Solemy Swear

Reads: 516  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 1

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

More Details
Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
a juvenile farce on American politics and elections in general.

Submitted: October 15, 2015

A A A | A A A

Submitted: October 15, 2015

A A A

A A A


~~Solemnly Swear
“Senator Leeland, have you decided who to vote for?”
 Wonderful. My campaign manager is a comedian, Senator Peter Upsworth Leeland thought darkly. Honestly—“hardly the best foreign policy,” as the private joke in the State Department went—come November, he feared the prospects of queuing for unemployment benefits. How terribly ironic, the Party Boss told him over warmed-over tea, that Leeland’s only stance on the Congressional Record was a passionate motion to repeal the Twenty-Seventh Amendment for its attack on capitalism and individual advancement. Persona non grata on talk shows, Leeland didn’t have a lame duck’s chance in a helicopter hunter’s convention.
He now grasped at straws. “Maybe add another party? Lighting can strike thrice.”
 The manager blew a smoke ring and tapped an ash. “Three’s a crowd, four’s just an orgy,” she said.
 “I know how to count, P.R.,” the Senator replied testily. “Got a diploma from the electoral college and everything.”
 Reyes snorted. True, Leeland’s honor thesis, The New Math: Creative Division in Geographic Urban Ethnicities flew off the shelves in law libraries, but his early brilliance, like most things in Washington, dimmed to a low candescent bulb. Maybe something in the swamp water was responsible.
 Say, that wasn’t a bad idea. Maybe he should check the Potomac for elevated signs of fluoridation. That would appease the conspiracy kooks and the environmental nuts. Reyes opened her mouth but the Boss was already babbling.
  “Hey, howzbout…how about we Feng shui the Senate chambers? It’s all organic, right? Natural. Like the Invisible Hand.”
Reyes had a facial malfunction. “I think the Chinese own too much of this country already.”
 “My God, don’t be the Party of No. Help me here!”
Reyes watched her burnt tobacco fall on the carpeted Seal of the United States. The office needed a good vacuum, and not just because of the Senator’s pacing back and forth. “The public eye, Mr. Senator. Don’t forget that.”
“Hmph,” Leeland grumbled. “Right…right. Stick ‘em in the Public Eye…” He jabbed the airspace with a pen. “Sear their minds on election day.”
Reyes glanced at the grandfather clock given by his loyal constituents—“for a good Clause” the affectionate note read—and watched time tick by. “If I may, Sir, I might be able to tap into something a bit more, er, primal. In fact she should be here—”
Bzzz!
Leeland swatted the intercom distractedly. “What?”
A pimply intern’s voice came through; “Hey, there’s a woman here to see ya.”
Leeland’s practiced eye narrowed with suspicion. “As if I want to be caught alone with a stupid female.”
His campaign manger coughed.
“Nasty habit, P.R. Told you to quit long ago. But with you as witness, I guess I can stand the presence of a woman.”
Reyes’s eyes rolled behind her shades. “I sent for her.”
“What type of shanghai is this?! Well, thank God you didn’t send me to the Jenkins room at the Y.” He hesitated. She had never let him down before. “…God’s sake, for the love of…. all right, send her in.” He flipped the switch and wiped his hand, as if oil from the pocked-marked, barely-legal teenager had seeped through—the hope of the next generation of voters, indeed. It was almost worse than the drooling babies women—women!—kept throwing at him.
Hearing a faint knock, Leeland faced the opposite window. Such first appearances were not exactly Emily Post, but that was why one sticks “ick” at the end of “polite.” Oh, the sacrifices he made for his country!
“Senator Leeland, Mrs. Queenie King.”
A frail voice echoed across the plush office. “Oh, this is such an honor.”
“Of course it is.” He swiveled on one foot to face her—a dead ringer for Travolta, no doubt, due to long practice. “Scoot, you…” he searched in vain for the intern’s name. The kid, accustomed to poverty at the Millionaire’s Club, left silently. “Now whaddya want?”
“I’m in a terrible jam…”
“…always willing to help a loyal constituent.”
“Oh, then you don’t mind that I voted for the other—”
“No wonder they lost. Now, Madam.” Senator Leeland tapped his foot, gesturing to a convenient stack of fundraising schedules. “I’m up to my as—if you just want an autograph, I’d be happy to sell you one.”
“Oh, no, Mr. Leel—”
“Senator Leeland.”
“Of course. I don’t need more junk. Why, the other day, I was cleaning house and saw this bundle of papers.”
“How nice of you to bring me a pile of—”
“My great, great grandfather, you see, was a blockade runner for the Cause.”
“Cause of what?”
“The Glorious Cause.”
Well, that explained why she didn’t vote for the winning ticket. She must have a fondness for losers.
“Missy, take your fossils to the Library of Congress. Without the press present, I don’t really give a durn about old people.”
“But, but your man Reyes said you’d be most interested in this par-tic-u-lar paper.” She pulled a photocopy from her blouse and held the damp sheet out to him.
Senator Leeland gingerly took the corner and held it at arm’s length. What he wouldn’t give for a wall between Capitol Hill and Main Street! He wouldn’t pay for it, of course, that’s why God invented taxpayers. And it’d be bigger, longer, and uncut than anything China ever had! Why, a greasy illegal Martian could spot it from space and realize: That’s America!
“Go on, read it!”
Leeland reflexively opened his mouth to call for Intern Whatshisname. But Reyes’s scowling glance dissuaded him. Recalling the old days, he held out the sheet (paper!) at arm’s length and sounded out the words:


“Articles of agreement made and entered unto the 9th day of May 1865 between Jefferson Davis President of the Confederate States of America and hereby known as the party of the first part and John Z. Bucklembum of the Town of Irwinville County of Irwin and State of Georgia hereby known as the party of the second part. The aforesaid Davis agrees to give immediate possession of his office of President of the CONFEDERATE STATES OF AMERICA, composing of the Sovereign States of South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Missouri, Kentucky, and the Arizona Territory, to the aforesaid John Z. Bucklebum, his heirs, executors, administrators, and assigns, and this party of the second party doth agree to execute his duties as long as he shall be sensibly and responsibly able, keeping the aforesaid Office of the party of the first part in good Husband-like manner and repair, and he shall not yield the aforesaid Office of the party of the first part to any officer, citizen, negro, or representative, public or private, of the United States of America. Nor shall the party of the second part, his heirs, executors, administrators, or assigns surrender the aforesaid Office of the party of the first part to the Vice-Presidency of the aforesaid Confederate States of America or any of his heirs, executors, administrators, or assigns, as they are mad, infatuated, little, conceited, hypocritical, sniveling, canting, malicious, ambitious, dogged knaves and fools. The current War for Southern Independence has excepted the party of the second part from holding elections of the aforesaid Office of the first part until the aforesaid Confederate States of America, comprising of the aforesaid Sovereign States and territory, has signed a satisfactory treaty with the aforesaid Northern Aggressors, the United States of America, and has been ratified by the provisions stated in the Constitution of the Confederate States of America, granting complete and perpetual Independence of the undivided territorialities of the aforesaid Confederate States of America; or until the aforesaid Jefferson Davis, the party of the first part, has returned in sound and sufficient Mind and Body to resume the aforesaid Office of the Presidency of the Confederate States of America of which he has yielded to the aforesaid party of the second part. Witness the seals and hands the day and year above written in the presence of the undersigned…”
 
 Mrs. Queenie King looked up, the gentle soul of a Frank Capra heroine. “You think I can get…” she hesitated “…forty dollars for it? My rent… my bookie...”
 Senator Leeland’s hanging jaw prevented a response. But the mention of greenbacks flicked on a mental switch. Oozing sympathy like a thick nasal drip, but threw an arm around the old broad’s shoulders. “Listen dearie, I’ll have this debutante here draw up a bill of sale and I’ll take this off your hands. How does one hundred smackers sound?”
 Mrs. King blushed. “Oh, Senator. Really!” She fiddled with her lipstick.
Even patriotism had its limits. Leeland quickly amended, “God no! I meant a hundred dollars. Two hundred, even.  Ben Franklin in each pocket. Waste not, want not, you know. Reducing our carbon footprint, that’s me. Save a landfill. Save a tree. Rhymes with ‘liberty,’ you know.”
“Oh, yes, Mr. Leeland—”
“Senator Leeland.”
 “Oh, my, you’re so right! Why, my grandson, Prince King III, is learning all about how darkie the air is. It’s so filthy the drones overhead can’t spot a thing.”
“Carbon dioxide isn’t harmful, so something must be,” Leeland agreed. “See the stars, see ourselves! What is N.A.S.A., but N.S.A. plus one, eh?” He slapped her back.
 “You’re so right.” She wheezed and bellowed, “Oh, bee-youuuuu-tee-fulll, for spayyy—”
Since he did not know the words, Leeland coughed loudly. “Yes, dear woman, I completely believe in reducing our carbon footprint.”
P.R. coughed. “Even though scientists have proved we don’t leave footprints.”
“Oh, yes. The party platform. Can’t forget it. Now, just run along. My man here will see you out.”
Mrs. King peered closely at Reyes. “Isn’t that a woman? At least, I thought so. Oh, dear. It is rather hard to tell with you young people.”
“Yes. Isn’t it. Reyes will make all the arrangements. Good-bye.”
“Oh, thank you. I knew I could turn to our good public servants in time of need.”
“Self service, baby.” He rubbed his palms together. “The American Way.”
***
 Senator Leeland waited until Reyes returned. He grinned broadly. “That was an elephant in the room.”
Not even a thank you, naturally. Reyes lit another stogie. “Elephant? You hear her say she didn’t vote for you?”
“Okay, she’s a jackass. But can I pick ‘em or can I?”
 Reyes bit into a stogie and spat. “Yes.”
Senator Leeland shot his subordinate a devastating glare. “This is a non-smoking building.”
“Relax. Ignorance produces antibodies.”
“Really? I was thinking about running for Surgeon General…”
Reyes wished she had more time for yoga. “Speaking of surgical strikes, are you serious about seceding?”
“Always dressed for success, P.R.”
“Make sure you don’t end up with green eggs on your face.”
“Shut it, woman.” Admittedly it was a poor response with no style or substance, but then the heated front of a Strom Thurmond rainfall came but once in a lifetime.
Then again, this was a new age. He cracked his knuckles. “So…President! An era of …. ‘Reconstruction’—or has that name been taken?”
“I’m sure the copyright was never renewed,” Reyes remarked dryly.
“Good! A sunny Sunbelt, a birth of a nation!”
Reyes cleared her throat. “The slavery bit might be a sore spot.”
“Trust you, P.R., to whine like a dentist drill about that. But I suppose your kind can be forgiven for misrepresenting preindustrial capitalism. After all,” he added, parading his homeschooled knowledge, “the black people did have to work off their passage.”
“The Middle Passage,” Reyes clarified.
“See? Who said they rode in steerage? Who said they were lazy, shiftless welfare queens? I believe Black lives not only matter, they have dignity! Don’t they?”
She knew this was coming. “The Civil War is a touchy piece of history.”
“Piece of shist-ory, you mean. Mention Bull Run and most think it’s a super strength laxative. Look, Reyes, you know the American people as well as I do. There’s one born every minute and they’re all connected to a vote. They want action and a motto. And my truth goes marching on.”
“Just be careful you’re not doomed to repeat it.”
“Don’t quote Santa Claus to me. I didn’t win the War on Christmas for nothing. Here, campaign on this: ‘1865-Civil War, 1965-Civil Disobedience, 2015-Civil Union!’ And I don’t mean no rainbow wedding cake.”
“You sure you’re man enough for the job?” She arched an eyebrow, clearly thinking the negative.
Leeland sniffed. “Compassionate conservatism is more than just shoveling manure at grassroots. It shows I am tolerant. But we can’t afford to be caring—that’s not an act of limited government.” He brightened. “How about we put in some foreign-looking man—or something—into the Cabinet—how’s that for Radical Republicanism? Secretary of Homes and Gardens, maybe. He’ll know all about bunkers when Kim Dung Ill or whomever hits the button.”
“A Muslim can’t be in the cabinet,” Reyes reminded him. “He’ll have be versed in the Bible, in the original English of course—”
Leeland stiffened. “The Confederate President does not place a debt ceiling on national security. If there’s one thing we can provide universal coverage for, it’s our national right to lock and load. Uh, do you think I’ll be called a fascist?”
“At worst? Maybe a farcist.”
Leeland wished he had a spell checker handy for these new words. Trust a political scientist to make up terms to describe simple human behavior. “The point is, is, we have to have some colored folks in here. Besides you. We’re squeezing them out of the voting booths, they have to go somewhere. Besides standing in another line for I.D.s, I mean.”
She prodded his memory. “That was to streamline the process…”
“Oh, yes. Fewer people mean shorter wait times. How’s that for a Southern Strategy?”
“Sounds like a whitewash.”
He perked up. “Do you mean we’re on the cusp of a colorblind nation?” He dared not hope. Stick that in your birth certificate, writ of Hocus Potus!”
Reyes ignored the outburst. “If I remember the Confederate Constitution…”
His euphoria vanished. “Oh, God, I have to memorize another one of those?”
“It does come in useful.”
His eyes shimmered in excitement. “It has the word ‘filibuster’?”
“No, sir, but Article I, section 9 does state: ‘The importation of negroes of the African race from any foreign country other than the slaveholding States or Territories of the United States of America, is hereby forbidden; and Congress is required to pass such laws as shall effectually prevent the same.’ It segues into your stance on I.N.S.”
“Ins? Now Reyes, I think positive. My O-U-T box has always—”
“No, sir,” she said patiently. “Think carefully. I.N.S. The freeloaders? The criminals? ‘Give me your tired, your poor’…”
“And you can have them! Not in my country!”
“The illegal refugees? Your maid and gardener? Remember?”
He gaped. What foresight the forefathers of the Sovereign States had! For God knows, not all cultures were created equal. “I’m all for opportunity, not quotas. And I’ve never wavered in my stance on immigration reform. Revoke the driver’s license for a one way ticket.” His chest swelled with pride. “My, what peculiar institutions we have here! P.R., as my Postmistress General, your first job is to start working with our supervisor of elections to make sure our sacred right to vote is not diluted. Even one drop…” he concluded with a flourish, “…is too much.”
 “Just because you never touched the stuff…” his campaign manger warned.
Leeland had no time for such pussyfooting. “The Land of the Lee, Home of the Brave. It has a nice ring to it. Let’s get to work.”
 Reyes admitted her boss never quite strutted about his office as he did now.
“But first,” he said wisely, reaching for his snuff box, “A break.”
Thus ended that era.
Buzz!
Leeland practically waltzed to the switch. “Yeah?”
“The old lady’s back and she’s got…”
 “Finally! Send ‘er in!” He flipped the intern off. “Independence!”
“Yes. We are now uniquely situated because, generally speaking, if the rest of the country falls apart, we can operate as a stand-alone entity with energy, food, water, and roads as if we were a closed-loop system.”
 He didn’t understand half of that bunk but, boy, did it sound impressive. “You said it…freedom’s ringing right now, and it sounds like Lady Liberty herself.” He swept an arm toward his visitor.
 Old Lady Queenie King, just having stumbled in, looked worried. “I don’t have anything to do with Liberty,” she said in bewilderment.
“You don’t look like much of a lady, either,” he agreed. “Now gimme.”
She seemed somewhat hesitant. “My mother always said, is running away an answer to anything?”
 “I’m not running away. I’m pursuing happiness. It’s my inalienable right. And for your information, granny, patriots never flee. We liberate. This great state was born in liberty! It’s in every schoolbook approved by the Liberty Institute for an Educated Society—”
 “What an adorable acronym!” Mrs. King clapped her hands in delight.
 Leeland patiently sized-up this ignorant layman. “Liberation, Ms. Queen, is a wonderful word, until those flat-chested feminazies got hold of it. The rights of free men cannot be chained! Just the other day, I some squaw on that godforsaken reservation with hands and face proudly held up high—”
“She was sinking in the tar sand,” Reyes cut in politely.
Tarzan? Oh, how Leeland envied the carefree life of savages. “Ought to be grateful! It’s the biggest thing to hit the Indians since we stole the state and sent them to their Happy Hunting Grounds, but never mind. Now here’s your two hundred bucks. Toodle, toots.”
 Mrs. King snatched the cold cash. “Oh, thank you—”
 “Now, gimme and beat it. I got work to do.”
 “—but the price has gone up to three hundred.”
 A thunderstruck Leeland’s mouth hung agape. “That’s robbery!”
 “Or capitalism.”
 Leeland shot a terribly hurt expression to his manager. If America could not trust the word of an aged senior, then the terrorists deserve to win. A tear trickled down from his worn cheeks. A lifetime in public service, shot to pieces—and without help from the N.R.A. This betrayal has left him numb. Somehow, this political backstabbing has become too routine.
 Reyes understood. She stepped forward and embraced Queenie’s hand in hers. The old woman recoiled from the touch, but tolerant as she was, did not pull away completely. Reyes smiled. “Mrs. King, are we not all sisters? In the great planned parenthood of life, we are all tender comrades. Share. Share and share alike. Now, as a big sister…”
 “A wiser, older sister,” Queenie cut in.
 “More like a great aunt. A distant great aunt, really, from my father’s side,” Reyes nodded soothingly. “Let us sing our great anthem: ‘Uh-oh say can you seeeee….by Cawn-gress-‘nl plight…’”
 A sobbing Queenie King held out a stained, browned scrap of parchment containing the last will and testament of a country’s last gasp. The new President eagerly jammed the fragile document into his pocket. “Finally! Jezz! Now get out, you old bit—”
 Reyes coughed loudly. “There now. But even in your severely advanced age, your decrepit bones and decayed body, do you not feel a bounce in your step, dear sister?”
 Mrs. King’s aged voice croaked, “You mean, join a rabbled spring?”
 “For God’s sake, do I have to call sec—”
 “Aye, sis!” Mrs. King cried.
 On cue, the verboten word unleashed a flurry of brutish-looking MPs stormed their way into Leeland’s private sanctum, brandishing the best that $472 billion could buy. President Leeland recoiled from the excessive rudeness of America’s finest. Why, back in the day, any parent’s basic training included ‘please,’ ‘thank you,’ and a hard wooden ruler. People, nowadays, barging in without even knocking.
 “Hey!” he shrieked. “What the fu—!”
 “Truer words,” a grinning voice boomed. Curses! It was his senior socialist colleague, elected by the hippie half of his otherwise silent majority. In the spirit of bipartisanship, they had rolled the other’s pork barrels over Niagara Falls. Living proof that checks and balances were a pile of hooey. No wonder that guy’s name was “Locke.” “Busted!” Locke proclaimed with malicious sympathy.
 “What are you talking about?” Leeland snarled.
 “Washington is capable of getting things done when it wants to. As I was heading home from the glorious health club, this hysterical woman ran up, cackling like a maniac about Rewards for Justice…”
 “Easiest money I ever made,” the old coot said sweetly.
 Leeland snarled, “Hmph! I’d grind you under my axis of evil, but your blood has already drained out of you eyes, out of your whatever, you dried-up bag!”
 “And what’s coming out of your holes?” she replied. “Not hundred bucks, I bet!”
 Reyes stood dumbfounded at the sheer humbuggery. Hoodwinnked! Picking her jaw off the floor, she gasped, “Why…why didn’t I think of that? Why? Why? Slipped right through my fingers….” She started to sob uncontrollably.
 Leeland nodded sympathetically. “There, there. No one can cover everything,” he soothed. Confound the liberal media! Right when he was comforting a minority person, there wasn’t anyone to witness this heartfelt spontaneity. “I won’t throw you under the George Washington Bridge. Or over the Great Wall of Mexico.”
 The hippie senator wasn’t falling for such an obvious ploy. “Too late, P.U.!”
 Peter Upsworth Leeland snarled, “My friends call me ‘Poo,’ thank you!”
 Mrs. King’s hands rested on her hips. “Speaking of which, where’s my money?”
“Shut up!” Locke snapped. “Anyway, this aged specimen told me about your plan to jam a star up our nation’s stripes!”
 “Stars and bars! I have not yet begun to fight! If you want to wage a Culture War on the grassy knolls of Capitol Hill, then here’s the white of my eyes!”
“When they’re not bloodshot,” Reyes clarified.
Leeland was astonished his underling quickly recovered to support him. It must be his magnetic charm. “Fear not, Reyes. For I’ll be alright, I’ll be alright, I’ll be alright someday—”
 Reyes cut in drolly. “Not if it’s for life.”
 “Oh, for the love of me,” Peter Leeland exclaimed. “Which side are you on?”
 Reyes seemed unperturbed. “On this Munich moment? Stand your ground, sir.”
 Seeing a red boresighter zeroing in did not inspire martyrdom. But this was the time to act! Let everybody else react. That's what you call a leader. Don’t think. Don’t do over it again. Don’t talk to more people about it. What luck for the rulers that men do not think. He sprung into action.
 The hippie gaped at yet another horrible misuse of the Schwarzenegger Doctrine. “Put your shirt back on.”
 Leeland glared as brightly as his torso. “Wanted to show I don’t wear mom clothes. Anybody who carries the common-sense gene knows that a leopard doesn’t change his stripes and I don’t, either.” He glanced down at the red dot over his chest. He swallowed and, like any good politician, advanced in a different direction. “Listen. How’d ya like to win a veepstakes? With great power comes a nice cup of…heck, a bucket … of warm joe. No need to bide your time, eh?” That this Commander in Chief was one heartbeat away from death never entered his mind.
 The other sighed. “I don’t think that’ll help the caucus. Now, will you come quietly or face the I-word? It’ll be four hundred thirty-five to zilch.”
 “Four hundred, four million,” snapped Leeland. “If you strike me down I will be more powerful—”
 “And absolute power corr—” Reyes started helpfully.
 “Adults talking here!” Leeland told her. “Women! They can legitimately shut the whole thing down except their mouths.”
 “My reward is tax free, right?” Mrs. King asked, counting her fingers.
 “For lessening a burden to government? You can bet your fat fanny it’s charitable,” Locke remarked.
Leland turned in panic to his campaign manager. Was her initials “P.R.” for nothing? “Reyes!” he implored.
 “Let us pray, sir,” she suggested.
 Didn’t she know there was an Iron Curtain between church and state? “For Heaven’s sake, what the hell? Tell them something useful!”
 “Er…Yes. This is not what it seems. Even in his youth, he was publicly accused by his high school social studies teacher of deceptive behavior.”
Leeland wailed. He was so certain the Confederate States of America was a more perfect union, even if it was based on disunion. Even if he must destroy the nation in order to save America, he would proudly bear that epitaph to the grave.
Too bad it didn’t help in the here and now. He shoved his manager forward.
Reyes, aware of history’s judgment resting on her shoulders, drew herself up. “Without a doubt, we will cooperate with all appropriate inquires to ensure this breach of trust does not happen again.”
That wasn’t it. My God—and his was the only Almighty, thank you very much—such half apologies were a clarion call for vultures, or half-starved tabloids tried of feasting on lame ducks. “This…this is a breach of privacy!”
“Yes,” interjected Reyes, “Our servers will remain private.”
Leeland wailed in despair. If this was the best money could buy…! What would the founding fathers say? “Uh…four scores and seven years ago…”
“Really, Leeland,” said his colleague in pity. “Do you really expect to get away with that one?”
Leeland’s face fell. “Perhaps it was a cheap tactic…”
“Yes. The American people have no interest in the sex lives of their elected officials.”
“And even I scored more than four times in seven years,” sniffed the Old Lady.
Oh, hang the founding fathers! Feeling cold handcuffs click on his wrist, he cried, “I am but one imperfect man saved by God’s grace!” On cue, Providence filled Leeland with radiance. He squared his shoulders as best he could. “…I…Today I believe that I am being called to lead by helping to clear the field so that a positive message can rise to the top of the field. I hereby surrender this office back to Jefferson Davis in the Great Beyond where it shall live in glorious infamy. Yes, the Confederacy is one with the ages!” He carpied his deim. “By the dawn’s early light, I, Peter Leeland, have ended the Civil War. So let’s be generous with this new birth of freedom. Free-dom! My two favorite words! How about it? Huh? Huh?”
***
 Peter Leeland sat up. “That’s the whole story, doctor.”
“Is it?”
He shrugged. “The important thing is I won re-election in a landslide.”
“Why is that?”
Leeland’s eyes narrowed.  “The American people saw me save the nation from a Constitutional Crisis.”
The doctor picked a gnat out his beard. “Then why are you here?” 
“Those fat cats won’t let me into Chambers until I’m declared officially sane. Bipartisanship, bah. I’d settle for brinkmanship any day. Well? Am I crazy?”
 “Mr. Leeland…”
“Ahem!”
 “Senator Leeland…”
 “Doctor,” Leeland began coldly. “Don’t tread on me. Even if the Confederate States of America is gone with the wind, I am entitled to be addressed by my honorific title.”
 “Yes, Mr. President. I believe the demands of the office have taken a toll, however. May I suggest a long rest? On the House, of course. Perhaps to the Ronald Reagan Funny Farm for the Hopelessly Disturbed?”
 “What won’t they name after that man?” Leeland said in amazement. Someday, when the blue, the red, and the grey have reconciled, his portrait would grace the three-dollar bill. Nestled among Jefferson and Lincoln…an honor afforded to one who has no regrets but the life he gave his country.
 And a vacation? He hadn’t had a real rest since he took Reyes to the Sanford Retreat in Argentina. They were like an old married couple. Except for the married part; his constituents would raise a noose if they knew that. “A long break sounds good. Maybe somewhere…a farm, perhaps, in the Middle East?”
 “Uh…I believe you mean the Midwest.”
 Leeland returned a blank stare. “Whatever. Never was much good in geology.”
 The doctor nodded slowly. “Fear not, Mr. President, I’ll see that you get there. After all, when resume your seat in the Foreign Relations Committee…”
 “Don’t worry, Doc.” Peter Leeland felt the rumpled paper in his coat pocket. “Men like me don’t perish from this earth.”
The End.
 


© Copyright 2020 pwl. All rights reserved.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Add Your Comments:

Comments

avatar

Author
Reply