Chapter 1.12: New friends

“Who’s that?” Drover whispered and pointed towards three colorful figures further away. It rarely happened that colorful ‘bows visited District 0 and when they did, whispers like Drover’s were common among us colorless. I had never seen them before, and judging by their clean looks they were new to the district.

They seemed to be about fourteen years old, give or take a few years. Probably just a bit older than Quince, actually. But the way they moved made them seem older. They were confident, upright and curious. Their eyes was greedily scanning off the grey surroundings.

“Hey there!” I shouted after them and the few colorless that had been out hurried in to their homes in fear.

“Hey yourself!” One of them shouted back and they started walking towards us.

“It’s you!” They stopped dead and stared at me.

“Uhm, hi?” I said fumbling.

“Oh Berry! I can’t believe it’s you!”

I looked confused at the young guy in front of me and Drover slipped his hand in to mine.

“You’re Marshmallow Puff, ye?” The yellow guy asked, as if it was a way of explaining himself. Silly, I obviously knew who I was, I just didn’t know who they were, or why they knew me.

“I’m Mithos” he said and stretched his hand out in a friendly gesture. As I took it to formally introduce myself he pulled me closer and whispered in my ear: “It’s starting again, it’s happening.” He then let go off my hand and looked around. “Some hot chocolate would be great, thanks for the offer.”

“What?” I felt really, really confused.

“After you” he continued and motioned for me to start moving.

I don’t know exactly how it happened, but somehow we did end up in our home with a cup of chocolate in front of us. The three young guys looked curious and mysterious.

“What’s happening?” Drover demanded to know once we were settled and felt safe.

Before they had time to answer our kids came bursting through the front door, laughing and joking with each other. By the sight of the three unknown boys in our kitchen they stopped dead. They knew that unknown colorful people in District 0 usually meant trouble and their faces went from happy to worried in an instant. Quince took a step forward so that he was standing between the three boys and the twins. “Who are they?” he wondered.

“They’re from the outside” I explained. “They were just about to tell us something.” My kids all stayed to listen, still in a safe distance from our guests.

“The uprising! There’s a buzz all around Fondant Fields, people are starting to question District 0!” One of the guys, who we still didn’t have a name on, suddenly said and smiled widely.

“Uprising?” Quince’s face lit up in a big smile.

“Ya, we just need help from the inside and we wanted to find Flax and you” Mithos said and looked at me.

“I’m in!” Quince said eagerly and almost jumped at the spot in excitement. Neither me or Drover knew how to (or even if) we should correct him and talk him out of it. Uprisings? It sounded dangerous, but it was also what we had taught our kids through their childhood that they should fight for.

Drover squeazed my hand and smiled, “So are we. And Flax will be too.”

The three guys all smiled and thanked us a hundred times before they left that day. Our task was fairly simple, all we had to do was to convince our neighbours in the district to get on the train. It would be simple enough, wouldn’t it?

“NO! You are not taking part in this!” I said for the millionth time that same night. Sundance and Sweet Corn thought it was the most unfair thing ever that they weren’t allowed to help in the uprisings. In mine and Drover’s opinion they were too young with their 9 years. Fact was, Quince was probably too young as well and he was four years older. It was impossible to talk him out of it, though.

“But why can Quince do it?” Sweet Corn wondered and flapped her eyelashes.

“Because he is older than you! End of discussion!” It was uncommon for me to need to raise my voice against any of the twins and I had a slight feeling of guilt when I saw their sad faces. That didn’t mean that I would change my mind in the matter, though.

“That’s so unfair” Sweet Corn muttered and tugged at Sundance’s arm to make him move with her. He hesitated for a moment before he decided to follow her. Sweet Corn stomped extra hard at every step, to really manifest how irritated she was with my desicion. Sundance followe with light steps, not looking too bothered at all.

Drover took my hands, he must have seen how hard it was on me to upset my kids. “We did the right thing” he said. “Remember what happened the last time we let Sundance join the campaign.”

The memory pierced my heart like a knife. My poor baby boy. I couldn’t help to wonder if his silent, fragile character had anything to do with our desicion to use him as a statue for the rebellion.

“This is Sundance” Flax said and helped my son to wave towards the TV cameras and right through our screens. Murmur broke loose in the studio and the host asked a few questions about where my son was from and why Flax had decided to bring him. The debate was not much about politics, but rather about my son’s appearance and whether the fact that white transferred along with yellow was positive or negative.

After the show a whole group of antagonists had gathered outside the studio and as Flax came out through the doors they spat Sundance right in the face. “FREAK!” they called after the two of them as Flax tried his best to protect Sundance while he hurried off.

“The boy we saw on TV last night is a true shame for our kind” Mayor Bloom said in a speech the next day. “I promise to do my best to keep you pure ‘bows safe from this plague. No one should have to endour the look of that colorless skin. It’s a shame that they have been allowed to breed and I will work towards purifying our kind. I promise to cure us!”

The speech was already a classic, well-known speech and had been broadcasted several times after that first time. We had managed to keep our kids from seeing it for a long, long time but we couldn’t keep it from them forever.

“Is it my fault, mom?” Sundance asked after he had seen it. “District 0, is it my fault? Are we here because of me?”

I remembered the question very well, a bit too well. He had never really gone back to his old self after that and I knew he had a great guilt on his shoulders. It didn’t matter that we told him time after time that he had nothing to do with it. He seemed so sure that he was the ultimate pest.

There was no way we could risk such a thing again. No way.

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8 Comments

  1. I love it<3 I really hope things go better for the white 'bows this time around!

    Reply
  2. Is that Mithos from Arrowleaf’s story?!

    Reply
  3. MITHOS! =O
    Even in other stories he’s sticking his neck out for colorless/mixed berries. ❤
    Sundance's event in the election was so sad… I bet that really did change him. Poor boy.

    Reply
  4. That Mayor Bloom!!!
    What is he trying to do? Kill them? >:

    Reply
  5. Uprising! Yes! I do hope things go better for the,. The current Berry society is horrible and needs to change.

    Reply
  6. Being imprisoned could have broken Mallow’s spirits, but I’m glad her bravery is able to shine through again!

    Reply

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