Uneasy the Head

Cold, white light glared out from behind the finger-smudged globes of the battery-powered lanterns hanging on the walls of the abandoned subway station. They brought into reality all the details of decay and makeshift splendor that the broad area was composed of. Dirty gray mortar was crumbled and pitted between bricks that were now more brown than red. Long shadows, cast by concrete pillars that helped hold up the archways that intersected in a dome above, lay thicker than the dust across the stained floor. It might well appear that no one cared for this place, but that appearance was wrong once the other details were considered.

Where once the train platform had been forgotten, now it was had been made into an auditorium of sorts. Faded plastic milk crates sat next to rusting folding chairs in uneven rows, their backs to the ticket booth that had been changed to a guard station. They all faced on direction: a dais made of cargo pallets topped with particle board painted red by spray paint. Upon the dais more crates had beens stacked and lashed together until a throne could be covered with patterned drapes torn from some hotel's large windows. This was the throne, and the platform the throne room.

Tara lounged upon the throne, her legs draped over the arm on one side and her back resting against the arm on the other. Her platinum blonde hair was mussed and matted in places, hanging down past her shoulders and uncontrolled by the crown of welded metal and broken glass shards. Her robes of state were along t-shirt that came to her thighs, the arms ripped off. Stockings full of runs did little to cover her legs, and her boots, though scuffed and dirty, were once a cute pair of ankle boots with stiletto heels.

With a knife she picked dirt out from beneath her nails while waiting for her official duties to begin. It was a wait that didn't last long. She heard the scuffle of booted feet coming down the tunnel first, and saw the beams of light from headlamps next. A pair of burly men, their heads shaven and skin worn dark and rugged from the sun and elements (a contrast to her pale complexion) came into view. Between them they carried another figure, bound at the wrists and ankles, a sackcloth hood over its head.

The men - soldiers in her army - deposited the prisoner down on the ground a few feet from the dais. One sent a savage kick to the back of the figure's scrawny leg until it dropped kneeling, never once crying out in pain from what must have surely been a kick that hurt. They turned the lamps strapped to their head off and removed the hood from the figure's head while Tara said, "So, you caught the trait-"
Words died in Tara's throat and her breath fled entirely. Blue-green eyes opened wide and the normally cool woman, whispered as an ice bitch by some of her less loving subjects, was rendered speachless. She knew the face she was staring at, though the hair nearly white hair that cascaded over it was obscuring most of the features and the eyes were blackened by the rough treatment of the soldiers.

"What joke is this?" Tara demanded angrily as she stood up quickly from her upcycled throne. "Who's the sick fuck who thought I'd like this joke?"

The soldiers looked puzzled, their brows furrowing as they regarded one another, then their prisoner. One reached down, grasping the platinum hair and jerking the head back. It only made it easier for Tara to stare…at herself.

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