Damascus Road

Prologue

All journeys have a beginning. A starting line to every race. An action for every reaction. A spark for every fire. A beginning can be anything. It can be an alarm clock, starting a day, or a moment that reshapes your world.

Red carpet. Camera flashes. Handshakes. My face hurt from smiling too much. I was introduced to so-and-so from such-and-such newspaper, and I struggled to feign interest in getting to know the man. He was pleased to meet me and wanted to set up an interview. I didn't like his face. He was overly cheerful, and he wouldn't meet my eyes. I don't like people who wont meet my eyes. I managed to avoid committing to any set time to meet him. Then I was led away from him and ushered unto the stage.

"Now, I would like you all to give a warm welcome to our guest speaker, an influential spokes person in the F.O.H., Saul Richards!"

I ruthlessly squashed my nervousness to the back of my mind as I made my way to the podium. I blocked out the voices of the crowd below. The greedy pockets of the politicians, the hungry eyes of reporters, and the curiosity of the masses all faded away. Ryan. I was doing this for Ryan. I was doing this for my son.

"I hardly know what to say. It's an honor to speak to you tonight, it truly is." That was a bald faced lie. "The world is changing around us, my friends. Our futures are no longer secure. Our families are no longer protected. Our children are no longer safe. We live in uncertain times. Suspicion is everywhere because danger could be anywhere. Confusion is rampant and everywhere you go you hear the word 'mutant.' I believe I speak the heart of our communities when I say that something must be done."

I paused here. This was the tricky part. I couldn't seem to aggressive towards mutants here or I would come across as radical and unpredictable; a source of chaos instead of logic. By the same token, if I wasn't hard enough on the mutants, I would be labeled as a sympathizer. I walked a thin road, trying to portray myself as a defender of the family, the government, and our way of life. If I stepped to far to one side, I would lose a portion of my audience. I hate politics, but that does not mean I'm not good at them.

"To concerned family members and watchful guardians, I'm not here to convince you that something must be done. We know this. I am here, instead, to propose an idea. A registration of all mutants. We need to know who these people are, and what they are capable of. I would also propose a restriction of using their powers without a license. If we demand a certain amount of responsibility from a person driving an automobile, it would be folly not to ask the same of someone who has potentially dangerous abilities!"

A murmur of agreement swept through the crowd, and I took heart in it. Encouraged, I pressed on.

"To mutants, everywhere. I have heard claims that our fears and concerns are merely a knee jerk reaction to that which is unknown. A compelling argument with a grain of truth to it. But if it is so… if all our fuss and panic is unfounded; if all the suspicion is without cause… why do you hide in secret? If the answer to ignorant fear is knowledge, why do you keep it from us? If there truly is no 'big, bad mutant threat' then why the lurking in the shadows? Come out! Be known! If there is nothing to fear, we will not be afraid. My registration is a path towards knowledge. It will lay open the facts. We would know the truth. We would know if, indeed, we should be afraid."

I had them. The speech was a success; the ninth this month. The cheering grew to a roar as I made my way down the steps, through the crowd, and to my waiting limo. They were screaming my name. "Saul! Saul! Saul!" I couldn't care less. I wasn't doing this for them. I was doing it for my son. I was doing it all for Ryan.

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AN: Well, that's the prologue… what there is of it. I wanted it longer, but it needs to end here. Until next chapter… If there is one. I'm sort of bad about updating… I'm also VERY VERY VERY busy.

I would also like to thank Neva for creating the Wallglass saga… it's part of my inspiration. If you haven't read it, do so.