Ignorance; A blissful realm of “perfection” and wrong. Why act against injustice when everyone else is doing it? Well, assuming they are…
“Purity and nervous looks. To glance, but snap your head and eyes away as quickly as possible. Curious, but no! Don’t get too close. Truth is too hard to bare. Weakened shoulders due to stress from school, work, life, everything. Why make these shoulders ache more by carrying the burden of helping a life? Just stand by and let someone else carry it.”
Normal day in the city. Grey, loud and cold. The holidays always made winter warm and enjoyable, but ever since the crack down the colorful lights, Christmas trees and fireworks never made an appearance. Five years and I still hold on. Praying for the return of the warmth that kept this season alive. Now police lights, quarantine walls and gun shots fill up the environment aura. The crime percentage increased massively, with each week there being, at a minimum of, 100 murders. Almost everyone is part of some form of group, gang, clan, cell, or whatever you want to call it. They’re all the same in the end. A bunch of hooligans that have no other alternative apparently or they’re straight up just evil. Ruining people’s lives everyday. But the worst kind of people are the ones trying to preach goodness and to help the weak. When the same people preaching, turn their heads away from the ones being torn apart from these groups. Half a decade and the norm has already been embedded into people’s brains. This is normal to see. Why change whatever is normal to us? Outrageous, how can you just stand by?
Shuffling down the avenue with a bundle of posters tightly gripped against my body, I stopped in front of wall covered in graffiti tags. Perfect place. Placing the bundle down, I started puncturing through the posters and into the wall.
People walking past me, minding their own business like usual. Not even telling me that what I’m doing is technically wrong, but hey, this is for a good cause. To stop crime and the violence that’s plagued not just the city, but this country. Both poverty and crime everywhere you go. It’s a dangerous wasteland.
After stapling, I flanked on out of there before anyone really stopped me, or worse, that masked group comes and kidnaps me. Going against the wrongful deeds done in your city doesn’t necessarily go unnoticed. Police and any other first responder thanks me for what I am doing, but gangs and clans notice too. They obviously won’t thank me. Especially that one group. No one knows what their name is, but we all know of them. A group of people wearing animal masks and dark clothing. Never really seen, but only heard of. Primary objective for them is to instill fear and evil in the streets of this broken city. To destroy the minds and bodies of simple innocent civilians. Even just thinking about them makes my skin crawl.
I don’t fear much and I do stand strong against any injustice, but being kidnapped is one thing that drives my mind to run 100 km/h. Bagged and dragged is what people tend to call this act that they perform. Like I said, I don’t know much about them. All I know is that anyone who was returned or survived has gone insane. Their eyes blank with darkness lingering in the iris and pupil. Pale and broken. Just like this city.
Turning the corner onto a new street, I noticed a group up front all huddled up by an abandoned store. Split second decision to make was to walk right through them. It felt like slow motion. Their eyes drilling into me. Hatred and anger was in the air. Nothing though. Not a single comment or swing of a fist.
The sight of my apartment complex brought a small smile to my face. Finally home where I can be safe. I unlocked the door to the main building and ran into a neighbor of mine. She was an older lady and very friendly.
“Hello miss, how was your day?” I asked her while holding the door open.
“Oh Tyler, it was absolutely wonderful. I hope you had a good day as well. I know you’re always out there trying to change things and I applaud you for that. If we didn’t have you, then things would be worse for sure.” she replied with a bright smile while exiting the door and waving goodbye to me.
As the door closed behind me, I started to climb the stairs skipping a step at a time. Hand in my pocket, I took out my room key. Ready to open my door.
“Tyler the Changer!! My man!” I heard a loud bellow across the hall. It was my other neighbor. A younger man who only smokes pot and plays video games.
“Hey there, how are you?” I asked him politely while unlocking my room and swinging the door open.
“I’m outstanding dude. Totally outstanding. I just wanted to thank you for being there bro. You’re like for real, a hero. I’m sure you get a lot of girls. Don’t cha? Aha, I’m just messin’ around. But hey, you wanna come over and chill? We could totally bake up and sit back on my new chairs.” he offered, while showing me his new chairs by moving his body slightly for me to see into his room.
“I’m good, thanks. You go ahead and enjoy your night, okay?” rejecting him with a small smile.
‘Whatever, you too bro.” he quickly said and closed the door.
I entered my room and zipped down my jacket. Taking it off and placing it on the coat hanger right by my door. Quickly kicked off my shoes while flicking the light switch. But nothing came on. Damn, did I pay my bills? This was a usual occurrence for me since I tend to forget to pay anyone or anything in due time.
Sighing I took out a candle and gently lit it with my lighter. The small flame illuminated some part of the room and my face. Doing that to about ten more candles, lighted up the room a good bit. Looked a little weird and devil-ish, but it worked for me.
“Hello there.” I heard a strange voice sound off in the corner with a small and creepy giggle.
Not moving an inch, I felt my skin tingle. What was that?
“Not going to greet me back?” the voice said.
I couldn’t move, my entire body was frozen. Move, please move.
“What a way to be a host, Tyler. First impression is already shit and here I was telling the rest that you’re different.” they continued, but how do they know my name?
Slowly turning my head towards the sound of the voice, I locked my eyes on the dark corner. The only place where there wasn’t light. That giggle came out again, sending a shiver down my spine.
“Yup, right over here Tyler. Right. Over. Here.” slowly coming out of the darkness was one of them. A masked person.
Their rat mask glowed in the light of the candle, with their dark clothing still blending in with the background.
“Don’t be shy now. We just want to have a, what do you call it? Nice get together.” moving closer to me, I staggered and tripped over my own feet.
As fast as I could go, I stood back up and started running for the door, but someone blocked the way. This one was a larger person, but with a bear mask on.
“Heard a lot about you Tyler. A friendly charming guy on a crusade of change. What a hero, huh?” they said while coming closer and closer.
Backing up, I noticed I was corned now. To get out of here would probably be suicide since they definitely have weapons.
“See, the problem to this all is that you’re going against our beliefs and our mission. You understand, right? Nothing personal, of course.” continuing to ramble, while I tried to figure out some form of plan, but it was too late.
Next thing I felt was a strike to my gut. All of the air in my lungs escaping my body. Falling to my knees, a sharp and shiny knife was planted on my neck and the hot breath of the person going down my back.
“You understand? Right, Tyler?” they asked once again.
I couldn’t speak. My mouth opened, but words wouldn’t come out.
“Take him.” they commanded the larger person.
One second later, the small amount of light from the candles disappeared as a bag was put over my head. My weak body was picked up and flipped over a shoulder, ready for transportation.
There was nothing I could do, my body would literally not move. What was going on? I heard a knock on the door as we got closer.
“Hey Tyler, bro. I heard some ruckus over by you. Are you alright?” I heard my neighbor ask loudly.
The door creaked open.
“Tyler, you ok-” he stopped as soon as he saw the picture. Which was probably very disturbing to him.
“Move.” said the masked person.
“O-okay, but that isn’t Tyler right?”
We were already heading down the hall as he asked that.
“Don’t worry about your friend. Nothing to be seen and if I hear about any of this outside. Hah, you’ll be next.”
Running was heard with a loud bang of a door. Of course he runs. Scared to help. Thinking it would be too much for him. I am really all alone in this situation.
“Nighty, night, Tyler.” my mind shut off.
I woke up coughing and with a hazy eyesight. My head was throbbing from random pressure. What the hell, where am I? As my sight cleared up, I noticed two people with bags over their heads in front of me. All of them tied up to the chair, their heads drooping low. Looking down I saw the restraints around my wrists and felt them on my ankles as well.
I’m stuck tight and yet I still tried to wiggle out. None of that worked though.
Metal on metal was heard behind me. Someone was getting closer, clanking whatever they had in their hand against a pipe. The room was dark and gloomy. Rusted pipelines all around with molded walls.
“Wake up. Wake up. Wake up.” the voice that went with the rat mask commanded.
The two in front of me started moving slowly. Muffled panic attacks started occurring from both of them.
“You know, Tyler. You could’ve just given up on everything and we would’ve left you alone. Even when your family insisted on it, you declined their request. Why? I just want to understand a hero’s thoughts.” they said as they walked back and forth from one person to the other. Turning around to me finally, expecting an answer.
All I could do was glare at them. I’m not scared anymore. They can hurt me, kill me, do anything to me and I won’t flinch. If this is the way I’m supposed to go, then so be it.
“No answer? Well, that tells me a lot already. I know you care about your family and leaving them was very hard, I know. Especially… your little sister?” a bag went flying off, revealing someone I haven’t seen in years; my sister.
My eyes locked with hers. Tears falling down her cheeks. No, please not her.
“She’s the one person you love the most, I know. Beautiful and young. Only 14 years old right? Sad thing that you had to leave her with a step-dad that abused her every night.”
“Shut up! You know nothing about me or my family!” I cut them off through my anger.
“Ah, there it is. Anger. The one thing that is pure in this city. But Tyler, I’m not even done yet. How about your other loved ones? The people. The poor and weak civilians. Just like this old woman.” pulling the bag off, showed the face of a bruised up woman. A face that I just saw a few hours ago, my neighbor. Her eyes barely open. The blood sticking some stray hairs on her face.
These sick bastards. Attacking me for just trying to start a change. They think I’m scared when in reality they’re scared of me. That’s why they’re threatening me. But then again what can I do? This psycho obviously has something very sickening planned if he tracked down my sister.
I swear if they hurt her in anyway, I will murder them. I ghosted her just so she won’t be brought into this mess, but look what happened? Not only did I break her heart, I still ended up endangering her.
“Cheer up buddy! We’re just getting started on the fun. Don’t be a stranger now and enjoy yourself, okay?” reaching out his hand he patted my cheek lightly before turning around ecstatically towards my sister and neighbor.
The fear in my sister’s eyes made my blood boil so much. Not only was I angry, but I was scared. Worried that she’ll be hurt. My little sister. My princess that I devoted my life to. To protect her. But through my actions I did nothing but harm her.
A sharp and shiny blade was in sight. They gripped the chair my sister was sitting in and slowly started moving the knife towards her cheek. Freaking out, tears started streaming down her face once again.
“No! Stop, don’t you hurt her!” I yelled.
Muffled screams as her cheek was being sliced open. Deeper and deeper. Blood and more blood. Giggling was alive while the torture was being initiated. My anger was boiling. Jerking around in my restraints. Trying my hardest to get out. Snap. The rope on my right wrist broke out.
The rat noticed quickly and pounced on me right away. Before he could lung his blade into me, my right hand caught his wrist. I cracked his bone with a snap and grabbed his knife as soon as it escaped his grip. Cutting the rest of the restraints I stood up while he cowered in pain.
“You fool thinking you can just hurt something valuable to me. You don’t understand that I know you. That I know everything you are about. Your group. My mind tells me to stop because of the trauma the group has caused, but I can’t. Destroying my mind. My sense of self. You are the danger. You are the crime. Giggling while you are doing this, the crazy self you try to act as. But you don’t know what insanity is. You don’t know pure ignorance because you have always been conscious of this evil. My evil. Your evil. The evil inside of us. The reason why we are who we are.” I splattered out as a big smile started propping on my face.
I let out a small giggle. This is me. I remember now. To be truly conscious, you have to let go of the facade. What your inside self is, let it out. To let out the evil and let go of the ignorance.
“If you like giggling so much, why don’t we put a smile on that rat face of yours.” ripping off his mask, I held the knife right to his lips. Fear in his eyes. With a bright and big smile, I cut upwards forming a nice slice on his cheeks. Giving him a permanent smile.
I stood up and walked over behind my neighbors chair. Her slow breathing was heard. For a second I let the silence live. With a quick swing, the knife punctured her neck. Smiling hard as the cracking of her neck was heard as I ripped the blade out of her.
My eyes strained and the smile not dropping, I turned my head and looked down on my sister.
“I told you to stay away.” I said quietly and lunged at her, slicing her neck open. The light in her eyes draining slowly as the blood spewed out smoothly.
The three dead bodies around me gave me an energy I haven’t felt in a while. The feeling that I first felt when the crack down happened. The one that was too much. The one I ignored every time I saw crime and death. Oh, how much I love being able to accept it again. This is me. This will always be me. I started laughing. Non stop laughing as I gripped my face with bloody hands. Falling down from the laughter I allowed it to happen. I allowed myself to feel again.
Goodbye ignorance and hello again, my true self.
Ignorance is blissful, but not as blissful as your true self. Hope you enjoyed this small narrative. I’m interested in your perspective, so leave a comment down below and also remember to like and follow for more!
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