Day 97 – An Apology

I am starting to write this at 11.30pm. Don’t expect anything great.

Ok, not doing that again. 910 words in 30 minutes!

Word count: 910

He had paced the library more time than he could count. The rows and rows of old, musty books served only to distract him from the words he was tasked to read. From all the speeches that he’d recited and seminars that he had hosted, this was perhaps the most difficult. As a politician he was used to lying; he was a skilled actor and an accomplished statue of charisma and manipulation. Never mind the birds, he could charm the sun from the sky. He wore slick suits and smooth ties. He gelled his hair and listened to the music that all the cool kids were listening to. He knew his street from his cred; he knew his Facebook from his Failbook. But today, a small bead of sweat was gathering friends on his forehead and he was starting to wish that he had been a little more generous with his antiperspirant that morning.

Tom Lake was not the sort of man that would have panicked in a disaster. None of his friends would have ever pinned him down as being the first one to break under torture. He was a born leader, which was just as well – as he was now entering his third year of being Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Tom had achieved many things for such a young man. Only in his early forties, he had arranged peace talks between Israel and Palestine and things were now looking a lot less peaky in the Lebanon. He’d done not a bad job on his own country, either. The welfare state was no longer a scapegoat for the lazy opportunists and the NHS dentist was no longer an urban legend.

However, there was one sensitive issue that had not yet been addressed. Tom had to admit that everyone had avoided the issue like the plague for years. There was a silent arrangement between MPs that no one would ever dare put their hand up and admit this mistake. Whenever the journalists hounded him and his colleagues, they would order their bodyguards to shuffle them off into the nearest black windowed Mercedes Benz and whisk them away to a private hotel until the drama died down. But the public were growing restless. They needed answers.

What made matters worse was that someone had leaked a vital document. Tom had not been able to believe it at first: one of his own ducklings, betraying him for a few petty pounds. Tom went into politics for secrecy and solidarity; for expenses and the annual trip to Brighton for the party conference. The idea of treachery in his own cabinet sickened him – especially when it came to this, the most embarrassing err the government had ever made.

The door behind opened. A lady in a smart grey suit appeared. Tom thought she looked dressed for a funeral.

“Sir, it’s time.”

Tom’s gut wrenched downwards, dragging his spirits even further into subterranean obscurity. No amount of dread would put off the inevitable. He put down the piece of paper that contained his speech and followed the lady out to the street.

As he had feared, Downing Street was packed. The journalists were at least fifteen thick and as soon as the front door opened, his eyes were bombarded with epileptic inducing eruptions of flash photography whilst his ears were drowned with the chatter of news crews hurriedly corresponding the news that he had just stepped out of the front door to the waiting world.

Tom stepped up to the podium, adjusted the microphone and took a deep breath. He took a few moments to himself while the Downing Street crew set up the microphones and checked that everyone was able to hear and see him. His entire career seemed to flash before him as if in a film. His first candidacy; his first dissatisfied voter; his first debate; his first election and the day he became Prime Minister. He sighed fondly. If all else would fail today – if his speech was not enough to convince the public or dissuade them from hating him – then at least he would have those memories.

One of the crew nodded to him and, blurred behind the microphone, every single journalist waited with baited breath in anticipation of his every word.

“Good afternoon,” Tom began, “From the very first moment in government, I have seen to it that accountability has been a top priority. Yes, we get it wrong sometimes. We’re only human, after all. But our determination and passion to make this country better has never wavered. I came in to politics to better the place I live in for the benefit of others. I wanted to right wrongs and to enable every single person the opportunities that I had been so generously given to by fortunately upbringing. However, I fear that I must now take responsibility for not only my own actions, but the actions of the entire present government and the governments before us. For many years now we have – in our error – failed to achieve a task that should have been at the top of our agenda. We, regrettably, had misjudged the nature of the threat and the time has now come to apologise for our mistake. So, today, I would therefore like to apologise for allowing Simon Cowell to come to prominence and would like to reassure you that we are now doing everything in our power to bring him to justice.”

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~ by S.G. Mark on January 12, 2012.

One Response to “Day 97 – An Apology”

  1. Hahahaha nice punchline.

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