them understand.
'I know what you're after, ' her eyes said. 'Because I'm after it, too.'
And when they sent one of their top ranking members after her she did not seem surprised. She simply pulled on her sweater and slipped into her flats before asking him to lead the way. Even though it was after one o'clock in the morning and by now they had managed to implement a curfew. She helped to put up signs that night. And the night after. And during the day she helped to pass out pamphlets. She was unobtrusive, did not force herself on anyone. She simply handed out pamphlets, without expression which, they realized later, was the most compelling thing about her. She never let you know what she was feeling. Assuming she felt anything at all, of course.
Somehow she became a symbol for all the men and women who worked most diligently towards the Party's ultimate Goal. That silent figure, dark and unobtrusive, seemed to represent everything that they stood for. A world without conflict, without greed or malice. Devoid of everything, but simple, Spartan beauty. When their Great Leader was elected to the head of government, it was she that he called upon first. It was she that stood behind him with the other lieutenants and she was the one that people saw. Despite the Great Leader's awesome charisma, it was the pale, unassuming girl that viewers remembered seeing on the broadcast.
It was not long before the Party realized that in order for their vision to cross the border from vision to reality, that they would have to recreate the world in her bland and unassuming image. They would have to make the world understand that the ability to feel was irrelevant. And the ability to verbalize and express those feelings was wrong, inhuman, atrocious and the source of all the conflict that plagued the war. And they told her this, asked her to understand and to help.
She stayed up late, working diligently on a proposal that they later named Act 2614E, after the suppressant that she cited repeatedly within. When it was finished, it was hailed a work of art. It was passed from hand to hand until finally it made its way to the Great Leader, who had ordered that she write it in the first place. He was astonished, stunned, and in the end, monumentally pleased with the work that she had done. He claimed that he had never seen anything like it, before.
The suppressant, it turned out, was very much a reality and had only recently been given a go ahead for distribution. She knew, she told the Great Leader, because she had been keeping tabs on it. Its creators were, after all, the reason she was the way she was. And she had found bliss above all else in her existence. Complete peace and tranquility, free from conflict. The way she said it, calmly, serenely, without a hint of conviction in those dark eyes, sent shivers down the Great Leader's spine. Good shivers, he told himself. After all, they were working towards ending war, disease, human suffering. All of which stemmed from human emotion and the irrationality that came with it. And so the legislation was signed and passed.
And as Suppressant 2614E was distributed, some noted that a small, dark haired girl passed from distribution line to distribution line. Her hands were tucked in her pockets, and her eyes remained on the ground. But they could feel her and the way she watched from the corner of her eyes. And every time there was a Resistor the Party's enforcer's would appear just after she had gone.
Despite the vision of the Great Leader and his Party, despite the work of the girl, the Resistors continued to appear. And one day, one of them escaped.
Teaser Tuesday VIII