35 Years Later, a short story by RichardBrown. Date added: 2006-05-15. Times viewed: 952.
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- Intro: Identity cards, chip & pin to an unpleasant extreme... a short story by Richard Brown
- Thirty Five Years Later
I was just sitting watching the TV when the news flashed up on the screen;
there had been a terrorist attack. The news wasn't on at a set time anymore,
it came on when it needed to. A much more efficient and effective way
apparently. My friend told me that they used to report all sorts of
irrelevant news. I'm glad they've fixed it. A fat little man flashed up on
the screen and spoke in the eloquent and correct way that we were now all
being encouraged to speak like.
"Terrorists have yet again tried to attack the houses of parliament. Two
Caucasian females had been throwing what could possibly have been grenades
at the building itself and were subsequently engaged and arrested."
They didn't look like terrorists. The TV doesn't lie though so it must be
true, I think it's a law. I don't know how these terrorists get into the
country anyway. Everyone's DNA is on file and people seen on the street must
be carrying the appropriate identification or chip. I'm getting my chip
planted on Thursday, they become mandatory for all citizens soon. It's
another way of keeping us safe. Apparently crime has decreased by thirty
percent since 2005. It must have been terrible in 2005 because we've had two
murders on this street in one month. That was before the reforms though,
when the economy was stagnant because Britain was part of Europe instead of
our American cousins.
"Law enforcement troops moved in and quickly subdued the terrorists using
the latest in Electro-shock weaponry. The terrorists were quickly felled
with no resistance and charged with protesting, not having a chip or
identity card, public political slander and attempted damage to government
How did these people get into London? Even I can't get into London without
the proper authorisation and official statement of earnings. My dad used to
live in London but he was evicted because he didn't earn enough money.
That's the law now, we can't have different class citizens mixing. If I get
promoted to senior sales clerk at work I'll be eligible to move to London or
one of the class three cities. How do these terrorists get past the check
"The terrorists instantly pleaded guilty and signed confessions admitting to
violence and conspiracy against democracy. They have already been dispatched
to a community labour centre in northern Iraq."
I think they got that idea from the Americans, get these criminals working
to repay their crimes that's what I say. The Americans put Iraqi terrorists
in the camps so that they can help rebuild the country after the civil war.
I'm not paying my taxes so that some extremist hooligan can have the life of
luxury in a prison. Prisons are for citizens, not terrorists. I paid a
hundred dollars to get my citizen diploma so that I could stay in this
country. I don't mind paying for it as long as it helps our great democracy.
I remember watching the statue of Saddam fall on the television. Some
soldier put the Anglo-American flag over it, it was a great moment in
history they told us in school.
Suddenly I heard a loud knock at the door. Torchlight was searching the room
from the window. It scanned around the room and then focused on me as I got
up. I went to open the door, it was a community control officer. I opened
the door quickly. I have nothing to hide, I'm a class two citizen with a
productive job after all. There was a tall stocky young man stood there in
body armour and holding a rifle in his hand. He eyed me up and down with a
gaze of suspicion. The police had been subdivided and re-organised so that
we now had a much better safeguard against crime and terror. The officer
looked at his hand held for a minute and then fixed a stare straight into my
"Where's your ID chip?"
"I haven't got it installed yet, I have my Identity card, house permit and
the rest inside though. I didn't think."
"No you didn't think, did you?"
He cut me off in mid speech and motioned for me to hand over some
identification. I quickly got it out of my coat, fumbling carelessly I
dropped it on the floor. I stooped down apologetically and gave it to the
officer. He perused it casually but carefully, occasionally using a
magnifying lens to check certain details. They couldn't afford to be
cheerful and pleasant, not with their job. After what seemed to be an age he
lifted his roughly shaven square jaw and spoke.
"Hmmm. seems to be in order Mr Hollingwood"
He paused and sniffed, almost building the tension purposefully. His chrome
badge thrust forward by his powerful torso shone into my soul, looking and
checking details. Always checking. For the safety of our democracy. We
needed saving from the world of terrorists and enemies of freedom.
"I'm taking down your address just to keep check on you Mr Hollingwood, make
sure you get that chip done tomorrow. That's all."
He put away his hand held computer and walked on to next door. My heart felt
like it had just been kick-started and I breathed in the mediocre class two
air. One day I'll be sucking in class three air I thought as I shut the door
firmly and activated the electronic locking system. My wages come through
tomorrow so I can afford to get the chip installed, it costs five hundred
dollars. It is a complicated piece of technology they say, something that's
going to eliminate crime and terrorism.
"Citizens be reminded that without the chip system you will not be able to
vote in the 2044 election. The two parties running are the new Conservative
Party and the Anglo-American national party. Voting will take place at your
local citizen's hall. That is all for tonight."
I'll vote Anglo-American, united we are stronger as they say.
Need to keep the country strong.
Need to keep us safe from harm.
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