A New Day - A Short Story by Alan Walsh

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Here's the complete short story that I posted a teaser from yesterday. Just for fun. Hope you like it.

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A New Day - A Short Story by Alan Walsh

  1. 1. A New DayA Short Story by Alan WalshAt first,there was no fuss. The Defense Secretary walked into the Oval Office for his 10 AM meeting,stepped back out in a moment, and said.. “So, where’s the Prez?” The Secretary looked up and said..“He’s in there! Been there for two hours. Must be in the John.”ASecret Service agent overheard theconversation and quickly canvassed the room. Coming out, he said.. “John’s empty. No onethere.Whole room’s empty.” Rapid inquiries were made in the adjoining offices.. then outwardthroughout the entire complex. Then.. panic set in.The White House was buttoned down and searched top to bottom..searched again.. then searchedagain. No one was allowed in or out. Business came to a screeching halt. Finally, dumbfounded andfeeling ashamed, the Secret Service reported that the President was nowhere to be found. “It’s as if hevanished into space.”A lid of secrecy was clamped down. White House staff went through hell as theywere individuallyinterviewed at length; each interview being more heated and intense. The President’s agenda wascancelled, and excuses distributed to the press. The Vice President and Cabinet were quietly found andspirited into the White House; setting up nervous shop in the Situation Room. The military was quietlyput on alert.. without explanation except to the Joint Chiefs. Not even Congress was informed, for fearof a leak. No one knew what to say.. or what to do next. A surrealstate set in. The press got wind of astory, and was snooping around hard for answers. Tempers were short and getting shorter.After two days of frenetic but fruitless activity, the senior leaders were confronted with the reality thatthe President was nowhere to be found..yet the government must go on. It was all so bizarre.“Impossible”.. people kept saying under their breath. Arrangements were made for the Chief Justice toslip in and swear-in the Vice President.An announcement for 5 PM was announced to the press; withoutfurther elaboration. As the short-list of witnesses assembled for the private swearing-in, a SecretService agent came running in and breathlessly blurted out.. “The President’s been found!” The VicePresident turned and asked.. “Where?”Where indeed! An agent on the roof spotted someone standing in the middle of the South Lawn. Atfirst he didn’t believe his own eyes. He looked twice more through his rifle scope before accepting theevidence. By then, others had seen the figure and rushed in. Moments later, the President was mobbedby security and literally carried into the building. Some tourists witnessed the event, tongues startedwagging, and it wasn’t long before the press was baying hot on the hunt.Many questions and a thorough hospital checkup later, there was no progress. When first asked, thePresident said.. “One minute I was at my desk, and the next I was on the lawn. What happened?”.Hisstory never changed. Other than looking a bit like a deer in the headlights, there were no indications
  2. 2. that the President was mentally or physically incapacitated. Everyone had questions, and no one hadanswers. Many people aged that day. But life and government go on, so at the scheduled 5:00announcement the Press Secretary spun a tale about the President picking up a mild bug that laid himlow temporarily, and business started to settle down to some semblance of a routine. Nothing was saidabout the President being on the South Lawn, and reporters finally got tired of posing questions toimpassive, silent faces. But one thing fundamentally changed. White House staff started looking at eachother with a suspicion that wasn’t there before. Fear had crept into the White House.Two days later, the CIA Director was heading back from a meeting when his secretary handed him amessage that read.. “Dragon – Noon – Usual”. Soon he left Langley and headed into the city where hedirected his driver to a place on the Mall. He hopped out of the car and told his security detail to waitdown the street; then he walked to a particular bench and sat down. A couple minutes later, an elderlyChinese man joined him on the bench. After a moment’s silence, the man said “Hello old friend. How’sthe President?”. Grunted response.. “Fine ..pause.. How’s the Premier?”. “A bit like a stunned animal.Sound familiar”? Eyebrows rose. “We can guess what happened here, because the same happened tous”. More raised eyebrows, and a surprised turn of the head. “Naturally we were able to contain ourincident better. We have no explanation. Do your people”? A quiet “No”. “These are very strangetimes. We must stay in touch.” A grunted “Yes” .. and the CIA Director was off to his limo. Discreteinquiries to assets in Beijing indicated that “something” had happened on the day in question.Appropriate leaders were quietly advised, but what to do? There was nothing to investigate; no minuteshred of a clue to follow. Only questions.One week later, a Cabinet Meeting was winding down when the President turned to the Labor Secretaryand asked “How’s that cancer treatment coming along?” The Labor Secretary froze in his tracks. He hadcontracted bladder cancer two months ago, the tumor had been removed, and he had been quietlyreceiving treatments without saying anything to anyone except his wife and immediate family; swearingthem all to secrecy. Pause.. “Fine Mr. President ..longerpause.. How did you know?” “Don’t remember.You must have told me.” All eyesin the room turned to observe the dazed look and white face of theLabor Secretary. Over the following days, the President demonstrated several more moments ofexceptional and unexplainable mental talent.Another meeting called by Dragon.. “Our Premier seems to have newly-enhanced capabilities.Same withyou?” A surprised.. “Yes”. “Check the President’s DNA”.. as he rose and walked away.It was time for the President’s annual physical, therefore a convenient opportunity fordiscrete sampling.Two days later.. “The President has two additional chromosomes.” “Two more than any other human.Two more than any human being ever.”Across the cold vastness of space, quiet voices communicated unobserved. “Have the seed implantstaken?” “Yes, and we’re seeing the expected results”. “Good. Begin seeding the next group, and if allgoes well seed the whole planet. Keep me informed of progress”.End

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