Max got into his car and went on wandering in the Desert of the Immortals. He didn't know where and how long he was going but felt that he still has a task to fulfill, before returning to the Community. He was driving on the connecting road of the former petrol pump which was treaded hard and smooth by heavy vehicles. Except for some miserly bushes and shrubs there were only pits and mounds of the red desert sand.
The sun didn't even rise yet, but was already burning. Behind his car dust was swirling up in the skies. In front of him appeared the asphalt stripe of the North-South Highway. Cars were very rare to see. The Mortals didn't leave their cities. Neither had they any place to go to, nor had they got permission to travel. If you wanted to travel, you had to ask for a permission to the Artificial Intelligence and identify yourself with your ID. The Immortals were living in Communities in the Wasteland. And there were Hermits who were wandering in the Wasteland for some reasons. They were living in caves, cars, deserted railway or industry places or the like. For many people being a Hermit was the key stage in the process of the transition from a mere mortal to an immortal.
So he was driving on the highway. As he was driving past some aerials he was wondering if it was possible to receive here anything on the radio. He was fiddling around with his car radio, and he managed to find an unknown city radio station. They were telling the news:
"Our police patrol drones had discovered illegal carrot and cucumber plantation from above. As we all know, such plantations endanger the purity of the State permitted plant species. Thus they endanger the nutriton, well-being and sustainable development of our planet. The police had started to investigate for the perpetrators. There must be a Community behind this. These community criminals do not understand, that we have only one planet, and we are one in all of this. Because of it, we have to be unified in terms of sustainability. With their antisocial behaviours, they are the enemies of mankind. Our Law will strike these evil-hearted criminals with full power."
These were the news. It made Max really think. There is nothing new under the sun, history repeats itself. When he was a kid, everyne was allowed to grow carrots and cucumbers without any permission. It was a free age, with freedom of speech, at least on the paper. Of course, like it always had been, there was a big empire you were not allowed to scold. In front of the police station there was a sign, a camera with a red crossing line: taking photos is not permitted. It had gone, history swept it away. There were a few decades where you were allowed to scold anyone. Then another great empire appeared. Firstly, if you wanted to grow anything, you could do it with a permission. Then slowly and surely they forbade it. Meat, vegetable and fruit production was only allowed in the State owned Food Factories. Anywhere else it was illegal.
The Communities were alert to these changes. They had been formed before all this. They felt, knew or suspected this direction the world goes. They did not want it so they tried to act against it. Those who were produced anything, gave meat, fruits and vegetables to some of them who could be trusted. They made packages and distributed them to the people. Strong relations, friendships were formed among the people. Some people, who were friends, bought land together and built earthbag houses. Instead of tractors they bought hucule, Carpathian pony horses. The beginning was thus easier, than fixing an old tractor. They had a ten-point house rule. It was the opposite to the house rules of the Loosenades. So when the State made the Loosenades the official living units, the Communities were declared as the ememies of mankind and pushed to the background.
The definiton of sin was different at that time. Everything that was good, beautiful and just suddenly changed to sin, everything that was formerly ugly and bad, became a virtue. Max wasn't a criminal. His only sin was riding a motorbike with the lady of his dreams without a helmet. Police caught them. The girl, Lea, was a very strange girl. She was able to reflect on his mood swings continuously. When she had a bad day, she was able to differentiate, that it was her, and not the whole world who felt bad. "Do you know it consciously?" - asked her therapist. "Yes, I do" - said the girl. "Incredible" - said the therapist. And actually, this was incredible to find a girl, who can keep her mood changes on a leash with the might of sober mind.
B.G. Max lives in Hungary, Europe. He welcomes your comments at gazdapiac (at) gmail.com
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