There was a new law in the whole wide world – almost no place was free of it, only the most isolated ones – and these were also the hardest places to live in. Every year, there would be a day in which people could die suddenly by just stepping out the the house on the street or sidewalks. Literally everybody would have to wear boots or shoes with platforms and high heels, like medieval chopines, to put their feet as far away from the ground as possible to protect their lives. If by any chance their bodies touched the floor of the streets, sidewalks and other public places; if you tripped in your own shoes while out of your own house, and other things considered “transgressions” of the rules, like using the telephone, visiting friends, have sexual relations before marriage, and so on – all these would unleash a modern government-approved mechanism, and suddenly the streets would be full of machine-gun fire, missiles, grenades and invisible guillotines.
The most interesting point is that anyone in the vicinity could be a target of the government fire power: if you left your home to see what was going on, even if you were wearing the tall platform shoes, without tripping or touching the ground in any way, you could be hit by the machine-gun fire and die, while one of the “outlaws”, that is, one who wasn’t wearing the protective shoes, by some chance of fate, could be spared and survive by sheer luck. It was, of course, a rule of terror, fear, persecution and resistance. In a period of only 24 hours, the country turned into a war zone.
There was a revolutionary group of friends with great creativity and some strange powers. They were 3 couples and a friend, and all of them had the ability to adapt the nature of the matter of their own bodies. One example: at being hit by a bullet and dying to all effects and purposes, a young lady belonging to this group could live through the body of someone else, as if possessing the other person, keeping her own personality and spirit. Basically, their spirits were immortal and their bodies extremely malleable and atomically flexible, in a way that when their mortal flesh was damaged beyond repair, they could keep rambling around, either invisible or using the shapes of other beings and even inanimate objects, which nonetheless had unusual properties.
There was a monarchic regime going on in the country during all this: the nobles lived in exuberance and wealth, but the new generations of the royal families, watchful for winds of change, fought to bring better life conditions to the people, while advocating ponderation and caution in place of their noble relatives. One of the young men of the resistance group was a descendant of an important Duke called Hugh, a handsome blond youth, and his cousin Ian, who was dark as the other was fair, and both managed to escape the clutches of their royal families and hide in places belonging to their revolutionary friends. During the popular efforts to save innocents from death, diseases and other war calamities, Hugh met his girlfriend, a talented actress, her brother, his girlfriend (a ballerina), and a tall, strong black young man callled Joe, who was also a policeman, his girlfriend Jessica, a dark-haired talented artist, and Ian, who was by himself.
These seven persons went out on the streets during the massacre day helping innocent people, risking their own lives to administer first-aid and take women, children, and the elderly to safe places, besides lying shamelessly to the government officials that went out questioning and bothering innocent citizens that stayed hidden at home. The terror was such that the movie “Bohemian Rhapsody” was acted out in a public square by musicians who wanted to pay homage to Queen and Freddie Mercury, who in reality were HIV positive and had to such a point relegated their lives, that the Russian Roulette that playing out the story in public on massacre day wasn’t such a risk anymore, and they saw it like a game. Bohemian Rhapsody was acted out then by these men, who were mostly homosexual. The show started always with 10 or more musicians, and the crazy part was that, as the story went on and the actors were dying in the most horrendous ways – their heads exploded due to explosive bullets, were decapitated by the invisible guillotines, their bodies perforated by the random machine guns – in the end, there were only four acting musicians left, just like the real Queen. These remaining four were precisely the most talented and wore the tallest platform shoes.
My group of heroes, however, didn’t make use of the tall platforms: just by being outside on the streets you were already breaking the rules, and even if you stayed home, you could be hit by shrapnel or stray bullets, so they just wore regular shoes and tried to help those in need. Our heroes were not afraid, for they knew their efforts were worth more than their individual lives – the collective, for them, always came first. Besides, they believed their immortal souls would meet beyond the circles of the Earth. They didn’t know, however, that they had mutant powers. That was until Jessica got hit by a missile. Everybody cried for her, but suddenly, everyone noticed that a black drag queen had the same personality and gait of the recently deceased artist. Her boyfriend Joe soon realized it was a reincarnation if his beloved. She had been a lively, highly trained circus artist and her vivacious personality could not be mistaken. The couple had then reunited, even in this new configuration: two men, one tall, strong, masculine and protective; the other, slender and feminine, glamourous and boisterous. Despite other people’s prejudice, they were happy, as long as they were together.
I was a neighbor of the revolutionary mutant group of friends and with time I became a member of the resistance against the government as well. I was every day becoming more attracted to Ian and Hugh, the royal cousins. Their elvish beauty was akin to angels and my devotion was likewise, not carnal: I admired them like a devout admires saints, martyrs and other religious idols. In the meantime, the government had changed from an absolutist monarchy to a repressive autocratic dictatorship in line with the military, the same way the monarchy had been in line with theocracy. Weapons, war, violence and death were the new “luxury, privilege and nobility”. What was bad became worse, became nameless. The situation escalated and every year, and new punishments and ways to kill became the norm on massacre day. I was killed and lost my body as it used to be; I became totally invisible and had neither weight nor matter: if you tried to touch me, your hand wouldn’t feel anything, no resistance but the air. But I had a voice and could speak to people through the wind, and I started to fight against the new massacre laws.
Now, being outside on the street and touching the ground was not the only punishable offense: just living in a residential building was a considered a risk. Every year the missiles would be launched from the rooves of these tall residential buildings. They were modern missiles that didn’t harm the building, but released radiation, heat, chemicals and other noxious substances to human beings. Fortunately, not everyone was affected by this. Most people, the resistance included, gathered on top of the buildings to watch the missiles: they were beautiful like fireworks, but could kill in minutes, days or months. The government’s plan was to do some sort of genetic cleansing, so that only the mutants or people with special powers would survive.
Joe and Jessica were the most in-love couple of the resistance group. In one of these attacks, drag queen-Jessica was killed again, and the soul of the circus artist disappeared for a while. When I met Joe again, Jessica had reincarnated on a colorful rubber hoop that shone and moved by itself. The policeman tried to live with Jessica in this unusual way, but as Jessica had reincarnated on an inanimate object, everything went downhill. On another explosion, Joe was hit and the rubber hoop melted, and I thought that maybe that was the end of Joe and Jessica. But they refused to disappear so easily.
One day I was lurking at the window of my apartment, which was in one of the higher stories of the building. I was invisible at the moment, but I knew I would regain material substance with time. From my window I had a good view of the streets outside and I saw Jessica again, not as the drag queen or as the rubber hoop, but as she used to be. I then realized that the mutation was a phenomenon initiated by the attacks on massacre day: explosions, shots, mutilations and missiles were atomic triggers. The mutation was a defense mechanism and if left alone for a while, the original form of the person would go back to normal.
On another day, I saw Jessica again, and she saw me as well, for I was no longer invisible. I decided then to make a party and invite all the members of the old resistance group. There were only a few left, but I called everyone I could find. I felt that if I put everybody together again, that would be a kind of cosmic ritual that would align the universal forces and bring about world peace. We were mutants, after all.
In the party, Joe arrived accompanied by his new girlfriend, who wasn’t a mutant like us. Jessica was also there, and she looked just like she was before all the massacre days. Joe was speechless and came to talk to me. I made his new girlfriend go away, and forced Jessica to stay at the party, because as she saw Joe with another woman, she cried with disappointment. Joe had seen Jessica melt away back when she was in the form of the colorful rubber hoop, this thinking she had really disappeared for good, and had decided to try to move on with a normal (non-mutant) woman. But as soon as they saw each other at the party, emotions ran high. Jessica told him how she had very recently regained her old body back and was working on a new theater company, and from then on, Joe and Jessica were always together.