Judgement Day By Simon Kewin
March 12, 2015 Comments Off on Judgement Day By Simon Kewin
“There’s a queue is there?” asked Dan.
The woman standing at the end of the line turned to look at him as he arrived. She wore a smart business suit he found immediately intimidating.
“Yes,” the woman replied, “some problem up ahead, apparently. This man was just telling me. There’s going to be a delay.”
Dan nodded. The line of individuals ahead of them snaked backwards and forwards in great loops, meandering its way to a point on the distant horizon. People became blobs, then dots, then a mere line.
“How long have you been here?” Dan said, shouting to the people on the next loop of the queue. They were dressed in retro 60s clothing from a hippy party maybe. Must have been some terrible disaster for them all to be here together.
One of the hippies shrugged. “Difficult to say, man.”
“Have you moved at all?”
The man shook his shaggy head. “Some problem up ahead. There’s a delay. We gotta wait.”
The grey plain they all stood on was featureless, its floor trodden sand. Dan wondered how many grains of sand there were. The sky was a bowl of uniform grey, low light like on a winter’s day. He was no longer at the back of the queue anymore. Maybe thirty, forty people had joined the line behind him.
“What happens if we just leave?” he asked the businesswoman. But she was too busy studying her mobile, a frown on her face, and didn’t reply.
Shrugging, Dan stepped out of line and began to walk away.
“Hey, you can’t do that!” said a man further down the line, burly, angry-looking. “I was a policeman. There are rules. You can’t just leave.”
“Has anyone tried?” asked Dan.
“You can’t. If we stop queuing what happens then? Everything starts to break down.”
Dan studied the man. He didn’t like the look of his red face and his scowl. “Well, I’m leaving anyway.”
“You have to wait.” The policeman was shouting at Dan now. “There’ll be trouble if you don’t.”
Several people tut-tutted in agreement. Others deliberately paid no attention, as if the exchange was too embarrassing. The businesswoman continued to tap away at her mobile with shiny blue fingernails and didn’t look up.
Dan ignored the man. He could just discern a distant line of hills across the plain, a line of darker grey. He wondered what the view was like from on top of them. He wondered what lay on the other side of them.
Not looking back, he left the queue and began to walk towards that distant horizon.
© 2014 Simon Kewin
Simon writes fantasy, SF, mainstream and some stories that can’t make their minds up. He lives in England with Alison and their daughters Eleanor and Rose. His fantasy novels Engn and Hedge Witch were recently published. Find him at http://simonkewin.co.uk