A Tale of Freedom

THERE wasn’t a single person in that room who dared utter a word of defiance to him. We’re not allowed to. Anyone who did, we’d never see again. So we’d kept our mouths shut. I was one of those people in the room, keeping my head low, not saying anything. This is my story, yet I am not the main character.

His name was Lucifer Wall. How fitting.

It was the year 2143. The world was suffering from the aftermath of a global war. He was a dictator, simply put. 12 years ago, when his father, Marcellus Wall, died of an unknown cause, he was the one to take up the task of leading his country at the age of 23. Twelve years feel like an eternity under his rule. While he lived lavishly and comfortably, his people suffered from hunger and disease. While he was forming diplomatic relationships with the other countries, and failing, the people were killing each other over scraps. He was prone to violence, he was despicable, the worst kind of human being you could imagine.

However, those who worked for him were saved the thought of living in poverty. I was one of them. We had houses, we had food on our plates every night. We slept well in beds. But we were never truly free. There was always the risk that if he disagreed with whatever you said, there was no point arguing, or you’d never be seen again. No matter who we were, everyone lived in fear.

Until the assassination happened.

The event itself wasn’t the main feature, it was what transpired after that changed our lives forever. The walls that he built to keep everyone from seeing the truth within were torn down. People finally got a good look at what we were suffering through. Our eyes were finally opened to the outside as well. We were free of tyranny. He had no surviving relatives or descendants, so we had our first democratic poll, and did away with monarchy.

We were free to choose. Well and truly free.

By Aliff Damean Tham, 18, Kuala Lumpur

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