He was in the midst of a revolution, but he really didn’t care.
Residents filled the capital city’s streets, shouting anti-government insults in rare unison and clashing with police decked out in riot gear and huge Perspex shields, throwing bricks and Molotov cocktails and being struck down with batons, powerful jets of water and tear gas. Walls were painted with poetry angry and defiant by hooded figures with spray cans, storefront windows were shattered and what they once showcased looted, livelihoods ruined by greed and desperate opportunism. Blood spatter adorned the pavements and roads, bodies lay wounded and screaming in agony, corpses attracted flies, and the charred remains of cars and buses created a kind of post-apocalyptic wasteland once seen only on the silver screen. The city, and his country, were falling all around him, but he really didn’t care.
He was in the midst of a different kind of revolution, one he did care about.
It was one that shook him to his very core. Fear and excitement coursed through his veins, each and every time he closed his eyes and saw her there, saw the twinkle in her eyes and her broad, welcoming smile. The ice that had built up around his heart was melting faster than he’d ever anticipated, ever thought possible, and he had something that had been missing for a long, long time – hope. He was fighting a different kind of war, silent and more deadly; a war inside his head against demons of the past. Shadowy figures more sinister than any politician, more deadly than any soldier or riot cop, more hurtful than any of the actions of former flames or wicked words uttered by those he once held close.
Criticisms of himself being chanted rhythmically and repeatedly, urging him to succumb and submit to the will of the darkness, the will of what was; countered by the chains and bolts that surrounded his very being creaking and groaning as what lay inside struggled to break free, fought to be able to spread its wings and soar. The person who he was, deep down, sensing a chance at a new life, a new chapter to be written.
Each and every time he closed his eyes and saw her there, the revolution continued. Small steps towards being in her arms, being free of the pain of the past, being able to give his heart wholly and without fear of those demons and their black, foreboding essence.