NEXT BEST HOPE (The Revelation Trilogy)

BOOK: NEXT BEST HOPE (The Revelation Trilogy)
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NEXT BEST HOPE
 

Stephen Woodfin

Copyright © by Stephen Woodfin and Gallivant Press, an imprint of Venture Galleries, LLC, 1220 Chateau Lane, Hideaway, Texas 75771. 214-564-1493

Venturegalleries.com

All rights reserved. No part of this book can be reproduced, stored in a retrieval program, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or otherwise except as may be expressly permitted by the actual copyright statutes or in writing by the publisher.

Text: Stephen Woodfin

Editing/Design: Linda Greer Pirtle

Cover Design: Jutta Medina

CONTENTS
 

Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God,

and each invokes His aid against the other.

—Abraham Lincoln,

Second Inaugural Address

PART I
 
CHAPTER 1
 

THE YOUNG AMERICAN
President followed his usual routine. He rose at six o’clock, did thirty minutes on the treadmill, showered, grabbed a bite of cereal for breakfast, and entered the Situation Room in time for his seven o’clock meeting with the first female Speaker of the House.

“Good morning, Mr. President,” the Speaker said, rising from her seat to shake his hand.

“Good morning, Madam Speaker,” the President said. “It looks like we have some work to do on our healthcare plan.”

The tone was cordial as they sat down at the table and rolled up their sleeves to get to work.

About fifteen minutes into the meeting, senior Secret Service Agent Ithurial Finis, entered the room. A black man, who stood six feet five inches and carried two hundred and fifty pounds of muscle, the former NFL middle line backer would make anyone seeking to harm the President think twice. “I have some bad news, Mr. President,” he said.

“Do I need to leave the room?” the Speaker asked, looking at the President.

“No. Stay please,” he said. “Let’s have it, Agent Finis.”

“Your numbers have just come up,” he said as he pulled his model 1911 Colt .45-caliber automatic from his holster and shot the President first, then the Speaker. Both of them dropped out of their chairs, dead when they hit the floor.

Agent Finis holstered his gun and strode toward the door. “I’ve done my part. Let’s hope everyone else does the same,” he said to himself as he shut the door behind him and locked it.

•  •  •

A few blocks from the White House in a banquet room at the Mayflower Hotel, the loquacious Vice President was holding forth at a breakfast meeting. After thirty minutes or so, he quieted down long enough for the Secretary of the Treasury to make a brief pitch on economic policy before both men excused themselves.

“You want to hitch a ride with me?” the Vice President asked the Secretary of the Treasury as they went out the back of the room towards their vehicles.

“Sure, if you don’t think it will cause some sort of constitutional crisis,” the secretary said laughing.

Both men slid into the back of the Vice President’s limousine as it pulled away from the curb, leisurely covering the short distance to the Department of the Treasury. The Vice President noticed an armored car that positioned itself alongside his vehicle in the next lane.

“Kind of early for a bank run, isn’t it?” he said just as the armored car slammed into the side of the limousine and the driver detonated a suicide bomb, causing an explosion that blew windows out of buildings for a five block radius and incinerated the armored car, its driver, the Vice President’s vehicle and all its occupants.

•  •  •

That same morning outside Wharton, Texas, Secretary of Agriculture Bascom “Bass” Whitfield sat on the tailgate of a beat up Ford F250 taking questions from farmers in a cotton field, a place he knew and loved. It was planting time, and he could smell the rich, freshly plowed soil, the sweat of men used to laboring in the sun, fighting back Mother Nature’s ever-present tendency to reclaim the world.

One of the old timers had the first question, “Bass, when are you going to get rid of all this genetically modified seed and let us get back to growing conventional cotton? My family developed seed for generations, and now I’m afraid to plant it because of all of the chemicals we have to use to grow that new stuff.”

“Beauregard,” Bass said, calling the old man by name, “I just started this job a couple of weeks ago, but one of the first things I intend to do is to tell those sumbitches at Monsanto and DuPont who think they own the world that they can go straight to hell.”

The farmers yelled and laughed out loud. “Go get ’em, Bass. You’re the man,” they hooted.

At a gate on the corner of the field the sons of a couple of the farmers had drawn guard duty. As they sat with their.30-06 caliber Remington rifles across their laps, they noticed a strange vehicle approaching on the dirt road. One of them got on his cell and called his dad, “Are y’all expecting anyone else?” he asked.

“No, I think everybody’s here,” his dad said.

“Okay.”

As the vehicle drew closer, Beauregard “BB” Butler, Jr., twice decorated for his service in Iraq, stepped out in the road and motioned for the car to stop. As it pulled up next to him, the passenger rolled down his window.

“We’re here for the meeting with the secretary,” he said.

The farmer boy could see his pressed cotton shirt, silk tie, and sunglasses.

“I think they’re full up at the meeting,” he said.

“Ah, come on. There’s always room for a couple more. We’ve been Bascom Whitfield fans since he taught us at A&M,” the driver said, leaning over and looking out the passenger window at him. BB caught just a hint of a foreign accent.

“I’ll see what I can do,” he said, reaching for his cell again.

“Don’t waste your time,” the man on the passenger side said, starting to roll up his window as the car backed up to turn around.

The young farmer dove behind his truck just as a hail of bullets erupted from the strangers’ car, riddling his truck all along the driver’s side. He and his buddy, Nathaniel “Nate” Adams, returned fire, knocked out the windows of the car, and struck the two men inside. BB drew his Glock 9 mm and emptied 15 more rounds into the car as fast as he could pull the trigger. He had no doubt he had finished the job.

The farmers at the meeting knew gunfire when they heard it. They got Bass in the truck, and one of them drove him like hell across the plowed fields in the opposite direction of the battle. The truck bounced over furrows like a power boat porpoising across a heavy chop.

“Hold it,” Bass said to the driver. “I hear something.”

As soon as the words came out of his mouth, he looked up to see an Army helicopter overhead preparing to land in the field. When it sat down, a couple of soldiers ran to the truck.

“Mr. Whitfield,” one of them said. “We need for you to come with us, sir.”

“What’s going on, soldier?” Bass asked.

“All I can tell you, sir, is that there have been widespread attacks on a number of government officials in the last few minutes. Our orders are to get you to a secure facility.”

“All right. Lead the way,” Bass said.

He turned to the driver, “Thanks for looking out for me. I hope the boys at the gate are Okay.”

“I’ll bet they got the better end of it,” the farmer said, grinning at him. “Take care, Bass. We need you out here in the cotton patch.”

Bass followed the soldiers to the helicopter, and the truck driver watched as it lifted off, turned to the north, and quickly moved out of sight.

CHAPTER 2
 

ERT ROBERTS SAT
glued to the TV in the kitchen of his law office in Kilgore, Texas, refusing to accept the truth of what he saw. One after another, new reports came in describing the assassinations of government officials. He knew the events of the day were unprecedented in his almost sixty years of living.

“We are still awaiting some word from the President,” the CNN reporter said, choking back tears, seeking a detached perspective. “His staff has promised he will be on the air momentarily.”

The camera panned to the White House behind her.

Ert heard his office door open and watched Leadoff Pickens, his forty-five-year-old fellow attorney and best friend, come in, pull up a chair at the kitchen table and sit down without speaking, staring at the screen.

BOOK: NEXT BEST HOPE (The Revelation Trilogy)
6.3Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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