Monthly Archives: August 2019

COG Chapter 27


#ContinuityOfGovernment, #WW3, #DeepState

With his office infiltrated by a traitor and hobbled by incompetence, an increasingly unstable POTUS attempts a ‘Hail Mary’ that might just save the office of the president… even if it destroys the world in the process.





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Chapter 27

The day after the election, SuperBunker life carried on as it always had. The massage parlors, hemoglobin cafes, and aromatherapy boutiques brimmed with plucked elites just as they had the day before, and the day before that. The monorails ran on time. The virtual sun rose according to its program. The ambient sounds of simulated chirping birds started on cue. At Ten O’clock Bunker Standard Time, the president’s face appeared on every screen in the North American Zone.

“My fellow Americans… The first lady and I have been so touched by all the encouragement we’ve received over the past few weeks. Today, it’s my turn to give thanks. We’ve been through some difficult times together. Whether we have seen eye-to-eye or rarely agreed at all, the conversations I’ve had with you are what have kept me inspired and kept me going. You made me a better president, and you made me a better man.

“After four years as your leader, I still believe in the beating heart of our American ideal— our bold experiment in self-government. It’s the conviction that we are all created equal, endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, among them life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It’s the insistence that these rights, while self-evident, have never been self-executing; that we, the people, through the instrument of our democracy, can form a more perfect union.

“This is what we mean when we say America is exceptional. Not that our nation’s been flawless from the start, but that we have shown the capacity to change, and make life better for those who follow. The work of democracy has always been hard; it’s always been contentious. Sometimes it’s been bloody. For every two steps forward, it often feels that we take one step back. But the long sweep of America has been defined by forward motion.

“Tomorrow, the world will witness a hallmark of our democracy. We will all bear witness to the system of checks and balances, as memorialized in our Constitution. These checks and balances, envisioned and implemented by our founding fathers, have ensured the continued existence of our exceptional nation for a quarter of a thousand years.

“Elections cannot be conducted in an atmosphere of rancor. Nor can they be simulated. Real men and women and transgendered… and the non-binary types must exercise their franchise. A true election involving human beings is good for this country. Anything else is anathema to freedom. The founding fathers were very clear— that true elections are to decide who our representatives shall be. So, let us continue to work together to anticipate the challenges and address those challenges because we have the capacity to do so.

“Therefore, after long deliberation, I have decided that I must continue to serve as your president until we can hold a true presidential election, one to be decided by the actual surviving voters of this nation. As president of the United States, it is my patriotic duty to suspend democracy in order to save democracy… until we can hold real elections.

“Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.”

All of this barely penetrated the consciousness of the elites who were sipping their designer coffees, performing their yoga poses, selecting their specialty bath salts, or engaging in their sessions of hair removal.

The Greys were too busy to take note of the machinations of the executive, either. With so many of them having gone missing from their posts, the work shifts of the remainders had been increased out of sheer necessity. Every day for them was becoming a drudgery. What was happening to their ranks? One grim rumor took root within their minds: that they were being systematically liquidated, disappeared by the gendarme of the elites, one at a time, secretly, so as not to foment a panic, in order to extend the stores of finite provisions. But that couldn’t be true. The Greys simply could not bring themselves to believe in the murderous nature of their masters. To accept that horror meant they would be compelled to take action for their self-preservation. No more than a handful of Greys was prepared to do that, so they instead persuaded themselves it was all just a wild conspiracy and carried on as they had.

Nurse Baum was half-watching the president’s speech on the ubiquitous BNN monitors while in transit between shifts. But she was distracted by the sensation of being stared at from behind. The monorail decelerated into the station and Baum gathered herself to step out onto the platform. Once off, she glanced back over her shoulder, noting a man in a black jogging suit and sunglasses. This was the moment she was anticipating. What will I do? She asked herself. She held eye contact with him for a moment, then walked to an empty bench and took a seat. The man in black looked both directions, then walked over to her and took the seat beside her.

“Miss Baum?” he whispered, while watching the monorail fill with passengers.


“I have someone who would like to speak to you.”

Baum had contemplated this moment many times, trying to imagine what was going to happen. If it were to be something sinister, Mr. Quixote surely wouldn’t have alerted her to it in advance. Her nervousness manifested in her racing heartbeats. She tried to remain calm. “I… I’m ready,” she forced herself to reply.

“Don’t worry,” the man in black explained further. “You are not in any danger.”

“How do I know that for sure?”

“In a moment, a black golf cart with tinted windows will pull up. Please get up and walk over to the cart and get in.”

Baum searched the avenue over her shoulder.

“There’s nothing to worry about.”

“You already said that.”

The cart soon appeared and stopped at the curb just a few paces from their bench.

“Walk casually over and get in.”

Baum got up from the bench and approached the cart. The plastic door opened. She looked inside. There was a driver and a man seated in the back seat who was hidden in the shadow cast by the tinted vinyl windows.

“Please, get in.”

Baum slipped into the back seat. The plastic door clicked shut and the cart whirled off down the avenue.

“Do you know who I am, Miss Baum?”

The voice was not the one she expected to hear. It wasn’t Fricke. She watched as he took off his sunglasses and then she recognized him.

“My name is General Buckminster. Do you know that name?”

“Yes. I’ve seen you with the president many times.”

“You look surprised.”

Baum pondered the situation. Matters had become uncertain. Fricke had exhibited nothing but contempt for Buckminster, so why would he send him in his stead?

“I was expecting someone else. That’s all.”


“Oh… no one in particular. Just someone else. Not you.”

“Do you know why you’re here?”

“I don’t think so. Am I in trouble? Did I do something?”


The cart whizzed along the avenue, passing the boutiques and cafes.

“Are you a patriot, Miss Baum?”

“I… I suppose.”

Buckminster cleared his throat. “Your country is in dire need of patriots, Miss Baum. Are you sure you are a patriot?”

“I… I guess. I don’t know for sure…”

“Excellent. Did you vote in the past election?”

“For president?”

“Yes. Did you vote for president?”

“Actually, no. I had to work a double shift and I’m a nurse so it is difficult to break away.”

“But if you did vote, who would you have voted for?”

She answered carefully. “I don’t share my political views.”

“That’s fine. That’s fine.” Buckminster repositioned himself so that he was facing more towards her in the backseat of the luxury golf cart. He extended his arm on the setback behind her shoulders. “What do you think of the election outcome?”

Wariness filled her. She had felt nothing for the POTUS short of resentment for incinerating the surface of the planet, but Buckminster was the POTUS’ right hand man. She thought it best to play coy. “I don’t know. I saw that Cleveland won.”

“He didn’t just win, he won by a landslide, the biggest margin of victory in electoral college history. 531 to 7.”

“I didn’t realize that.”

“And yet…” Buckminster paused.

“And yet what?” Baum asked.

“And yet, President Elect Tex Cleveland’s victory was stolen from him.”

“How so?”

“Didn’t you watch the presidential address this morning?”

“I’m sorry, I was busy working.”

“The president of the United States suspended the results of the recent election and is refusing to hand over power”

“Wow. That’s…,” she hesitated, “audacious.”

“Audacious is an understatement, Miss Baum.”

“So why am I here?”

“You are here because you are a very special person.”

“Me? How so?”

“You are special because you have access to the president.”

“What do you mean?”

“You are his nurse. You administer his medications and perform his health checks.”

“So?” Baum shrugged.

“Miss Baum, the president is holed up in that UltraBunker, running the government and simulated country with total impunity, flouting the Constitution and rule of law. He intends to continue doing this despite losing the election. It is time for him to go, but none of us can get close enough to make that happen. He’s paranoid and delusional. He’s had my security clearance revoked and we have no one else on the inside who can get to him. We… your country desperately needs your help to get him removed so that we can restore the republic.”

Baum felt a sense of betrayal as if she had been belted in the ribs by it. She had expected something different after speaking with Fricke and Quixote. They seemed genuine. Now she saw that she was just being used.

“Will you do this patriotic duty for us, Miss Baum?”

“Do what?” she asked.

Buckminster reached into his breast pocket and handed her a small black case. He unzipped it revealing a small vial.

“What is it?” she asked, although she already immediately recognized the name scribed on the label.

“It’s a sedative. Once administered, it will put him under for several hours. When he is out, we need you to deactivate the security systems for the UltraBunker. The instructions are on this lanyard. Here, put it on. Once that’s done, we will send in the SEALs to extricate the president from the office of the presidency.”

“Then what?”

“Then we’ll install the duly elected President Tex Cleveland as the new president of the United States.”

“Yeah, but then what happens to me?”

Buckminster smiled. “You, my dear, become a hero to the republic.”

“Is that it?”

Buckminster scowled. “What do you mean ‘is that it?’”

“I mean is that all? Do I get anything else?”

“Well, we can give you an honorary PIN and a priority number so you can become a permanent resident of the SuperBunker.”

Baum stared Buckminster in the eyes as a spirit of resistance welled up inside of her. Her gaze hardened. She had something of value that they wanted, access. That was leverage. So few Greys had any leverage. “That’s not what I want.”

“What do you mean?”

“I want something else.”

“I’m sorry Miss Baum, but we are making a very generous offer.”

“Oh, to hell with your offer.”

“Miss Baum…”

“You are going to meet my demands or you can find someone else to do your dirty work.”

“Miss Baum, there is no one else. You or going to do this for us or else.”

“Or else what? You’re going to disappear me like you have all those other Greys? I don’t care anymore. Do what you have to do. Do it right now. Get it over with. I won’t do anything for you unless you give me what I want.”

Buckminster huffed. “All right. What is it you want?”

“I want out of this bunker. I want to go home.”

Buckminster laughed. “Why on earth would you want to do that?”

“To find my daughter.”

Buckminster sighed. “Oh, Miss Baum, there’s nothing left up there. This is all that remains of the world.”

“I don’t care. I want to try to find her or die trying. I want you to let me go.”

“I don’t know how that is possible in lieu of Protocol 4. perhaps we could get you a luxury apartment and a job promotion. Would that be enough instead?”

“I said I want out of here! I don’t care if I am poisoned by radiation the moment I step on the surface. I want out of this hell.”

“I don’t see how…”

“That’s what I want or no deal.”

Buckminster bit his clenched fist trying to contain his frustration. “O.k. I’ll see what I can do. Perhaps President Elect Cleveland can make an overture to the Chinese and Russians to address Protocol 4 again ad let you out. That’s all I can promise for now.” Buckminster stuck out his hand. “Do we have a deal?”

“No. I want you to guarantee me passage to the surface, in one of those missiles if necessary. Guarantee it or no deal.”

“Miss Baum…”

“Pull over and let me out.”

“All right. All right. Stop the cart.”

Buckminster extended his hand. Emma Baum stared him in the eye, probing his dead expression. She knew he was a liar.

“Tomorrow morning, Miss Baum. It has to happen tomorrow morning.”


Follows, comments, likes, edits and suggestions are greatly appreciated. 

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COG Chapter 26


#ContinuityOfGovernment, #WW3, #DeepState

With his office infiltrated by a traitor and hobbled by incompetence, an increasingly unstable POTUS attempts a ‘Hail Mary’ that might just save the office of the president… even if it destroys the world in the process.





Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

Chapter 26

“Thank you. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen.” President Manfred waved at the crowd of summoned Greys from behind his teleprompter. A Manfred/McGuinn campaign banner formed a backdrop. The “u” in “McGuinn” was fashioned into a goal post. “Tonight, America goes to the polls to exercise their unalienable right to choose their rulers. It’s been a long, hard fought campaign. And these have been trying times. We have battled an opponent in this race hardened by decades of corporate profiteering and pillaging of the environment, but we know our message of ‘staying the course and rebuilding America’ is a winning message.”

Smattering of applause.

“America loves a winner. My running mate, Brock McGuinn, is the embodiment of a winner— the winningest quarterback in football history! He brings the spirit of a champion to the Brown House, for now, and to the White House after we rebuild it!”

Brock McGuinn grinned.


“My fellow Americans, we had to make some tough choices. Leadership is never easy. But we are firm believers that America should always stand by her convictions and never, never surrender. Americans do not stand on the sidelines. They get into the game. So do your patriotic duty and go to the polls and exercise your right. Due your patriotic duty and remember to vote for your champions.”


The POTUS held up Brock McGuinn’s fist and smiled and nodded. A Cheshire grin remained frozen into McGuinn’s face. His chin dimple was made especially prominent by the makeup team and lighting. The POTUS released Brock’s fist then gestured for him to take center stage. Buckminster, dressed in his military dress uniform, entered the frame and crouched down over a red white and blue football. Brock got behind him, placed his hands between Buckminster’s legs, under his crotch, and barked out the signals. “Red eighty-eight! Red eighty-eight! Ohio! Ohio! Hu-hut!” Brock took the snap, dropped back, planted his back foot, and fired a bullet pass that rifled just over the heads of the crowd, finally hitting a bespectacled Grey in the face some fifty yards away, dislodging his glasses upon impact. The crowd went bananas. Brock raised his hands to signify a touchdown. The crowd cheered even louder. Brock pumped his fist. The crowd started jumping up and down, some started to weep. A few wetted themselves in the excitement. Then the loudspeakers began the opening chords of the Saxon football team fight song. When concluded, the crowd broke off into a fevered chorus of “Don’t Stop Believin’ by Journey.”

The surveillance cameras captured everything that happened, converted it to binary code, and fed it into the supercomputer election algorithm.

POTUS and Brock and Buckminster shook a few more hands and retreated into the UltraBunker to watch the election returns. Buckminster turned on  BNN. Haberdash poured everyone a brandy. Brock stood with his hands on his hips, leering at the screen.

“How’re we looking?” Haberdash asked.

“It’s early,” Buckminster replied. “The polls haven’t closed on the East Coast.”

“Can someone explain why this whole process isn’t just instantaneous? Can’t they just push a button and have it over with?” asked the POTUS.

“Sir,” Buckminster explained. “An authentic, reliable modeling of the voting decisions of every single potential voter from a voter population of over two hundred million requires a very complex computer simulation. Every conceivable voter parameter has been included. Unemployment rates. Price levels. foreign policy decisions. The stock market indices. Consumer confidence. The time of day. The results of other states. The results of the past Super Bowl…”

“I was MVP!” shouted Brock McGuinn.

“…The simulated eastern time zone results, as reported by BNN, impact voters in the west. That parameter has to be applied sequentially. There really is no way to get the most accurate simulation without processing it in real time.”

The POTUS downed his brandy and watched the television avatars break down the results.

“…and here is Wolford with the latest results in Florida where polls have just closed. Wolford…

“Thank’s DeForest. We are getting simulated results in from the panhandle precincts. President Manfred has a strong lead in Broward country, which is strongly democrat, but is it strong enough? Let’s have a look. If Tex Cleveland can win these seven counties, all historically republican counties, he will probably have enough to win Florida.”

“Shit!” cursed the POTUS. “Why did we only get 55% in Broward county? Bucky?”

“I don’t know what’s happening there, sir. I’ll call my people in the IT department.”

“Tell them we should be getting 65% in Broward. Those damn Mexicans and Jews all vote democrat. This is wrong. The simulation is broken.”

“I think they’re Cubans, sir, not Mexican, and they tend to be more conservative.”

“I don’t care what you want to call them. They should be voting for democrats. What the hell is going on?”

Buckminster made a call on his cell.

Brock tossed the red white and blue football to himself.

Haberdash, who was already on his second brandy, began watching BNN intently.

A faint knock came from behind the UltraBunker blast door.

“Who is it?” the POTUS asked.

“It’s Nurse Baum, sir.”

“Yes, yes. I’m sorry there is no one there to let you in. My assistant has not been reporting for duty. Hab, will you let her in please?”

“Sure.” Haberdash got up from his chair and backstepped to the blast door without taking his eyes off the screen or spilling his snifter.

“Oh, for the love of Christ!” shouted the POTUS. The returns from Virginia were flashing on the screen. Tex Cleveland was the projected winner. “What in the fuck is going on?”

Haberdash opened the door and Nurse Baum rolled her cart in. The POTUS stood up to curse the screen, but took a seat when Baum pulled up next to him. She took his vitals while he fumed.

Brock raised the red white and blue ball to his ear and feigned a throwing motion.

Buckminster made more calls on his cell.

“Bucky!” the POTUS shouted.

Nurse Baum wiped a vein on the president’s arm with an alcohol swipe.

“Bucky! What the hell?”

“I don’t have any information yet, sir.”

Nurse Baum removed a needle from a plastic package, bit off the cap, and flicked loose the tiny air bubbles.

The avatars on the monitor discussed the surprising victories for Cleveland. “It’s going to make things interesting,” one remarked.


“Just a moment, Mr. President.”

The POTUS leaned back in his chair, trying to calm himself while awaiting his injection.

Haberdash picked over the adjacent buffet tray.

Nurse Baum reached in to administer the amphetamine shot.

“BNN is now projecting republican Tex Cleveland as the winner of North Carolina.”

“What the fuck, Bucky?! Who are you talking to? Here, give me that goddamn phone.”

Bucky handed his cell to the POTUS.

“Hello. Who the fuck is this? Chester? Chester who? You listen to me, Chester, you go find out what the hell is going on or it’s your ass. Do you hear me?” He handed the phone back to Buckminster.

“What do you want me to do, Mr. President?”

“What do you want me to do?” the POTUS mocked, then glanced over at Brock who carefully laid his ball down on the conference table, then crossed his arms and glared at Buckminster. “You’re my campaign manager, Bucky. Start managing things.”

“I don’t know what I am supposed to do, Mr. President. I’m hopeful things will turn around in New York. New York is always blue.”

“I don’t want any excuses,” the POTUS replied. “Brock, do you like excuses?”

“We don’t make excuses,” Brock answered. “Champions don’t make them. One time, we got down by 21 points to Denver due to some really bad calls and a bunch of guys on I.R., but did we make excuses? Hell no! We sucked it up and started making plays… came back and won that one in overtime.”

“Yeah! yeah!” the POTUS interrupted. “Do you hear that Bucky? No excuses.”

“What should I do then?” Buckminster asked.

“You get on the phone to that Broward County and make sure they find some missing ballots.”

“Some missing ballots, sir?”

Some missing ballots, sir?” the POTUS mocked again. “Yeah. Missing ballots. Like they missed an entire truckload of them or something. Get them tabulated. We gotta have Florida.”

“Sir, this is a computer simulation.”

“No excuses!” Brock barked.

“Find a way, Bucky,” added the POTUS.

“But sir,” Buckminster continued. “How do I engineer a truckload of ballots to show up in a computer simulation?”

“Not my fucking problem. Figure it out.” The POTUS fell back into his chair and presented his vein to Nurse Baum who promptly injected him. He exhaled and relaxed and barely stirred when it was announced minutes later that New York had gone to Cleveland.

“We still have Texas and California,” Haberdash offered…


…But by 9 PM standard bunker time, it was all over. BNN called the race in Texas for Cleveland which put him over the top. Manfred had lost. Not only had he lost, but he had lost every single state except one— Connecticut— which is where Brock McGuinn’s Saxons played their home games.

“I don’t understand,” lamented Buckminster. “You’re a war time president. War time presidents never lose.”

“Now you’re just a one-and-done,” Brock pined. “Like those losers Bush and Carter and the Eagles.”

“I just don’t get it,” Buckminster moaned as he paced the room. The POTUS reclined in his chair, barely lucid. Buckminster shuffled over to the president’s side. “Mr. President,” he asked in a timid tone. “I think we may need to make the call to President Elect Cleveland.”

“What the hell for?”

“To concede.”


“Well, because it’s what the losers do, sir. They call and concede. It’s a gesture that promotes national unity. It helps us to move forward as one republic.” Buckminster presented his phone to the POTUS as if he was a waiter presenting the check. The POTUS stared at it, his expression darkening.


“Yes sir?”

“You can take that phone of yours and shove it straight up your ass.”


“You heard me.”


“I’m not conceding anything.”

Just then, Buckminster’s phone rang.

“Who is it?” asked the POTUS.

“Uh, it’s Tex Cleveland, sir.”

The POTUS stared at Buckminster lost in his diabolical thoughts.

The phone rang again.

Brock stared at the POTUS.

Haberdash piled caviar onto a cracker.

“Should I answer, sir?”

The POTUS broke from his trance. “Sure. Put him on speaker… Hello! Who is it?”

“I have President Elect Brandeis Cleveland on the line. Are we speaking to the president?”

“You are.”

Ruffling sounds.

“Hello, hello Mr. President.”

“Tex. What do you want?”

“I was expecting a call from you.”

“Were you?”

“Oklahoma just came in. I’m over 270 electoral votes.”


“Aren’t you going to concede?”

“Sure. Congratulations for winning a rigged computer simulation.”

“Don’t be a sore loser. Hey, is Brock there?”

“He’s here. You’re on speaker.”

“Hey Brock…”

“Yeah. What do you want?”

“What did you think about that ass-whoopin we put on you tonight? I can’t recall any presidential election ever being a shutout.”

“It wasn’t a shutout,” Brock snapped in a shrill voice that sounded as if he was choking back tears.

“Oh, right. You guys won Connecticut. Still, 531 to 7, that’s an ass-kicking for the record books.”

“You don’t have 531. We still have a chance to win the west coast and make a game of it.”

“No way, Brock. We’re running up the score. We’re gonna rub your nose in shit all the way up until the polls close in Guam. We want all the votes. 531 to 7. Hell, we might even contest Connecticut. You only won that by half a percent.”

Brock tried to speak but stopped when his voice came out as a squeak.

“You all have a pleasant evening.” Cleveland signed off.

“That bastard!” The POTUS slammed his fist.

Brock massaged his eyelids to prevent tears from bursting out and rolling down his face.

Bucky slouched in dejection. “Sir, what should we do?”

“Shut the fuck up, Bucky! I’m not conceding that I lost an election that didn’t even happen.”

“But sir, that would be an abuse of power.”

“I said I’m not conceding. I demand a real election, with real voters and ballots, where most of the rules are enforced.”

Buckminster looked dumbfounded.

“Get that stupid look off your face, Bucky. Now listen to me…”

“Yes sir?”

Listen carefully.”

“I’m listening, sir.”

“You’re fired! Now get the hell out of here and don’t come back.”


“Get lost!”

Buckminster stared at the president, then glanced at Haberdash who shrugged before shoving another cracker piled with caviar into his mouth. With nothing left to say, he stormed out.


“Yes sir?”

“I’m promoting you to chief of staff. Can you handle that?”

“I don’t see why not? I was a walk-on at Michigan.”


Follows, comments, likes, edits and suggestions are greatly appreciated. 

Previous Chapter

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COG Chapter 25


#ContinuityOfGovernment, #WW3, #DeepState

With his office infiltrated by a traitor and hobbled by incompetence, an increasingly unstable POTUS attempts a ‘Hail Mary’ that might just save the office of the president… even if it destroys the world in the process.





Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

Chapter 25

To V.

C/O Mr. Quixote

1569 Section L


Emma Baum stared at the note, being careful not to appear conspicuous as she did. She had stared at it many times over the previous three days. She was riding the monorail, whirling through the SuperBunker towards the Latin America section of the SuperBunker— Section L. She found an open seat which was unusual as the trains at that time were perpetually standing room only.

The Asia section flew past in the windows. Billboards covered every surface, picturing glamorous, symmetrical, flawless Asian faces, layered over vistas of aquamarine surf and sugar sand beaches and mountain pinnacles framing airbrushed, luminescent melon sunsets. Words flashed and scrolled in oriental characters, sentences each punctuated with national flags. The elites were out and about upon the avenues, sipping their tea and snorting their powders, bathing in the pristine, climate-controlled, bug-free, ersatz world of the SuperBunker… in their prescription-induced fogs.

The Greys served them dutifully, if not enthusiastically. In the Asian section, the workers stood apart with their pasty skin and fair hair—when it wasn’t died blue or green or some such. European guest workers were assigned to the Asian section. The race of the guest worker caste did not match that of the host elites. This was by design. The sociologists had determined that elites would feel less dissonance and discomfort when their servants were not of the same racial heritage. In Section N, the North America section, the Greys were of brown skin and dark hair and round faces and short stature. In Section E, the prole class was comprised of sinewy North Africans and Middle Easterners. When the monorail stopped at the border between Section A and Section L, white workers boarded and the blacks got off. The Greys that worked the Latin American facilities and serviced the Latin American elites were entirely Sub Saharan African or Aboriginal.

Baum stepped off with the crowd of uniformed passengers who quickly dispersed in the directions of their myriad destinations. She passed through an RFID tracking gate, down an escalator, and onto the colorful avenues of Imperium Hispanicum. She passed under the gaze of Simon Bolivar and Che Guevara and soon found avenue 1000, then block 500 and unit 69 without trouble. She entered a cozy, terra cotta cafe and sat at a small round table surfaced in bright tiles, facing the pedestrian avenue. An image of President Manfred giving a campaign speech with scrolling Spanish subtitles filled the television monitor behind the coffee bar. His strained grin and baggy, drooping eyes divulged the wear and tear of an intense campaign. The simulated election was going to be close.  Baum was greeted moments later.

“Buenos dias,” chimed a Nubian server topped in a wreath of interwoven braids.

“Hello,” Baum replied.


“Yes please.”

“What will you to order?” she asked in shaky English.

“I’m only here to make a delivery.”


Baum reached into her bag and withdrew the envelope. “I have something I am to deliver to a Mr. Quixote. Is he here?”

The server’s lips pursed in confusion. “Who do you say?”

“I’m looking for a Mr. Quixote. Is he here?”

The server pondered. “I am not know any Senior Quixote.”

“Are you sure? My instructions say I am to give him this card here, at this address.”

“May I see?”

Baum was apprehensive but relinquished the envelope after considering the simple, cryptic note it contained. The server examined the envelope. Then she examined Baum. She handed it back. “One moment, please,” she said in faultless English, and she went off behind the counter and through a door into the back.

Baum turned to watch the passersby as she waited, noticing it looked like a typical sunny midday on the surface, betrayed only by the soft multiple shadows cast by the diffuse overhead lighting rather than the hard-edged shade made by a true sun. The server returned within two minutes.

“Mr. Quixote will see you now,” she remarked before drifting into a back room.

Baum tried to call after her but instead sat silently at the table.

“Hello, Ms. Baum,” came a voice from behind.

She turned to find a Chinese face stretched up from behind his laptop screen.

“How did you know my name?”

“You were expected.”

“You’re Mr. Quixote, then?”

“For our purposes, yes.”

“I am supposed to give you something.”

“That card you’re holding, I presume?”

“Yes. But how do I know you really are Mr. Quixote?”

Quixote grinned. “Is your note addressed to V?”

Baum nodded.

“Have you read the note inside?”

“Yes, I have.”

“Does it say ‘Guacamole’ or ‘Habenero’?”

Now convinced of Quixote’s authenticity, she handed the card over. “See for yourself.” He reached out to retrieve it and opened it up, read it, nodded, and tucked it into his shirt pocket.

“Do you have any idea about what’s happening?” he asked, probing her mind with his intense gaze.

“No,” Baum answered. “Are you going to tell me?”

“No. I’m afraid it’s too dangerous for you to know right at this moment. You wouldn’t want to know, anyway. It would be hard to get through your days with that knowledge, being unable to share it. But you’ll know everything soon enough. I promise you that. I’ll say that big changes are coming soon.”

“Should I be worried?”

“No. You should be hopeful.”

“What reason is there for hope? Hasn’t the world been destroyed?”

“Live in your hopes, Ms. Baum, not your fears.”

“Well, when will I find out?”

“Days. A week or two at the most. Just be ready.”

“Ready for what?”

“Be ready to trust.”


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COG Chapter 24


#ContinuityOfGovernment, #WW3, #DeepState

With his office infiltrated by a traitor and hobbled by incompetence, an increasingly unstable POTUS attempts a ‘Hail Mary’ that might just save the office of the president… even if it destroys the world in the process.




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Chapter 24

Nurse Baum had barely slept for a week. The fate of her daughter consumed her thoughts, filling her with despair. Most of the Greys felt this way, having been separated from their loved ones on the surface and presuming them to be incinerated or dispersed by the mass destruction. Yet Emma Baum and the thousands of other guest workers carried on with their duties, imprisoned in the SuperBunker, subject to the perplexed or often indignant stares of their underworld masters. The elites just couldn’t comprehend why the Greys weren’t more grateful for being spared.

Emma opened her eyes and turned to the cot next to her. It was vacant and had been so for the last three nights. She got up, grabbed her duffle, slid her slippers on, and navigated the maze of snoring, staring, weeping, coughing co-workers to make her way to the changing stalls. Once dressed, she went to the lockers where she fixed up her hair. She no longer wore makeup in hopes of currying the president’s favor as a rumor had spread that the POTUS had gone insane, having murdered his gay lover in an apocalyptic rage, deep in the inner catacombs. This was dismissed as wild conspiracy theory by the elitists, of course, so the subject was not broached in conversations with them.

Emma Baum stared at the contents of her locker, locking on the vial of phenobarbital she had swiped from the pharmacy. She buried it with her duffel bag and removed her handbag from her locker. She walked out of the dorm and onto the avenue. The canvas sky, high above, was clear blue, and the simulating orb lights were soft and yellow. She strolled past the boutiques that were preparing to open for business: the designer barista, the fine clothier, the waxing salon, the cigar shop, the cosmetics emporium— each manned by glum-faced Greys. She forced herself to keep her eyes focused directly ahead as she walked.

“Psst,” hissed a voice from behind.

Emma dismissed it and continued to walk.


She redoubled her pace, turning slightly and catching a glimpse of a figure stepping out from the alley she had passed. She pressed on hoping whoever it was would relent but the footsteps gained. She turned to see who was pursuing her. He was a shadowy man with a high collar coat, sunglasses, and a Gatsby hat pulled down low on his forehead. She still had a few hundred meters to go to the safety and security of the medical center security queue. Surely, he wouldn’t attempt anything out in the open.

“Hold up!”

Baum broke into a trot. Her mind raced. “What did I do?” She immediately thought of the phenobarbital she had. Busted!

“Emma Baum,” the voice called.

The voice was familiar.

“Nurse Baum, I have something for you.”

They were both standing in the avenue, passed in both directions by a steady stream of elites dressed down in designer fleece sweatpants, exotic sneakers, highlighted hair pulled or slicked back, faces masked in thousand-dollar sunglasses.

“Nurse Baum, it’s me.”

She recognized the voice. “Mr. Fricke?”


She started to turn.

“No, don’t!” he ordered. “The camera AI will catch it as a suspicious gesture and hone in.”

“What are you doing here?” she whispered.

Just then, a portly security guard on a Mo-Mo rolled up. She pretended to check her screen until the gendarme was safely past.

“No time for that. I have a very important favor to ask.”

“What is it? I don’t want any to get involved in anything.”

“I just need you to deliver a message. A piece of paper.”

“Why me?”

“Because you’re the only Grey I can trust at the moment.”

“Why would you trust me?”

“Because we have something you what in return.”

Baum immediately thought of her daughter. “And what would that be?”

“It will be well worth it for you.”

“What does that mean?”

“That’s all I can say, for now. Just trust me.”

Even if her instincts told her it was most likely a bureaucrat’s bullshit, she had nothing to lose. A fleeting hope rooted in bullshit was better than total despair.

“Who am I delivering it to?”

“It’ll say on the message.”

“What is the message?”

“I’ll walk past you and place a card in your handbag. It has instructions written on it.”

“Is it top secret? What if I read it?”

“It doesn’t matter if you read it. Just deliver it. Do that and I will come for you.”

Baum nodded her head in agreement. Fricke walked past her and slipped the card into her bag with an imperceptible sweep of his hand.

“I’ll find you after,” he whispered as he walked past. “You must be ready to come with me at any moment. And don’t speak of this to anyone.” He kept walking ahead, turning left into a vegan confectionary.

Baum walked on to the hospital. She turned off the mall avenue and passed through the automatic sliding glass doors, past the desk, and into the security queue. Once through the imaging detector manned by another sullen Grey, she boarded an elevator. She ran her thumb along the ridge of the heavy paper card as the lift carried her down, not daring to remove it as there were cameras recording every movement. She waited until the door opened and she poured out onto hallway. There, she plucked the card from her bag. Holding it at her waist as she walked, she glanced down to read it. The face of the card was addressed:


To: V

C/O Mr. Quixote

1569 Section L


She unfolded the white cardstock paper card. Inside was a note written in a flourish of blue fountain pen ink… a note consisting of one word:




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