Refuge: an underground city built to save people from an apocalyptic world. But how will its people save themselves? Read the stories in any order, or start with the introduction at part 1.
Reconciliation Council report B-26, dialogue between S.B. and Edward Hernand, recorded by James 72A
I was an obstetrician before I was arrested six years ago. I was convicted for falsifying birth records. I delivered babies who would otherwise have been taken away from their parents – or given away, or left at Medical. Grays babies, birth defects, recessive genes and unblended racial characteristics. I listed them as stillborn, or collected by PsyOp, and then I sent them home with their families. Sometimes the parents didn’t want them, and I found placements for them.
I was interrogated regarding the placements. The Empath questioned me about where the babies were now. I refused to answer her. She made me bang my head against the wall in an attempt to torture the information out of me. I couldn’t hold out against her, but I managed to override her suggestion. I pounded my head so hard I passed out.
She couldn’t keep questioning me then. She gave up and called in the bots to arrest me and take me to Confinement. I didn’t challenge the conviction, so I wasn’t questioned any further about where the babies were living.
I don’t really have anything to say to that Empath. I see she’s not even here now. I have wondered about my other patients, the ones who were pregnant before I was arrested, the ones who didn’t have authorization and who contacted me because they knew I’d help them. I wonder what happened to their babies. But there’s little I can do about it now. I don’t think this man can tell me anything, either. After the Revolution he was locked up just a few cells down from me. He can’t really tell me what’s happened since then, whether Government has changed the more punishing rules, whether they’re letting more people have their babies and keep them, whether children who don’t look like the blended average are more accepted now. Maybe it’s even worse now. With the PsyOp Empaths locked up and Military shut down, maybe people just directed their hatred at each other even more.
[Recorder’s note: Hernand speaks. Councilor Booth seemed like she was about to make a statement, but Hernand spoke before she could.]
I’m speaking again on behalf of Kay 48C, who is in Confinement and under treatment for paramania. According to the report she filed to my office after this attempted interrogation, she was more interested in the Grays Syndrome infants than anyone else. Obviously the Psychological Council had a strong interest in locating these infants, since the replacement rate for Empaths and Commanders is so low.
[Councilor Booth:] Do you have any further statement, Mr. Hernand?
[Councilor Harmon:] I don’t think any further statement is necessary. The subject has spoken his mind to a representative of the Government that oppressed him. I believe we can adjourn this dialogue.
[Councilor Booth made a statement about the goal of these dialogues being communication, to help alleviate the prejudices to which S.B. referred. Technically I cannot transcribe the entire statement, since it was made after adjournment.]
[Technically I can’t note anything else, but Mary was right. Hernand is lying about something.]
©2016 Michelle M. Welch