It was at the end of his military period in a central asian country when Sinclair, who had lost his troops a week earlier and had been wandering through the jungle since, came upon a small village in a green valley. Strangely, at entering the village, nobody paid attention to him. No barefoot kids with wet noses came out running towards him, as they did with Captain Haddock in Tibet. No bare chested village elder came out to receive him with honours, as they did with Captain Bontekoe on Sumatra. No barely clad virgins came out to receive him, as they did with Captain Thunderrod on Tahiti. The only thing he met when he entered the primitive settlement was the noise of excited people, yelling and screaming, from somewhere within this small group of huts. It was to the origin of this noise that he set his steps.
He came upon a square that was crowded with people, except for the centre, where four men with long beards sat behind a desk. In front of them, on the dusty ground, sat a veiled woman, with her hands bound behind her back. Nobody paid attention to Sinclair, while he moved forwards through the yelling crowd and stopped just short of the clear centre. One of the bearded man exclaimed something in his language which Sinclair did not understand, and then pointed at the woman. The men stood up and the people around Sinclair lifted their hands. He saw that all of them were carrying stones.
“Stop”, yelled Sinclair.
Nobody seemed to hear them. A few stones were thrown and one of them hit the woman on her shoulder. She yelped. Sinclair pointed his gun to the sky and shot. That stopped them. There fell a silence and everybody looked at him. He walked into the centre and looked at the bearded man.
“This business has to stop right now.”
“We have to defend the honour of our families”, said the man who had spoken before. “Do not interfere in our business.”
“I cannot stand here and watch this cruel act.”
“Then you should go away.”
“I am a citizen of this world and have the right to be here. Moreover, it is my duty to defend the rights of this woman and prevent this barbarous act.” Sinclair loved saying these things. How his chest swelled and his blood pumped in his temples. There came something steel-like in his blue eyes. Defending morality in the face of danger, that was what he lived for.
“Your world is not ours. Your rights are not ours. This woman shall die.”
“Damn your impudence!” said Sinclair.
The man lifted up a foot and kicked the still kneeling woman against the side of her head.
“Right,” said Sinclair, lifted his gun and shot the man through his head. Then he aimed at the other 3 bearded men and killed them too. “Well then,” he said for good measure.
And so, justice was installed. The woman, who was a widow and had been suspected of doing something with some man (nobody knew who exactly), however, was not very happy. “They will kill me, when you leave,” she said.
“I will not leave” said Sinclair.
Nevertheless, things were not easy. The four bearded men were replaced by four other bearded men, who not only declared her guilty again, but also declared guilty the four new widows who had belonged to the four dead bearded men. They sentenced all five woman to death, so Sinclair had to shoot these men too. In the following days, various other men tried to execute the sentence anyway and Sinclair shot them all.
In the end, the only people left in the village were women, children and Sinclair. The children, however, were growing up fast. Especially the boys were disturbed that their fathers had been killed and not only did they blame Sinclair, who had a gun, but they also blamed the women, who did not. They got increasingly violent with their sisters and mothers and also threatened the five widows. In the end, Sinclair had no choice but to kill all the boys in the village too. This, surprisingly, despite everything these boys had been up to, rather upset their mothers and one afternoon they all turned against Sinclair. They ran towards him, a massive flock of giant crows, and Sinclair had to shoot them in self defence.
Only one of the widows, who hadn’t had any sons, survived. So did all the girls. Nevertheless, there were no men in the village left that the the girls could marry and because they were doomed without husbands anyway, they put a large amount of poppy in their soup and died from the overdose.
“Kill me,” begged the widow to Sinclair. And really, Sinclair did not see any reason why he should not. So he shot her.
Then he left the village, satisfied with the knowledge that he had restored justice, morality and peace.