Helena was taken back to the Palace, as they called it. She did not have much of a chance: when she tried to escape, a crowd had held her and raised her on their arms as if she was their leader. She was taken to a Council room, where several men and women were waiting for her, expectantly looking at her. A few of them had military suits on, but there were also two representatives of the Sisters, and the president of the world eco-government was there.
“Please, sit” the president of the world eco-government told her, indicating the only chair that was available. The Sisters looked at her with pride, as Helena complied. “I am glad to have you here with us, Prophet” he continued. “Rescuing you was the best thing that could happen. You are a beacon of light for our followers, the source of wisdom that they drink from to continue their holy mission”.
“I am not a Prophet” Helena continued.
“That’s so humble of you” the president of the eco-government continued. “The Sisters have told me about this, it is indeed the mark of the Prophet.
One of the Sisters, who oddly enough looked a lot like a man on a wig to Helena, spoke on a basso-profondo voice. “The prophesy will then turn true: a humble one will descend upon the Earth, one that will not trust her own powers. She will appear in the midst of the cleansing fire, and she will guide humanity to the last war of all, restoring the balance of nature”.
As he spoke, Helena inspected him and noticed that he actually did have a 5 o’clock shadow. That was definitely a man. When he stopped talking, the other Sister spoke. “You came from the fire of Newcastle, the cleansing fire intended to kill the rebels there. We had not noticed initially, but you are our chosen one”.
“Cleansing fire? You mean the nuclear bomb that was thrown there?” Helena was enraged by the memories.
“The nuclear attack was necessary to stop the advance of the rebel front in the north” the president of the eco-government said. “It was the eco-friendliest option”.
“That’s not true! Now Newcastle is a wasteland that will be contaminated for the next tens of thousands of years! That’s not eco-friendly at all” Helena objected.
“It is!” the president of the eco-government insisted.
“It’s not!” Helena continued.
The tension had extended to the whole room. The men and women were all looking around, not one of them daring to speak up for one or the other. Apparently, Helena had enough power to hold her ground against the president of the eco-government.
“Look, I had several scientists working on this problem. It was the best solution that they could come up with” he explained. “Also, sometimes sacrifices are needed”.
“I don’t think that massacring the population is an eco-friendly thing to do” Helena stated.
The Sisters gasped. The rest of the people in the table looked at her, eyes wide open, terrified by the consequences of what she had just said. The highest spiritual leader of the eco-world had just pronounced herself. The president of the eco-government did not have words to respond to that. Seeing that opportunity, Helena left the room.
It was impossible to go out without being spotted, so Helena went back to her room. Barbara was waiting for her there. She looked concerned.
“Helena, are you OK?” she asked.
“I am perfectly fine. I’ve said what needed saying” she answered.
“I know. Sister Jeffrey has told me” Barbara told her. “It was so brave of you to speak the truth… In front of all of those world leaders, too!”
“Wait, what do you mean that Sister Jeffrey had told you?” Helena asked.
Barbara brought out a brand new smartphone from a pocket in her Sister garments. “Sister Jeffrey tweeted it. You know, the Sister that looked like a super-muscular heavyweight mixed martial arts champion?”
“Wait, so this is public?” Helena asked.
“Yes, in fact it is compulsory for every citizen to follow Sister Jeffrey, to get spiritual updates. He has uploaded a video of it, too. Oh, you look so fierce saying it, I really admire you”.
The reaction did not take long. The news had soon gone viral, and the still-forming eco-world was now boiling with one of its initial crises.