The Senator watched the machine mending the cuts on his arm where glass shards were embedded from the blast. The anesthetic was highly effective, but he was far from relaxed.
He watched his wall screen as the cameras played back footage, news reports, and all manner of shows to be run tomorrow. The algorithms were very successful at convincing people that what they saw was real time, with neither flaw nor fault of any sort. That was how the system had been designed all those years ago after the Great War, the war to end all wars, across the planet.
And here he was, hundreds of years later, carrying on the same, mundane mission as the fifty-some-odd men and women of the generations that had come before: the same old, same old of keeping the people happy, blindly happy, and happy to be so blindly happy. Happy, happy, happy.
He hated happy. There was too much happy. There had to be an opposite, a negative, a neutralizer of happiness. Anger. Hatred. Fear. That’s why he needed them. That’s why he needed her. Her and the other. Shadela.
That girl was far more dangerous than he’d first conceived. Perhaps they should have done more screening before choosing her as next in line.
A rap at the door snapped the Senator out of his semi-trance. “Yes, Chief? I hope you bring good news.”
The Chief shifted his feet. “Well, sir, yes and no.”
The machine had done its work. Only faint scars were left from the incident. The Senator rolled his sleeve back down, turning towards the man in the doorway.
“Well? Are you going to elaborate? I thought you were trained for this job, Locknut, not simply dropped in from elementary school.”
The Chief cleared his throat, eyebrows slightly raised. “Yes, sir. The good news is we got her.”
The Senator glared at him. “And?”
“And the bad news is, the one that got her wasn’t a Guard.”
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