Anglic Union

Gap in tale here

Drummond-McLaren Speaks

The sun was modestly above the horizon, throwing long twilight shadows.  The Great Stairs of the Union had been cleared of onlookers.  Behind Cedric Drummond-McLaren, a shoulder-to-shoulder crowd of National Renaissance Party supporters stood quietly, preparing to cheer loudly when called.  Drummond-McLaren, dressed in a black trench coat with its Iron-Eagle NRP badge, a silver-grey Homburg hat perched solidly atop his head, prepared to speak to reporters.  He had spent the day closeted with his advisors.

“I am deeply disappointed,” he began, “ in the antics of the Independent Union Party and its alleged leader, Elektra DeWitt.” He was interrupted by cheers.  “For the good of the Anglic Union,  it is past time for the NUP’s Executive Committee to assemble, remove DeWitt from her leadership role, and expel her from the NUP.  Yes, I have read the Bill of Particulars she laid before the Speaker this morning, and they are a pile of lies from stem to stern.  Assuredly, when correspondence passes from Ambassador Parker back to Earth, it is all forwarded to the Senates and Lords  Foreign Relations Committee for their consideration.  You have never heard a word  about this correspondence, which surely through the usual mysterious processes would have reached the press, for the excellent reason that the Committee received no such correspondence. Why not?  Because the correspondence is a hoax.”

I must hope, Drummond-MccLaren thought, that no one realizes that correspondence being passed to the Committee all passes through the hands of its Secretary, who could be relied upon to misfile anything that would give away the show.  Hopefully there are no hints that Parker sent all these letters to me as private mail, not official business.

“Yes, Parker did write me regularly.  We have a correspondence chess game perpetually ongoing. Well, we do, and he always wins.  I can’t imagine how. Yes, he did sometimes have his own political opinions, which he told me privately, so that I would understand where he was coming from and where his reports might be subconsciously biased toward his opinions.  But I simply tolerated his opinions, even though I disagreed.  Could I have removed him?  He had spent decades building up contacts and friendships within the Republic’s government.  If I removed him, we’d lose the benefits he’d spent so long to develop.

“Did I realize that the Stellar Republic was advancing with this legislation?  No.  I asked Parker to develop a B Team worst case scenario, and describe to me its effects.   That’s what I thought I was reading.  His actual reports are in the public documents sent directly to the Senate, the ones that speak glowingly of the advance of the Stellar Republic, its positive relations with all its minor neighbors, and the assurance that the non-tariff treaty will soon be renewed.  There was no hint from him that the Stellar Republic would act as it has done.

About George Phillies

science fiction author -- researcher in polymer dynamics -- collector of board wargames -- President, National Fantasy Fan Federation
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