Sunday 20th March
You still don’t get it do you. I ran away, not only from the system but from my life. Yes, my dear Cathy, my wife too was part of my dissatisfaction. I know I could have divorced her, but in a way I still loved her you see. Or loved the memory of her, of what we once had; it was almost painful every time I had to look at her and regretting how we had both changed. Leaving everything was actually easier than just leaving her. What will you tell her? About me, I mean. You can’t just leave her with nothing, expecting me to maybe walk back at any time.
-[We have already taken care of that Janek. She thinks you are dead. Apparently she was really upset, if that is any consolation at all.]-
Shit. You guys really do think of everything, don’t you?
-[We like to think so; though we are constantly guarding against complacency. In your case it was really the only sensible decision. Whatever you might have chosen you were never going to return to your old life I am sorry to say.]-
No, don’t be. I was the one who ran away. To have returned would always have been a failure on my part. At least this way I know I have been true at least to some of my ideas. But tell me; if I don’t pass the tests? If by some chance I am found to be incompatible in some way, will my decision to erm….volunteer not mitigate in my favour. In other words dear William, if I am rejected further down the line, am I back to square one? Or What?
-[My dear Janek, the older and wiser you become the more you will realise that bridges are best crossed when one actually approaches them. To attempt to prepare for every scenario is pointless. Besides it may not be in my control at all by then. You are about to enter a completely new sphere, a higher echelon. You may in fact never see me again, though that would be a pity. I feel that having read your journal, and followed your escape route, and through these few brief meetings I have come to know you quite well. You mentioned earlier that you had no personal friends. I too have no friends, well not any more. In a different life I would like to think that we might have been friends, you and I, Janek.]-
How flattering William, but unfortunately I cannot reciprocate. It isn’t that I don’t have any friends, that no-one likes me. I have, or have had, many acquaintances. I just didn’t want any of them to be a friend. I have never felt the real need for a friend. I have always been a bit of a loner. The only friend I thought I had was my wife, but sadly we sort of grew apart, and as the years progressed I realised she might actually be the opposite, my enemy. In many ways I regret ever placing so much trust in another person; experience should have taught me that they always let you down in the end. Or you them, I suppose. So friends no, but acquaintances – yes many, and as acquaintances go, you were pleasant enough William. You know, you chose a rotten pseudonym. You should have been a Roger or a Peter, or even a good old Dave. William just doesn’t suit you at all.
-[Well Janek, I have to leave you now. You will be processed in due course, and inducted into the programme. Who knows if our paths will cross again. You are about to become one of us; one of the special ones, the new breed of humans. Doesn’t that make you just a tiny bit excited.]-
Excited? Hell, I’m scared shitless.
-[You really should try to curb that tongue of yours, Janek. It may not be appreciated by those you are about to meet, especially the Americans, who are to say the least, quite puritanical about bodily functions.]-