- Vol. 07
- Chapter 05
14 August 2022
The President died on 14 August 2022. At first, the government managed to keep it quiet, allocating an assistant that was making less than the minimum wage of the District of Columbia to take over the Tweets. The assistant, an Ivy League graduate, $124,000 in debt, jumped at the opportunity with fervor. He happily locked himself in a basement room and typed like he had no control over his limbs anymore. ‘GOOD LUCK TO OUR CHAMPIONS AT THE OLYMPIC GAMES. THE GREAT STATES OF AMERICA ARE BEHIND YOU! Gold!’ He was not allowed to mention the empty stadiums that were expected, nor the fact that the American delegation was down to one child prodigy gymnast and two dressage champions.
Above the assistant, the scene was a little more hectic. The President had died in circumstances that were less salacious than those that had routinely been bet on in the office. The reality was in fact much more embarrassing. Having the President succumb to a disease he had up until the moment of his death insisted was not a real threat, but in fact a plot to overthrow him from the ‘liberal fascism elite’, was not the best way to reassure the country.
The staff that remained alive and working in the house that was once white and built by black hands strategized for days after the President’s death. The assistant continued to mislead an eager audience. For a time, a blow-up doll that used to live in the President’s bedroom was brought into the Oval Office and dressed in an expensive suit, size XL. The doll would wave in sudden, spastic movements every time the door opened and shut. These movements kept the media reassured that the leader of the free world was administering business as normal. The blow-up doll came to an end when a senior staffer aimed a row of staples at its head with a makeshift slingshot.
14 August 2022
After using the President’s son and then son-in-law as stand-ins (neither worked; CNN questioned why an acne-ridden teenager in basketball shorts and a sign over his chest saying ‘P L E H’ seemed to be attending a state visit from the bemasked Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan), the ideas came slightly out of left-field. A scarecrow appeared on the White House lawn wearing the star-spangled banner of the 47 remaining states; a hologram designed on the social media platform Snapchat gave a speech at a political rally in Hershey, Pennsylvania; a duck that was presumed to have been a gift from a Canadian delegation ran onto Marine One wearing a suspiciously yellow head of hair.
Mornings at the White House seemed to begin and end exclusively with workshops on how to cover the unavoidable reality of the President’s demise, and that of his Vice-President when it was discovered. Meanwhile, the assistant was having the time of his life: ‘Don’t listen to lies spread by MSM. Be calm & vigilant & trust the leader of the American People!’