This story may contain scenes of sexual activity between males. If you find this offensive or if it is illegal
for you to read this in your jurisdiction, please do not do so. The author does not condone the violation
of any laws.
This story is based on an idea I have contemplated for many years but never had the courage to write.
Some elements of this story have appeared in previous stories I have written, as I did not think at the time
I would ever write or publish Brother Jonathan. Please forgive any redundance.
The story may seem rather dark, but it deals with several difficult subjects. I can assure you that it will
have a good ending. Beyond that, I say nothing more. I am grateful for those readers who understand
and appreciate what I am doing here and who have written me. I encourage you, even if you disapprove
of what I am writing, to let me know what you think at free7thinker (at) operamail.com. Thank you very much!
by Free Thinker
"I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan:
very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love
to me was wonderful, passing the love of women."
II Samuel 1:26 KJV
Thursday, March 18, 1982
Jonathan gazed into the sleeping face of David, his Davy, the love that had been taken so cruelly and now had been restored. He gazed at the same freckles on his nose and cheeks, the same lips, the same cowlick above his forehead. Davy was a man now. It was so difficult to believe and yet, it was Davy. There was no denying it. It was Davy.
Yet, the price he would pay for Davy's return to his life was not expected, and it would not be cheap. The next few days, possibly years, would be the most challenging since the deaths of his parents; possibly worse. But, it had to be done. He considered the alternative. He could just give up politics, give up the fight to reform the DHS, give up the fight to find his parents' murderer. He and Davy could just go off someplace and live quietly and never face the ugliness of life again. However, what would happen to Matt, to Kyle, to the hundreds and boys and girls in state institutions with no one to fight for them? What about the thousands to come? What about the spirits of his parents and grandparents, looking down on him even as he lay holding the most precious living person in his life? Could he ever have a moment of peace?
A soft tap on the door awoke him from his thoughts.
Matt slowly opened the door and peaked in. He smiled at the sight of the sleeping David in Jonathan's arms.
"I thought you should know. It looks like the spook has a friend outside."
Jonathan closed his eyes and shook his head. Slowly, he disentangled himself from David, who had begun to awaken. Naked, his partial erection leading the way, he crept to the window and peaked between the curtains. A boxy, Navy blue Chevy Caprice was parked near the corner; someone, possibly male was seated in the driver's seat. Jonathan frowned.
"What is it?" David asked sleepily.
Jonathan looked toward Matt.
"You didn't go outside or anything, did you?"
"Naw," the boy replied. "I just peeked out the curtain the way you just did."
"Good. We'll be out in a few minutes. I don't have any coffee, but I have some OJ in the fridge."
Matt smiled and closed the door.
"You don't drink coffee?" David asked in mock horror. Jonathan shrugged.
"I just never developed a taste for it," he replied as he climbed back into bed. He wrapped his arms around David and the two kissed.
"God, how did I ever fall I love with you? You don't drink coffee? I'll bet you don't like girls, either."
"I'll work on it."
"Not if I have anything to do with it."
The two smiled at each other and then Jonathan sighed.
"I have to get up."
"I have to face the music."
Jonathan leaned down and kissed David on the forehead.
"I'm sorry I got you involved in this," said David.
"I'm not. I'm just glad you're back in my life."
By the time he had showered and dressed, Matt and David were watching theToday show and munching on English muffins and cereal. Jonathan opened the front door to retrieve the morning paper, glancing surreptitiously up the street as he did, and returned to the counter.
"Listen," he said glancing over the headlines. "Don't go anywhere until you hear from me or from Kevin. I'm not sure how we're going to handle this, but I don't want anything happening to either one of you. Understand?"
"Aye, aye, mon capitain," replied David.
"Ten-four, good buddy," added Matt.
Jonathan slipped his coat on and adjusted his tie as the phone rang.
"Hello? Hey. Yea. There's another one out there. Can't tell. OK. I'm walking out the door right now."
The three smiled at each other. Jonathan kissed David, squeezed Matt's shoulder, and then walked out the door.
As he hopped down the steps, the mother and boy from across the street was just climbing into their car. They both stopped and looked at Jonathan with strange expressions on their faces before quickly slamming the doors. Jonathan smiled at them as he walked around the front of his Citation, but the car sped quickly away. Apparently, someone had been asking questions.
He could see the spook up the street as he opened the door to his car. He still could make out no details of the occupant, though he had the impression they were male. With a worried look up at the front window of his townhouse, Jonathan drove away.
The Eight O'Clock news was just coming on as he turned onto Capitol Boulevard.
"Scottsburg police are looking for a teen-age runaway from the Pushitaw State Boys Home whom they believe is involved in a number of crimes since his departure Tuesday. Fifteen year-old Matt McAllister is wanted for questioning in a string of burglaries in the East Capitol, South Campus, and Bohemia neighborhoods. He is described as stocky with dark shaggy hair and was last seen wearing a black concert tee-shirt. If you have any information, you are..."
Jonathan angrily struck the steering wheel with his right fist. So, this was how they were going to do it. He whipped the car into his parking space and slammed the door before striding angrily across the lot to the west entrance of the Capitol. The elderly guard at the door took a double take as the young man stormed into the building. Several people turned in surprise to watch Jonathan as he marched to the marble stairs that would take him up to his office in the attic.
Kevin was just emerging from his own office as Jonathan strode past.
"Have you heard the news?" he demanded of Kevin. His friend simply nodded and put a finger to his lips and followed him to his office.
Mrs. Carlisle was startled as the two blew past her and into Jonathan's inner sanctum. Toby, who had been hoping for a few minutes to ask some questions for the paper he was to write when he returned to school about his experiences at the Capitol looked at the lady with confusion.
"Calm down and remain rational," Kevin cautioned.
"I've been rational my whole damn life. I'm sick of being rational."
Jonathan was livid. He stood before his desk, his briefcase thrown to the couch at the side, his fists clenched tightly at his side.
"The police are in on it, too," he spat.
"Perhaps not. Maybe they are just going by information being fed to them by those who are in on it."
Jonathan was still breathing hard. Slowly he fought to control himself and sat down in his chair. Kevin sat across from him.
"OK. We need to put together everything we have, bit by bit, figure out what is fact and what is conjecture, make a persuasive argument that something must be done, and then present it to the district attorney. If the DA doesn't accept it, we have one last option."
Jonathan took a weary breath.
Jonathan creased his eyebrows. Kevin continued.
"Anything you say on the floor of the House is immune from prosecution. You can't be sued for anything you say and, here's the kicker, not that you need to worry about this, but... you can't be arrested on the floor of the House while its in session."
"You can't be serious!"
"I'm dead serious. Back in the twenties, when the Klan controlled the House, the Governor was trying to clean up the legislature. He tried to prosecute several legislators for various crimes and the legislature came up with 'legislative immunity' before they impeached him and then celebrated by lynching some blacks and Catholics."
Jonathan looked at his colleague in wide-eyed amazement.
"I'm serious," Kevin said. "And, if we start making allegations that kids are being abused at the state homes and that Franklin and Stillman are either protecting those doing it or are doing it themselves, we have to be prepared for a fusillade of every legal and political attack imaginable. If the DA won't help us, then the best way to reveal this and to get maximum public exposure and ensure maximum public outrage is to dump it all on the floor of the House in front of God and everybody and pray the papers and the TV stations and anyone else listening will pick up the ball and run with it."
Jonathan pursed his lips and nodded.
"OK. Let's do it this morning. I've got the Rules Committee at ten and Education at eleven. There's nothing important in either one today so I can blow them off."
"Same here," said Kevin. "Except I have to meet my local precinct chairmen at nine. I'll be back here at eleven."
Jonathan nodded, let ut a deep sigh, and stood. Kevin turned as he stood at the door.
"It going to work out, Jon. Its going to be rough, but its going to work out."
He smiled at Jonathan, who gratefully returned it.
"Thank you, Kevin," he said with gravity. "Thank you."
Jonathan followed Kevin out the door, and as Mrs. Carlisle gave him the morning mail and the daily work load, he signaled Toby with a grin and the two returned to his office.
Glancing over the mail, he said, "OK, Tobster. I understand you have some great Pulitzer Prize winning piece in the works and you need my expert assistance."
The teenager giggled and opened his spiral notebook.
For twenty minutes, Toby delved into Jonathan's thoughts about politics, about the legislative experience, and what needed to be done to reform the government and improve the state.
At one point, Toby asked, "What's your favorite thing to do as a member of the House?"
Jonathan leaned back in his chair, his elbows resting on the arms, his fingers spread out and touching. After a moment, he replied, "This."
Toby raised a skeptical eyebrow.
"No, I'm serious. When I was a teenager, I wanted nothing more than to go into politics. So I worked as a volunteer in several different campaigns, I joined the Teenage Republicans, and I served three times as a page in the legislature, twice in the House and once in the Senate. And, I was fortunate that the people I worked for were interested enough in a wide-eyed kid to answer his questions and inspire him to pursue his dream."
Jonathan smiled and shrugged, his heart breaking on the inside as he gazed into the earnest, almost worshipful face of the boy before him.
"Its time for me to pass it on and pay it back."
He thought he might detect the beginning of moisture in the boy's eyes. Sadly, Jonathan looked down.
"But, Toby, you have to remember something. I looked upon the men I worked for as if they were the Gods on Mount Olympus. But, we're just human beings and once upon a time, we were teenage boys just like you."
Toby chuckled as if Jonathan were merely being modest or disingenuous. Jonathan had intended to say more, to warn the boy of troubles ahead, to soften the blow that would surely come when the crisis burst and ease the disillusionment that would certainly cause the boy so much pain when he witnessed the trashing Jonathan was sure to experience. However, the mood was shattered and the opportunity lost as Jonathan silently cursed the ringing telephone.
"Yes, Mrs. Carlisle?"
Toby saw Jonathan's face turn pale and his hand cover the receiver.
"Toby, could you please excuse me?"
The boy nodded, quickly stood, and exited the door, carefully and quietly closing it behind him.
"OK, put him through."
Jonathan knew it was awful from the pain in David's voice.
"They have Matt."
"They kicked in the back door, two guys, white, early to mid twenties. Matt was in the kitchen. They put some cloth over his face and then dragged him out."
Jonathan was frozen.
"Are you alright?"
There was a pause.
"David! Are you alright?"
"I'll be OK. One of them kicked me in the groin. I, uh... I threw up on your carpet. 'I'll clean it up."
Jonathan knew his love was in shock for worry about something so inane when Matt was in such danger.
"Should we call the police?"
The speed and vehemence of Jonathan's reply surprised them both.
"We don't know whether its safe or not. But, I know who to talk to. Did you see their car?"
"No. I'm so stupid for not looking."
"Did they have a gun?"
"I... I don't know. I'm sorry, Jonnie. I'm sorry. I blew it."
"Davy, its OK. Its not your fault. But, I have to go. Do you need to go to the doctor?"
Jonathan could hear the self-reproach in Davy's voice and it broke his heart.
"Davy, I love you."
After a pause, Jonathan heard a soft, "Thank you."
Jonathan replaced the receiver and walked carefully and deliberately toward the door. Mrs. Carlisle said nothing as he walked out the office, becoming accustomed to unusual actions by her employer over the last several days. Toby watched curiously as his hero walked down the hall.
Jonathan ignored the hello's of several colleagues as he descended the back stairs to the fourth floor. He simply looked ahead. On the fourth floor, Bill Cavanaugh was just walking into his office as Jonathan walked past. He started to greet him, but stopped as he saw the young man's determination as he passed.
At the door to Eddie Stillman's office, he turned. Stillman's secretary, an older woman with big hair and a big bosom, declared, "Excuse me, excuse me,excuse me," as he walked past and opened the door to the inner office.
Stillman was behind his desk; two men in slightly out of date polyester suits were sitting in chairs on either side of the desk. All three looked up in surprise as Jonathan stepped in. His eyes met Stillman's. The evangelist looked at him with malice for a fraction of a second and then, he sat back with an unctuous smile.
"Why, Brother Jonathan! What a pleasant surprise. And, what a fortuitous coincidence. Why, we were just speaking of you, weren't we, Hal?"
Jonathan looked at the man on the right, the one to whom Eddie had addressed the question, and recognized Hal Moses, the District Attorney, who was just standing up.
"Representative Holbrook, it's a pleasure to finally meet the 'rising star of the Republican Party. We need good men like you in our Party if we're to restore decency and good Christian values to our society."
Coldly, Jonathan shook his hand. Stillman stood up, still smiling.
"Hal, I'm sure you and your assistant understand the nature of legislative emergencies. Could I call you later to continue our... our discussion?"
The D.A. gave a curiously knowing smile and replied, "Sure thing, Eddie. Sure thing."
Turning to Jonathan again, he added, as he and his assistant walked out the door, "Its was surely god to meet you, Brother Jonathan. I'm sure we'll be talkin' again soon."
Stillman had come around his desk.
"Let me walk you two out. You don't mind waitin' a minute, do you, Brother Jonathan?"
Moses was grinning, as was his assistant as the entered the outer office. Jonathan's eyes met Stillman's again as he walked past. The evangelists eyes remained friendly; yet, there was a message in them that did not escape Jonathan.
With the door closed, Jonathan took a deep breath and attempted to regain control of his anger. He stared at the faded red carpet on the floor of the office and then looked up. On the wall to his left, instead of the usual bookshelves, (indeed there were no bookshelves at all in Stillman's office,), were several framed photographs of Stillman, several of which were taken outside his church in Clear Creek with various local dignitaries. There was even one with Stillman standing beside President Reagan.
The door opened and Jonathan turned around. Stillman enetered and closed the door. As he walked around his desk, he said, "Hal's a member of my congregation. We're very close friends. Indeed, quite a few powerful people have seen the light and joined our congregation. Quite a few, indeed. Even, Daniel Webster Franklin."
He waited for the full import of his words to sink in until he asked, "Now, Brother Jonathan. What can I do for you?"
Slowly, deliberately, as evenly as he could, Jonathan asked, "Where is he?"
Stillman looked at him curiously, for a moment, as if he didn't understand the question. Then, he became thoughtful. After a moment, his face became only slightly serious, though it maintained his previous unctuous demeanor.
"I'm sure he's back in Pushitaw by now, where he will be safe from pedophiles and child molesters and hoe-moe-sexuals."
"What's going to happen to him?"
"Why, he'll be safe. He'll be protected, as much as we can protect him. Of course, accidents happen. Boys can become distraught and upset when they have been victimized by perverts. Why, just last weekend, a sweet little boy named Luke was so disturbed by Brother Bransted molesting him that he hung himself. Such a tragedy. Such a sweet boy. I knew him myself."
There was something about the tone in Stillman's voice as he spoke of Luke, something oily, more oily than normal, that caused a shiver of revulsion in Jonathan and caused a disquieting sense of deja vu.
"That boy didn't kill himself and Bransted didn't molest him. Bransted knew the truth and that's why he was killed. I know the truth. You can't get away with this."
"Oh, don't be so melodramatic. Of course, I can get away with this. Now, the question is, will you cooperate? My offer still stands. We can make you Governor and all you have to do is help us. But, if you choose to be obstinate... Well, it will be very difficult for young Matt to deal with his trauma, I am sure. And, 'Davy,' your 'sweet Davy' may find himself in serous legal difficulties. And, you, Jonathan. Think of the humiliation, the scorn, the public ridicule when people learn that their Boy Scout is nothin' more than a cock-sucking boy-fucker."
Jonathan could not breathe. He was trembling with rage.
"You want to be Governor, Jonathan. Its everything you've always wanted. You know you want it" He could barely think. His eyes turned away from Stillman. In an emotional whirl, his head turned and his eyes swept across the room. And, then, they alighted on the word. He froze.
It was a diploma from Pushitaw Bible College granted to Eddie Joe Stillman on May 21, 1970.
And, then, nausea swept over him.
Beside the diploma, in a simple black frame, was a photograph. He recognized the place. It was the ancient giant black railroad engine in Pushitaw Park. It was a young man and a pre-teen boy. The young man was skinny, with shiny black hair and those black plastic framed glasses from the sixties. He had never seen the boy, but a wave of nausea swept over him as he realized who the man in the picture was.
"You know you want it," Jonathan heard Stillman repeat softly. Or did he? Could it, instead, have been an echo from thirteen years before?
He turned to Stillman, who was sitting passively in his chair.
"It was you."
Stillman cocked his head slightly, his eyes and smile unchanging, before responding.
"Spring and summer, 1969. I remember you well, Brother Jonathan. You whimpered and cried so sweetly. You had a beautiful voice. You'd have been perfect in the choir."
Jonathan was struggling for breath, his dizziness growing.
"I will make you Governor or I will destroy your life and those of everyone you care for."
Stillman looked at his watch.
"I believe that David is now being taken to the Scottsburg City-County Jail. Life in jail can be so very dangerous, especially if the other inmates should learn he is a cock-sucking boy-fucker."
Jonathan's mouth was dry. His hand reached out to the back of the chair in which Hal Moses had earlier been seated. He steadied himself.
"I know a lot of things about a lot of people, Brother Jonathan. I'm a very powerful man. I can help you or I can hurt you. Its up to you."
Jonathan slowly backed away. Grasping the doorknob, he turned and gave Stillman one last look. The man remained in his chair, a serene expression on his face. Quickly, Jonathan pulled the door open and staggered out the door.
He did not remember returning to his office. All he knew was that Kevin was there and that life was a nightmare.
He was sitting at his desk. Kevin was seated beside him.
"Jon, speak to me! What's happened?"
"Its him. Its him."
"Who's him? What?"
"Stillman. It was Stillman."
"What was Stillman?"
Jonathan looked up at Kevin with a look of utter defeat.
"Just before my parents were killed, I was molested by some creep in the park in Pushitaw who threatened to kill my parents if I told anyone. It was the same guy who molested Davy before his parents were killed in the fire. Kevin... it was Stillman."
Kevin looked Jonathan in th eye and knew it was true. Now, he understood his friend, the pain, the silence, the stoicism and his heart broke for his friend.
"Kevin, he's the devil. He's Satan. He admitted it. He laughed about it. And, he has Franklin in his pocket. I don't know how, but he has something on him and Franklin's under his control. And, Moses. He has the District Attorney."
"Jesus." Kevin stood and looked out the window as a shadow moved across the cityscape to the north.
"He has Matt."
Kevin spun around.
"David called me a few minutes ago. The broke into the apartment and took Matt. They also attacked David. He says he's OK. The must have chloroformed Matt. That's why I went down to Stillman's office, to confront him. He made no effort to deny it. He seemed proud. He seemed quite pleased with himself. And, he says they have David, now. He's threatening to kill them both if I don't go along with him."
"Where is David now?"
Kevin walked over to the desk and picked up the phone. He punched in a number and after a moment, said, "Janet, get me Dad."
He turned to Jonathan.
"They'll listen to William Peter Berkeley. If a senior partner in Robertson, Berkeley, and Hanson knocks on their door, they're gonna jump."
As Kevin spoke to his father, Jonathan stood and began to pace about the office, gathering his wits and his self-control. He had to save David and Matt, but it was unthinkable that he could acquiesce to Stillman's demands. He sat down on the couch and watched his friend.
Kevin replaced the receiver.
"Dad will have someone check the jail and find out the situation. Don't worry. He's also going to have Pushitaw checked out. Now, let's get to work. You have to address the House this afternoon and we have to organize your presentation."
Jonathan was grateful to have something on which to focus his mind. For the next several hours they organized, wrote, rephrased, rehashed, and refined his presentation to the House. By the time they were finished, it was after one and the House was already in session. They were just standing up to leave the office, however, when the phone rang. After answering it, Jonathan gave the receiver to Kevin. When he replaced the receiver, he looked at Jonathan gravely.
"There's no record of David being at Central Division or at Adult Detention Center. A contact in dispatch says a car was sent to your address, but that's all he knows. They're still checking out Pushitaw."
His voice revealing his determination and certainty, Jonathan declared, "We have to speak before something happens. We have to get down there now."
The two were walking quickly down the hall, however, when two Scottsburg police officers appeared at the head of the stairs. The officers stopped as they saw Jonathan and Kevin. The legislators stopped as they saw the police. Kevin turned to Jonathan.
As firmly as he could, he commanded, "Back way, get to the floor, anyway you can. Now!"
Jonathan turned and began walking quickly toward the back stairway.
"Jonathan Holbrook!" one of the policemen called. "Stop! Police! We have questions!"
Jonathan sped up almost to a run. The policemen took off.
"Stop!" Kevin yelled as they passed him. "He has legislative immunity!"
"Bullshit!" one of them yelled as Jonathan disappeared down the back stairs. Kevin took off in pursuit.
"You can't arrest him!" Kevin called. "I'm the one you want! I'm the one with the evidence!"
One of them looked back at him as the rounded the corner at the stairs, but they continued onward, as did Kevin.
Jonathan had reached the bottom of the stairs. Startled tourists and House staffers and fellow members stopped and stared as Jonathan ran toward the door to the House cloakroom. As he burst through the door, the two policeman jumped into the hallway off the stairs and darted to the door through which Jonathan had run.
In the House chamber, the usual opening items of business were being dealt with. Only about three fourths of the members were in the chamber and most were chatting amiably with each other as the clerk was reading the assignment of bills to committees and the disposition of bills in the morning's committee meetings. Toby and the other pages were fidgeting on the couches under the dias. The Speaker was nursing another hangover and rubbing his temples. Just as he turned to fire more chew at a spot near his spittoon, the door at the side of the dias burst open. The entire House froze as Jonathan Holbrook came running in. He stopped in front of the stunned pages, struggling to catch his breath as he looked about the chamber.
The Speaker held his chew and, instead, demanded, "What the hell is goin' on?"
Jonathan had taken only two steps toward the aisle and his desk when the door burst open a second time and the two Scottsburg Police Officers entered followed now by two very elderly and very out of breath Capitol guards. The policemen rushed Jonathan and, in front of the stunned and speechless House, threw Jonathan down on Eddie Stillman's desk. One of them held him still as the other patted him down.
As they drew his arms beside him and handcuffed him, the Speaker demanded, "What's the meaning of this?"
The policemen ignored him and roughly pushed Jonathan toward the front just as Kevin burst through the door.
"Mr. Speaker!" he yelled. "This is an illegal arrest! He has legislative immunity!"
"Not for child molestin' perverts!" Eddie Stillman yelled.
"Jonathan Holbrook, you are under arrest for the lewd molestation of one Matthew James McAllister. You have the right to remain silent. Anything..."
As the policemen ignored Kevin, the House was in an uproar.
"Mr. Speaker! Point of order! These police officers are in violation of House rules! They cannot enter the House chamber!"
By this time, Bill Cavanaugh was standing as well.
"Point of order, Mr. Speaker! These men cannot arrest a member of the House on the floor of the House while the House is in session!"
"Mr. Speaker!" Kevin yelled, "This is an illegal arrest and it will be thrown out of court! Order them to wait until we have adjourned!"
This got the policemen's attention, as did the suddenly booming voice of the Speaker calling out, "Stop right there!"
"Mr. Speaker!" Stillman nearly screamed. "Arrest him! He's a child molester. He's trying to escape!"
"Silence!" The Speaker commanded and, suddenly, the House was, indeed, silent. The Speaker turned to an elderly man below him and to his side who looked as if he had been sitting in that chair since 1927.
"The Parliamentarian will rule."
The man, who looked as frightened as if it were he being arrested instead of Jonathan, shivered and then slightly regained his composure. He took a deep breath and then leaned into his microphone.
"Only those individuals specifically invited or authorised by majority vote of the House may be permitted on the floor. Section 12, subsection c of the Rules of the House. And, no member may be arrested on the floor of the House while the House is in session nor can any member be prosecuted or sued by slander for any comments made on the floor while the House is in session."
The Speaker, enjoying the first real excitement in the House in years, suppressed a smile.
"Well, gentlemen," the Speaker said softly as the police officers scowled. "I'm afraid I'm gonna have to ask you to wait outside for a spell."
"We'll be here. Believe me."
"Well, that's right comforting, but I have to remind you that you aren't allowed to talk in here, either."
However, as the officers skulked toward the door, the Speaker stopped them.
"Uh, boys. I'm afraid you forgot something."
He pointed to the handcuffs on Jonathan. The older of the two officers gave the Speaker a murderous look and then removed the cuffs. As he stepped outside, the faces of two more police officers appeared at one of the doors at the rear of the chamber.
Jonathan rubbed his wrists and said, "Thank you, Mr. Speaker." However, before he was able to finish, Franklin and Stillman both were standing, demanding the Speaker's attention. The Speaker recognized his Democratic colleague.
"Mr. Speaker," Franklin boomed, "I move to adjourn immediately."
"Second!" shouted Stillman.
"Point of order, Mr. Speaker!" Kevin declared as both Stillman and Franklin gave him poisonous glares. "At this point in the proceedings, a motion to adjourn requires unanimous consent. "
The Speaker raised an eyebrow and Franklin sat down. Stillman, frustration boiling from his face, reluctantly followed suit.
"Mr. Speaker!" Jonathan declared as he finally reached his desk.
"The chair recognizes Representative Holbrook."
All eyes were on Jonathan as he attempted to adjust his tie and straighten himself up. He took a deep breath.
"Mr. Speaker, the House is aware that allegations have been made regarding the abuse of children in several state institutions. Mr. Speaker, I now have proof that such abuses have and continue to occur and that an organized and illegal conspiracy by members of this very body has suppressed any attempt to expose and eradicate it."
"Mr. Speaker!" Franklin declared. "Point of order! It is against the House rules for a member to question the integrity or to personally insult a member of the House on the floor of the House as the House is in session."
The Speaker sat back and looked at Jonathan.
"I don't believe our young colleague has named a single name, yet."
Franklin was apoplectic, but the Speaker pointed to him with anger and the most feared and loathed man in the House, unused to such cavalier treatment by one of his puppets, sat.
"Thank you, Mr. Speaker," Jonathan continued. "It has come to my attention that these attempts to cover-up the scandal include murder and kidnaping. Tuesday night, a teenage boy, a runaway escaping the repeated abuses at the Pushitaw State Boy's Home, met me at Indian Creek Park. He has revealed to me that Representative Bransted had uncovered the scandal and that a boy with whom he had spoken at the home on Saturday was the boy alleged to have committed suicide Sunday night. Mr. Speaker, that was no suicide. That poor child was murdered!"
Chaos erupted from the members and from the spectators in the gallery. The Speaker angrily banged his gavel and then desperately clutched his temples.
"If anyone makes me gavel again, I will clear the galleries! You hear?"
The chamber fell into silence. Jonathan continued.
"Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, we shall mourn the loss of our brave colleague, Representative Bransted. But, I tell you, his loss was no suicide. Our colleague came to me Monday evening and requested time to appear before the Rules Committee Tuesday morning to reveal what he had learned in his investigations. The next morning, he was found shot to death with a bottle of liquor. Mr. Speaker, Bill Bransted didn't drink and he didn't kill himself. Our colleague was murdered.
Before the House and the spectators could erupt again, the Speaker raised his gavel, heading off any tumult before it could begin.
"Mr. Speaker, Tuesday afternoon, I was offered support in a race for Governor in 1988 if I would end my investigation. This offer was made by the very man responsible for the scandal and the cover up. Mr. Speaker, the young boy who can testify to the abuses in Pushitaw has been staying in my home for protection. This morning, thugs in the employ of the perpetrator broke into my home and kidnaped him. Later, a friend of mine who has assisted me in my investigations was picked up in my home by the Scottsburg Police. Yet, attempts to find where they took him have met a brick wall. Mr. Speaker, this morning, the perpetrator told me that he controls the District Attorney and, through the DA, the police. He has threatened to kill both Matt McAllister, the courageous boy who brought this to my attention, and David Hathaway, my good and dear friend who has helped. I know he is capable of doing this, Mr. Speaker. I know because when I was eleven years old, this monster, this symbol of everything evil, molested me."
Murmurs of shock and disgust grew throughout the chamber. Jonathan looked about and then, softly, said, "Mr. Speaker, the man I speak of, the man who molested me thirteen years ago, the man who has molested countless other children, the man who has gained control of Democrats and Republicans alike to through blackmail and intimidation, the man who has had many people murdered to silence them, including a member of this very House and my own dear parents, the man who threatens to kill a courageous fifteen year-old boy, the unspeakably vile bastard is... Eddie Stillman."
Chaos erupted throughout the chamber again and the Speaker, try as he might, was unable to quell the furor. Members and spectators were both shouting in outrage, but as Jonathan looked around the chamber he was shocked.
Suddenly, he was naked and the crowds were spitting their venom not at Eddie Stillman, but at him. He looked about him in shock. They were yelling at him. At him!
"Mr. Speaker!" he called out. "Mr. Speaker!"
But, Eddie Stillman was on his feet. He stood calmly as all around him shouted their invective at Jonathan. His eyes met Jonathan's and a message of triumph appeared in them. Jonathan looked behind Stillman and saw Toby sitting on the couch. The boy's eyes were red. He looked into Jonathan's and slowly turned away.
Someone moved to adjourn and before anyone could object, the Speaker gavelled the House into
adjournment. And, before he realized what had happened, the policemen were at his desk, throwing him
down on it, handcuffing him, pushing him through the crowd and out of the chamber.
Thank you for reading my story. I am sorry it has taken so long for the story to continue, but there is one more chapter. If you have any comments please write to me at free7thinker at operamail.com.