Walking through the bustling streets, I slip into one of the side alleys in order to avoid the daily inspection checks and constant battles between the Chaotics and the Dynasties. The subtle creaking from behind indicates another presence as I slowly reveal a dagger from beneath my robe. I continue walking at the same pace as a second follows. From a muddy puddle ahead, I barely make out a hooded figure picking up his pace as he approaches. My hands turn white as I grip the dagger tighter. Suddenly, he grabs my hand and turns me around. I’m about to stab him when I realize he’s a she and she’s my girlfriend. I push her into a building so that no one sees us. Any kind of contact between two persons of opposite sex is prohibited because of the war going on and the opposing roles of each gender interfering with one another. I kiss her quickly and tell her to leave before someone notices but she doesn’t budge. I ask her again, this time more insistently but she just stares mindlessly at me.
“Techa, I’m leaving tomorrow. The Chaotics have decided to ship me to the Wastelands for Commencement Day.” She said. My eyes turn red, as my conflicting emotions make it hard to respond. She hugs me as she cries yet I still have no words. Speechless, I wrap my feet around hers and interlock her hands in mine like we used to. My heart rapidly beats as she walks away.
“Remember, Peace, September eighth,” I mutter and she nods with her head down.
Days 2 – 99
The days go by slowly as we push the Dynasties back to the Relic Grounds and Commencement Day nears. It’s ninety-two days after fighting on the front line, and Commander H finally transfers me to the Alpha Team where I’ll lead half of the army into direct hand-to-hand combat with the enemy. One day later, the President personally drafts a letter handpicking me to attend the Annual Chaties Meeting where the most powerful leaders from both sides meet to discuss treaties and official business. I gaze in awe for an awfully long time until I remember every word by heart like a child picking up a book for the first time.
Putting on the formal leather robe I was sent, I tuck my half heart necklace underneath the collar and hope that Peace still has hers, wherever she is now. Opening the door, I am welcomed by a man in a suit, representing his loyalty to the Dynasties. I greet him with a Chaotic three finger touch and he offers his hand for a Dynasty handshake. Remembering all the Dynasties I’ve killed in combat, I can’t come to look him in the eye and guiltily smile as he opens the door for me. During the ten-minute ride, I learn his name is John and that he has two children who are enlisted in the Dynasty army. We share in common the thought that war is not necessary to find a silver lining. When we arrive at the looming tower, I give him a handshake and he gives me a three finger touch. I sigh and open the door. The ten hour torture begins. My heart flutters when I see President Quill standing across the room with Dynasty President Madison. I greet the other military officers and sit at my assigned seat. The president comes over to greet me as I look at pictures of Peace and me. I bow and give him a three finger touch, embarrassed.
“Mr. Techa Krii, I have some bad news. As of today, you will become the Vice President of the Kingdom of Chaotics, the Chairman of the Board of Chaotics, the Primary Heir to the President of the Kingdom of Chaotics, the Leader and Commander of the Army of the Kingdom of Chaotics, the Director of the World Order of Hollows and Grounds, a Knight of the Chaotics’ Guard, and lastly, the Underworld Leader of Tchao. Your new daily salary will be $1 billion effective immediately and all your expenses will be paid for including personal necessities such as clothes”
“How is this bad news…?” I try holding my glee in.
“I never said it was bad news for you.”
“Thank you so much for this opportunity. I will not let you down, sir.”
He puts down my first check and pats me on the back. I just sit there, without saying anything, realizing this means I have complete control over everything, and can just coincidentally move some random person named Peace into a job position that coincidentally coincides with my schedule perfectly. The meeting drags on for three hours about topics not even remotely related to peace treaties, meaning that neither sides were ready for the war to end.
Outside, a group of fifty Chaotic Servicers escort me to a brand new Bugatti Limousine which is driven by a Sergeant and is surrounded by three military trucks. I am then taken back to my house where I tell servants what to pack and not to pack. Then, we relocate to a castle just five minutes from the President’s Isle. Happily, I lay down on the comfy bed and fall asleep.
I am awoken not more than 265 hours later to breaking news: the President has committed suicide. The sound of an eerie alarm goes off in the distance. Mounds of rioters are seen starting fires in the distance. Soldiers create a circle around me but I tell them, “I’m not a goddamn politician — I am a soldier just like all of you, and tell you that this is not part of your job description. Alpha Team, flank right. The rest, flank left and center. Go!” I grab my titanium plated suit, an MRAD sniper rifle, and an electronic pistol from inside the weapon locker.
Suddenly, there’s an explosion inside the house and I immediately seal the door to the room. Two more soldiers join me from an underground bunker hole and we wait until the enemy comes closer. I open the camera visuals from hologram, where we see two unidentified men getting ready to arm explosives to the door. Taking out a phaser, I point it at the door, aim, and fire. The round phases through the door and hits one target in the throat, blood pouring out. The second man is killed not long after he runs in the other direction. We cautiously open the door and sprint for the main entrance where Teams Foxtrot and Charlie rendezvous for a recap.
After less than an a hundred hours, all fires are extinguished and I take the oath to become President of the Kingdom of Chaotics. An emergency meeting is called in by both sides to decide where we’ll go from here, and I immediately sign a treaty with the Dynasties in order to stop the fighting and become a united kingdom again. At the President’s funeral, no one mourns nor does anyone speak any gentle words about him. The President dying is the best thing that could’ve happened at the moment due to the underlying circumstances because there would be an excuse for revolt against tyranny and for a new government to form.
Putting on my old soldier’s helmet and sneaking out of the President’s Isle by means of an underground tunnel, I am invisible to the public as I march in line with other soldiers right through the gate labeled “Women’s Manufacturing Factory.” I take off my uniform and hand it to a soldier who immediately recognizes me and salutes me. He leads me to Warehouse E-3 where I spot a beautiful, fair skinned girl working tirelessly at sewing together worker’s clothes for higher ranking officials. I press the emergency stop button which stops all material from moving on the assembly line, but everyone keeps making the same motions even though there is no material to work with.
Running to her, I pick her up and tell her to stop. She looks at me with this confused look as I run my hand down her hair. All the soldiers purposely turn their heads the other way as I carry her out into the open. We catch up and I learn that I had stopped Commencement Day just in time because the higher ups were planning to create a woman’s task force and fight on the front line along with everyone else. Dirt ran down the drain as we take a shower together and it seems as though everything has worked out perfectly. Suddenly, I remember Day 79 — it was a Saturday. My heart sinks as I remember the ambush, and the look in my friends’ eyes as the van tipped and hundreds of Dynasty soldiers rushed us back into the forest where half of us were killed as a message to our President. I start to cry but she wraps her feet around mine and interlock my hands in hers, whispering, “It’s my turn to take care of you,” as I think of everything we’ve been through. Suddenly, I see something in the sky, and remember it’s September eighth — “I love you, Peace. I always will.” She looks at me, holds my hand and everything goes dark.