KILL NOLIE KILL
words by Lynn Novella
*protected by copyright*
Nolie braced herself against the cold as she walked down the dark alley, gathering the fur collar of her coat closer to her neck. The click-clack sound of her boots echoed louder than she liked on such a dark and quiet morning, and she hurried along to calm her anxiety.
Her job required this short, dangerous walk every day. Nolie could mark all the steps with her eyes closed, but she would never be so naive to actually do so. No such thing as real news anymore – not any news anyone could trust – but she knew horrible things happened if you were caught too long in this dark alley by yourself. She knew people disappeared here all the time – it’s just the way things were now.
She rounded the corner, taking in the familiar rise of cold glass and steel that housed the Governor’s Library. A bright, dismal sun made the glass shine like swords of light darting into the sky. Nolie loved and hated this building, all at once. It provided a way for Nolie, with no other family or loved ones around to help, to pay her urban toll twice over. For that she was grateful.
But the mystery of the Library was never lost on her, and she knew there were more nefarious purposes to the building’s role in government. She never spoke to another soul for longer than five minutes at a time. Upon entering the building, she was immediately routed to a private elevator that took her straight to her basement terminal. She knew there were other librarians around, but the terminals were made for one person only – one desk, one computer, one printer, one scanner, and one lamp, and one chair. The terminals were roomy and comfortable, with leather chairs and a mahogany bookshelf.
For enough money to make Nolie comfortably middle-class in a time of civil unrest, economic depression, and guerilla warfare, all she had to do was answer the questions that came into her terminal’s inbox. Respond to the faceless names within minutes with primary sources of information – cases, statutes, regulations. Print copies of the question and answers, file them away.