“What’s going on? Why has my wake-up been initiated?” The pod was still almost entirely in darkness but a soft golden glow illuminated the very edges as the sunrise programme activated.
“Good morning Thomas, are you feeling well today” The soft tones of his pod companion rose him to full wakefulness
“Yes, fine but what’s going on, my wake-up is not normally scheduled at this hour” Thomas rubbed his eyes, any kind of negative emotion was futile and therefore not forthcoming but his routine had been disturbed and he felt slightly off kilter
“The Central has made a momentous announcement so all citizens are being awakened early”
Thomas sat up. “What announcement?” He was not concerned as there was no need, suffering had long since been eradicated, but he was intrigued as major announcements were uncommon
“The Central has finally succeeded in creating a hologram with feeling capabilities, both physical and emotional” His companion spoke without intonation but Thomas was not blind to the significance.
“Thomas, watch the screen please” He turned his attention to the screen that covered the far wall of his sleeping pod, fully engaged. The image of the rising sun which normally completed his wake-up process had been replaced by 6 members of the Central; between them stood a short dark man who looked, at once, defiant and afraid. His black eyes flashed at his unseen audience; the screens could be activated for full interaction but Thomas had a feeling that this man would be kept in darkness, at least for a time.
He moved to speak but the Central silenced him with the use of a holographic cuff which coiled around his throat. He tried to tear it away as it tightened but that caused him very obvious distress so, after a minute or so of struggling, his hands fell to his sides. At the same time the Central were all taking it in turns to address him, their words could not be heard, as was traditional, but they were having a strange effect on their target
“Who is that man?” Thomas asked. Punishment this cruel was unusual in their World and never made public in this way; he was horrified.
“His name was Adolf Hitler” The information was given as fact and without emotion.
“I remember…….something……..from the 21st Century perhaps?” Thomas tried to recollect his ancient history
“The 20th. The Central will be reporting details of his actions later today”
Thomas turned his eyes back to the screen and the agonised expression of the man being tormented. He was trying to cover his ears to stop the terrible words of the Central from permeating his brain but another cuff had wrapped itself round his torso leaving him unable to move his hands high enough.
“What are they doing to him?” This level of violence was unknown to him and he could not tear his eyes from the screen.
“They are denouncing him before the entire World”
The screen indicated that interaction would be permitted shortly. This meant that Adolf Hitler would see those people to whom his torture was being broadcast and that they would be able to contribute to his punishment. The words of the Central would be augmented ten thousand fold.
“But why now?” Thomas was curious
“Because now we have the technology to ensure he will suffer; there is little point in denouncing a dead man who can’t feel his accusers wrath”.
Thomas could not argue with this logic and decided he would watch this afternoon and discover more about this strange, black eyed man; he was intrigued.
Post written in response to another excellent one word prompt from Fandango