The Chief, Chapter 4

(Previously: Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3)

“You promised this would be an easy job, no mistakes. You drew up the plan, picked the crew, laid out everything. And you failed, you fuckwit.”

“The Chief Justice was in just in the same place, at the same time. It was an unavoidable coincidence tha-”

“That what? That he had the same height and build as the mark? That he just happened to take the same path to work every day? That he tended to be in the same place at the same time EVERY FUCKING WORKDAY?”

“I told you, I would get the job done, and I will. So who are you to complain, huh? I thought you said the Chief Justice was ‘that self-confident ass who couldn’t put together the intellect to blow his own nose’. Wasn’t he on one of your lists? Didn’t you want him out of the way as well? The way I see it, I did you a favor.”

“The only favor you did was to fuck up our entire operation. And for that, you won’t be getting your payment.” [beep]

“Did Robin just flip me off?” Newsome asked his secretary, Rachel Robinson.

“Yes, and I encouraged him to do so. Here, sign these, initial these, and review these, then send them over to Andrew for review before his press conference,” she said as she dumped pile after pile of papers into his hands.

“You know, I like you better when you’re not doing crap like this. I’ve got agendas and speeches and … other stuff to review, so unless it’s illegal for you to forge my signature on papers no one else is ever going to see again, I’m going to hand this back to you and tell you to hold off for a couple hours, okay?” Travis gave the stacks back to Rachel, turned and entered his office. The TV was still on, and still running nonstop incoherence interference. He reached for the remote, but paused with his thumb over the power button.

“… militia types, who haven’t lost any love for this justice? Aren’t the militias and freemen and those types prime suspects in this assassination?”

“Well, yes, they are, and I would -”

“Do you think they were responsible for this murder? Because that’s what we’re talking about, isn’t it? A political murder in broad daylight?” Travis had never been impressed with the right-wing political news station, but at least they brought in interesting guests, even if their hosts were interrupting morons.

“I can’t speculate on what or who the government has under suspicion at this point,” said the first guest, who sported a beard and whose title card said he was ‘EX-SF OFFICER’. “But I can tell you that I would put the militias very near the top of my own list, if I were investigating.”

“Brian, lemme interject here for a minute,” said another guest, giving the host a taste of his own medicine. “I think you’re both way off base with this line of thought, I think-”

“Way off base? Off base how? We know that militias are all about state sovereignty, and states rights, down with authority, anything Federal equals bad, right?” Brian Tudder, the show host, responded. He was fiercely territorial with his opinions, and had a reputation for defending them no matter what the cost to his dignity.

“Remember, this justice was the one who ruled last year, by himself, that the states had a right to ignore federal laws that directly violated the Constitution.””

“No no no, that doesn’t matter because one, he was wrong, and two, even if he was right, he was still in the minority, all by himself, so his opinion didn’t matter anyway.” Brian and the unidentified opposition guest droned on, talking over and alongside each other without hardly taking a pause to breathe.

Oh, why not, there were plenty of good arguments out there, and plenty of reason to push the ball down the field, as the President had implied earlier.

“Rachel?” Travis called from his office. “Rachel, find Andrew, tell him I’ll have some new talking points for him in about fifteen minutes, and that he needs to incorporate them into the President’s remarks.”