To Three-Word-Wednesday (Today’s words are eradicate, mercenary, squeamish).
In the same world as last week’s story, The Job
There were always politicians.
Even now, even after the near-end of the world, even after the years of struggling to find a new way to survive, even now, when survival was not guaranteed for more than ten percent of the remaining population, there were politicians.
And they would stand in their safe, protected halls in their safe, cozy auditoriums, and they would pound their fist and shout. “Eradicate the Blank Plains!” they would demand. “Wipe out the Creatures! Make this world safe!”
Over and over again, the politicians would shout, because shouting was safe when you were within the walls.
There were always the mercenary ones.
If it seemed like there were more of them now, when every commodity was a rarity, when there were so many ways to gouge and so few could afford to be gouged, then it was probably a matter of perspective: there had always been those out for number one.
They would stand by the gates and offer “services,” in the marketplace and offer supplies, by the graves and console widows, and all at a low, low price.
If it could be bought, they’d sell it, because selling was easy when your audience was captive.
There were always the squeamish.
If they seemed far more delicate now, when there was no room for delicacy, when food was scarce and resources tight, if they seemed too soft to live, it was probably the comparison: most people had grown far more hard. But there were always those that could not toughen.
They would wail over their choices for meat, when even their herd animals were starving. They would wring their hands over an outlaw’s death, when outlaws threatened everyone.
They would flap their hands, because it was easy to be squeamish when someone else was getting dirty.
There were always those who wouldn’t do what was needful: the politicians, the mercenary, the squeamish.
And then there were the Rangers.
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