I find it hard to hope anymore. I feel utterly crushed, defeated, and disempowered. Every petition, every email and letter, every court case to keep my rights as a citizen of Europe exhausted, steamrolled through, voices of dissent brushed aside, arguments ignored and mocked. It is over. And my only hope, which I scarcely dare entertain lest it join the pile of rotting dreams, is that Scotland might vote for independence. I am not convinced it will happen this time, but I suppose the chances are as good as any other of the seismic events of late. But I have a question to those who say it will not come to pass. If Scotland rejects independence, albeit by an increasingly narrow margin for sure, or if a referendum is not granted at all, then where does Scotland go from here? Will Scotland ever return to a happy place in the Union? Will those who voted Yes in 2014 somehow vanish? Who will become the party of governance in the Scottish parliament if not the SNP? Would Scottish Labour return, refreshed and ready to resume the reins of power? Would the Tartan Tories return us to a place of happy and contented Unionism? Would the tide of Scottish separatism recede, and if so what factors would lead to its lull? Would Scots suddenly discover their love for Trumpism, austerity, a low-tax and low-wage economy? And with each new generation in what direction would Scots drift? Is Brexit likely to go well for Scotland, even if it does for many in England, and with Theresa May riding higher and higher on the backs of English votes, and Labour in free fall, are the 45-49% of Scots who already back independence likely to relax back into the Union? Where does Scotland go from here if not forward, for I see no way back. I believe the Union has been irrevocably soured, and that sooner or later it will break. I hope it will be in my lifetime.