Fiction Friday

Seventeen years after Dear Leader failed to survive the “Liberation of the Peoples” I waited for the number ten train to downtown. Late as usual, but what else could be expected, my neighbors weren’t the type companies saw as an investment. High risk you might say, fucked over I’d say. Dear leader wasn’t an unelected despot. We, by which I mean my neighbors and parents, voted him into office, again and again. There was a time, my parents claimed where the trains ran regularly here, the schools improved, parks were maintained. Mobility was a thing. I could have gone to college they claimed. I’d have been smart enough.

The train doors opened. I stepped inside. Except for the few souls standing at the station with me in the early morning, the train was empty, and clean. There was an affinity among the cleaning staff for our line. They either lived with us or lived like us. But all of us on the train took to our seats, most of us young. Tradition suggested we give up our seats to the older white suburbanites headed to their plush cubicles, but we had a pact, never give them anything more than the country they’d already taken. The media decried the youth of today, but they never meant those people’s kids. Kids who wouldn’t be up until later and then headed off to private schools.

I looked at my watch. The large hand ticked along, too far along. I might as well have stayed in bed.

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