I was 13 years old and on my third re-write of Ki-Chan: Demon Hunter back in 2000. This was election day, and I was sitting in a storage room, trying to think of a real reason why Ti-Chan and the others would leave America. I know I told you before about those dreams I had of everyone in Chichibu, but I had yet to dream of why. But suddenly, I saw a vision.
I saw a dark, slate blue sky. A nasty thunderstorm. I saw White people fighting each other over the Bible and which copy was right. I saw the sky turn red, as Republicans took over the House and Senate. I saw police officers shooting unarmed protesters, and then, I scribbled the following on notebook paper:
The year is 2016-D.E. And these are rough times for many youths. Since the start of the digital revolution of the era A.D. there has been chaos among the many. Earth's population has dropped to a mere 1.5 billion, after centuries upon centuries of religious based war and famine. America, once a proud and bustling nation, is now a police state, where no longer does freedom of speech reign, but instead a watchful eye is cast on the few adventurous enough to speak boldly against a Christian militia. Graveyards of those slain by the government are adorned with stones of red marble, with one caption: Subdued in the name of God.
But despite a country living in censorship, there are still thirsty minds, hungry for a life abroad. Young men and women, starving for sunshine and oxygen, wanting to shed their dreary gray skies and endless rains, in exchange for a more open classroom. And here is where our story begins…
I took out a line about anything apocalyptic, but I remember keeping this paragraph, because at 13 I thought "WOW! What a great way to start a comic book!" and with that, I turned on the radio, where the Backstreet Boys' "The One" was suddenly interrupted by an interesting phrase out of the boy band's home state of Florida.
Fearful, I abandoned writing one more word about America in Ki-Chan's world for four years. The last thing I remember scribbling down was a passage about a paper Ti-Chan was writing about The Statue of Liberty being renovated, and left it at that.
Then this past April, I re-typed the above phrase and put it on page 7 of Ki-Chan: Demon Hunter Book #1. Again, I thought this would provide a decent backdrop for Ki-Chan's world and segue into Ti-Chan's trip.
America... I am so... so sorry.