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Everyone remembers that day:  The day the parcels came.  No one was expecting them and not everyone got one.  That's what made it so hard; not being able to talk about them because you could never tell who got one and who didn't.  Well, not at first.  Later, as time passed, that obstacle faded as The Fifth (capitalized by those who lived it) drew near.  The people who had received one of the mysterious parcels all had a different air about them – one of nervous expectation, of guilty defiance in unguarded moments.  Nothing was ever said, not out loud.  But there were subtle not-quite-glances between friends and strangers alike, a knowing.  Tension began coiling, day by day, growing tighter with each news broadcast, each headline, each reassurance that life was as it should be.  

As the days marched on, some people began casually mentioning dinner plans, or visits to friends, or errands to sick relatives; innocent social gatherings that would raise no brows.  Parcels whose recipients could not (or would not) use them found their way to those who could, and would.   A strange sort of peace seemed to descend, in which people smiled a bit more readily, and looked others in the eye a bit more often.  

By now the parcels and their contents were known to the government, but rarely could the offending items be found in citizens' possession.   Only the terminally brave and the terminally innocent were caught, and promptly dealt with.

And then it was The Fifth.

The ones who had resolved to heed the call of "Codename V" but hadn't had the benefit of knowing they weren't alone braced themselves to defy their family, their friends, and their neighbors – only to discover their family, friends and neighbors all bore the same half-frightened/half-determined expression on their own faces.

Well after nightfall, long after curfew, flashes of white became visible from the shadows of the empty streets.  Furtive steps sounded in fits and starts, and bits of darkness fluttered with the movement of a cape or a long-haired wig.  As the curfew recordings blared, footsteps doubled…trebled.  Cloaked figures encountered one another first in surprise, then in solidarity.  Tiny rills of black in the darkened streets converged to form brooks, then streams, then rivers, gaining speed and  flowing toward Parliament as one.

The surging black tide that reached the armed barricades had acquired a life all its own, separate from and greater than each individual within it.  The mass of  soldiers, their tanks and their guns, meant nothing; all that mattered was obeying the imperative that was  issued a year ago.  The streets surrounding Parliament were obliterated by black-cloaked shapes with bone-white faces, all moving inexorably forward.

The panicked cry to stand down and allow the sea of masks to pass was all it needed to heave and crash in eerie silence against the barricades.  Soldiers were jostled aside or simply ignored, left to wonder at the power of the wave washing over them.  No words were spoken; only an occasional soft grunt or huff of exertion as the people passed.

And then it was over.   The goal had been reached.  At an unspoken command the crowd halted, and waited.  

They had no idea what to expect…they only knew that they had had to come, and they did.  In spite of their doubts, and fears, and very real danger, they had all found a way to fulfill the responsibility given them by a stranger who dared to speak the truth.  (Even the ones young enough to have never known any other life had felt its pull; the unshakeable, ineffable sense that this was something that must be done; that it was right.)  

They had calmed their doubts, and faced their fears, and stood toe-to-toe with the danger, marveling as it quailed before them.  Through their own efforts, their own conviction and the strength they hadn't known was theirs, they stood… giving new meaning to the Norsefire motto that had loomed over them for years.
Movieverse drabble, in response to the Shadow Gallery's Non-V/Evey Drabble Challenge.

Disclaimer: Obviously I don't own any aspect of V for Vendetta, and suing me would be an exercise in futility. ;)


- All stories housed in order at my website.
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:iconewigestudentin:
ewigestudentin Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm a sucker for underexposed perspectives, really. So glad you wrote this story - there are so many details in it I have never thought about...
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:iconabbey1normal:
abbey1normal Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2008
Hey, I didn't catch this one at the SG, it's awesome and very original.
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:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you! :thanks: The challenge on the SG made my brain go to the extreme of the least known characters in the film. xD
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:iconsaniika:
saniika Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2008  Professional General Artist
How wonderfull...I am so glad you dealed with "Everyone" not just known character from movie.
I felt reading this liek "this count´s only this."

Yes...very good...I cannot express it very good since my language ability is limited....but I am glad you wrote this...I am glad you are writing...
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:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you - Bel's challenge made me think of all the Unknown characters almost immediately! :)
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:icona-chemical-vendetta:
a-chemical-vendetta Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2008
good job hope u win
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:iconfuguestate:
FugueState Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
thanks! :thanks
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