“Here they come.”
The plaza had been slowly filling for hours, but now a tidal wave of protesters poured in from main street. He reached under the visor of his riot helmet to wipe the sweat gathered on his forehead.
“Hold this line,” the captain behind him growled. There were already reports in of property destruction from some of the fringes of the demonstration and the direct command was to put an end to the hostile presence as soon as possible.
So many faces. So much anger.
Fingers on triggers. Clouds of gas billowed. People shrieked, ran, fell.
He never saw the brick coming.
His world spun. The surrounding noise rose and fell like crashing waves. Rough stone rushed toward him from above and he lifted his arms to defend himself, gradually realizing he’d fallen to the ground. He lifted his eyes toward heaven. All was dark and blurry, but his vision was no longer swimming. Raindrops spattered the visor of his helmet.
A single thought: he wanted to feel the rain. His helmet fell to the ground and he looked up into a concerned face. The black man extended a hand, offering support. He took it.