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President Elect

Джек Марс
President Elect





9:15 p.m.

Ocean City, Maryland

“Not looking too good there,” Luke said.

The elevator was all carpeting and glass walls. A long double line of buttons ran along a metal panel. He caught sight of his reflection in the concave security mirror in an upper corner. It was a strange, distorted, funhouse view of him, totally at odds with the reflection on the glass walls. The normal glass showed a tall man in early middle-age, very fit, deep crow’s feet around the eyes and the beginnings of gray in his short blond hair. His eyes seemed ancient.

Staring into them, he could suddenly see himself as an old, old man, lonely and afraid. He was alone in this world – more alone than he had ever been. It had somehow taken him two full years to realize that. His wife was dead. His parents were long gone. His boy was hardened against him. There was no one in his life.

A little while ago, in the car, just before he stepped into this elevator, he had dug out Gunner’s old cell phone number. He felt certain that Gunner still had that number. The boy would have kept the same number even after moving in with grandparents, even after getting the best new iPhone available. Luke felt sure of it – Gunner kept his old number because he wanted more than anything to hear from his father.

Luke had sent a simple text message to the old number.

Gunner, I love you.

Then he had waited. And waited. Nothing. The message had gone into the void, and nothing had returned. Luke didn’t even know if it was the right number.

How had it come to this?

He didn’t have time to ponder the answer. The elevator opened directly into the foyer of the apartment. There was no hallway. There were no other doors except the double doors in front of him.

The doors opened and Mark Swann stood there.

Luke soaked in the sight of him. Tall and thin, with long sandy hair and round John Lennon glasses. His hair was pulled into a ponytail. He had aged in two years. He was heavier than before, mostly around the midsection. His face and neck seemed thicker. His T-shirt had the words SEX PISTOLS across the front in letters that could have been used to write a ransom note. He wore blue jeans, with yellow-and-black checkerboard Converse All-Star sneakers on his feet.

Swann smiled, but Luke could easily see the strain in it. Swann wasn’t happy to see him. He looked like he had eaten a bad fish.

“Luke Stone,” he said. “Come on in.”

Luke remembered the apartment. It was big and hyper-modern. There were two floors, open concept, with a ceiling twenty feet above their heads. A steel and cable staircase went up to the second floor, where it connected with a catwalk. There was a living room here with a large white sectional couch. There had been an abstract painting behind the couch last time – crazy, angry red and black splotches five feet across – Luke couldn’t quite remember what it looked like. In any event, it was gone now.

The two men shook hands, then hugged awkwardly.

“Albert Helu?” Luke said, using the name of the Swann alias who owned the apartment.

Swann shrugged. “If you like. You can call me Al. That’s what everyone around here calls me. Can I get you a beer?”

“Sure. Thank you.”

Swann disappeared through a swinging door into the kitchen.

To Luke’s right, he could see Swann’s command center. Very little had changed. A glass partition divided it from the rest of the apartment. A big leather chair sat at a desk with a bank of tower hard drives on the floor beneath it, and three flat-panel screens on top of it. Wires ran all over the floor like snakes.

On the far wall, across from the sofa, was a giant flat-panel TV set, maybe half the size of a movie theater screen. The sound was muted. On the screen, about a dozen police vans and cars were parked on a city street, lights flashing in the dark. Fifty cops stood in a line. Yellow police tape extended in several places. A large crowd of people stood behind the tape, stretching down the block and away from the scene.

LIVE the caption below the scene read. CHINATOWN, NEW YORK CITY

Swann came back with two bottles of beer. Instantly, Luke knew why Swann was getting heavier. He was spending a lot of time drinking beer.

Swann gestured at the TV. “Did you hear about that?” he said.

Luke shook his head. “No. What is it?”

“About forty-five minutes ago a bunch of neo-Nazis tried to do some kind of group march through the middle of Chinatown in New York. Gathering Storm, ever heard of them?”

“Swann, what if I told you I’ve spent the past two years living mostly in tents?”

“Then I’d say you’ve never heard of Gathering Storm. Anyway, they’re actually a nonprofit organization, dedicated to preserving and promoting cultural… what? Whiteness, I suppose. American Europeanism? You know. They want to make America safe for white people. Jefferson Monroe is their major funder – they’re basically his modern version of the brownshirts. There are probably half a dozen groups like this now, but I think they’re the biggest one.”

“What happened?”

Swann shrugged. “What else? They started up beating random people on the street. You’ve never seen these guys. They’re a goon squad. Big guys. They were throwing people around. A couple of people in the neighborhood took offense. They lit the Nazis up with guns. A bunch of people were shot, five dead at last count. Shooters still on the loose. It’s what they call a fluid situation.”

“The people killed were all Nazis?” Luke said.

“Seems that way.”

Luke shrugged. “Well…”

“Right. No big loss.”

Luke looked away from the TV. He was having a hard time wrapping his head around what was going on. Susan Hopkins believed the election had been stolen. Her opponent, the incoming President, was funding a neo-Nazi group, which had just sparked a mini race war in New York City. Was this how things were done now? When had everything changed? Luke had been gone a long time, apparently.

“What have you been up to, Swann?”

Swann sat on the big white couch. He gestured at a seat across from him. Luke took it. It had the tangible benefit of facing away from the TV. From his spot, he could look out the darkened glass doors to Swann’s roof deck. The hot tub gave off a pale blue neon light. Otherwise, it was mostly dark out there. Luke had slept on the deck once upon a time. He knew that in daylight hours, it gave a panoramic view of the Atlantic Ocean.

“Not much,” Swann said. “Nothing, to be honest.”


Swann seemed to think about it for a moment. “You’re looking at it. I’m out on disability. When we got back from Syria, I just never could… go back to work. I tried a couple of times. But intelligence is a nasty business. I never minded it when it was other people getting hurt. But after Syria? I got panic attacks. The severed heads, you know? For a while, I was seeing them all the time. It was bad. It was too much.”

“I’m sorry,” Luke said.

“I am, too. Believe me. And it’s not over. I’m a little bit of a recluse now. I keep my old apartment in DC, but I mostly live up here now. It’s safe. Nobody can get in here if I don’t want them to.”

Stone thought about that for a second, but said nothing. It was true enough, as far as it went. The vast majority of people couldn’t get in here. Honest, mainstream people. Nice people. But bad people? Killers? Black operatives? They’d get in here if they wanted to.

“I rarely go out,” Swann said. “I order my groceries on the internet. I let the kid into the building from here, and monitor him coming up in the elevator. Watch him on the closed-circuit TV. I leave a tip for him in the hallway, he leaves the grocery bags at the door, and I watch him go back down. Then I go out in the hall and get my food. It’s a little pathetic, I know that.”

Luke said nothing. It was sad that Swann had been reduced to this, but Luke wouldn’t call it pathetic. It happened. Maybe he could help Swann, get him back out into the world again, but maybe not. Either way, it would take a lot of work, and time, and Swann would have to want it. Sometimes psychological trauma like this never really healed. Swann was a prisoner of ISIS, about to be beheaded, when Luke and Ed Newsam barged in. He had been beaten and mock-executed before they got there.

A silence settled between them, not a comfortable one.

“There was a period of time when I blamed you for what happened to me.”

“Okay,” Luke said. That was Swann’s truth, and Luke wasn’t about to argue with him about it. But Swann had taken the mission on voluntarily, and Luke and Ed had risked their lives to save him.

“I realize it doesn’t make much sense, and I don’t believe it now, but it took me months of therapy to get to this place. You and Ed have this weird glow around you. It’s like you’re superhuman. Even when you get hurt, it seems like it doesn’t really hurt. People get too close to you, and they begin to think this thing you have also applies to them. But it doesn’t. Regular people get hurt, and they die.”

“Are you in therapy now?”

Swann nodded. “Twice a week. I found a guy who will do it over a video feed. He’s in his office, I’m here. It’s pretty good.”

“What does he tell you?”

Swann smiled. “He says whatever you do, don’t buy a gun. I tell him I live on the twenty-eighth floor with an open balcony. I don’t need a gun. I can die any time I want.”

Luke decided to change the subject. Talking about ways that Swann could commit suicide… it wasn’t cheerful.

“You see Ed much?”

Swann shrugged. “Not in a while. He’s busy with work. He’s a commander with the Hostage Rescue Team. He’s out of the country a lot. We used to see each other more. He’s pretty much the same, though.”


“Do you feel up for doing some work?” Luke said.

“I don’t know,” Swann said. “I think that would depend on what it was. The demands, what I would have to do. I also don’t want to jeopardize my disability. Are you paying under the table?”

“I’m working for the President,” Luke said. “Susan Hopkins.”

“That’s cute. What does she need you for?”

“She thinks the election was stolen.”

Swann nodded. “I heard that. The news cycles zip by at the speed of light these days, but that’s a story with legs. She doesn’t want to step down. So where do you fit in? And more importantly, where would I fit in?”

“Well, she’s probably going to want some intel gathering from us. I imagine she wants to do some kind of takedown on these guys. I don’t have any details right now.”

“Can I work from here?” Swann said.

“I suppose. Why not?”

Luke paused. “But the truth is I’m a little concerned about this conversation. You’re different from before. You know that. I would want to make sure you’ve still got your old chops.”

Swann didn’t seem bothered by that. “Test me any way you like. I’m in here day and night, Luke. What do you think I do with my time? I hack. I’ve got all my old chops, and some new ones. I might even be better than before. And as long as I don’t have to go outside…”

Now Swann paused for a moment. He stared down at the beer in his hands, then looked up at Luke. His eyes were serious.

“I hate Nazis,” he said.


November 12

8:53 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time

The West Wing

The White House, Washington DC

“There was violence all through the night,” Kat Lopez said. “Kurt has the details, but the worst of it was in Boston, San Francisco, and Seattle.”

“Why wasn’t I told about this?” Susan said.

They walked along the halls of the West Wing toward the Oval Office. Their heels clacked on the marble floor. Susan felt better than she had in a while – well rested from a long night’s sleep. She had eaten breakfast in the Family Kitchen without checking the news once. She was beginning to believe that events were taking a turn for the positive. Until a minute ago.

Kat shrugged. “I wanted you to get some sleep. There was nothing you could do about it in the middle of the night, and I figured today was going to be another hell of a day. Kurt agreed with me.”

“Okay,” Susan said. She supposed she meant it.

A Secret Service man opened the doors for them and they passed into the Oval Office. Kurt Kimball stood there, sleeves rolled up, ready to go. Luke Stone sat in one of the armchairs, in almost the same position he was in the night before.

Stone wore a plain black T-shirt with a leather jacket, jeans, and fancy leather boots. He looked fresher, less distant, more in the here and now than yesterday. His eyes were alive. Stone was a space cowboy, Susan decided. Sometimes he was just gone, out in the ether. That’s where he went when he disappeared. But now he was back.

“Hi, Kurt,” Susan said.

Kurt turned to her. “Susan. Good morning.”

“Nice boots, Agent Stone.”

Stone pulled his jeans leg up a couple of inches to reveal more of the boot for her. “Ferragamo,” he said. “My wife gave them to me once upon a time. They have sentimental value.”

“I’m sorry about your wife.”

Stone nodded. “Thank you.”

An awkward pause settled in. If she could, part of Susan – the emotional part, you might even call it the female part – would spend the next twenty minutes asking Stone about his wife, his relationship with her, how he had processed her death, and what he was doing to take care of himself. But Susan didn’t have that kind of time right now. The hard-headed, practical part of her – would she call that her masculine part? – pushed on with today’s agenda.

“Okay, Kurt, what do you have for me?”

Kurt indicated the TV screen. “Events have been moving fast. No surprise there. We had a mass shooting in New York City’s Chinatown last night. A large group of operatives from Gathering Storm emerged out of a convoy of black vans at around eight thirty p.m., and went on a march south from Canal Street. It was a provocation, of course. Within minutes, they were engaged in fistfights with neighborhood residents.”

“Gathering Storm, huh?” Gathering Storm was one of the Monroe-funded organizations that made Susan sick to her stomach. She often wondered exactly what it was these people thought they were doing. Of course, up until now the violence had been almost entirely threats made over the internet. Now it was real.

Kurt nodded. “Yes. They seem to recruit their activists based on size. The fist fights were completely one-sided for several minutes, until two contract killers from the Hong Kong Triads – apparently in New York on a murder assignment – opened up with Uzi submachine guns. The latest tally is thirty-six wounded, including a dozen Chinese, likely shot by accident, and seven dead, all of whom were members of Gathering Storm. Another three members are expected to die.”

Susan wasn’t sure what to say to all this. Good? That came to mind.

“The Triad members?”

“In NYPD custody, on multiple murder, attempted murder, and weapons charges. They have court-appointed translators, and last I heard a legal team is en route from Hong Kong. The Triads are well funded, to put it mildly, and the expectation is the lawyers will try to build a case for self-defense on the murders, and plead out the weapons.”

“What do you think of that approach?” Susan said.

Kurt smiled and shook his head. “New York doesn’t have the death penalty. That’s about the only thing those guys have going for them right now.”

“How about if I pardon them and send them home with medals?”

“I think we’ve got enough problems.”

“Tell me more,” she said.

“Well, once the news came out about New York, it seems the gloves came off. Groups of young men started entering Boston’s Chinatown around ten p.m. and attacking people on the street. They seemed to be men who were drinking in nearby bars, as the four men arrested were all drunk.”

“Four men were arrested? You said groups – ”

“Yes. It appears the Boston police were somewhat more lenient than one might hope, and let the majority of the offenders go with a simple warning.”

“What else?”

“A group from the Oakland branch of the motorcycle gang Nazi Lowriders entered the Chinatown in San Francisco and attacked people on the streets with sawed off pool cues and billy clubs. More than forty of them were arrested. Two of the victims in those attacks are in critical condition at area hospitals.”

Susan sighed and shook her head. “Great. Anything else?”

“Yes. Probably the most exciting news. Jefferson Monroe is scheduled to speak at a rally of his followers this morning, perhaps to address the violence last night, perhaps to call for you to concede again. No one is quite sure what his script is going to be. The best part is where the rally is going to take place.”

Susan didn’t enjoy it when Kurt was being coy.

“Okay, Kurt. Out with it. Where is that?”

“Lafayette Park. Directly across the street from us.”


9:21 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time

Lafayette Park, Washington DC

It was a beautiful thing to witness.

They called it the People’s Park, and today the people were all here.

Not the ordinary denizens of this park, where generation after generation of the rabble, the rabble-rousers, and the radicals – the unwashed, the losers of life – would camp out and protest the policies of one President after another.

No. Not those people.

These people were his people. A sea of people – thousands of them, tens of thousands – who last night had passed the word across social media that their man was speaking here today. It was a stealth move, a knife in the back, the kind of move Gerry O’Brien excelled at. He had obtained the permit for this gathering from the city just before close of business yesterday afternoon, and the news of it had spread like wildfire overnight, the flames fanned by hurricane-force winds.

Now the people were all here, wearing their giant Abe Lincoln hats and carrying their signs – handmade signs, official signs from the campaign, professionally made signs from the dozens of organizations that had supported the campaign. Most of the people were dressed warmly in heavy coats and hats against the unseasonable chill.

Jefferson Monroe gazed out from the makeshift stage at that teeming mass of humanity – it was like a rock and roll festival out there – and knew he was born for just this moment. Seventy-four years, and many, many victories: from his earliest days as a teenage moonshiner in the backwoods of Appalachia, through his time as an angry young strikebreaker, an ambitious company executive, and eventually a major shareholder and captain of the coal industry.

Later, he became a senator from West Virginia and conservative political kingmaker heavily funded by the same coal companies he once worked for. And now… President-elect of the United States. A lifetime of striving, long decades of climbing up from the bottom, clawing his way, and suddenly, quite by surprise (an outcome no one expected, not even him), he was the most powerful man on Earth.

He was here to force the sitting President to leave the White House early, and allow him to enter. It was as audacious as anything he had ever attempted. Past the crowds and across the wide thoroughfare, he could see the White House in the distance, rising on a green knoll. Could she see him from there? Was she watching?

God, he hoped so.

He turned away from the crowd, just for a moment. Behind him on the stage was a crowd of people. O’Brien was there, the mastermind of this campaign, the dark lord of the white supremacists, a man at least as driven as Monroe was himself. Even now, he was barking something into a cell phone.

“I want that bird,” Gerry the Shark seemed to be saying. But how could that be right? I want that bird? What a strange thing to say! At a moment like this?

“I want it, okay? I want it to land just like we talked about. Tell me you can do that. Okay? Good. When?”

Monroe shrugged it off. Dealing with Gerry was more than just a wild ride – it was a lesson in surrealism. The President-elect decided to ignore his closest advisor for the time being. Instead, he spoke to the other people on stage.

“Are you seeing this?” he said, as he covered the microphone with his hand and indicated the massive crowd. “Are you seeing this?”

“It is the best thing I’ve ever seen,” a young aide said.

Behind him, clapping began in the crowd – not random, but rhythmic, thousands of hands clapping at once – CLAP, CLAP, CLAP, CLAP…

A chant was about to go up. This is how it started, with clapping, and in some cases stomping. And here it came, the voices rising.

“U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!”

It was a good one, a good one to start on.

Monroe took his hand from the microphone and gripped the stand instead. He raised a hand, quieting the chant within seconds. It was like he simply turned down the sound on a machine – a TV, or a radio. But it wasn’t a machine, it was thousands and thousands of people, and he controlled them, effortlessly, with a gesture. Not for the first time, he marveled at that power, a power that he had. Like a superhero.

Or a god.

“How’s that global warming treating you?” he said, his voice echoing over the multitudes. Laughter and cheers rippled through the crowd. Personally, Monroe knew from climate scientists employed by his companies that global warming was a fact of life, and would be a serious issue a century from now, or sooner, perhaps even a threat to civilization itself. As President, he might quietly look for ways to implement policies that lessened the threat somewhat, without harming industry profits. In the meantime, his companies were gradually increasing investment in the renewable energy fields – the solar, wind, and geothermal technologies that were the future.

But his people didn’t want to hear any of that. They wanted to hear that global warming was a hoax, perpetrated in large part by the Chinese. So that’s what Monroe would tell them. Give the people what they want. And anyway, it was cold out today, an unseasonably cold day in early November, and that was evidence enough – there couldn’t be any such thing as global warming.

“Today is our day, did you know that?”


The crowd greeted that idea with a roar of approval.

“We came from nothing, you and I did. Okay? And we came from nowhere. We didn’t grow up in fancy upscale Manhattan or San Francisco or Boston penthouses. We didn’t go to special private schools for special people. We don’t sip lattes and read the New York Times. We don’t know that world. We don’t want to know that world. You and I, we’ve worked hard all our lives, and we’ve earned everything we have, and everything we will ever have. And today is our day.”

Their cheering was an eruption – an earthquake – of sound. It seemed like some great beast was beneath the surface of the Earth, sleeping dormant for centuries, and now it would rend the ground and burst forth in a frenzy of violence.

“Today is the day we are going to remove one of the most corrupt administrations in American history. Yes, I know, I know. She said she’s not leaving, but I tell you what. It’s not going to last. She’s leaving, all right, and a lot sooner than anyone thinks. It’s going to happen a lot sooner than she thinks, that’s for sure.”

The cheering went on and on. He waited for the crowd to die down. Monroe’s people hated Susan Hopkins. They hated her, and everything she stood for. She was rich, she was beautiful, she was spoiled – she had never lacked for anything in her life. She was a woman in a job always done by men.

She was a friend to immigrants, and to the Chinese, whose cheap labor practices had destroyed the American way of life. She was a hedonist, a former jet-setter, and she seemed to confirm everything heartland people suspected about the celebrity class. Her husband was gay, for the love of God! He had been born in France. Could there be anything more un-American than a gay Frenchman?

Susan Hopkins was a monster to these people. In the far reaches of internet conspiracy websites, there were even those who claimed that she and her husband were murderers, and worse than murderers. They were devil worshippers. They belonged to a Satanic cult of the mega-wealthy who stole and sacrificed children.

Well, today Monroe would give his people the murderer part. He wished he could be there inside the Oval Office and see her face when this news broke.

The crowd had quieted again. They were waiting for him now.

“I want you to listen to me for a minute,” he said. “Because what I’m about to tell you is a little bit complicated, and it’s not easy on the ears. But I’m going to tell it because you have to know it. You, the American people, the true patriots, deserve to know. It’s very important. Our future is at stake.”

He had them. They were ready now. Here it came. The Hail Mary pass. The bomb. Jefferson Monroe geared himself up and launched it.

“Five days before election day, a man turned up dead near the Tidal Basin right here in Washington, DC.”

His people had gone silent. A dead man? This was something new. It was not the typical Jefferson Monroe rally topic. It seemed that thousands of pairs of eyes were riveted to him. In fact, that was indeed the case. Give us something, those big hollow eyes seemed to say. Give us the meat.

“At first glance, it seemed like the man had committed suicide. He was shot in the head, the gun was found near his body, and his fingerprints were on the gun. It didn’t make much impact in the news at the time – people die every day, and often enough, they take their own lives. But I knew, okay, folks? I knew that this man didn’t kill himself.”

The eyes watched him. Thousands and thousands of eyes.

“How did I know that?”

No one said a word. Jefferson Monroe had never seen such a large group of people so quiet in his entire life. They sensed something big was coming, and that he was the one bringing it.

“I knew he didn’t commit suicide because I knew this man personally. I’d almost say he was a friend of mine. His name was Patrick Norman.”

Jefferson was no stranger to telling big lies. Even so, and unlike many politicians, he felt a certain twinge when he did it. It wasn’t guilt. It was the sense that somewhere out there, someone knew the truth, and that person would work tirelessly to bring the truth to light. In fact, it wasn’t even somewhere out there – at least three people standing behind him on the stage knew the facts. There were probably a dozen others in the organization. They knew that Jeff Monroe had never once spoken to Patrick Norman.

He pressed on.

“Patrick Norman was not suicidal – far from it. On the contrary, he was one of the best and most successful private investigators in the United States, and he made a lot of money. I know what he made because I was paying him. He was working for my campaign at the time of his death.

“Campaigning is a dirty business, folks. I’ll be the first to tell you that. Sometimes you do things you’re not proud of to get a leg up on your opponent. And I hired Patrick to look into corruption in the Hopkins administration, and in the business dealings of the soon-to-be former President’s husband, Pierre Michaud. Okay? Do you see where this is going?”

A ripple of assent, a loud murmur, went through the crowd like a rolling wave.

“Patrick called me on the phone a couple of days before he died, and he said, ‘Jeff, I’ve got the dirt you’re looking for. I just need to follow up on a couple of last leads. But this thing I have – the bad things she’s done – is going to blow this election wide open.’”

This was a lie stacked on top of a lie. Norman never called him. He never called him Jeff – he never called him at all. He had no dirt on Susan Hopkins, even after nearly a year of looking. He had determined that she was probably squeaky clean, or if not, the dirt was buried so deep that no one would ever find it.

“What Patrick suggested to me was that Hopkins and her husband accepted bribes from foreign leaders, including Third World dictators, in exchange for favorable treatment from the United States government. He also suggested that there was a quid pro quo going on in support of Pierre Michaud’s sham charities. If the dictators would make Michaud look good by letting him build his fake water systems – water systems that help no one, folks! – the USA would sell them weapon systems. This is shocking stuff. And folks, that was the last I ever heard from Patrick Norman. He had the dirt on Susan Hopkins. Then he died, apparently by his own hand.”

Now a ripple of boos went through the crowd.

“But it wasn’t by his own hand, right? Yesterday afternoon, the Washington, DC, medical examiner’s office released their findings. Patrick Norman did not fire the gun that killed him. And he had marks on his body consistent with a struggle. All indications are that someone killed him and made it look like a suicide.”

He paused and let the moment draw its breath. These were the true parts, and the parts that were especially damning.

“Five days before the election, Patrick Norman, the man with the dirt on Susan Hopkins, was murdered.”

The crowd exploded into a fit of ecstasy. This was what they wanted, all they had ever wanted – something that seemed to confirm everything that they just knew about Susan Hopkins. She was corrupt to her core, and she would have someone killed to cover her trail of deception.

As the crowd cheered, the cheer began to morph into something, the chant that had emerged late in the campaign. It was the most dangerous chant of all, one that Gerry the Shark had released into the public sphere through his Gathering Storm goon squad.


Then a strange and wonderful thing happened.

Even as his people chanted violence, a white dove flew down from the sky, hovered about Jefferson Monroe for a moment, then alighted onto the right shoulder of his wool coat. It flapped its wings a couple of times, then settled down and relaxed. Now he had a dove on his shoulder. The crowd erupted.

It was magic. More than that, it was a sign. A sign from God.

He moved carefully, trying not to alarm the bird.

I want that bird, Gerry the Shark had shouted into the telephone.

Monroe raised his left arm, trying to quiet the crowd. It worked, sort of.

“This is a dove of peace,” he said. “And this is how we’re going to do it, folks. Peacefully, through the rule of law. Through the enforcement of the laws of the United States. Through the peaceful transfer of power which has been one of our great traditions since the earliest days of the Republic.

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