General Julio’s Diary: A Short Story

By Soham Mukherjee

DAY 8

I know they hate me. Let them. They are ignorant scum. And I am in-charge. It is not for them to decide who they should hate and who not. I still have my supporters. They cheer for me every day. They shout my name and pray for my health. It upsets me deeply that I cannot go out and greet them. This damn assassination threat; it has made my life hell. Sitting here in my mansion, signing papers, not being able to go outside, constant stream of people filled with ignorant bile chattering me into distraction – one could lose their mind.

DAY 11

It is so odd. I am all powerful in this country. I rule it. I have everything at the very tip of my fingers. Yet, these so called ‘security experts’ tell me that I have to stay indoors with all the doors and windows closed because some maniac somewhere is waiting with a sniper rifle. 28 days! I’m already going mad. They will do a threat reassessment at the end of the month; unless of course they catch the bastard first. This country has had enough of experts and traitors.

Damn these revolutionaries!

They are the absolute filth of this country. They are ruining the name of this great nation – with their “spontaneous” protests, ridiculous music and constant death threats. These people shouldn’t be put in prison. They should be in an insane asylum, or shot – the bastards.

DAY 15

Going out and mixing with my people is my thing. That is what made me. Their love has brought me here. It is for them that I have done everything that I have done and if these revolutionaries don’t understand that then to hell with them. What difference does it make that there is no freedom of choice? They are getting food. They have shelter. They have work. They are getting educated about the proud history of their country. What more could anyone need? All you have to do is do as I tell you, and you’ll be happy. Why is that so hard?

DAY 16

What do they mean by this “freedom of choice”? What do they wish to choose? I have given them everything; freedom from the colonisers, a raging economy, fundamental human rights, equal pay – all my doing. And yet, they are not happy. They want to kill me. They want me out of the way to bring about a peaceful revolution. Killing me isn’t violence then? If you destroy something, even if you hate it deeply, aren’t you committing violence, especially if it is another human life?

DAY 19

These incompetent morons; they’ve read handfuls of old philosophy books and claim to have

understood the world. They can’t run a country. They do not have the brains to. In fact, they do not have the guts to. When you’re running a country, you have to make sacrifices. You have to make horrible, hard decisions. Some people have to die, to be sacrificed. These spineless molluscs will faint at the sight of the horrors I have seen. I put an end to all of it! All of it!

Poverty is all but gone. Only lazy sods that don’t care to work are poor. Everyone else has a decent source of income and a modicum of respect in society. Damn the rest! If they don’t work, they don’t eat. Let natural selection do the rest.

DAY 21

My wife and children have been taken away from me. For their own safety, I am told. I am getting old now. I need them to support me, to help me through this, to help me understand the meaning of this and to look after me as I fade away.

NO, no; I must not drown myself in self-pity. You, my people, do not want to hear this. I wish I could write about every day. But there is so little to tell you, so little of import, so much that you will not understand. All this drollery is fraying my nerves. I broke my coffee cup the other day. I threw it across the room and it smashed against a closed window.

DAY 23

Almost there, five more days…

DAY 28

This must be the happiest night of my life. Tomorrow I shall be a free man again. They have caught the bastard. I’ve told them to hold him. I’ll command the firing squad myself. I want to watch him die. I’ll have them fire exactly 28 bullets into him. One for each day of agony I have suffered in my cloister. He must pay for his sins.

But tomorrow, I will be free.

DAY, THE LAST

I opened my windows in the morning. There was nothing there. Not a soul in sight. No cheering crowds. I frantically roamed around the house. There is absolutely no one here. I don’t understand. Why is everything empty? All the papers I signed, they are all gone. My ceremonial robes, my guns… they left my books. But what use is knowledge if one cannot put it to effect.

What is happening! Is this a dream?! Am I dead?! Where is everyone!!

I hear footsteps! Whose shadow is this that?

Bruto!

Soham Mukherjee is an amateur writer who loves football more than most things. His first book, a collection of short stories, was published last year. 

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