Always Greener

Jennifer Walters entered her dark home with a smile on her face. She was still walking on air as she turned on the lights and absent-mindedly tossed her keys onto the end table next to her couch. Eddie was a nice guy, considering that she wasn’t expecting much from him. She never expected much on a blind date set up by one of her friends – but Eddie was a perfect gentleman, and he tried not to stare at her green skin or her tall frame too much.

Her euphoria continued as she remembered watching the ‘X-Men’ movie with him and eating enough snacks for three ‘normal’ people. She remembered the nice walk in the park at night. The whole time, Eddie talked to her about his own life, rather then ask her what it was like to be She-Hulk. She appreciated that. She also appreciated the fact that he kept the whole date rather informal, meaning that she could wear comfortable shorts and a cool cotton tee-shirt. She had to dress up to work, she much preferred spending her leisure time in leisure clothing.

She looked at her dark television screen briefly before heading to the kitchen for a drink of water. She opened the refrigerator and removed a bottle of water, and stared at the label – it was bottled at a spring somewhere in Canada. “Only the best for you, Jen.”

As she headed toward the kitchen table, she could hear the sound of her last phrase echoing off the walls of her empty home. The smile disappeared from her face as she sat down. Reality had set in, chasing away all sense of optimism – just like every other guy she tried to date, Eddie was intimidated by her. He was just too polite to say so. Jen longed for someone who was her equal, someone who could dish out as easily as he could take. At the very least, she wanted someone she could talk to honestly – someone she could just hang around with and be herself.

Jen sighed deeply. Kermit the Frog was right all along, it’s not easy being green. While she wouldn’t trade her role in life for anything, she sometimes wondered why someone so popular – a hero, for God’s sake – was relegated to spending every evening talking to herself in her kitchen. She wanted nothing more then someone to talk to in person, at least a close friend. Someone she could trust. Someone who trusted her.

Her smile was becoming a frown now, as she gripped the water bottle tightly enough to cause the plastic to start to discolor. Being She-Hulk was both the worst, and best, thing to ever happen to her. She now had the respect she always knew she deserved. But at what price? Spending her life with everyone frightened of her presence? To spend the rest of her life essentially…alone?

Jen didn’t even remember hurling the water bottle across the room until her kitchen became covered in Canadian water and shards of plastic. She clenched her fists as she watched the water dripping down the cabinets. Clenched her fists out of…anger? It wasn’t anger that drove her now, it was her need for self control. She began to let go, slowly, to let her emotions take a little of her time.

She closed her eyes quickly as tears began to flow. Slowly, at first, but before she knew it they were flowing freely as she settled her forehead on the table on top of her hand. Being She-Hulk was the best thing to ever happen to her. And the worst.

Jen awoke abruptly to the sound of her telephone ringing. She long ago gave up using alarm clocks to wake her – the involuntary anger response at being so rudely awoken by an incessant beeping or disgusting morning radio shows caused her to smash too many then she cared to count. She now relied on her own internal clock – or failing that, her law firm partner to call her and threaten her. This time was one for the latter.

“Jen, wake up! You have to be in court in two hours! And buy an alarm clock, for God’s sake!”

“Unnnhhh–” Jen tried to respond to her partner, but she found herself…less then articulate. Her mind still was asleep – and by then, she realized that her partner didn’t even wait for an answer before hanging up.

Jen picked her watch up off of the night table and glanced at it quickly. It was nine o’clock. Peter was right, she was running late. As the reality of time running out began to rudely awaken her mind, she leapt out of bed, completely unaware that her body had not fully awakened yet.

She found herself tripping over a simple high-heeled shoe sitting in the middle of the floor, falling head-first into a small bookshelf she had sitting next to the opposite wall. The bookshelf was no match for the Jen’s invulnerable body – in seconds, it had become a simple pile of splinters surrounded by torn books scattered all over the floor.

“Damn it! Damn it, damn it, damn it!” Now, Jen was fully awake – but it was too late to save her bookshelf or books. Sometimes being so resistant to damage was not a good thing. She stared at the mess of broken paper and wood for a second before heading to the bathroom – no time to clean it up now.

Several minutes later, she stared at her own reflection in the mirror as she finished dressing in one of her nicest formal suits. The deep blue color of the suit and blouse complemented her skin and eyes, while remaining formal enough so people would take her seriously as an attorney.

She wanted to be taken seriously today. This was the trial of her career, the biggest test of inner strength and patience she ever had to endure. Today, she decided, the High Court would grant a temporary suspension of enforcement of the Mutant Registration Act until the Supreme Court could hear the case and determine if it was constitutional.

Jen knew it wasn’t. The law itself was racist, forcing mutants to register with the Federal government as a danger to society – whether they had special powers or not. She knew that if it was upheld, it wouldn’t be long before people with genetic defects or handicaps would be forced to register – and soon after that…the Fourth Reich.

She shook her head to dismiss that thought. Maybe it was a slight exaggeration, but the comparison was still there. The MRA has proven that anyone can get a law passed, no matter how stupid, simply by causing paranoia to support it.

Jen took a deep breath and stared deeply into her own eyes for several minutes. As she did, she started to see a glimmer of doubt somewhere deep in her soul. Behind that doubt was fear – for herself as much as for other mutants forced to register under the Mutant Registration Act. The doubt was cast by her fear of failure. She knew, deep down, that if she were to fail…she herself would be doomed to the same fate as those victims she defended. This was her last stand.

“Here goes nothing.” Her own words echoed in her mind as she grabbed her briefcase and headed out the door. Nothing. She hoped that somehow, it would be more then that.

“Nice of you to decide to make it.”

“Oh, shut up, Phil.” Jen hoped her cold response, along with the fact that she didn’t even turn to look at him as she spoke, would tell her partner that she was not having a good day so far. Phil responded by not saying a word as he followed Jen into the courthouse.

As Jen entered the courtroom, she could plainly see two distinct groups in the courtroom. One side of the room was filled with people who had confident looks, and seemed fairly calm. On the other side of the room were the mutants and those who loved them – they all wore sad, frightened expressions.

‘Give me your tired, your poor…your huddled masses yearning to be free’. For some reason, Jen remembered that old saying from the Statue of Liberty. The mutants in the gallery were perfectly described that way…huddled masses, yearning to be free. Frightened men and women, clinging to their last hopes for freedom.

“All rise, please.”

From those words on, Jen felt like little more then a spectator as the case progressed around her, without even her slightest input being allowed. The opposing council called one expert witness after the other, and neither Jen nor Phil ever got a chance to speak up. ‘You’ll get a chance later’, the judge said. Jen wisely spent her idle time in that court jotting down notes which she would use later – if the case turned out unfavorably, they would become useful during the appeal.

Then the judge stood up, announcing that he was going to go to his chambers to decide the case. Phil was livid as he stood up, and began yelling until his face turned red.

“Objection! I object, your honor! We haven’t had any chance to present our testimony, or redirect with the opposing council’s witnesses!”

The judge pointed his gavel at Phil, just above the sign that read ‘Hon. Joseph Reed’. “One more outburst out of you, Mr. Simmons, and I’ll hold you in contempt! I received your affidavit, that’s all you need for now.”

“But your honor–”

“May I remind you, Mr. Simmons, that this is an injunction hearing, not a murder trial. I will not allow it to drag on for days at your whim!”

“Damn it!” As Judge Reed left the room to retire to his chambers, Phil slammed his left palm down on the table.

Jen smiled. “Calm down, Phil. We can always appeal. Or we can take this to the Supreme Court.”

“No, we can’t.” Phil leaned close to Jen, the anger still apparent on his face. “Because if we fail now…the Supreme Court will refuse to hear this case…at least until someone dies because of that law!”

Jen folded her arms and slumped down in her chair as her heart began to sink. She had dedicated a good chunk of her career to defeating the MRA. And now, because of one stubborn judge…she was going to lose her life’s quest?

She was fuming already as the judge re-entered the courtroom, her look of contempt for Judge Reed piercing him as she stood and watched him return to his soft leather chair behind the bench.

“Please be seated. I have reviewed all of the evidence in this case, and determined to deny the injunction against the Mutant Registration Act.”

“Let me finish.” Judge Reed looked over at Phil, who began to stand. “The act itself only requires registration of mutant abilities once they are discovered. It does not advocate violence, nor does it advocate imprisonment. Only registration. The reality is that some mutants out there are dangerous. If we have to register our guns and cars, mutants should be registered as well.”

Jen stood up angrily, heading toward the bench quickly. “They don’t deserve to be treated this way! Mutants are people too!”

“And kids are people too…and dogs.” Judge Reed leaned closer to Jen and smiled. “Where do we draw the line, Miss Walters? Will you appear before this court to fight for the rights of cockroaches as well?”

“You, Judge Reed–” Jen was pointing a large finger directly across the front of the bench, casing Judge Reed to lean back. “–are a bigot! You have no business running a courtroom!”

“You are out of order, Miss Walters! One more word out of you, and I’ll find you in contempt! You’ll find yourself in a jail cell so quickly, that green head of yours will be left spinning!”

Jen’s fists were clenched tightly now, her teeth grinding. She wanted nothing more then to smash the bench to splinters and rip that bigoted judge in half. All sense of calm gone, she now began screaming at the judge. “No, you are out of order! This whole case is out of order! People like you are the reason why society is falling apart – people who are unhappy unless they can beat down someone else!”

“That’s it!” Judge Reed slammed the gavel down on the bench, causing the small wooden plaque it rested on to fall to the floor. “You, Miss Walters, are in contempt! You will accompany my bailiff to the holding cells, where you will remain until you apologize to this court!”

“Jen–” She turned to see Phil, her partner, standing behind the defense table, looking at her sadly. She didn’t need to hear his words to know what he was going to say. He wanted her to apologize, to swallow her pride and save them both a lot of trouble later on.

“Your honor.” Jen turned back to the judge, a calmer expression on her face this time. “I’m sorry. I…I just let my temper get the best of me.”

“Very well.” Judge Reed stood up and put the gavel down on the bench. “Apology noted, you’re free to go. Maybe next time, Miss Walters, you’ll keep your anger in check.”

“Yes, your honor.”

As soon as the judge left the bench, Jen raced past Phil at the defense table, pausing only to grab her suit jacket and briefcase before she headed toward the exit.

Before she even made it through the door…she was crying.

Phil found Jen sitting on a bench outside the courthouse, her suit jacket draped across her lap and her briefcase at her feet. She sat, staring at traffic as it passed by, as if lost in thought.

“Are you okay, Jen? You almost lost it back there.”

Jen turned to face him and smiled weakly as he sat down next to her. “I’m sorry Phil. I guess this case is affecting me more deeply then I’m willing to admit.”

Phil nodded silently, and placed a hand on Jen’s shoulder. “We’ll get through this, Jen.”

“The Nazis in Germany passed a law just like the MRA before World War II, Phil. It wasn’t long before six million people were executed as a result.” Jen had pain and fear in her eyes as she spoke. She kept staring at Phil, expecting him to tell her that she was exaggerating, that her fears were unwarranted. But he just gave her a sympathetic look.

“I know, Jen.” Phil sighed. “People never see these things coming until it’s too late.”

“Exactly. People, Phil. Not institutions.” Jen sighed and pointed at the courthouse again. “Institutions make these laws, not people. It’s fear, Phil. Fear of the unknown…That’s what gives government too much power over these things.”

“What are you really afraid of, Jen?” Phil gripped Jen’s shoulder tighter, noticing that his fingers didn’t even seem to make an impression. But now he could feel the movement her powerful muscles as she shifted in her seat. “I saw you crying as you left the courtroom. What’s wrong?”

Jen smiled weakly again. Phil always knew when she was hiding something from him. “The world is so fragile to me, Phil. I try as hard as I can to be a perfect citizen…but in my heart, I’m only human. I screw up sometimes, just like you do. I get angry–”

Phil sat up suddenly. “You’re afraid you’re turning into your cousin Bruce?”

“No.” Jen shook her head and leaned forward, looking down at a group of ants walking along the pavement. “People like me, Phil…it’s so easy for me to end up on the wrong side of the law. Just one slip, that’s all it takes…and I end up like my cousin Bruce. To become a savage. That’s what they would call me, a savage She-Hulk.”

Phil shook his head slowly. He couldn’t believe that Jen was anything like Hulk, in any way.

“It’s true, Phil.” Jen looked at him sadly. “I almost lost control in that courtroom.”

“But you didn’t.” Phil stood up and offered his hand to Jen – a hand that dwarfed in comparison to hers as she took it. “You’re here. And you’re still a model citizen.”

Jen laughed a little and stood up. “Let’s get some lunch, Phil. I’m starved.”

“Great idea.” Phil followed Jen quickly, trying to keep pace with her large strides as she walked down the street. “But you’re buying. I don’t make enough to feed you.”

She smiled as she turned around to look at Phil for a moment. He always did know how to cheer her up.

Jen awoke in her dark bedroom to red and blue flashing lights dancing on the ceiling. At first, her mind didn’t comprehend why – but as the sleepy mist began to clear in her head, she understood. It meant there were police cars outside…lots of them.

She checked the clock – it displayed three a.m. – and grabbed a robe to hide her pajamas and some old sneakers, and headed outside. She didn’t like the stereotype of lawyers being characterized as ‘ambulance chasers’, but sometimes, in an emergency, there might someone who needed the help of an attorney.

She was shocked at the scene as soon as she stepped outside. There were nearly a dozen police cars and vans parked on the street, and all of her neighbors were outside, watching – save one. The police were entering and leaving the house right next door, which was surrounded with crime scene tape.

“Excuse me…what’s going on?” Jen tapped the shoulder of an officer who was guarding the crime scene.

“Oh, some mutant didn’t register–” The officer suddenly froze as he turned to face Jen. “Uh…no offense, Miss.”

“None taken.” Jen glared at the officer and turned her attention to a small group of people exiting the house next door.

There were four police officers carrying a young girl, about fifteen, out of the house with her feet and arms bound with heavy rope and handcuffs. She had duct tape over her mouth. The parents stood in the doorway, sobbing – but could do nothing to help, since they were being held back by two more officers. The mother screamed the daughter’s name repeatedly – ‘Rebecca’. Jen knew the sound of the screams would be etched into her memory, forever.

Jen began heading toward the house, her nearly invulnerable body tearing through the crime scene tape and shoving the officers in her way. It only took her seconds to reach Rebecca, and lift her away from the officers trying to bring her to one of the police van.

“This is no way to treat a human being!” Jen began frantically removing the bounds, snapping rope and steel alike until Rebecca was free. The girl raced back into her parents arms, clinging to them as if they were her lifeline.

Jen then turned her attention on the officers, who approached her to try and retrieve Rebecca once again – but they were casually tossed aside by just one of Jen’s arms.

“You should all be ashamed of yourselves! How are you each going to explain this to your children…your grandchildren? That you came here to beat down and tie up a little girl?”

Suddenly, the street was filled with nothing more then the sound of occasional police radio chatter as everyone just froze, staring at Jen as tears began forming in her eyes.

“Go home…all of you. Go home to your families.”

Nothing. The officers remained frozen, just staring. Jen took a few steps forward and grabbed one of the police cars, lifting it over her head. “Go home, or I swear to God, you’ll have nothing left but a pile of twisted steel!”

As the police officers began racing back to their cars, including the one she just put back down, she began to feel regret over what she had done. It only took a few minutes for the street to clear, for everyone to go back to their homes.

But somehow, she knew it wasn’t over. As Jen retreated back to her home, and went back to bed, she made a mental note to call Phil in the morning. She would need him…she knew she crossed the line, and she would soon pay for it. She was now a savage.

As sleep overtook her, she wanted deep down to cry. But after her day…she had no tears left.

Cold concrete was what Jen felt on the side of her face as she woke up in the morning. The sun streamed in through a tiny window she could see from her spot lying on the icy floor. She had no idea where she was, or what time it was – only that she was no longer in her own home.

She tried to sit up, but quickly found that she was too dizzy. It had to be the after effect of some kind of tranquilizer that she was feeling. As her mind began to awaken, it started flooding with questions. Where was she? Was she kidnapped?

The grogginess and the uncomfortable room told her that whoever brought her was unfriendly. The whole place was unfriendly. Jen sat up slowly, and began to look around at what appeared to be a room in some sort of barracks. The room contained a small private shower and toilet, and a basic cot. She was close enough to the cot to realize that she must have fallen out of it, since it was too small for her.

But the windows were small, too – as if to prevent escape. And the door to the room was locked from the outside. It was a cell. She was in some kind of prison. She needed Phil’s help.

“Hey! Let me outta here! I’m a lawyer!” As soon as Jen pounded on the door once, she felt a little stupid – the door swung right open. It wasn’t even locked. As soon as she got over her feeling of embarrassment she began to wonder…what kind of place was this? Like a prison…and yet not?

She started to slowly walk down a nearly-dark hallway, toward what she could see was an exit at the other end. She began running toward it, hoping that it too was unlocked. Once she reached the door, she burst right through it – it wasn’t locked either.

As soon as she stepped outside, she realized why.

The building she just left behind was inside a compound surrounded by three twenty-five foot tall steel fences, in sequence. Each one of them was labeled ‘High Voltage’. It was a prison, of sorts – just more in the community fashion.

Jen began walking around slowly. At that hour of the morning, not many people were outside – but there was activity. She could see her neighbor’s child being carried, kicking and screaming, into a small building in a corner of the complex near the entrance.

“Hey!” Jen raced toward the child and the four guards carrying her. As soon as she got close, she suddenly halted. Two other guards had some kind of weapon aimed at her. One she didn’t recognize. “I’m a lawyer, dammit! You can’t treat me this way! You can’t treat this little girl this way either!”

“You’re both mutants.” One of the guards, an older man who was obviously in charge of the whole operation, decided to pipe up and speak to Jen. “We’re acting within the law.”

“Oh yeah?” Jen stepped closer to the man, until she towered over him. “And what exactly did I do to end up in here?”

The older man motioned to the guard next to him, who handed him some kind of electronic file retrieval device. “Assault on police officers, inducing panic. You have to understand, Ms. Walters, we can’t keep you in a standard prison. And given your gamma-irradiated cousin’s record–”

“What?” Jen yelled her question loud enough to cause the older man to flinch in fear for a second. “My cousin? I’m nothing like my cousin! Why would you even think–”

“Do not interfere with our business, Ms. Walters.” The older man frowned as he spoke slowly, with a deliberate tone. “You are allowed to walk the grounds only on my say-so – because of your reputation as a lawyer. That can be revoked.”

Jen stood, fuming, as the older guard walked away from her behind the four who were ‘escorting’ the young girl into the small building labeled ‘Examination’. She began to worry about the girl. She began to worry about herself.

“I demand to know where she is!”

Phil Simmons slammed his briefcase on the Police Captain’s desk at the West Chester County police headquarters, knocking over all of his family pictures and his desk lamp. He noted the name plate which was now on the floor – ‘Captain Milton Tyler’. “She’s my partner, dammit! If you don’t tell me where she is, I’ll be back here with warrants!”

“Yeah? Go ahead.” Captain Tyler stood up, leaning forward toward Phil. “In the mean time, get the hell outta here before you find yourself behind bars!”

“I dare you.”

“Don’t push me, Simmons! You come in here, raising hell, every time one of your mutant clients gets arrested! This time, I’m not biting!”

Phil leaned farther over the desk. “Then you might just find your name on a warrant, Captain Tyler.”

“Get out!”

“You can’t throw me out.” Phil folded his arms and smiled. “This is a public building.”

“Fine.” Captain Tyler stood up suddenly, leaning forward toward Phil. “She was taken to a government MRA holding facility. I don’t know any more then that. I don’t even know where it is.”

“A what?”

Captain Tyler shook his head, indicating that he thought little of Phil’s intelligence. “They can’t put mutants like her in a regular jail.”

As Phil frowned and headed toward the door, he thought it would be better to remain silent. But after hearing Captain Tyler talk about Jen that way…anger just got the better of him.

“People like you make me sick. Jennifer Walters is more human then you’ll ever be.”

Alarms blared as Jen effortlessly plowed through the reinforced steel doors of the ‘Examination’ building. She paused for a second as she looked quickly around the room. Several different people, including the young girl who was just brought it, were restrained on medical examination tables. They each had several tubes, wires, and monitors hooked up to them.

Her heart sank as she watched a woman lying on one of the tables, crying and struggling against her restraints. She could tell by the sound of the cries that the woman was being intravenously fed some kind of chemical that was causing her a lot of pain. Monitors were recording her reaction to the chemical. She was being tested somehow.

Jen spotted the young girl she watched the staff bring in earlier – she was strapped to a table, and was asleep. By the rhythm of the girl’s breathing, Jen could tell she had been sedated.

“No…No more.”

Jen turned toward the door at the sound of several loud footsteps. She found herself facing four armed officers in riot gear and the same older officer she met earlier. This time she paid attention to the name on his uniform – ‘Hall’.

“Ms. Walters.” Hall stepped in front of the armed officers, admiring the destroyed steel doors as he entered. “Living up to your cousin’s reputation already, are we?”

“No more of this. I demand you release these people immediately.”

“You demand?” Hall laughed out loud. “This is a prison, Ms. Walters. Everyone here has broken the law. You’ll get no sympathy from me. Now back to your cell…now!”

“No. No more.” Jen walked over to the woman who was writhing in pain, tearing the nylon straps which held her to the table quickly, and then pulling all of the wires and tubes away from her. Jen turned her attention to the young girl next. As she did, she could hear Hall barking orders at her, getting more and more upset – but Jen didn’t care. She wanted only to free everyone…or at least as many as she could.

Hall didn’t seem like much of a threat to Jen, until he walked up right behind her and jabbed her in the ribs with some kind of steel pole, which then sent a high-voltage charge through her body. He was zapping her with a cattle prod. That’s all Jen or anyone else in that camp meant to these people. They were cattle, to be herded, tortured, and experimented with.

Hey eyes blazing with anger, Jen turned suddenly and grabbed the fabric of Hall’s uniform, lifting him up in the air quickly.

“I said…No more!”

Hall quickly found himself airborne, his body flung across the room carelessly as a doll thrown by an angry child. His body was still travelling at high speed when he collided with the other four officers – he and the four were immediately knocked unconscious as they all slammed into the wall behind them hard enough to cause the wall’s partial collapse.

Once Jen had freed the young girl, she lifted the girl’s sleeping form in her arms and began carrying her slowly toward the main gate of the complex. As soon as she began walking, a large group of frightened and bewildered people who had been imprisoned in the camp began following her cautiously.

They watched her defeat Hall and his officers. They followed her, hoping she would make it out – but they also kept their distance out of fear that she would not, that she would end up dead like so many who had attempted escape before.

“Open the gate.” Jen knew she had a lot of nerve giving orders to the young police officer standing guard in a booth next to the gate. But by this time, she was more concerned about the health of the girl she was holding then of her own freedom or safety. She bit her lip as she glanced back at the small group of injured and weak behind her. People who came from the so-called ‘Examination’ building. “Open the gate…please.”

“Sorry, I have my orders.” Jen looked at his badge as he spoke. The name on it read ‘Michaels’. “I have to keep this gate locked unless Hall asks me to open it.”

“How many have to die because of ‘orders’, Michaels?” Jen bit her lip harder to keep her feelings in check as tears began forming in her eyes. “What if it was your family in here?”

Officer Michaels looked a little hurt for a second, but remained stubborn. “I’m sorry. I–”

“Tell me–” Jen’s tear-filled emerald green eyes pierced directly into Officer Michaels’ fearful brown eyes. “How long is it until your son or daughter is taken away in the middle of the night…taken away from you, and locked away into a place like this…where you will never see them again.”

Michaels glanced at the child in Jen’s arms, and then turned away from Jen quickly. She could see that he was looking at two photos on a small shelf in his booth.

“Tell me.”

“Damn it.” Michaels tore a set of keys off a ring inside his booth and stepped outside quickly. He inserted one of the keys in a small slot next to the gate and turned it quickly. Sirens began to blare once again, and bright strobe lights started to flash as the gate began opening slowly.

“Thank you, Officer Michaels.” Jen bowed her head to him lightly. “It warms my heart to see that someone cares.”

As Jen walked out of the gate with a small crowd of people referred to as mutants, Michaels did nothing but stare. The gates of the complex were wide open. There would be no more lies, no more hiding…no more injustice done in this place.

“What the hell are you doing, Michaels?” Hall was more angry then Michaels had ever seen him when he walked up and saw the gate open, and the crowd of people walking away.

“Something I should have done a long time ago.” Michaels turned to Hall, an angry, determined look on his face. He reached into his guard booth and grabbed only the photos from his shelf, holding on to them tightly. He was tired of having nightmares, of being unable to sleep every night. He was tired of being afraid to tell his wife and son what he did for a living…tired of having to be ashamed. “I quit! And anyone here who has any conscience left should too!”

As Michael silently walked through the gates, Hall stood frozen. One by one, the officers working in the camp began throwing their weapons and helmets to the ground, and walking out of the gates. It was only a matter of minutes before Hall stood alone, in the entrance to a prison camp rendered obsolete…by humanity.

It would be days later before the incident leaked to the local newspapers. By the time the media processed the information, the story became back page news. It would only be a footnote in history – but to everyone who was there…it meant so much more.

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