David entered the apartment block, covering his mouth with a soiled silk rag. It did not help much; his lungs itched and burned from the dense haze that blanketed the city, which served as a constant reminder of the day previous. In an effort to prevent it drifting in, he slammed the door shut quickly.
He stormed up the stairs, footsteps clattering like a typewriter. He soon exhausted himself, despite being fit and young. He rested, wheezing, on the third landing. There was a wide poster opposite to him, depicting the “Benevolent” Leader, a great wolfspider, feasting on flies with tophats and monocles. “DON'T BE A CAPITALIST'S MAGGOT,” the caption read.
A vivid image came to him; a protest sign laying among lifeless corpses, their limbs at disjointed angles. “FREEDOM OR DEATH,” it read, in bold lettering. It was almost charming in its naivety. Like all of them had been.
Tears welled up in David's eyes, and he kicked that blasted poster. Once, twice. The wall crumbled beneath the force, and one of his legs became caught, knee deep, in the wall.
“Goddamnit!” he swore, and extricated himself, struggling. Clouds of dust swirled up as he did so. Swearing, he took the poster, tore it up into little pieces, and stormed again up the stairs and into his apartment.
It was crowded with useless junk and litter. Sheets covered the floor. “LIBERTY PRESS,” most pieces read, with bold title headings saying things like "DON'T BE CAUGHT IN THE COMMUNIST'S WEB." He opened his freezer and sourly took a bottle of the strongest drink he had; light beer. It would take him, what, a hundred liters to get drunk on that? He could probably do better drinking water.
He took himself, crumpled into the porous brown sofa, and cleared the cluttered table beside it, sitting the bottle on it. Irritatedly, he realised he should use a coaster, and took the nearest scrap of paper for this purpose.
“Working a shift, will be back late – XOXOXO, Melanie,” it read. Another reminder! Goddamnit! Melanie was dead, like all the others, he reminded himself, taking a swill. In a way he was lucky, really. He tore the paper scrap up and cast it away, ignoring his previous concern about coasters. There was a certain irony, he mused, to being concerned about those little circle-stains when the room was so cluttered with filth.
Yesterday was the day of the protest march. He had helped organise it, of course; that's why all the papers were there. He had written scathing critiques of communism, as part of the Liberty Press. So had Melanie. They had urged the people to action.
And action they had made. A few thousand people gathered in the square, bearing signs of protest, shouting slogans. And then…
And then, a ghastly green haze had drifted in. At first, people had assumed it was just from the industry. Since “Benevolent Leader,” there had been a great industrial boom. And with it, smog came often. But no; it did not just itch and burn the lungs.
It killed. It killed swiftly and suddenly. The fuckers had used chemical weapons! Chemical weapons on peaceful protesters!
Those fuckers. They had killed almost everyone he knew. His mother had been taken in the purges, like most of the older generation. He remembered his mother. She had been a huge woman, much, much larger than any man; kind but domineering. She had killed his father swiftly and mercifully.
His sisters had been conscripted. He did not know what had happened to them (you never did). They were probably dead; buried together in their own mass grave. His brothers, they had been forced into prostitution. Most, he knew, had been brutally murdered by clients. His friends, of course, were dead with the protesters. Even that friendly homeless man had just disappeared one day.
He had liked that homeless man.
SCP-1006 has placed a request for less mosquito spraying in the surrounding park area, following Incident 1006-12, which resulted in the expiration of multiple SCP-1006 instances gathered at the dispersion point.
Signed: Agent Boyles