Fiction Mystery Suspense


In Normalandia life flowed calmly and peacefully. There were no murders, no thefts and no

robberies. It seemed and perhaps was a perfect world. But some, like James, weren’t convinced at all about it.  In Normalandia it was forbidden, under penalty of death, to explore the borders of its territory, which was quite large. All the inhabitants had to be content to stay within their borders and they could not go beyond them.

But James was too curious to be satisfied with such confinement. Many nights he spent sleepless thinking about how to get ( to do) to know the borders of Normalandia.

For all the inhabitants there was a ban on reaching the borders of their nation by land, from which they could only move by plane.

Day by day the desire and impatience to set foot on the border of Normalandia grew in James.

He had only to decide in which direction to move and then set off. He knew that he would be followed and probably captured. However he did not fear the death sentence to which he would be destined so much as he feared being stopped before reaching the border.

Finally one morning shortly after dawn he set off determined to reach the south-eastern border, which was the nearest. He hadn’t told anyone about his decision. He had taken a vacation from work while he had told his wife that he would be away for a week for work.

He left in his car and did not immediately head towards the borders but decided to take a rather tortuous route in an attempt to deceive controls and pursuers. In the first three days he didn’t realize he was being followed even though in reality he had been watched since his departure. Imagine this wasn’t the case in Normalandia. When he realized he was being followed James began zigzagging from one direction to another, in the hope of confusing his pursuers who, however, kept following him. How to reach the border without being blocked (stopped) first ( before)? James had asked himself and continued to ask himself.

Along the borders there had to be something that the people of Normalandia had to continue to ignore the existence of. What could it be? Maybe it was an arsenal of highly sophisticated weapons, or perhaps some monstrous being or, why not? Something too precious for everyone

to see. But he absolutely had to see what it was. It was said that others who had risked so much before him had not had time to tell what they had discovered.

James was becoming more and more convinced that he would not be able to reach the border in his car. His pursuers, who wouldn’t let go of him for a moment, would have stopped him before. James began to think that he had to dig a tunnel to go through to the borders, or even hijack an airplane to land it on the border. But for such initiatives, he would need allies and he did not know where to turn. He had no people he could trust blindly and, moreover, even his friends would have tried to dissuade him from similar initiatives rather than help him carry them out. He just didn’t know what to do. Then, thinking and thinking again one night he decided to turn to the homeless at the station who, in exchange for room and board, said they were ready to dig a tunnel several kilometers long that would overlook the border, would lead to the border. The homeless team worked tirelessly day and night and dug a good chunk of tunnel before being stopped for illegal work. All they ended up in jail. However they refused to say why, for whom they had started digging the tunnel. Again James found himself not knowing what to do to reach the border. After having ruled out hijacking a plane, an undertaking that seemed too risky to him, he decided that he would reach the border on foot, that is, he would walk the last four kilometers that separated him from the border. That route (journey) was all a game of hide and seek with his pursuers. James hid in the doorways of buildings, in elevators, in rubbish bins, but also into wells and manholes to escape them. It was a real tour de force but James managed to get to the border, even though several times he was on the verge of being caught and therefore stopped. He could arrive at the border, where there were signs and writings on the streets saying that Normalandia ended there, without anyone stopped him. Amazed and incredulous James began walking through the deserted and poorly lit streets, with the few old buildings all in darkness. So what was there that the inhabitants of Normalandia had to ignore? He kept wondering. He saw nothing that could explain a ban on reaching the border like the one in force. And then…he had been able to reach the border without being stopped, even if he had had to struggle. What would happen now? He needed to see someone, to talk to someone , but the border seemed deserted, at least in that stretch. Well, perhaps in another stretch of the border there was really something whose existence the people of Normalandia had to ignore…Yes, he had arrived at the wrong point ( of the border), that is why they hadn’t stopped him. James decided to walk ( advance) along the perimeter of the border in the hope of finding something that would justify or, at least, explain the ban. But he continued walking through deserted and dimly lit streets, and all the buildings were in darkness.

“ So, did you find what you were looking for? Igh..Igh Igh” The voice behind James was creaky, and it had a teasing tone. The being to whom it belonged was a dwarf less than a meter tall who was leaning against the large door of a building. One would have said that the dwarf was lurking waiting just for James. “Oh,I found only you besides the deserted streets…Maybe the ban on reaching the border is there precisely to prevent you from being seen, from being known of your existence” said James.

“ Ah, look, you’re wrong…completely wrong! Since…as for the ban on reaching the border by land it exists only to intimidate the inhabitants of Normalandia. On the border, as you can see, there is nothing extraordinary, nothing that cannot be seen and known” the dwarf said in his crackling voice, hopping around James. “NOOO! I don’t understand!” James shouted “ Then WHY those who dared to reach the border by land were sentenced to death?”

“ Oh, my dear, this is only a symbolic condemnation. The people condemned to death are not killed but…they are confined to the border which, as you can see, is rather depopulated (sparsely inhabited)”

“Do you mean that you too…you also broke the ban and…this is why they confined you to live on the border?” Asked James, confused and fearful.

“That’s right. And you too will remain here forever to welcome the new arrivals” the dwarf said in a peremptory tone and with an amused face.


April 23, 2024 14:52

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