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The Bystander

“You can only see it from this angle!”

I scampered over the piles of empty food containers and dirty clothes to get to the far side of the room. I tripped over something but I pushed on, undaunted. I had to see it for myself, this new wave of hope. There were rumors of a revolution but there were always rumors of something or another. As long as people thought their cushy lives were in jeopardy, they talked, but it wasn’t their lives that were uprooted.

Reaching the dusy window, I shoved a curly haired kid aside and took her place. The view wasn’t the best but Richie was right, it was the only window where we could get a decent glimpse of the fray.

A clash of wits weren’t all that unusual either. It ranked up there with talk and false hope but as I watched those couch potatoes fall to their knees, I felt my own knees buckle. They were being mowed down. First by physical force, and when that didn’t work, there was water and guns. I’m still not sure if the guns were meant for the people or the sidewalk just in front of them, but when you watch people jump in front of a bullet aimed for another, you start to wonder if the ones charged to maintain peace were merely forcing order.

“What the fuck is Richie doing?”

I snapped at out my daze and looked over to where I last saw Richie. Sure enough, he was gone. In his place stood that same curly haired kid from before.

“There!” The curly haired kid shouted.

I followed her shaky finger and felt my stomach drop. There was Richie, running into the fray or posters and batons. The so-called peace-keepers switched their water hoses for guns and shields, as if the people before them were worthy of their ire. As if they were less than the criminals we kept well fed and taken care of in our over run jails.

More sirens came but I never saw Richie again.

© 2017 Maura D.


Inspirational Song: Willow Tree March by The Paper Kites (I suggest listening to the song while you read)

Prompt: tehuti‘s 100 Writing Prompts

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