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Fandom: Blake's 7
Title: The Consequences of Totalitarianism
Rating: Australian PG, like the series
Disclaimer: The universe of Blake's 7 was created by Terry Nation, and therefore is copyright. There is no money being made from, or solicited for this work of fan fiction.
Author's Note: This was born out of a Blake's 7 Friday challenge, involving a selection from the list of 100 Favourite First Lines of novels.

Someone must have slandered Josef K., for one morning, without having done anything truly wrong, he was arrested. He was told he was affiliated with the Freedom Party. In vain he protested the charge. To no avail, he protested his innocence.

He confessed eventually. When the pain grew too much, the fear too great, and the demands too many. He confessed to whatever it was in the confession they gave him to sign. He didn't read it. He stood through his trial, listening to the descriptions of the actions of another. It didn't concern him.

The accusation was accurate now.

I am an invisible man. My name was once Josef K. I was arrested on a false charge, tortured, forced to confess my nonexistent crime, sentenced and transported. Now I fight the Federation.

I am employed as a quality controller in a factory which assembles Federation pursuit ships. My task is to review replacement parts, and reject those that are insufficiently flawed. Three ships have been destroyed on contact with atmosphere so far. Others have developed leaks, odd breakages or strange rattles. None of these problems have been traced back to the parts I inspect.

I sleep well each night.

A screaming comes across the sky. It is followed shortly afterwards by a rain of shrapnel, scattered parts of a Federation troop carrier. Another platoon of shock troops, subjected to a terminal shock.

The investigators cannot figure out where the problems are coming from. At first it was just the occasional failure, but now there are constant and consistent ones. Computer systems aren't picking up any flaws in parts. There aren't any suspicious patterns.

There's panic in the investigators' ranks. Their jobs are on the line, as are their lives. A scapegoat is found, a sacrifice made to unhappy superiors.

Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendia was to remmeber that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice. It had been his first time tasting air which was not filtered. The birth of sensation.

It had been his quest for sensation which led him into the Federation's military. He had taken joy in the feel of mud on his boots, the smell of his own blood, even the bites of midges. He had been a good soldier.

His one regret: he wouldn't be able to fully enjoy the sensation of his death.

Once an angry man dragged his father along the ground through his own orchard. Julio Buendia cursed his father, his mother, the Federation, the military, and the twisted circumstances which led to his father's death. Each shovelful of earth hit the corpse like a slap. The final thump of the shovel on the completed grave was enough to break the handle of the old tool.

Then Julio Buendia packed up his things, tidied up his life, and left the planet where he was born. He headed out beyond the stars, outward to a world where the Federation didn't hold sway.

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