The mask irritates his face, but he keeps his hands by his side. The clean ones get jumpy if an infected messes with its mask. He keeps his head down but can feel the sideways glances bouncing towards him. He hears the shuffling as they unsuccessfully attempt to quietly distance themselves from him.
His anger rises but he forces it down. Violence from an infected results in only one thing: extermination. As much as he wants to scream and throw himself at these people, he knows he can’t risk it. He would be taken out before the first punch was thrown. Members of the secret guard are everywhere, constantly watching the infected.
He keeps his cool, silently brooding as his stop approaches. He gets up to leave, avoiding eye contact with everyone, just as they like. Stepping off the bus, he runs head on into a clean one. She jumps back, gasping, and brushes off her clothes as if he were filthy.
“That’s it,” he thinks to himself. “I’ve had enough.”
He leaves the woman in the street and races up the stairs of his apartment building, a place like many others designated for the infected ones. He enters his apartment, a clean-room, the device by the door beeping to indicate his mask is securely in place, as it ought to be. This is the one place an infected can take his mask off without consequences, but that will soon change.
He sits at his kitchen table, devising his plan. He knows what his fate will be but the infected have to start somewhere. They are sick and tired of being treated as second-class citizens. New laws are being enacted weekly, stripping more rights of the infected. They aren’t even considered human anymore.
A revolution is needed to help his fellow infected brothers and sisters. The clean ones are no better than them. Tomorrow, they will see. If they resist, they will pay. Once the masks come off, they’ll be no turning back.
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Word Count – 333
3: a protective covering for the face; a gas mask; a device covering the mouth and nose to facilitate inhalation; a comparable device to prevent exhalation of infective material; a cosmetic preparation for the skin of the face that produces a tightening effect as it dries