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A Whole New World
A Whole New World
It was a quiet afternoon at the tavern, if it could even be considered one. You have the usuals, the ones who come around almost every day, and then you have the ones who come for a quick drink to wash away the day’s worries. Sitting in the back corner by himself there was an old man. The owner had seen him in there, a couple of times, usually keeping to himself and not really bothering anyone. Except for today he didn’t have a drink. The old man walks over to a group of people standing at the bar, loudy talking.
“‘Scuse me, but could any of you spare a drink for an old timer like myself?”
“Get lost, old man. Can’t you see we’re having a conversation here.”
“Ungrateful little-” the old man mutters under his breath.
“What was that? Wanna tell us what you were saying?” the head of the table antagonizes.
“You know, people weren’t always as rude as you are now,” the old man responds. “The world used to be a very lovely place. People enjoyed one another's company when they saw others. Wouldn’t you like to know how things came to be? An old fossil such as myself could inform you, if you pleased.”
“Go get the man a drink.” the head told the man on his left. Now facing the old man, he says, “It’s not like we have anything better to do. Go ahead.”
“Thank you, young man. I’ll be sure to include as much as my old mind can remember. Now, where to begin….”
“Back, a long time ago, there were Governments, and there were the Anarchists. The story of the Anarchists is a long and dangerous one. First as a small group of rebels from within the United States itself, they traveled country to country, recruiting men to fight for their cause. They believed that whatever is in the world is theirs to take, by any means necessary. They also believed that any form of government or powerful ruling was to be destroyed. They thought that people have the right to do whatever they want, when they want, and how. If the governments are controlling the resources people need to survive, well, let’s get rid of them. It’s no surprise that their motto was ‘Every Man for Themself.’ But that didn’t mean that people willingly joined them. Any who resisted were killed to make room in the new world they were to create, but the majority were forced to join against their will. They worked from the inside, chewing away at the defenses of a country until there was nothing left to protect it with. It was almost genius the way they operated.”
“When do we get to the good part?” the leader asked.
“Patience. Do you have a name, young man?”
“Well, Dex, listen well.”
“There were those trying to fight back as well. Word soon got out that a group of rebels were resisting the law. Local armies would try and shoot their way through smaller bands of the Anarchists, but to no avail. Once the death toll got high enough, government forces would step in and fight. And with its own people forced to fight against its own country, the government often fell to the Anarchists. Independent governments weren’t idiots though. Just like the Anarchists, they found ways to supply troops to one another when under attack. With more forces to deal with, the Anarchists had to stay quiet, but most importantly smart.
Soon enough there were classes given to people on the streets. You were either a Govy or an Anarchist. This was the primary factor in the Second American Civil War. Its people did not want to go down with its government and get killed like the others, and there were those who said if they group together they would have enough power to wipe the Anarchists off the face of the earth, And so the war started. The news soon struck the world that the United States was against itself once again. Most thought that it was bound to happen again at some point because if it happened once, it would happen a second time. But the United States of America was at an extreme disadvantage. The majority of people in the states were not loyal to them anymore, and thus joined the Anarchists in their purge of the world. The war was quick, sad, and brutal. Thousands upon thousands were killed to make room in the new world. Some changed sides as soon as they realized what was happening. The United States government was not prepared for such a large threat to the nation, and thus was their downfall.”
“News soon struck the world of the President being last seen on live television being dragged away by the Anarchists. Some countries were frightened, and lowered their arms for the Anarchists to take for free, while the larger countries still fought for what they believed was right. But it didn’t matter anymore. With their recent accomplishment of taking over the United States, the Anarchists had access to the most dangerous technology in the world, nuclear weapons. They forced the president to watch his people be killed on live TV, and he broke. The president just wanted to end the madness, in which the Anarchists soon assured him it would soon. With access to nuclear warfare, the world was soon brought down on its knees. When negotiation with the Russians turned out negative, they were the first to go. Then the United Kingdom, and then China. All other major powers of the world laid down their arms and succumbed to the sheer power of the Anarchists.”
“So we live in this pile of sh-”
“Language, young man.”
“We live in this world because some adrenaline-junkies thought it would be cool to take over and nuke the place? Why take over and then destroy the very thing you were created to rule?”
“Exactly. But as the war grew to an end, many people were left with the question of, Was it worth it? Some believed that the Earth was just returning to its original state, where people could go around doing what they pleased, with nobody telling them what was wrong or right.”
“That’s the way that we live right now.”
“Indeed. You fend for yourself, not looking after anyone but yourself. It’s an interesting way of life, and I myself have grown fond of it over the years.”
“You know, we could let you travel with us. You’re kinda smart for someone as old as you. And sharp. You need that for out here. You could negotiate for us if you wanted.”
“I’m flattered by the offer, but I must refuse. I have my own life to live - or lived, perhaps. It’s been alright at least. Allow me to continue.”
“The Anarchists eventually disbanded, its members scattered across the earth as leaves falling from a tree on a windy day. Small groups of people formed together, living with each other and keeping each other alive. Others fended for themselves, not trusting anyone after the events of the war. Those who lived after the war had lived lives in the wilderness, such as myself and your group, and once they passed their children followed in their footsteps. There was no order, there were no rules, anybody could do anything. In the long run, the Anarchist's master plan ended up working out all right for them, if you think about it.”
“That is all I have for you.”
“It’s been interesting. Would you like another drink? We could buy you another. We have the money.”
“No, it’s fine. It is getting late after all. I must leave, and I thank you all for your generous hospitality and company. May the winds of fate bring us all together again.”
The old man walked out of the bar, the winds blowing the fog around them into swirls of vast nothingness. As the group of young men watch the old man leave, they notice as he leaves no footsteps as he walks through the mud out the door. And as he walks into the fog, it looks as if the man fades into the fog itself, welcoming its embrace into the unknown, never to be seen again.
“Some story, huh Dex?” asked Dex’s right hand man, Kurt.
“Yeah. Makes you wonder...You saw the way he left, right? Almost as if he just disappeared.”
“Yeah I did. Think he was even real at all? I sure don’t. We’ve probably just had too many drinks.”
“Ah well. Too late to know now. As for drinks, we just got here. Waiter! Another round here please. Just wash it down, you’ll be fine.”