“Do you really want to play like this?” one man asked another while stepping in front of him as they crossed a street.
Drivers waited impatiently for the two men to move along as the rest of the crowd did.
“All you have to do is give me the bag,” one man reached for the satchel worn by the other.
The man carrying the satchel immediately looked at the man who was troubling him. When their eyes locked, the man reaching for the satchel was thrust in a backward motion by an invisible and very strong force. He rose to his feet, walked back to the man he had recently stopped, “So it is true. ARK exists. I almost didn’t believe my employers.”
At this moment, people were exiting their vehicles and sprinting in a direction other than that of the two men. A teenage girl stepped out of the car closest to the man with the satchel and was swept into the air by what seemed to be the same force that had been demonstrated only a few moments before. She was frantic as she was taken uncontrollably toward the man who wanted the satchel. The force caused her to fall to the ground at his feet. The man took a handful of her hair and forced her to her feet while removing a gun from the back of his pants. He held the gun so that it faced the side of her head while the man with the satchel watched calmly.
“Oh my God! Oh my God! Oh my God!” the young woman said repeatedly under her breath.
The man holding the gun to her whispered in her ear while the other man continued to watch calmly, “You keep sayin’ God’s name like that and He might be offended. Go ahead. It is God’s fault you are in this situation anyway.”
Four black and white cars screeched around the corner, flashing their red and blue lights. All sixteen tires squealed as each vehicle came to a stop. The doors opened, and two officers stepped out of each car, knelt down behind one of the open doors, and pointed a gun at the man standing with the girl. One of the officers shouted, “Sir. Please drop your weapon.”
The man holding the girl yelled toward the man holding the satchel, “Hey protector. You are going to get these nice people killed. You sure you don’t just want to give me that bag?” No more than two seconds passed before the man holding the girl shook his head.
The squad cars that protected the officers who hid behind them were suddenly cast into the air. The officers’ focus moved from the man with the gun to their vehicles. Each officer watched in amazement until every vehicle that had been thrown into the sky was stopped, and then forced downward toward the officers. The eyes of each officer shut and each one flinched.
They opened their eyes, each one surprised that he or she had not become one with the pavement below, realizing that the squad cars above them were quickly becoming more and more compact. It was almost as if one force was pressing down on them while another pressed upward.
“Move, move, move!” one of the officers shouted. The team scattered and the vehicles crashed to the ground.
The man with the satchel, who had been silent until this moment, asked a question of the man hiding behind the young woman, “Why do you choose to steal, to kill, and to destroy?”
The other man replied, “Ah yes. Your holy book refers to us as thieves. Tell me something protector. How can we be thieves when our only aim is to liberate humanity from authoritarian rule? How can we be thieves and aim to free humanity at the same time?”
“My master will not be blasphemed against!”
“Your master is responsible for genocide. He is the one who set loose the deceiver and all who follow him. Your master commands service and threatens those who do not serve with suffering.”
“Serving my master is the only way to gain true freedom. True liberation.”
“Then you are in quite the situation, protector. The only way for this girl to be free, is for you to hand over that bag. I need it to fight for freedom, and now you need to give it up to insure that this young girl can find freedom. That is… If your master can forgive her.”
The protector paused for a moment while he looked into the tear-filled eyes of the young girl, “You know I can’t do that.”
The young woman flinched as she heard the gun sound. To her surprise she remained conscious. Moments later, she began to feel a burning sensation on the skin of her right temple. It was the still, hot bullet that had not yet completely exited the gun and rested against her skin.
She remembered to exhale.
How do you choose a side when both parties claim to fight for liberation? Who is right when two minds proclaim opposite truths?