American Crime

"Sir, would you like to comment on the FBI's findings?" Jessica thrust her microphone forward incessantly.

"Who let you in here? You know you are all liars. Yeah, I'll comment. It's a sham. How do we even know they were after me? Maybe they were after you? You are the corrupt ones!" Spittle splattered on his lapel pin. The Seal of The President of The United States, Became just a shiny spittoon.

"Sir, these allegations are serious. Do you care to offer a serious comment?" Jessica pressed him for more.

"You people are so miserable. I pity you. They call you the phony media. The Ineffective Journal, that's what you are. I hear lots of people say that." He searched the crowd of reporters for a more friendly outlet, someone to ask the easy questions and help him pass the blame. He couldn't let go, though. "It's Jessica, right? Just because they found everything in my possession doesn't mean they were mine. You should look at my opponent. I bet it was all his." His puffy cheeks reddened with the sunset behind him. "You know it was them, don't you? The FBI is the most criminally corrupt organization ever to exist. I saw them; they planted everything."

"Mr. President, Jason Binds APR News. Are you insinuating that the FBI agents are out to get you?"

"Sit down. No, wait. You come in here and ask me such mean, nasty horrible questions. You should be ashamed. Yes, they are out to get me. They all are. So are you. But I will tell you. I should have fired the director. He donated over five thousand to my opponents. He's just one of them."

"Sir, do you mean Director Drake? You hired him. He donated five thousand to your opponents, but he donated five hundred thousand to you. Care to comment?." Jessica saw an opening and exploited it.

"I'm sick of it. Someone get her out of here. What an ugly woman. I'm not taking any more questions. Just one last thing. You better investigate the investigators cause the whole damn thing is corrupt." The reporters continued to shout out questions even as he waved from the door of Marine One. The following morning's tabloids would feature a photo of the president flipping the bird through a half-closed door.

At 7:00 AM, the White House residence's multiple televisions switched on as scheduled. On nearly every screen, the experts in every field, from law to psychology, broke down the bombshell reporting. The British news had a banner, "White House Washout."

Flashy "Breaking news" graphics replaced the talking heads one after another.

As the reporters worldwide simultaneously announced, "the justice department will be making an announcement any minute now," the bedside intercom blared. The distorted voice commanded, "Oval. Now. What the hell did you do?"

From beneath the blankets, an angry grunt accompanied a projectile. Across the room, a soft slipper hit the 'LG' label on the screen below the bright red "DA calls charges' potentially seismic' warns of the heightened threat environment."

The door to the Oval Office was being held open by the Chief of Staff. Through the opening came hushed whispers. Lawyers gathered to the right—both personal and those representing the office. They hunched over as if bearing a great weight. Several of his staff talked frantically on their phones to the left or pounded out responses to text messages. Only one man sat. Legs splayed out; hips shifted forward. He lounged as if at the movies. Resigned to witness history quietly.

"Good morning, gentlemen. What do we got? How bad could it be really?" One step behind the Resolute Desk, he stopped. A fistful of newspapers flying. "Charges pending? Charges? What about them? Here's what I want you to do. Investigate them. Investigate all of them. Everyone who reported I did what I did— which I didn't— but I could if I wanted to. Tell them you have something when you have nothing. I want lawsuits. By noon. Now, who can we charge with what? The judges. What courts are we talking about here? Are they mine? Smear them. Discredit them."

"Sir, the White House Council wants you to say nothing, do nothing, brag about your achievements. It's bad enough without more attention."

"You are weak. You are a fool. Give up without a fight? Get me the Saudis. Get me China or Iran. Get me anyone who can get dirt on my enemies. They all want to get me." He grabbed the phone receiver and slammed it down repeatedly without dialing.

"Mr. President. Please calm down. We will fight, won't we boys?" The Chief of Staff's eyes darted face to face, following every whisper. "Your boys got your back at least," he took a step towards the lawyers.

"Sir. I know hundreds of laws over a hundred years old that have never gone to trial. We can tie things up till May. But what then? Off the record. What were you thinking? The illegality is shockingly blatant." Jimmy Kohn, the most recent hire, would be the first to get fired.

"Ads, sir, lots and lots of advertisements. You are the most powerful man in the world—the most remarkable man ever to live. Use that power to influence opinions. Spend millions passing the blame."

The president shifted forward; his sweaty palms smeared the shiny desk. "Now someone is thinking, so who can we slander? Can we arrest anyone before the prime-time news?"

Every phone in the room rang in unison. Every lawyer, every staff, all held their breath. Only the casually seated lawyer fished through his briefcase. Finding no popcorn, he crossed his arms, waiting.

"Oh, fuck."

"Twenty-seven charges."

"Thirty-eight counts each."

One by one, they read off the most critical lines of the four-hundred-page indictment.

Haggard yet emboldened, the Chief of Staff stepped to the desk. He placed his hands on the edge and leaned in. "Sir. We have to face some facts. The charges look terrible. I think you should consult your family and consider stepping down."

"Resign? How fucking dare you! I won't resign! I fire! I am the boss. Not you. I demand your resignation immediately!" Pacing back and forth like a caged beast, his temples pulsed. "Someone give me a plan. A real one, or I'll ruin you. It's all your fault. You are all incompetent."

General Muster stiffened. "Look. Sir, they did catch you in the act. A fact you can't deny. There is one thing you can still do. Nothing makes the public forget a crime like a brutal war."

The lounging lawyer sprung to his feat. "Whoah, whoah there, a war? General, are you insane? Mr. President, you and your father before you have compensated me extravagantly. It wasn't because I was a great lawyer. It was cause no matter how guilty you were, I was always willing to do your bidding. I was your hatchetman. I destroyed lives for you. War? Even you can't be that insane! Look at these charges. There is no more defense. It's time you faced justice. No war could be big enough to make people forget."

"Clear the room, not you, General Muster."

They filed out apprehensively. The hatchetman paused at the door, head slowly shaking. "Your mother always warned me you were a monster. Your father paid me to look the other way." 

The door tightly closed and the room secured, the disgraced president had one last request. "He was right. We do need a big war. Now bring me the nuclear football and find me somewhere to pass the blame."

September 23, 2022 23:30

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23:26 Oct 05, 2022

This was hilariousssss, lol!!! You did a great job of revealing the characters absurdity through their ridiculous, but serious interactions. Bravo, really, I very much enjoyed it.


P. T. Golden
02:49 Oct 06, 2022

And no name was needed at all. Changed the catchphrases just enough to avoid one of his whacko lawsuits. The prompt begged for something like this. You might also like anti-intelligent species. My upcoming collection of short stories is called Ban The Taboo. Anti-intelligent is a look into the future after book bannings.


22:38 Oct 10, 2022

Lol, I feel you. Is anti-intelligent apart of your upcoming collection or is it uploaded on your reedsy account?


P. T. Golden
14:12 Oct 11, 2022

Here. Though run loser run might make it in Vol 2 and that’s on here


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Kimberly Close
02:36 Oct 05, 2022

When I saw this prompt, I was very much hoping for something exactly like your story! Love this! Very well done!


P. T. Golden
04:51 Oct 05, 2022

It was kinda obvious, wasn't it? What else could you do with that prompt? I read the prompt and it was an instant "aha" moment. From there it wrote itself.


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Marty B
06:02 Oct 04, 2022

Oh this is too close to reality :0 Good story!


P. T. Golden
12:45 Oct 04, 2022

So obvious too without mentioning a name. Purely personality disorder exposure. Read anti-intelligent species.. also eerily related to current situations. Then again, my book title (coming soon) is “Ban The Taboo.” My mom when she read it said “impressive, you must have inherited that talent, but some of these might get you banned” inherited— I have two writers in the family I got all three names from. One died for his book, which changed history banned— one is about a sociopath witch who battles Jesus during an apocalypse that started when ...


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