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 C-11, submitted by Julie Corzon
I worked for Civil Council before the Revolution, processing arrest records. I always wondered why the other councils bothered getting Civil involved, when Military handled the arrests and PsyOp handled the interrogations. Someone high up in the ranks must have been an idealist, thinking it was about checks and balances, or at least maintaining that appearance. When I actually tried to do my job, pointing out inconsistencies and trying to follow up on reports that were obviously falsified, I was booted out.
It was Vessa Harmon who had me fired. I wasn’t surprised at all to learn that she’d falsified more records. When she was booted off the Reconciliation Council two weeks ago, I was recalled to do my job again, reviewing Reconciliation reports to see if any other problems come up.
None of this is why I’m submitting this report, though. I don’t need to speak out about the injustice I’ve suffered. I’m not an idealist; I never expected anything but injustice. But I always did expect that I could trust myself, and reading these reports is making me think that I can’t.
The first one was the interview with Jay 59A. He said he lived with his family in Section 22h, that they occupied practically the whole side tunnel. I lived in 22g, right next to them, and I should have remembered them. Even if they had multiple Empaths in the family and they were projecting at passersby to keep them moving on, I should have known about the family. Everyone has to come out and buy food, at least. But I couldn’t remember any of them at all.
The second thing was Ingrid Feeord’s death certificate, the suicide whose sister was involved in one of these dialogues. That was one of the dialogues that Colonel Harmon tampered with, covering things up. This isn’t what bothers me, though. What bothers me is that my signature is on the death certificate, logging it in, and I can’t remember Ingrid Feeord at all. I looked right at my signature and didn’t remember signing it.
Then I read C-10. The Empath who took bad memories away, and then she took away people’s memories of her so she could disappear. How do I know it’s a woman? Something about that report hit me in the gut, the same way reading Jay’s interview did, the same way looking at Ingrid Feeord’s death certificate did. I wanted to tell myself that I was a kid when I lived in 22g and I might just have forgotten the family down the tunnel, that an electronic signature could be easily forged, that I had no reason to think C-10 is female or someone I knew at all. But I couldn’t convince myself of any of it. Hundreds of people who have had their minds messed with by Empaths, hundreds of records I frowned at cynically and filed away, and now I’m one of them. I used to think my lack of idealism would protect me. Now I can’t trust anything.
©2016 Michelle M. Welch