Helena was reading calmly next to the breakfast table while her grandmother walked around, cleaning stuff up. She loaded the dishwasher and then walked back to the table, where she had left a letter before.
“Hey, Helena… It says here that I need to go to the clinic today” she said, a bit of doubt in her voice. “Do you think it’s going to be OK?”
Helena looked up from her book. “Mm… I guess so. I mean, they just said that they wanted to check your health, right?”
Her grandma did not seem convinced. “Yes, that’s true”.
Helena tried to reassure her. “I’m sure it’s nothing. Just take it easy” she said with a smile.
“OK, honey” her grandma answered with a smile.
Helena waited while her grandmother put on a coat and got her nice shoes on. She kissed her goodbye, and went back to the kitchen, where she took her book. As she was walking towards her bedroom, the phone rang.
“Helena, this is Dani. Did your grandma just leave for the clinic?”
Helena was surprised by hearing her friend’s voice. “Dani? Isn’t this call…?”
“I’m calling from a safe line, but we don’t have much time and this is crucial. Did your grandma leave for the clinic today?” Dani pressed on.
Helena was getting a bit anxious due to the intensity in her friend’s voice. “Yes, they just wanted to check on her, she has just left”.
Dani got furious. “Check on her? Did you really believe that bullshit?”
“That was what the letter said!” Helena tried to defend herself.
“Come on, Helena. The environmentalists have bowed to reduce world population to just below one billion people, and are carrying out genocides in most countries of the world. This is just part of it!” Dani shouted.
“But… but…” Helena refused to believe what her friend was saying.
“They also stated that old people are a burden to society! This check is just a way to kill old people!”
Helena ran to the window of the living room, trying to see whether her grandma had already left the street and headed towards the clinic. There was no sign of her grandmother.
“She is gone!” Helena shouted into the telephone, desperately. “She is gone, gone…”
“Don’t panic! You just have to…”
Helena did not hear anymore. She just ran out of the house like a lightning bolt, jumping down the stairs as fast as she could. She knew the way to the clinic, because she had helped her grandma there several times already. Her grandma was nowhere to be seen. Helena was in front of the clinic, about to cross the street, when there were gunshots from inside the building. Helena was about to barge in when someone held her from behind. It was a man of the environmentalist police.
“Let me in there! My grandma is inside!” she begged.
“This is the way it has to be” the man responded.
Some windows were shattered and there were screams in the clinic as the massacre continued. Helena tried to fight her way inside, but the man would not budge. After a few minutes, there was a long silence inside the building.
“It has all ended now” the man told Helena.
“No!” she dropped to her knees, crying. “No, no, no!”
The silence was broken as the entrance burst open in fire. Helena’s grandmother came out between the flames, coat open, a gun in each hand, ready to shoot at whoever was willing to oppose her with any sort of resistance. The police sirens were approaching already, as the clerks from inside the building had called the emergency services. Before the environmentalist policeman that was right behind Helena could react, her grandmother shot him twice in the chest.
Helena screamed as blood spurted out from the man and several police cars arrived at the scene. They all got ready to shoot, surrounding the entrance of the building, and a policeman soon started to shout from a microphone.
“Please, stop your violence or we will need to take action. This is not environmentally friendly at all”.
Helena’s grandmother looked at her surroundings, saw Helena and spoke. “Fine. I give up. We can make peace right here and right now, amigos”.
Helena realized what was about to happen and started to run. Her grandma, a proud Latin American woman who had emigrated to the country long ago, only spoke in Spanish when she got extremely angry. That had been, in part, a way to signal to Helena that she needed to take cover.
As Helena left the scene, her grandmother dropped the guns, leaving everyone relieved. The policemen started to lower their own weapons, deeming the situation under control. In a second, the woman had taken out a hand-held machine gun from her coat, and she shot in every direction.
Helena heard several explosions as she left the scene, and went directly home, expecting the worst. She cried for half an hour before the phone rang once more. She took it.
“Are you OK?”
“Dani?” she asked. “No, I’m… Not OK. My grandma… I’m never going to see her again”.
Dani’s voice seemed a lot more relaxed than before. “Never is quite a strong word. I would say you won’t be seeing her for a while”.
Helena was confused. “What do you mean?”
“Switch on the TV, or check the Internet. It’s everywhere” Dani told her, before hanging the phone.
Helena switched on the television, where she saw a news report that had interrupted the program that was going on at the moment. She put the volume up and listened to the news anchor.
“… the suspect had apparently been called to the clinic to be recycled, and in a completely environmentally unfriendly way, not only has she refused to be recycled, but also she has started to kill people and policemen in a fight that has taken the lives of 17 agents. The suspect is still on the loose, and the police is carrying out an investigation to find her. If you were to see her, don’t approach her, she is dangerous and should only be dealt with by the appropriate authorities…”
The news report was accompanied by a picture of her grandmother jumping over a police car, while simultaneously kicking a policeman in the face and shooting another one with a gun. Her grandmother might be a fugitive, but was still alive.