For a moment, we all sat there, stunned by what we had just witnessed. Those that won the Vote never spoke. Those that won never resisted. Those that won never questioned. And yet, Mrs. Heinz had rebelled. The very thought, the very concept of such an occurrence, did not exist, and to see it played out directly in front of our eyes was too much to handle.
We began to file out, slowly, complete silence over us. The cool, fall air caught in our lungs as we exited the building, burning them with a frosty chill and causing many to gasp for another breath. Some of us, the braver ones, the less-intelligent ones, stole glances at Mr. Black and swore that they saw a shadow of a grin flash across his lips. Of course, had we been looking at our own reflections, we would have found a similar expression plastered on our faces. Margret Heinz was just as much a scapegoat for our sins as she was for Mr. Black's.
Life moves slowly along, time blurring, each Vote coming and going, each year bringing along a new winner, each year bringing a sigh of relief from those of us that remain. We try to forget that Margret Heinz won, just as we have done with so many other Votes. But the ripples continue to break through our perfected peace, burst onto our consciousness when we least expect them, when we are the most vulnerable. In the those moments of weakness, we wonder if perhaps she was right, her final words echoing eerily in our minds. A world without the Vote? It seems impossible, but for a moment we selfishly, foolishly, let ourselves bask in the possibility. Then we find ourselves, shake ourselves free of the thoughts that can only bring about our untimely fate. Luckily, these contemplations diminish over the years, showing their ugly heads less frequently as time goes on. Eventually, we can only hope that the memory of Margret Heinz and her words that force an unwanted and dangerous self-reflection will be gone forever.
No one wants to be the stone thrown into the lake. After all, while the changes that the stone leaves in its wake shift the entire landscape, it is only for a time. Soon the ripples disappear and the lake returns to its perfection while the stone lies forgotten amongst thousands of others beneath the surface.