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Drama Fiction Funny

“Passport, please.”

Michael pulled out his document and showed it to the Venosian Immigration Officer who watched him with grim face. She took the little booklet out of his hands and thumbed through it like it was some kind of boring magazine.

“Sorry, I can’t let you pass.” She said and handed him back his Passport.

“What?” Michael gasped, “Why? I have passed this border a dozen times since it was established in the treaty without any problem.”

“Maybe that is true but I have a bad feeling about letting you pass this time, what if all the other voyages were just to establish some kind of confidence, a rouse of some kind?”

“No, of course it wasn’t, I was visiting my family on the other side of the boder as I want to do now, they will be waiting for me at the train station in Altbon, you can’t do that, there are laws!”

“There are laws, that is correct and one of these laws says that I as immigration officer have the last word on this, and my word is no, not today, not this week, try again the next, maybe then my feelings have changed.”

Voices to hurry up or leave started to shout from behind him, so Michael gave up, took his passport and his bags and left the line.

He hated this border and he hated the peace treaty that had established it five years ago, of course he preferred peace to war, the whole war in fact had been a stupidity just because a Canoan Patrician had the feeling the Venosians were preparing for war, so he decided Canoa should strike first.

The final result after some weeks of border skirmishes was that feelings had changed, but of course now the Venosian nobility insisted on war reparations and some Canoan Politician had agreed to give over the province of Palo, but not the capital city of Tarnt itself and all because a feeling in his stomach told him it was the right thing to do, as he later proudly told in a press conference. Now Michael and every other habitant of Tarnt had to pass passport controls whenever they wished to visit families or friends that lived outside the city and as he well knew from stories he had heard from others, his today’s destiny was nothing uncommon.

He left the train station that served as the border crossing point to the south and with a raised hand; he called for one of the coaches that was waiting outside for passengers.

“To the next  telegraph office.” He ordered the driver and took seat behind him in one of the two empty seats.

“For sure, sir.” The driver gave a light whip to the horses and the coach set into motion. “No luck with the officials today?” he asked after a while.

“No,” Michael answered through his teeth, “not an ounce.”

“Yeah,” the driver answered without being set off by Michael’s bad mood, “the lady who is in charge is in bad mood today it seems has a bad feeling about almost everybody that tries to cross the border today. Word made the round that’s why I was close by, days like that are good business for us… you know the saying one man’s luck is another’s…”

“I know that saying” Michael interrupted him.

“Yeah, sure you do.” The driver answered short and seemed to be concentrating on the street before him. Michael felt bad, he knew the man just wanted to be friendly and talk, he should just shut up and hope they would reach the telegraph office fast, but his feeling said that he had to restart to conversation again to show his good manners.

He desperately searched for something else to talk about, when he saw a burned out building on the side of the street.

“What happened there?” his voice almost sounded relieved while he pointed at the blackened ruin.

“Oh that?” the driver took up his question with enthusiasm, “that was a bakery, they burned it down yesterday, one client had the feeling the owner was overcharging the prices for bread, the poor man insisted that it was because of the higher prices for wheat that everything had to be imported and paid duty for because of the city being in the middle of a foreign county, while the field wasn’t even two hours away, but you know how it is when somebody gets a feeling, right?”

“Yes, yes of course.” Michael answered, and completed the sentence in his thoughts, first one gets a bad feeling about being, betrayed, maltreated or whatever, but instead of keeping it to him he shouts it out loud and then the feeling catches the next one it was like a rapid spreading decease and before you could do something everything went into chaos, Wars had erupted and ended on the feelings of kings and patricians, revolutions and proclamations of states, it happened so fast that map makers had stopped drawing borders long time ago.

“But did they arrest the firebrand?” he asked the driver.

“Of course, the police came, sadly a bit late as always, they dispersed the crowd and took the man with them, but you know how it works, he could proof that his feelings were justified so the judge let him go with a slight pat on the fingers.” The driver shook his head like he couldn’t believe it, “crazy that thing with the feelings, it’s causing so much chaos, one should think that there must be another way to decide what’s best, but no idea comes to mind.”

They arrived at the telegraph office and Michael paid the man for the trip, plus some extra tip as he still felt bad about his behavior.

He turned around to enter the office when he saw the telegraph operator closing the door from outside with a big lock.

“Hey, I’m sorry!” Michael shouted, “I need to send a telegram urgently to relatives in Altbon and its still early for closing.”

“I’m sorry, good sir,” the man shook his head “but I had a bad feeling about staying open and decided it would be better to shut down for today, tomorrow I will open from 9am, I try again then.”

Michael started to breathe heavy and clenched and unclenched his fists. The Telegraph employee just looked at him with pity, “one of these days, hum?”

“Yes,” Michael answered still heavy breathing, “one of these days.”

“Don’t worry, tomorrow is another day, tomorrow you’ll feel better.”

“Yes,” Michael answered with resignation and turned around without any further word, he decided to not try another office for today, his family would notice when he wasn’t in the train he had indicated them, at least so he hoped. He was tired but decided not to take another coach and walk instead, the time in fresh air would help him to calm down or so at least he hoped.

Tomorrow would be another day, tomorrow he would feel better.

November 18, 2022 21:32

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