Condemned to die.

Most of us fear death, but know that it will happen. Most of us hope that death will come swiftly in the night, or with enough warning that we can farewell our loved ones. Joshua knew he would probably die a very painful death. He had been with his friends when the police came and forcibly took him away.

It had started. He had said what he needed to his team, and now, he would accept his fate.

The police took him to a strange room. Blindfolded him. Laughed at him. And began to undress him. To try to make him feel shame. One of the policemen awkwardly hit Joshua. It was not a well aimed hit. And there wasn’t much anger in it, but it was like a switch in the group. They went from very professional, to animal instantly. Hitting tender parts of their prisoners body. Even scratching and ripping until someone yell with irritation in their voice. As if, their captive wasn’t to be harmed. In his left ringing ear, Joshua understood a little of what happened next. He was taken to another room where people around him discussed who he was. What he had done. He was standing, but his left side burned, so he stood crooked to take some pressure off the more injured side.

He slowly realised he was in a makeshift courtroom, and they were discussing his guilt. He was being reported as a traitor. His mind flashed to moments of helping people know one else saw. And teaching his team to find similar people to help them. He remembered being invited into houses and parties, but his treacherous behaviour was never directed at the state. He had known something like this would happen. He took a deep breath as he was asked a question. An easy question to turn in a way to prove his innocence but… he gave them a different kind of answer.

His newest accuser had a kind face, but powerful hands, and worried eyes. As he walked towards the growing crowds, he washed his hands of Joshua, condemning him to death. The searing pain changed sides for a moment as Joshua was beaten some more and stripped of his clothes. Thrown on the ground and jeered at, urine began soaking his skin and his shorts as they began dragging him along the ground until he awkwardly got his feet under him. He knew he had a long walk ahead of him.

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