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Saturday 9 May 2020

Tales From The Village

    “Good morning, good morning, any complaints?”
    No.12 turned round to see the face of No.2 on the television set
    “Unlike you I like to mind my own business” No.12 told him.
    “Don’t be like that, it was a genuine enquiry.”
    “Why do you care?”
    “I don’t, but the community has to live, so do you.”
    “So where do we go from here?”
    “I’m leaving today, my term in office is over.”
    “And you called me to say goodbye……goodbye!” and he put down the receiver of the telephone.
    The former No.2 was in his room in the Town Hall busy packing a suitcase when the door opened. A Top Hat official dressed all in black stood framed in the doorway; behind him were security guards in grey overalls, white pith helmets and gloves, each holding a white truncheon.
    No.2 stopped what he was doing “Yes what do you want?”
    “If you would come with us Number 2” the Top Hat official said.
    “Why, my term in office is over, I leave in ten minutes.”
    “The helicopter has been cancelled Number 2” the official said “You will not be leaving, it seems we need you!”
    “Why come to me, my successor is already here, I’m sure she is equally equipped to be able to help you.”
    “My orders come from Number 1” the official told him.
    “Number 1?”
    “It seems it has been decided that you are to be co-opted onto the town council.”
    The colour drained from the former No.2’s face, he dropped the book in his hand “W……why?”
    “There is a vacancy” the official told him.
    “But I don’t want to be co-opted onto the town council, I want to leave!”
    “I trust you are not going to be difficult No.2h.”
    The Top Hat official stepped back and the two security guards stepped forward and into the room.

    The doctor-No.86 and her medical team were waiting in the operating theatre; a final check of equipment occupied them while they waited the arrival of the patient.
    No.2h was escorted out of the Town Hall, down the steps, and bundled into a waiting taxi. One security guard got into the back seat next to No.2h, the other in the front passenger seat.
   “To the hospital, and don’t take the scenic route!” the security guard said.
    The driver turned the ignition key starting the engine, engaged first gear and the taxi moved forward sounding its two tone horn to warn cyclists and pedestrians of its approach. Then the taxi shot forward gathering speed through the white and yellow triumphal arch. The driver followed the road through the woods, turning right over a bridge and following the road leading out of the village, finally arriving on the gravelled forecourt of the hospital. Two orderlies emerged from the stone castle as the taxi came to a stop, and helped No.2h out of the vehicle who immediately began to struggle. That’s when the two security guards stepped in restraining No.2h as an orderly produced a syringe, rolled up a sleeve and administered a sedative. The second orderly went back into the hospital and fetched a wheelchair, into which the limp body of No.2h was seated and wheeled away along a corridor to the operating theatre.

    No.2h found himself lying on an operating table; he struggled against the leather restraints but failed to move either his legs or arms. He turned his head to see men in white coats, and there was a woman in an operating gown filling a syringe with a dark red liquid.
    “What’s that?” he asked.
    The blonde haired doctor turned her head and smiled.
    “You’re going to be all reassuring and tell me this won’t hurt” he said.
    “On the contrary, the pain in your head is going to be excruciating, but by the time we’re finished you won’t be feeling anything!” the doctor told him.
    The doctor pressed the plunger of the syringe clearing the air out of the needle which was then inserted into the patient’s right arm and pressed the plunger all the way down. It took a few moments before anything happened, the patient’s eyes widened, his body tensed, and he struggled against the restraints, and shaking his head violently trying to shake out the terrible visions in his mind. And when he began screaming the doctor placed a gag in the patient’s mouth giving him something to bite on before administering a second brown coloured drug which seemed to calm the patient. Gone were the tragic and traumatic visions of the past, the faces of former demons replaced by psychedelic colours whirling around in his mind like the inside of a kaleidoscope. Then a third injection of green liquid was administered. This time a drug that cleared No.2h’s mind of any fear or courage he might have, taking away the sensation of joy and happiness, finally rendering his mind of free thought, and the power to even laugh or cry.

   The next day there was a meeting of the local town council in a large orange walled domed chamber beneath the Town Hall. No.2, Chairman of the town council presided over the meeting from the chair, while the other twelve members of the council stood at a number of lecterns set in a semi-circle and subdivided as 2a 2b 2c 2d 2e 2f 2g 2h 2i 2j 2k 2l.
    “First business of the day is to welcome a new 2h who was only recently co-opted onto the town council” the new No.2 said with a bang of a gavel.
    There was no round of applause of welcome from the other eleven councillors who remained unmoved, their blank expressionless faces registering no emotion whatsoever, and that included No.2h.
   “Now onto further business of the day” Number 2 said reading out the first item on the day’s agenda………

Be seeing you

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