Game on….A short story…

Joe Steele, coffee in hand, leans back in his recliner and watches the news. Per usual, the news is filled with horror, mysteries, and multiple examples of humanity at its worst. “Welp, there is no hope for us. If there was, the politicians would sell their souls out to buy it for themselves.” A Senator, Sydney Quillbatter, takes the podium to deliver remarks on the current crisis facing the country. As she walks to the podium, she stumbles and giggles. Burping loudly, she bangs on the microphone and burps again. She waves at a few of her friends in the media.

“Hey, how’s your momma? Please, excuse me. We are all here on serious business. Our land is facing a horrible crisis, and our colleagues refuse to cooperate with us on our new rewrite of this piece of legislature.” Two gorilla-sized men come in bearing the 2,000-page document. “The sooner they participate in assisting us with the labor on this document, the sooner we can act on behalf of our citizens.”

“Holy God. This idiot wants a new document written. What is the purpose of this insanity?” Joe fumes as he pours another cup of coffee. As he walks back to his recliner, another Senator takes the podium. “I would like to add to Sydney’s remarks. Yes, we took a week off for recess, but we spent our time coming up with our own plan. This entire rescue operation would go smoothly if our fellow Senators would just pass our bill.”

More and more excuses are made for the destruction of the old bill. Joe, who has grown tired of the circular logic and double speak, changes the channel. “Tonight, and tonight only, there is a town hall meeting at the City Hall. Senators Quillbatter and Chester Frankel will be present to answer your questions. The event starts tonight at 6.” A wicked grin stretches across Joe’s face. “Looks like I have plans for this evening after all.”

Joe arrives to City Hall at 530. Walking through the door, he is escorted through a metal detector/X-ray machine. The agent beckons for him to exit. Extending his arms, Joe follows suit. Another agent runs a wand over his body and then he is given clearance to enter the room. When he arrives, an intern hands him a card. “Sir, if you have any questions to ask, please wait until you are called upon. Also, you have been selected to read the question on the back of this card.” Joe nods his head. “Okay, is there any chance I will be able to ask Senator Quillbatter a question that’s not on the card?”

“Sure, it’s a possibility.” Without another word, the intern turns and walks away. Joe takes a seat on the front row and waits for the meeting to begin. Senators Quillbatter and Frankel enter the room and take a seat. Scatterings of applause are given when they are introduced. “It’s important for our citizens to have access to their government officials, hence the reason for our appearance tonight. We are here to put your fears to rest.”

Joe listens as the Senators take questions and responds in kind. As the last person reads from the cue card, Joe stands to his feet. “Yes sir, do you have a question?” Clearing his throat, Joe nods. “Yeah, I have a question. Our countrymen are dying. You and your cronies are playing games and wasting time for political gain. My question is this: Who did you sell your soul to, and why do we have to pay the price?”

“How dare you speak to me in such a manner? I’m a United States Senator!”

“By what standard? You and your fellow Senators have sold us out and now the country is burning. You and your colleagues don’t care about this country as long as you rule the ashes.”

Quillbatter and Frankel both exhibit symptoms of rage. Frankel leans on the podium and shouts, “what do you think the odds are of this little stunt making television?”

Joe smiles. “I would say about the same odds of you not having a busted lip.” Frankel’s eyes are the size of half-dollars as Joe’s right hand smashes into Quillbatter’s mouth.

“Game on.”

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