If you expect me to tell you my name or give you more than the scantest of details in my background, then you must be crazy. Reason for that will become self-evident as I explain how I turned my town’s police force against me.

My story begins with a crowd-funding scheme, wherein I would get neo-nazis and their sympathizers to help me self-publish a novel, that would then be given free to students across the country. I typed up a chapter that I, honestly, half-assed as proof-of-concept, got myself a six pack and put myself to the task of working the usual haunts. From MRA forums to 4chan, I made sure I spread awareness of my project as much as I could to raise fifty thousand dollars. A modest sum that I thought I would be able to turn to much better use.

After I had my advertisements circulating, I started to work them. My friends and family assure me that I was much less than pleasant during the month that I conducted this experiment, and I know that, if I get out of this alive, I’ll have to swear off alcohol for good. And when I say that I worked them, I mean that I worked them. And you can fuck off if you think I didn’t earn every thin dime of the sixty-four thousands dollars that I eventually had directly deposited into my bank account. I then razed every single bit of evidence that I possibly could and went about my life, swearing off of ever interacting with that subsection of the country ever again.

To say that it happened over a short span of time is a bit of an understatement. The emails were pretty instant. I had to cancel and set up new email accounts for nearly an hour before I finally had one that was secure. And then the phone calls came. Each one was more angry than the next, to the point that it was impossible to block every single phone number that was incoming.

Now, I don’t know what they were expecting to happen, at first, that I would turn their money back over to them? The crowd-funding website that I used stipulated that every dollar given to the project was then the property of the crowd-funder. The money was mine by right, and I honestly thought that there wasn’t a court in the country that would convict me for ripping off people like this.

I honestly didn’t know how much bravado I had, or how fool-hardy I could act. This went on for days into my semi-retirement before the mail started to come in. That’s when I knew that this could have serious ramifications on my life. But, did I go to the police? No, I didn’t. Honestly, I thought that I was capable of self-protection, and that letters aren’t really as bad as it could get, I reasoned. Unfortunately, I was right.

It wasn’t even a week later that my car alarm went off in the middle of the night. I knew it was mine because of how piercing and high pitched it is. Believe me, if you heard this alarm from two miles away you would do whatever possible to turn it off. So, I went to get my keys, stepped out onto the landing of my apartment and got ready to press the button to turn it off when I saw the group of black hooded strangers clustered around my car. They all looked up at me as if they were a single being while swaying their arms to and fro. Each of them was armed with a blunt weapon.

I turned, ran to my door and turned all of the locks. After putting the chain in place, I grabbed my book case and leaned it up against the door. I was only just in time as they began to hammer at my door. None of them said anything, which made the entire thing even more terrifying than I thought possible. I then ran to my bathroom, closed the door and braced my legs against it so that I was pinned between it and my toilet. My hands were shaking so badly that I dropped my phone twice before I could dial in 911.

By the time that the police arrived, my front window was broken and the strangers were wandering around in my apartment. There was no way that they didn’t know where I was, and yet they didn’t do anything but walk around, from the sound of it. They had to break the door down, due to the bookshelf, and charged into the living room. There was a hushed conversation between one of the strangers and a police officer. It took a little less than a minute for the cop to get to the bathroom door.

He knocked and I called out in response, “Yes, officer, I’m in here.”

“Could you please step out here, son?” The officer said in a clear, authoritative voice.

“Did they leave? I called out, my voice quaking.

“Come out, or I’ll take the door off its hinges, your choice.” I wanted to vomit.

I got up and, with a shaky hand, grabbed the door knob, twisted and walked out into something that was worse than any nightmare I’ve had. There were four of the hooded figures, it turns out. They all had their masks off now, and were standing next to four police officers. Each of them then introduced themselves, by name. The hooded figures were the children of those cops.

What could I do but stare in wide-eyed horror. I knew that extremist groups had infiltrated police agencies and had been inside of them for years, but I never knew it could be this bad. I never wanted to believe that it could be. Not my town, not where I live. That, I thought, was impossible.

They then, in no uncertain terms, explained to me that I should hope to never need police protection ever again, because they were everywhere. In every police house, in every precinct, they were there and they all knew who I was. No matter where I went, I was on my own from that day forward.

What did I do? What could I do but sink down onto the floor as if I weighed a quarter of a ton and watched as they left my apartment, peaceably and calmly.

It’s been six months since then. I live on the other side of the country from where I grew up, and I live in fear that I’ll ever need a police officer. Every time one appears in my rear view mirror, I wonder what will happen, if anything. And every time they pass by.

I don’t know what to do, I’m at my wit’s ends at this point. It turns out that I accidentally picked a fight with the law, and the law won.