Truth or Trickery | Uniform 7

Hey!

So this instalment will end the meeting between Matthew and Altair and will lead into some more intense and action-filled story-lines… (probably). Anyways, here it is! 

A smile immediately appeared on Altair’s face before he jumped up and hugged Matthew, a gesture that would have been frowned upon by most people. The embrace lasted a few seconds at most but shocked Matthew nonetheless. He had never been this close to a person since his childhood. It brought on confused sense of joy to know that he could make someone happy enough that they would disregard social standards and succumb to a reaction of such raw emotion.

Matthew was soon left to ask Altair to leave after being thanked profusely and continuously. The rest of the day went by quickly with only two other people coming to see Matthew. On his way out of the building, he was stopped by his boss.

“Listen, I know that you gave a job to that 1-star and I understand. We all make mistakes. Sometimes they trick you with some fake sympathy story to prey on your emotions and before you know it they’re gone and you can’t even recall at what point you gave them a job. However, you must understand that there are better, more deserving people who are trying to get these jobs as well. I’ll let you off the hook this time, but try not to let it happen again.”

Matthew wanted to interrupt but he had begun doubting his meeting. Was it possible that Altair had lied to him? Was there another way to explain his education? Did he even have a family?

Matthew continued asking himself these questions as he waited for the bus to arrive. Once it came he moved to his class’ designated area and sat down, eager to return home. The route home took longer than the one to work and Matthew was given a lot of time to think about his encounter with Altair. The more he thought about it, the more confused he got until he realized that there was only one way to find out the truth.

Was Altair lying? What’s Matthew gonna do to figure out the truth? Is the government as oppressive as Altair led Matthew to believe? 

These questions will be answered (probably) in the next few instalments so don’t forget to check in daily! Or feel free to comment with guesses! You might be right! Or have such a great idea that I change the story-line to fit it! 

Subtle Leash | Uniform 6

 

So the last section ended with Altair discussing methods used by the government to erase oppositional viewpoints. Now, we look more into Altair’s rebellion of this prompting Matthew to re-evaluate how he sees society.

“That’s terrible!”

After a pause to collect himself from his sudden emotional outburst Matthew continued.

“I still don’t understand why you don’t wear a tie though. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a 1-star without a tie before.”

“That question has a simpler answer, and the story is not as interesting I am afraid. Simply put, I don’t wear it because it is a symbol of conformity. The tie is issued as the final piece of the uniform, forced upon us before going to university. A place that was once meant for self-discovery has now become nothing more than a training facility for people who have unknowingly already been initiated into the government’s meticulously managed machine.  The ties are used to remove people’s differences. No one is unique, which may make some feel safe, but it also means that no one can question anything. No one can be creative, or independent. The only difference is the stars. A single marker, categorising people into indisputable classes.”

The following silence lasted a couple of minutes as Matthew took the time to process what he had just heard. He thought back to all the 1-stars he had seen in his past but found that he remembered none of them. Any one of them could have once been a politician’s son or a retired policeman, but he had never looked closely enough to notice. Remembering the rules he was given with the job, Matthew sighed before speaking again.

“Look, I’m not really supposed to give jobs to 1-stars.”

“Of course not. Heaven forbid anyone opposing the government can find means to survive.”

Seeing the downcast look on Altair’s face after his sarcastic outburst, Matthew quickly continued.

“I’ll see what I can do. There are a few places in need of workers quickly. I can’t guarantee it will be permanent. You will most likely be fired once you’re no longer useful but it might be enough to get you through the next few weeks.”

There it is! Part 6. I don’t know why but I feel like the instalments are getting shorter… despite the fact that this is one of the longer sections (if only by a handful of words). Oh well, it just means that I’m just as excited for the next part as if would be if I were reading it. Seriously though… Every time I reach 300 I have to force myself to stop because otherwise I’ll keep writing ‘one more paragraph’ for hours until I finish the story. Ok well anyways… part 7 will be up tomorrow!

Ok Bye! Hope you enjoyed it and check out some of my non-writing posts that I’ll be posting over the next couple of weeks!

The Big Reveal | Uniform 5

Hey!

So the last section ended with Altair bringing up the oppressive government in the story which this section will elaborate on. Hope you enjoy it!

Seeing the confusion on Matthew’s face, Altair continued.

“Everything that you’ve been told is a lie. 1-star citizens are not the bane, nor the crutch of society. Once they might have been, but now they are an image created by the government to keep control. Enemies of the state are brought in, stripped of their stars, and sent back into society, then the citizens do the rest. Before today, how many 1-stars have you spoken to? Probably none, correct?” His only answer was a nod from Matthew prompting Altair to continue.

“How many have you passed on the street, without more than a glance? More than you can count I assume? How much more do you know about any of them than what you are being told? Nothing!” Two more nods came from Matthew. Altair was about to continue but Matthew interrupted.

“What happened though? What did you do to lose your stars?”

“I told the truth. I talked to a few 1-stars one day and learned about their lives. Each of them came from highly ranked backgrounds, but had opposed the government. Eventually, I did the same. I told others at Stur the truth. I thought that if they knew the truth they would see as I had, that the way our society functioned was flawed. I hoped that if enough of us knew, we might have been able to stop the governments cruel regime. My plan was discovered before I could follow through with it though. Within a day, I was stripped of my stars and my place at Stur. My family and friends wouldn’t listen to me, and could barely look me in the eyes now that I was a 1-star.”

 

There it is! Part 5 of Uniform! The next section will address the ties people wear in this story and the title! Hope you liked it and come back tomorrow for the next instalment!

 

Double Take | Uniform 4

Hey!

So this is the 4th part of Uniform! The next few instalments will discuss class prejudice in this story. Without further ado, here it is!

Plastering a smile on his face Matthew welcomed the man who introduced himself as Altair Mulder, and ushered the secretary out of the room. As Altair took the seat in front of Matthew, he quickly glanced around the room with a guarded look, as if looking for threats. The short silence was soon broken by Matthew.

“Hello Mr. Mulder, my name is Matthew. Now, what is it that you hope to get out of our meeting today?”

“Good morning Matthew, I was hoping to get a job. Anything is fine so long as the salary lets me provide for my family, and please, call me Altair.”

Matthew was taken aback by the man’s reply and how different he was from most advertised 1-stars. Not only was his speech not broken, but his intentions were clear and thought out, unlike the rash decisions 1-stars were always shown to make.

“Forgive me for asking this Mr. Altair but where were you educated? I only ask as I’ve never known for someone with only 1 star to be as educated as you.”

“It’s alright Matthew, I went to Oakwood Academy before attending Stur University,” he replied with a slight grin.

Matthew was even more surprised by this than by Altair’s evident intellect. Oakwood academy was famously reserved for the children of 4 and 5-star citizens, and only the brightest children of 3-stars were enrolled in special cases. Even this wasn’t as impressive as going to Stur University though. Stur was the best and most selective university in the country. Only the brightest were given the chance to apply, and only a handful of them got in. It was almost an unwritten rule that Stur graduates rose to have 5 stars. If this was all true Matthew wondered, then why did Altair only have 1 star now? He was brought out of his thoughts by Altair’s chuckling.

“Impressive is it not? I could have had 5 stars by now, but I could never have worked for such a tyrannical government. Nor support the parasitic society on which it thrives.”

And that’s the end of this section! Hope you enjoyed part 4 and return tomorrow for part 5. Tomorrow more of the parasitic society Altair mentions will be discussed and Matthew learns some dark secrets the government has kept hidden!

Ground Rules | Uniform 3

Hey!

So this is the 3rd instalment of Uniform. This section gives a bit more insight into Matthew’s job in the story.

Walking up to the secretary Matthew stated his name and was quickly ushered into his new office. He took a second to look around and found that the room seemed identical to the one that he had been interviewed in. A small wooden desk stood at the end of the room facing the door. There were two wooden chairs. One in front of the desk, and one behind it. No other features lay in the room apart from a computer on the desk for Matthew to categorise applicants in, and a water cooler against the far left corner of the room in case Matthew or one of the applicants grew thirsty. A few moments after Matthew had settled in the door opened to reveal Matthew’s boss Aaron. Aaron sauntered over to Matthew’s desk and took the seat usually filled by applicants.

“So Matthew, I would like to personally welcome you to the conscription bureau. Your training went spectacularly and your results in the entrance exams give me great confidence that you will succeed in this job. However, before you start working I would still like to tell you a few ground rules of the job. First, always be in uniform, second, don’t come late, and finally, don’t waste your time with 1-stars, give those jobs to more deserving people.”

The last rule confused Matthew but he nodded nonetheless, eager to start working. With a smile, Aaron got up and left the office wishing Matthew luck as he left.

A few minutes after Aaron had left, the secretary that was in the lobby earlier walked into the room, followed by the 1-star who had gotten off the bus behind Matthew. Confused, he looked at the woman who shrugged at him almost casually, but the look she gave Matthew had a clear message: Get rid of him.

There you have it! Section 3 is posted. I hope you like it. In the next section the 1-star citizen is revealed and Matthew learns that he may not know the world he lives in as well as he previously thought.

 

Divide & Segregate | Uniform 2

Hey! 

So this is the next instalment of Uniform. This section gives a bit more insight into the class system in this world. Hope you enjoy it!

The stars marked a person’s status in society. 5 stars were worn by highly ranked government officials; 4 stars, mainly by important business men; 3 stars by lower ranked government officials and law enforcement officers; 2 stars by the regular working class like Matthew; 1 star, the lowest rank, was worn by the outcasts of society. 1 star was worn by people who were born different, or were unable to complete their work; people who were a burden to society. Originally, 1 star meant an eventual death sentence until the day came that they were found to be more useful as test subjects for scientific advances and helpers for the upper class. Still, it was rare to see someone with 1 star walking the streets anymore.

When the bus arrived Matthew quickly scurried to his designated class area near the back of the bus. The trip to work was uneventful for the most part until a one 1-star citizen walked on at the next stop and slowly shuffled to the back of the bus. His suit was dirty and torn in places but looked to have once been expensive, a disgruntling look aided by the man’s dishevelled beard. Even more incredible, the man wasn’t wearing his tie.

Matthew quickly left the bus at his stop after which he cast a last look towards the 1-star man who, to Matthew’s surprise, had also left the bus. Shrugging off the strange situation, Matthew walked into the office building. He had recently been assigned a job at the conscription building. The last time he had walked through the doors of the building, he had left with a job. Now he would be on the other side of the desk, deciding where the best workplace for applicants would be.

There you have it! The 2nd part of Uniform! Part 3 will be posted tomorrow!

 

Don’t Deviate | Uniform 1

Hey guys! 

So as a project for myself I’m going to post parts of a shorts story every day. The word count for each section will be around 300 words. Hope you like it. The story is going to be called ‘Uniform’

The bell sounded at six in the morning waking everyone up as usual. The city moved like a well-oiled machine, an efficiency groomed over decades. Citizens collectively got out of their beds and prepared for the day ahead of them; showering, getting dressed, eating breakfast and finally, if they had already reached maturity, putting on their ties. This had been the routine of the city for the better part of the past century without a blunder.

Near the city center, Matthew strode to the door, ready to leave for his first day at work before being stopped by his mother.

“Slow down honey, let me have a look at you before you go off. You’re growing up so fast! It feels like just yesterday you were climbing on your father’s lap trying to steal his tie.” She said, almost squealing while looking over her son.

A stern look overcame her features as her gaze focused on her son’s neck. Reaching forwards, she grasped his tie and quickly undid the eccentric knot her son had made before redoing the knot as society demanded. Once she finished she let him leave while she muttered about how lucky he was that someone highly ranked had seen him.

As he walked towards the bus stop he thought of the knot he had made this morning and why people believed it to be so bad not to follow the rules of society. At the bus stop, he saw a few people who fit into the higher ranks that his mother had muttered about, distinguished by the number of stars marking their suit. The people taking the bus consisted mostly of 2-star citizens but a few 3-stars could be spotted in the crowd.

So that’s the first instalment! The next part will be posted tomorrow! Hope you enjoyed it and feel free to comment.