Evil prevails when good men do nothing.
At least that’s how I remember the saying.
I don’t know exactly why that quote repeats itself over and over in my head. That quote. These are dark times you see. I only have a few minutes left before my time here is over. I only have this one chance.
One chance to kill Him.
‘What is it?’ I turn to see Sergeant Brash standing over me.
‘He’s ready, sir. The President will see you now, if you’d please follow me.’
‘Ok. Lead the way sonny.’
I get up, patting out my uniform making sure there are no creases left. I put on my gloves. The snug, tightness of the white fabric wrap themselves around my fingers and wrist, bringing a sense of readiness, a sense of pride. A pride that I seem to have taken for granted, before it left me in 2016. I get up and follow Brash who waits for me at the entrance to the long hallway that will eventually lead me to His office. We walk down the hallway of what we oldies used to call, The White House.
Brash walks confidently, straight back, steps in tune. I follow momentarily gazing at the various portraits hanging from the walls. His face is on every single one of them. His smug grin of a smile seems emphasised in each portrait. He stands with pride, with purpose. With each step further down the hall His face seems younger, as if I am just walking back in time. Back when He shocked the world and won power of my country thanks to the votes of naive imbeciles. I know this as I was one of them.
It’s Brash once more asking me to follow. I quickly snap out of my day dream and apologise brusquely.
‘Is everything alright, sir?’ He asks clearly oblivious of my sweating forehead.
‘Sergeant, how old are you?’
‘I’m sorry sir…’
‘Your age son, what is it?’ I say cutting him off.
’28, sir.’ The assertive, mechanical voice returns almost instantly.
‘So you were eighteen back in 2016 I imagine?’
‘Sir, yes sir.’
‘Recall what you remember.’
‘Not much sir, just that they were dangerous times, sir.’
‘Them Islamists sir, they … well they terrorised our country and the world, sir.’
‘Enough with the sir Sergeant. Relax. We can speak like normal men here.’
I notice Brash’s posture momentarily shift uncomfortably. I smile softly. The confusion I’ve caused him pleases me somehow. He opens his mouth to respond.
‘Yes si – General.’
‘Good. Please continue.’
He stares at me. He checks his watch, as I continue to look him in the eye with a curious and innocent look.
‘General, if you don’t mind me I don’t think it’s wise to keep Him waiting.’
‘It’s disrespectful to avoid a question, Sergeant. Especially one asked by a superior officer, let alone your General.’
‘Just answer it Sergeant.’
He pauses awkwardly darting his eyes from side to side, swallowing before opening his mouth to answer.
‘Well before Him, we struggled to have any security in our cities. People were scared to do their own thing without being at risk of being killed in suicide attacks and the like. Thanks to Him, we aren’t scared anymore. An ideology that preached hate to people that wanted to prey on the weak and innocent. Now we live in a safe place thanks to His leadership. Sir, may we could please continue.’
I nod softly, moving aside so as to allow him to turn and continue walking his robotic movements down the hall.
Evil prevails when good men do nothing.
I feel my gloves heating up as I feel sweat buds form on the palm of my hand. I scrunch my hands tightly and release. Tight, release. Tight, release. Repeating the pattern as much as I can. I look up and see His door. It is nearly time I realise, Brash turns the handle opening it and I walk in. I enter and I see Him.
I say as I sit myself in front of him. His back is turned to me as he looks out the window. He turns his chair to face me. His face more wrinkled than in the portraits outside, his dyed orange hair desperately cloaking the white streaks that persist. He purses lips. Nods powerfully.
‘Jerry.’ He reaches his hand over the desk. I shake it, removing my gloves before I do.
He places his forearms on the table. Looking directly into me. Jesus, the presence He brings never ceases to intimidate me.
‘I hope you’ll be able to attend the party my wife and I are hosting in your honour. Your faithful service to our country has been unchallenged since I first took office all those years ago.’
‘Of course, Mr. President.’
‘Please, Jerry it’s Donald for you.’
‘Whatever you say, Mr. President.’
He gets up, pushing back his chair as he rises. I scan the room. Any man would assume that it was empty. I wasn’t any man. In this section of the room there would be, I’d estimate, 12 micro cameras placed all over the desk.
‘May I offer you a cigar Jerry, a drink perhaps?’
‘Sorry, Sir I’ll have to say no.
He shrugs understanding my answer before placing one of the cigars back into His beautifully carved wooden box. No doubt He bought that set Himself. He collapses on the couch on my left. I stand, and sit opposite Him on the opposing couch. I watch Him light his cigar, and how he inhales it with satisfaction. The smoke escapes his mouth like an old dragon unable to cast fire with his last breath.
‘Tell me Jerry, have I succeeded?’
His question is direct and simple. Yet judging by his next question it still produces a confused look on my behalf.
‘Have I succeeded in what I promised I’d do?’
I sigh calmly. Carefully choosing my words, I reply
‘Yes Mr. President, you have. Some say you’ve even exceeded all expectations.’
He nods, and falls backwards in the comfort of his sofa. I continue to sit up straight, the atmosphere is still tense. This’ll all be over soon, I tell myself. Soon.
‘Jerry put it on the table.’
I freeze. Those words. My heart begins to thump with vigor and speed. My breathing becomes laboured as I turn to face him.
‘Your gun Jerry, put it on the table.’
He’s now pointing at my vest. How could He know? It’s impossible. I reach in slowly. Gently yet firmly clasp my palm around the handle of my 9mm. I inhale slowly as I remove it from my vest, placing it gently on the table in front of him in one motion. In all this time He stares at me indifferently.
‘Mr. President whatever you’re thinking…?’
‘Jerry please. Enough of the crap.’
He’s sitting up again. Looking at me directly. I suddenly relax find my composure, my breathing reverts to normal.
I have nothing to lose anymore. Nothing to hide. Remember why you’re doing this.
‘So I suppose security is waiting outside?’
My question is casual, frank.
‘Would you like there to be Jerry?’
‘Answer me Mr. President.’
The sudden change in my tone, I notice, catches Him off guard. He looks at me, I catch Him inhaling deeply.
Who’s nervous now?
He places his cigar on the ashtray, before leaning forward across the desk:
‘There’s no one out there Jerry, only you and I.’
He gets up and turns it look out the window of His office. His hands are behind His back. Seizing the opportunity I quickly grab the gun and cock it taking aim at His neck.
‘Why Jerry?’ He turns to ask me.
‘After everything we’ve been through, this is the one question you think you should ask me?’
I raise my voice keeping my arm directed at him. He turns his head sideways giving me a side glance.
‘You want to know Donald? Why I decided to assassinate you here in your very own fortress that was once a place for democracy?’
I thought back to the day of His inauguration. I was one amongst the crowd beaming with joy that finally we would return to the top as a nation. That we would become what our grandfathers had wanted us to be, patriotic Americans. Looking back I realise what a sham of a man I’d followed.
‘Jerry you’re blame is misplaced.’
‘Damn you sir. Your leadership has cost the lives of millions.’ I yell. I thought back to Operation Icarus. That had started it all.
The plan was to rid the world of them Arabs. For the President it was a chance to show the world that we, the U.S were still number one. The top dog. The crisis with Islamic State was spiralling out of control, and the President was told that no matter what we did we’d never rid the world of Islamic extremism. With the approval of Britain and France’s head of states we prepared the nuclear assault.
‘I may have given the order Jerry, but it was you that approved it.’
‘Everything I did was for you, because I thought we were doing the right thing. I thought we were right.’ I was yelling now.
‘We were right! We were. We ended the war on terrorism. Islamic terrorism has been over for ten years Jerry, thanks to your efforts and my leadership.’
‘At what cost, Mr. President at what cost?’
With the Islamism problem geographically exterminated, The U.S now had to fight an East Coast war with her neighbours. It was like Pearl Harbour all over again, just this time at San Francisco. Millions of Americans died in a surprise attack by the combined assault of the Chinese, Japanese naval assault followed by North Korean air raids. The U.S responded, and held the invaders back. We were lucky. Within days we were given support from the United Kingdom, and France who saw this attack as an attack from the East. We ended up killing millions of Asian Americans within weeks after the San Francisco attack. Many committed suicide, or suffered hate crimes.
‘Jerry put down the gun.’
We were winning the war, barely. A surprise attack in Japan from the fourth navy overran the Southern Island of Japan on the December 7th 2018. From there we worked cohesively with our partners in the Commonwealth, U.K and France. We dropped another bomb on North Korea to keep that side busy on January 3rd 2019. This time China deployed a hydrogen bomb practically destroying over half the East Coast. The President continued to preach his hatred at the East calling for all ‘true’ Americans to enlist and rid the world of such ‘perverse acts of violence’.
North Korea was eventually destroyed by a coordinated attack from the U.S, South Korea and the Western Coalition. This left a surrounded China, and a war torn Japan. Naval forces surrounded both countries, creating a series of blockades to prevent anything from getting in or out. Mr. President praised the American fighters.
‘If I can’t leave here Mr. President, neither can you.’
‘Jerry look at you. You’re weak. You’re just like the people you were assigned to kill.’
The doors crashed open, the windows behind Mr. President smashed into a million pieces. Voices yelled. Swat teams and the President’s security entourage surrounded me.
‘Don’t shoot him.’ Screams Mr. President at the baffled armed security forces.
‘Shut your mouth!’ I yell.
The President needed to win you see. For a patriotic American like myself we wanted a strong leader a leader of the people. We didn’t see her as that leader, and so I was assigned a task to organise her assasination. In return I would be promised my position of Chief Of Staff.
‘You were the reason she died Jerry! Not me.
‘Perhaps Mr. President, but we both know that this is how it has to end.’
Semi-automatics cocked and readied to take me out.
‘Enough.’ The President yells atttempting to calm the tense atmosphere.
Only if the good.
‘You’re not going to do it Jerry. I know you.’ He rises to walk towards me.