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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation


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xmmfic: fences
children of dune - leto 1
seperis
Actually, this is themed. Before Jus Ad Bellum was concieved, I was playing around with the concept of a mutant/human war and the consequences for humans. Bits of Jus came out of this, including a scene from this snippet I wrote--God, I have no idea. According to editing dates, about five months or so before I finally figured out what I really wanted to write and started Jus, called then Flip of a Dime. Hmmm.

Khaki, Victoria, I thought you might get a kick out of this one.

Fences

There were one thousand, nine hundred and sixteen camps scattered across the eastern United States. Only two in New York, though. They were all the same except location and weather conditions. She'd seen them all now.

Electric fences, eighteen feet high, nine hundred sixteen feet long, five hundred forty-five feet wide--to keep them in. Barbed wire, ten feet high, same dimensions--to keep them out. Razor wire lining the top, spun so fine it could cut off your fingers with the most casual brush of your hand, bright silver in the cold winter noon.

Marie knew her statistics the same way she knew her eye color and the length of her fingernails--after all, she saw it every day.

There were one thousand nine hundred and sixteen camps just like this scattered across the eastern United States. The camps were crap--the buildings dilapidated and so close to falling over that she shuddered every time she made teh mistake of looking up at them. Concrete ripped apart in chunks and thrown like a child's toy across what had to have been once beautiful lawns, reminders of the war no one really could forget. The smell was horrible, but she supposed you got used to it after awhile. Not that she ever did--she'd have to remember to thank Logan for his sense of smell she'd picked up.

It was the worst part of the city and she could feel them stare at her, through their closed windows and from behind musty curtains. Mutie bitch. She'd heard it before, doubtless would hear it again. But she watched anyway--her own weird penance for being who and what she was.

Today she watched a child play.

* * * * *

{--"Tell me this isn't real. I won't wear a number.--}

{--"Rogue--"}

{--"Fuck this, Cyke, I'm not a kid! I'm the reason this is happening!"--}

* * * * *

There was an electric fence, barbed wire, fifteen years, and twenty yards of broken pavement that separated her from the little girl playing in the snow--Marie had noticed that the kids never got any closer to that fence than that twenty feet. Smart kids. Sometimes she wanted to ask how they'd figured it out, if a stray ball had wandered too close or if one of their number had touched it by mistake She could have asked, she supposed, but never had yet. Somehow, it never occurred to her to do so once she was out of sight of it--maybe because she hated to think about it, any of it, and denial was something she treasured when she had the leisure to do so.

She could pretend that she and that little girl were equals. That the chain she wore around her neck didn't mean anything. That the world wasn't this fucked up, it just couldn't be.

The girl was maybe six, small for her age, playing hopscotch on the cleared concrete. Somewhere, they'd gotten chalk and marked up the ground, and Marie remembered her own childhood playing that game, though God knew, she couldn't remember a single rule--it'd been too long. Watched intensely as the little girl threw a rock and hopped her way across, almost losing a shoe that hadn't been tied properly, adn then tripping over her own laces and falling wiht a scream loud enough to wake the dead. Instinctively, Marie moved toward her, stopping inches from the barbed wire that marked the limit even she was permitted to approach, and she watched a woman run out, hair loose, obviously called from doing something else, not even wearing shoes and Marie's feet got cold in sympathy as the child was scooped up and cuddled, the crying ceasing.

It was an accident that the woman looked up and saw her. A true accident, because Marie made an effort to avoid being seen, but she couldn't help it this time, she couldnt' turn her head and duck away, was held in the clear blue regard, seeing the myriad expressions chase themselves across the woman's face--fear, anger, hatred, horror--and the woman cradled her child close as she turned to go back inside the small apartment.

Maybe she thought Marie was the kind that got kicks out of making kids fall. Maybe that's what she thought Marie's mutation was. Mutie bitch, she knew the woman was thinking it. Didn't even blame her.

*****

{--"Scott, we can't. This isn't--"}

{--"Tell me we have a choice. Tell me that there's another way. We have to or we lose everything."--}

{--"Xavier would never condone this!"--}

{--"Xavier's dead because of them."--}

*****

She walked the perimeter--another habit she wasn't quite sure when she picked up. Tucking her hands under her arms automatically even though her gloves kept her hands relatively warm.


*****

It was familiar and Marie wondered why she did this to herself every day, as if it would make some sort of difference. Pulling her coat up to her throat, she turned away, knowing that probably every person on thsi block was now looking out their windows to see her standing there in clothes worth more than any one of them would make this year, fifty feet from the car she'd received on her eighteenth birthday.

There were one thousand one hundred and sixteen camps, and this camp, number one thousand one hundred and one, was named Rogue. She even knew why. It'd been erected on her birthday and that had been Magneto's gift to her. A thank you for all her help. A monument to being an almost-martyr.

She'd vomited into the gutters outside the barbed wire the day it was completed, and Logan held her hair back and supported her while she cried.

*****

{--"This is not who we are."--}

{--"This is why we wear a number, Cyke. Believe the dream, sugar. This is the world we wanted, right?"--}

{--"This isn't what we fought for."--}

{--"No. This is what we won."--}


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So sorry I disappeared on you last night. Bad AIM karma got me again. Not sure what atrocities I committed for AIM to retaliate, but I suffer the consequences. Perpetually booted. *sigh*
D.

Holy fuck. That is the scariest, most realistic thing I read in ages.
I went in with the assumption that the mutants won, then swapped to humans, then mutants again, etc...

The twist I was not expecting was that the 'marked' mutants won, but at a loss to their own humanity. A special brand of evil considering Magneto's roots.

I really enjoyed this. thanks.

Ah, Gretel in Darkness: "This is the world we wanted. All of those who would have seen us dead are dead." Terrible and sad.

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