Confessions Of A Vampire by Dave MacMillan
E=MC squared - recognise it? Einstein's deceptive little formula for the speed or light - or something. That's how things are supposed to be in the great cyber-revolution. Yeah ... And I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell - cheap.
In scifi, a cute little colliary to Einstein's thesis is that time will actually slow down for the mass reaching light speed. I'd like to add my own little subscript to Doktor Einstein's theory - WHEN you add banks and their agents to the internet that YOU do slow down to a snail's crawl. It's the old "how do you fuck up a wet dream" syndrome. They require that bank executive wannabes pass that course on the graduate level before earning their MBAs.
The long and short of it is that, though I had the text for my website in the hands of the 2nd webmaster a fortnight ago and I rang the bank agent 10 days ago with my credit info, I WON'T be able to process secure credit card transactions until Monday, the 19th. The webmaster is prodding right along (I have a base website now - slowly but surely it's coming together; it's the bank/agent that is showing me how really effective heels are when used as brakes. I'm beginning to think that this bank is a sumo wrestler in another life - a big-assed mother, you know? The URL to my website is http://www.geocities.com/macmillanbooks/. Please realise, though, that you can't order from the site with your credit card yet. Realise, too, that we're still touching the thing up - so, it's not going to look finished ... yet.
Of course, if there's anything that catches your eye, you can order through the post - but the USPS in South Carolina will not deliver in-country post in less than 5 days or foreign mail in less than 20 days (and I don't have a merchant's acct to handle credit cards for e-book purchases yet. I do understand the postal system in Burma is worse than South Carolina's - maybe Burundi's and Sierra Leon's as well. Oh, well ... When you're fucked, you're fucked.
Anyway, I hope to have the bloody website operating so anyone can give their friends and loved ones a lovely e-book by X-mas. Please bear with me. Please order from me too - as the bank wants all my limbs, both testicles, and my first born for all the wonderful things they're doing for me in "helping" to set this up. I'm not sure yet which head it is that they're demanding in addition to the above, though - legal North American Standard is excruciatingly inexplicit Dave
A dapper, naivete-perfected Joe McCarthy in freshly-pressed Pierre Cardin waited in a Mercedes beyond the gate for me at exactly 1800 hours the next evening.
We were soon driving through the working-poor and lower middle-class sections of Prince Georges county toward the Maryland coast. Thirty minutes later we were whizzing through the farm country of southern Maryland. Finally, at 1900 hours, we pulled into a drive that seemed swallowed by bole after bole of leafed-out trees.
"You're going to like these people, Karl - they're more your type than Hank and Boyd."
I raised a brow in question. He laughed. "They're classy people. Well-educated, old money, good brains - the kind of leaders who will make the revolution coming to America succeed. They're not the foot soldiers a Congressman Broussard is."
"And they're all straight arrows too, right?"
He chuckled. "I'd guess most of the younger ones probably swing in private, behind closed doors, with their own - but, yes, they do present an unblemished image of sanity and stability to the world."
He pulled in behind another Mercedes, the far more expensive convertible model. "These people, and many of their friends, see that America took a wrong turn and got broken. They understand the need for strong leadership - strong moral leadership - even if it has to step on some individual rights. The greatest good for the greatest number lies in strictly defining and controlling social behavior, at least, in the short-term - until we've reestablished harmony in the country again."
I nodded complete understanding. Of course I understood. A social deviate of any persuasion wouldn't have courts offering him an attorney and trying to observe his rights once Joe and his friends held power. He'd be beaten until he told the police who his colleagues were and then shot. At least, he would disappear. Overcrowded prisons would become a thing of the past, no longer a matter of political dialogue.
As we took the steps up to the door of the manor, I wondered idly how many families in America would learn the fear their European cousins learnt more than fifty years before if Joe's plans for this country were ever implemented.
A very proper English butler admitted us, ticking Joe's name off a mental list he had memorised, and showed us into a large, tastefully and expensively decorated room. Men in expensively tailored suits stood in small cliques of twos and threes, slowly sipping drinks and discussing investments.
"The people on board now are mostly in oil and banking," Joe whispered to me as he stood at the door watching his betters with near awe. "But our revolution is expanding rapidly through the upper classes. There's been almost a hundred percent growth in those joining us just this past year."
I extended my hearing into the room. I wanted to catch the nuances of this class that would lend itself to build the new order of a fascist America. Not the thoughts and fears - but the dynamics of this leadership. These men who viewed themselves as the natural replacements for the class to which I belonged.
Soft, Southern accents and twangs predominated as my hearing moved through the room. Golf courses coupled with various partnerships with the communist Chinese seemed to be the center around which most of the conversations revolved.
I noticed without surprise this gathering of the selected few was entirely white and male.
Bob Treman broke away from his group and came toward us. "Joe, it's good to see you again," he said as he neared us. "Thanks for coming." He smiled pleasantly to me, pretending he didn't know me.
Joe chuckled. "You couldn't have kept me away, Congressman. I'd like you to meet the Prince von Muribor, an Austrian sympathiser. Karl, this is Congressman Treman of Maryland."
We shook hands and I pretended to bask in the friendly smile of the Congressman. "Karl here has ties to some of our European allies," Joe explained. I watched the man's eyes widen as he nodded. Apparently there were some areas of communication not frequented at the Honorable Robert Treman's hide-away in Capitol Hill.
"My Prince, you just make yourself at home," he offered. "Joe here pretty well knows his way around - stick close to him and see how we do it over here."
I wasn't sure if I had been sloughed off with a mild warning or accepted into the inner circle.
I took a glass of champagne from a passing tray and pretended to sip at it as I followed the leader of the Christian Circle from one clump of people to the next during the next forty-five minutes.
Joe and I were near a set of windows facing the drive and trees beyond when I sensed conversations stopping on the other side of the room. I glanced over the shoulder of a banker from North Carolina and saw a tall, craggy-faced man with slicked-back, receding wavy hair enter the room from another entrance than the one we had used. I recognised him from the memories of the skinhead in `P' Street park who had lost his life feeding me during the winter after he made the mistake of attacking an innocent man.
Joe was a shorter man than I and the banker's back was turned to the room. They continued their discussion of how to build a stronger Christian Circle party base in someplace called Charlotte to offset the liberal influence of another place called Raleigh-Durham as I watched the man make his way into the room, stopping at each small congregation of people.
"You ought to send some of these bullies you've got up here in the North down to us and let them stomp some sense into those professors at Duke," the banker told Joe, and I sensed no humor behind his suggestion. "That'll get the Senator's rednecks spitting nails and the churches organising CC cells real fast."
"It'll keep that nigger from Charlotte off the Senator too," Joe opined.
"We'd have to kill the bastard if it ever looked like he might win . . ."
I tuned their conversation out as I watched the man I knew to be the Reverend Pat Koughlin make the rounds of the room before me. I had never understood the appeal of racial prejudice - even in its intellectual infancy in Europe. The economic side of its appeal I could comprehend - for workers and the Lumpenproletariat. They were the ones whose job positions were threatened by Slavs or Arabs - even Greeks - who would work for less than the native-born worker. Racial tolerance to the lower classes had always been seen as a password for economic competition and loss of jobs.
Though it was despicable for a politician to pander to a commoner's fears, I could understand those fears. What I didn't understand was belief in racial inferiority by otherwise intelligent and educated men. Men such as Joe or the banker.
Perhaps it was because I, myself, was such a hybrid of Slavic, Magyar, and German bloods. Or, it could be my continuing love for the Slavic Sergei who had in fact nearly the same number of Germanic blood lines as I, substituting Greek for my Magyar ones.
I accepted that the commons by the very nature of their position in society were ignorant. The better educated they became, the more advanced their society became - as it was today in Europe. Or their betters sought to lessen the extent of knowledge to protect their own position or that of the church - as it had been too long in much of Asia and Latin America and was now proving to be in America.
I accepted that some men were less intelligent than others. Though society probably had some part to play in their inability to develop into complete human beings, their failure was mostly a genetic factor designed to destroy their blood lines as it is in nature. But ignorance was not the same as stupidity. One depended on education or its lack; the other was the result of random genetic selection.
I accepted too that some racial characteristics were more attractive to me personally than were others. The Turkish shepherd who had fed me as I re-gained my strength on the mountainside in Austria was a man who would never appeal to me because of the random selection of genes that had made his legs short and bowed, his nose hawkish, his hair-line descending almost to his brows, and his chest cavity so large he was barrel-chested. But, simply because I found him unattractive did not mean I considered him inferior - if his intelligence and education had made him an equal.
I could not accept an intelligent man of an unthreatened social position considering another man inferior solely because of his race. It was not logical.
It was Wahnsinn.
Reverend Pat Koughlin reached the three of us. Joe immediately fawned on the man slavishly, surprising me. I had seen him treat equally with the captains of industry and government at this soiree as well as Congressmen and government managers at Bob Treman's house on Capitol Hill. I knew his intelligence to be high - even if misguided - and his lust for power to be higher still; but I had never seen him be a sycophant.
The banker was hardly better.
Their Führer was with them.
I felt a fool as the preacher spoke first with one man and then with the other; but I met his eyes searching mine unflinchingly.
"Reverend Koughlin, I'd like you to meet Karl von Muribor," Joe offered finally and I noticed he left out my title.
"You're German?" the preacher asked, his voice warm and friendly, instantly wrapping me within it.
"Austrian - and Swiss," I answered.
He grinned and offered: "I'm going to be staying here with Bob Treman for a few days, perhaps we can get to know each other better?"
"I'd like that," I answered.
"Good. What time tomorrow is best for you?"
I was slightly taken back at his assumption I would make time only one day from now available to him. But, still, I had come this far that I might understand America's descent into a hell Europe had tasted and rejected. Tomorrow was Sunday. I had thought of taking the lads to Baltimore's Mechanic Theater that evening. It was still cool enough I could withstand the afternoon sun if late enough. "Perhaps around this time?"
He nodded. "We'll meet here. The Speaker of the House of Representatives will also be with us; you won't mind keeping that under your hat, will you?"
I looked at him questioningly and Joe chuckled. "Sir, he sometimes has problems with our idioms," he told the preacher and turned to me to say: "He wants you to treat your knowledge of your visit and his guests a secret."
I smiled my acquiescence to the Reverend Pat Koughlin, now I knew what he meant.
I liked Reverend Pat Koughlin. A little.
He was well-preserved for a man in his sixties but singularly unappealing physically. Perhaps, I went to sexual thoughts because the preacher could not follow me there.
He was warm and friendly. Which had taken me totally by surprise. I had been prepared for the monster behind the nightmares Joe McCarthy and his cohorts prayed so avidly became reality.
He was magnetic, even charismatic, in the brief moments we chatted. He had seemed - well - normal. He was intelligent, and he was imminently able to touch a man and have him like him. I had no sense of danger or of consuming insanity. The well-heeled nouveau riche of America in the room about me had been forgotten in those few moments. As had their dreams of establishing order in the midst of the chaos I knew the preacher had ordered.
That was my problem with Reverend Pat Koughlin. I had access to Joe's thoughts as we romped through Congressman Bob Treman's orgies and had taken advantage of that access. I knew as much of what Joe knew that I could handle.
The Christian Center was already a political party, much as the NSDAP had been in the middle twenties. It dominated the Republican party at present but was posed to leap into independence when the party of Lincoln collapsed after serving its usefulness.
There were connections to the skinheads and even more violent, disaffected groups in the country. Joe McCarthy didn't know the men at the pivotal junctions that brought those groups back to this preacher, he simply knew they were there.
His role was to present a trustworthy face to the American public as it grew tired of the violence creeping ever closer to middle-class homes. He was there to bring like-minded men in government and industry to this would-be Führer and to make the Christian Circle credible to the public.
He was doing that admirably - with the appearance of innocent idealism combined with organisational skills. He was a combination of McCarthy, Hess, and Borman - all three in one, and that before the allure of sex could be added where needed.
In a real sense, Joe McCarthy was imminently the most dangerous man in America. Simply because of his skill as an organiser and a thesbian. Because of his looks and his rutting instincts in bed. He was this preacher's stalking-horse. Or, perhaps more accurately, he was the preacher's Trojan horse at the thin walls that protected democracy, and men such as Broussard and Treman were there ready to raze those walls in order to bring the horse into the public square.
Joe McCarthy had quieted the fourth estate's instinct for the jugular with his reasonableness. He had convinced the commons with his sincerity.
Treman, the brightest voice of conservatism since Vandenberg, was obviously more than the nothing I had assumed before today. One aspect of him was open to blackmail and, even, public disclosure and repudiation - as was the Congressman from Mississippi.
The aspect hosting this soiree that brought industry and Koughlin together this afternoon was a new and more threatening facet of the man. The new Speaker of the House with whom I was to share my audience tomorrow would be the first of the jackals to run if a crack developed in the united front Treman, Broussard, and McCarthy were building for their leader.
My dilemma was that I couldn't understand how the two faces of American fascism I had met tied into the destabilisation going on across the face of America. The phylum and order of homo vampiricus was unfortunately not blessed with divine omniscience - not even a little.
Because we were so much more perfect in every other aspect than our mortal cousins, that little fact made me agnostic to the core. My meeting the next evening with Reverend Pat Koughlin, however, threatened me with the dark beauty of blatant atheism.
I liked him.
Unmöglich, nicht wahr?
Perhaps it was impossible, but so were vampires and other mortal nightmares.
As some German wit once said with more insight than even he expected: alles ist relativ. Everything is relative - even the impossible.
I drove myself to Congressman Treman's home the early evening of the next day and turned the Volkswagen's air conditioner as high as it would go. The day had been hot; the late afternoon was nearly equally so. The heat threatened to drain me worse than fifty-six years of sleep had. I doubted if I could again enter the world before the sun was safely set - not until autumn again neared the borders of winter. And I wondered what insanity had led me to accept the preacher's invitation at such an ungodly hour.
The same butler as the evening before opened the door to my knock and I was shown into a more intimate room, its French doors opened to a well-tended and shaded garden on the side of the house. There I waited as the servant went to announce me not to the master of the house, but to the Congressman's master.
"It's good to see you again, Prince von Muribor."
At the sound of the voice, I turned to see Koughlin strolling across the room toward me, a short, pudgy, dark-haired man waddling hurriedly after him. "You know the Speaker of the House, Luke Renfroe, don't you?"
"I don't think we've met," the fat man with the shock of black hair and pock-marked face huffed as he caught up with the preacher and faced me. I noted he did not appeared chastened in the least from his recent reprimand and large fine his fellows had visited upon him. Perhaps American reactionaries could not be embarrassed, regardless of how stupidly they behaved?
I smiled at the man. "We met in the receiving queue at the Embassy-"
"That's right!" Renfroe grunted with surprise, pursing his lips. "I did meet you there. I knew you looked familiar but couldn't remember from where."
Koughlin smiled. "I thought you might like to meet a man who's one of the strongest men in the United States. The Speaker here has the intellect and credentials to keep sending journalists and the Democrats scurrying for shelter-"
The course skin about Renfroe's lips and nose wrinkled and valleys formed where there had been a pocked plain before as he smiled. "We've been designing the strategy that'll bring the government to another grinding stand-still. We're going to finish rolling back sixty years of liberal, socialist government and giving America back to its citizens even if it means shutting down government for a while-"
The preacher's eyes hooded for the barest moment. "Luke, I don't think the Prince is that interested in the mechanics of how American government works," he said and turned to face me. "Actually, I've been wondering exactly what the Prince von Muribor is interested in," he continued thoughtfully.
I smiled placatingly. "Put simply, I'm interested in investments, the kind that aren't taxed as highly as they are in Austria-"
"Or Switzerland?" he added quickly.
"Or Switzerland," I allowed and wondered when Joe had provided his dossier on me to the preacher.
"There's nothing wrong with that. A man has every right to make money, the way I see it. Only, how do you see what the American press calls the right-wing helping you do it?"
I smiled and lapsed immediately into what passed for a business mien for me. "Investments require security as well as a business-oriented climate that they may grow. And everyone in Europe knows this country is having some social problems now."
"So, you would tie your investments in with us?" the preacher asked, probing directly to the core of what was in my mind. From what I had seen of America the past five months, I wouldn't invest a sou here - not if I ever wanted to see a return on it. The destabilisation this man was orchestrating was working remarkably well.
"It crossed my mind. It's not just my money we're talking about. I have friends who-" I smiled. "I guess I might label them conservative. They want to avoid the possibility of upheavals that would reflect poorly on their investments."
"How much are you talking?"
I pulled myself to my full height and, while not exactly frowning, allowed my face to go lax to show displeasure. "Gentlemen rarely discuss money," I opined, remembering the apt expression from some ancient American flick.
Koughlin smiled benignly. "But businessmen do. And businessmen want protection to pursue their investments."
"Are we discussing the purchase of protection here?" I asked in amazement.
The preacher forced a laugh. "I've been called a lot of things these past ten years, but being a mobster isn't one of them. I was trying to pin you down on how interested you and your investors are. We'll win. Tomorrow is ours and it won't be bought with bribes and shake-downs; it'll come because Americans are fed up with ineffective government, with-" He smiled shyly. "There I go running on off at the mouth again," he chuckled.
"When that time comes," Luke Renfroe said, "ours will be the most pro-business government in the world. We'll have the least expensive labor and the lowest business taxes. America's going to explode into the twenty-first century, Prince von Muribor. You couldn't do better than to invest here."
I smiled at the Speaker of the House of Representatives. "There is one aspect of the mechanics of government that interests me, Congressman. How can these-?" I searched furiously for a word that was innocuous, "these conservatives you lead be assured of continued reelection? There will assuredly be a fight your next election by parties interested in their defeat-"
Luke Renfroe laughed. "Prince von Muribor, only 30 or so percent of Americans vote for Congress - maybe 50 percent when there's a presidential election as well. Reverend Koughlin's people produced a solid 50 percent of the vote this past year. That's 15 percent of the total electorate.
Our Congressional Republicans are being trained right now to keep their ears to the heartbeat of their Districts."
"Didn't the people your side defeated do that as well?"
"Not usually. They sure didn't listen to what conservative Christians wanted to say - and they didn't say what they wanted to hear. But what the majority is doing right now is staying in touch with their individual Districts. They're representing what those people back home want."
I noticed the preacher watched me carefully and wondered what he was thinking. Instead of judiciously learning what was on the surface of his thoughts, I plunged into the discussion the Speaker of the House of Representatives seemed to be offering. "There are problems I do see, problems that could well frighten away the people I know," I offered.
Koughlin remained silent but Renfroe plunged right in with me. "Which are those?" he demanded.
"Your streets are hardly safe. Most men would not feel comfortable taking a relaxing evening stroll through most of your cities."
"Is that the only one?"
I shook my head. "There seems to be a smouldering racial tension - and tensions are something no investor likes."
"These are - well - temporary problems," the Speaker offered. "They'll disappear when we've rolled back all of this federal socialism."
I looked at the preacher directly, meeting his eyes. "You first began your ministry in a Negro area. That would seem to imply a lack of racial preoccupation on your part; but, even yesterday, I overheard racial epithets in this house and what had to be strong beliefs in Negro inferiority-"
The preacher smiled. "I'm not smiling at you, Prince von Muribor. Your observations were quite accurate. I just find it humorous to hear a man using the word `Negro' in 1997 - it's almost been obliterated from the American vocabulary."
I nodded my acceptance of his explanation.
"The American black is unique in the world. His forebears were taking out of primitive African villages and sold into slavery. Forced miscegenation followed over the centuries between then and now. Today's black American is more white than he's anything. Yet, white America hasn't civilised him as you Europeans did the educated in your black colonies.
"But that's all in the past and you're wondering about today and tomorrow. When the Christian Circle is in power, in full control of the country, we're going to make it our responsibility to do for the black in one generation what you Europeans did for Africa over a hundred and more years.
"The garbage is going to have to mend its ways fast or get punished fast and quick - especially drug-dealers and those that kill and rape their own as well as white people. But that applies to white garbage just as much as it does black garbage. Where I come from, a person disposes of garbage instead of letting it sit around and stink up the place."
"So, you would establish strong police control over - what? - Negro population areas?"
"A Christian Coalition government will have a heavy police presence anywhere social unrest is probable. Good people will be free to take those evening strolls you were talking about - like their parents and grandparents could."
He laughed good-naturedly then. "America has lost its morality. Its young no longer have a good idea of the proper way to behave. Christianity will restore that once it again takes its proper place in our society and our people go to church like God tells us to."
Ah, yes. Morality. Enforced at the point of a gun - or trumped-up charges. I didn't have to ask him about the place of a woman, homosexuality, or abortion. I had heard about Christian morality, American-style, for the past five months. I was sick of it. The gun was the only way to enforce it. Just as the morality of the Deutsche Volk as interpreted by Adolf Hitler had been. Guns and fear.
Joe might well believe the computer and fear of its ability to store information - both real and false - would take the place of the fear of a man in a trench coat at one's front door in the middle of the night. But even his computers required minions feeding them information. And there was nothing that established fear in a populace as quickly and completely as learning one's neighbour had been dragged out to an unmarked car the night before - and that neighbour had disappeared with no trace.
I smiled my thanks to the two men, signaling I was through with them. "I think you've answered my few remaining questions - and those of my friends."
"And are you satisfied, Prince von Muribor?" the preacher asked quietly.
"Very," I offered with an even broader smile.
"Then, I guess there's nothing left but to thank you for coming out to visit us this evening." His words were a much stronger signal our interview was over than my smile had been.
Driving back to Washington, I accepted I understood almost all that I had started out to learn about American fascism on the cusp of the 21st century. I had met its leaders and understood their perceptions of what they and their foot soldiers had to be about to gain and hold power.
I returned over and over again to the one thing I did not know. How Koughlin, McCarthy, Treman, and their ilk were linked to the vulgar creatures actually destabilising America? Burning churches and bombing buildings with people in them required the coarsest, most unfeeling men and women in the world. Men and women who had given up any claim to humanity.
Doing the work of fascism required creatures then, not humans. And certainly not creatures who would consider themselves gentlemen. It required evil, animal creatures.
While I still had no idea of what I would do with the information I did have, I knew no-one but another vampire would believe it. Regardless of what I did decide to do, I needed the link that married the Reverend Pat Koughlin to the primitive creatures across the face of America who did his will. My curiosity would never be satisfied until I understood everything.
I realised my opinion of Reverend Pat Koughlin had changed as I drove the hour back to the District of Columbia toward the two men I loved waiting for me there. I didn't like him very much at all. At the soiree, he seemed gracious and warm, welding a bond between himself and each person he spoke to. With just Renfroe and myself, he had been in command and impervious, very much in charge and enjoying it.
As I let myself into the house, I heard my lads in the sitting room. Emil mentally greeted me with an image of the biggest, wettest lips I could imagine. But, as I neared the opened door of the room, I heard Tom ask: "What's it really like?"
Emil answered: "You mean being a vampire?" I accepted an offered link to the Swiss' thoughts and listened as the two of them began to discuss the nature of my being. I stayed in the hall, electing not to join them, conscious that Tom might feel intimidated in my presence but was comfortable with Emil. Emil watched the American nod.
"I woke up a whole day after that bout of sex and knew immediately I was different - and knowing the only thing that could be different was that I had changed into one," he answered. "I don't know if I can put into words what I felt that moment-" He chuckled.
"You've got to understand I wanted to be a vampire, to be like Karl, ever since I knew what he was. But I was still pissed off when I woke up." He laughed. "It had happened - the biggest change in my life - and I didn't even know it.
"I guess I expected to be taking my last, gasping breath as some old troll years from now when it happened." He grinned at the thought. "Then, I'd wake up young and good-looking all over again."
"It's made you better looking somehow," Tom allowed.
"The effervescence?" The American nodded. "We don't sweat - we can't. When we change, the pores disappear from our skin; that takes away a certain coarseness I see in every mortal I meet."
"You can change - into other things?"
Emil nodded. "Just about anything you can conceive of. I've been a wolf, a bat, a mist - even a panther when I hunted." He laughed again. "Though you've got to be careful about changing shape. It's only your natural body that's affected - you lose your clothes when you do it."
"Yeah. The first time I did it I had to come back here naked. Walking naked through a city - even on a winter night when everybody's inside - is a little embarrassing."
"What did you do?"
"I finally realised I bounded out of the house as a wolf, so I turned myself back into one to make it back home."
"You can teleport yourself too, can't you?"
"I haven't tried it, but I think Karl's returned to Zürich that way since we've been here."
"You're stronger too?"
"There isn't a man who can touch me if I don't want him to. I can out-run and out-fight any mortal. He can't kill me, but I can kill him. I can see better, read thoughts-" He shrugged.
Tom chuckled and said: "What's sex like as a vampire?"
I felt Emil's face break out in blotches. "It's better. I'm more sensitised as a vampire than I ever was as a mortal. I couldn't wait to get over to Karl's flat back there in Zürich, to get it on with him - I guess I was pretty sensitised then-"
"I know the feeling," Tom allowed under his breath.
"Only, it's a whole lot better now. I can go on and on without flagging-" He grinned. "As you do."
Emil watched the American blush. "Do you love him?" he asked softly.
"Yeah. Only, I love both of you, Emil."
The American snorted. "Before I met you guys that night at the Inner Harbor, I basically saw myself falling in love with just one girl and settling down with her - marrying her, I suppose. When I had finally come to a working arrangement with Sergei and Würther and called Karl, I sort of thought - if it developed he and I went to bed - that same kind of thing I imagined about me and a girl would happen between him and me.
"But there you were. And it sure as hell was obvious you weren't some pick-up like back in Zürich. That sort of threw me for a loop." He grinned. "Würther was mortified at the thought of a three-way. It took old Sergei a few moments; but, by the time I left you two, he couldn't wait to try it out."
"Shit! I wasn't queer. I didn't want to be queer. I don't know - a one-on-one with a guy I liked wasn't exactly queer to me. But two guys? No way!"
He chuckled and I saw his neck and face blaze through Emil's eyes. "But I sure did come around soon enough!"
It was late; dawn's approach threatened the night beyond the windows. In the bedroom above me, the American slept the sleep of the satiated. Emil restlessly had gone in search of a drug deal he could disrupt. I sat before the piano, my eyes closed, and allowed my thoughts to float where they would.
Tom. He was so different than I allowed myself to expect in Zürich as his spirit's incoherent whisperings touched my thoughts night after night. He was definitely his own person; though there were occasional flashes of either Sergei or Würther when I least expected them.
I wondered if the personality that soul now wore was an improvement over the others I had known. I didn't see it but that meant nothing. Improvements in nature came in small gradations. Just this evening I saw him fall asleep against Emil's bare chest, the Swiss youth's arms around him.
Würther would have been horrified at the thought of sex with anyone but me or being seen showing affection to any man. He would never have trusted himself enough to cuddle against another until sleep came to him.
And Sergei? He had liked his sex and was indiscriminate about where he found it - as long as he was the instigator. As long as he had control. Even with me. Even after he gave himself to me, he wanted to be the one to initiate things. I chuckled to myself. Sergei actually pouted the few times I made an opening move on him.
I suspected sex was certainly not the most accurate gage by which to determine spectral advancement. But every act of it was as much a combination of the personalities of the people involved as it was the actual mechanical coupling of bodies.
There had been occasional other partners when Sergei and I were exploring our sexual union. But he never submitted to anyone but me; it was an absolute limit he held himself to. Würther had been chaste by comparison, though just as passionate in his love-making. Sex to him had been just that - love-making - and never anything more or less. He had sex with me because he loved me; and he gave himself to me completely.
Tom enjoyed our romps with Emil as much as Sergei ever had a menage-a-trois. But he shared himself equally with both of us, something his predecessors would never have done. There seemed a simple joy that rose in him as we touched and fondled our way toward a coupling. And it didn't matter who was doing what with whom.
I smiled at the memory of our shifting union just past us. I had touched his thoughts as he straddled Emil and began to lower himself onto him. Out of curiosity, nothing more.
In the jumble of images I encountered, I found warmth for both Emil and myself in equal measure. An acceptance of us and a desire to be with us, doing what we were doing. Deeper within his thoughts was the same acceptance but a stronger, more complete desire to simply be with us, singly and together.
In the month since he first fought himself into our bed, Tom MacPherson had come to love us both, in equal measure.
At least one thing had gone right.
I guessed I felt sullied and was exhibiting it with my examination of my meaningful sex life.
I played the overture to Eroica as the first streaks of purple spread across the eastern sky. Beethoven had always soothed my soul and was the perfect welcome to the coming dawn.
"Do you really think something like that would work?" Tom asked Emil as we sat together in the sitting room.
"Why wouldn't it?" the Swiss youth demanded. "Look at these video stores," he continued, his voice becoming more heated. "Hard sex flicks are only as far away as your television screen if you have a V.C.R."
"But do we really want to get into porn? Does Karl?"
"It doesn't have to be just porn!" He gripped his chair in the rush of his vision. "Many American cities now have a gay cable channel. Gay-oriented television's in its infancy now, mostly news broadcasts and talk shows of interest to gay audiences - like all television was in the fifties."
He pushed himself out of his chair and began to pace the room. "I'm talking about the broad spectrum of entertainment - from porn flicks to television sit-coms to gay dramas. Even books and magazines. We can walk into an existing vacuum and create an empire equal to that of Ted Turner with his CNN. That's the one news program seen around the world today."
"Why hasn't it been done before?" I asked cautiously. I knew nothing about business; I assumed, if one wanted to open a restaurant, he would do so near other restaurants that had proven there were customers there.
"I don't know," Emil answered. "Lack of vision or money, I suppose."
"And how much money would this cost?"
"To set up? Less than a quarter of a million American." He suddenly stopped his pacing, stared at me for a moment, and then sat down in his chair. "Karl, take a porn video. Ten young men, a camera-man, and a director - the most you'd have to pay for them to fuck and suck their way through four or five hours of film is maybe thirty-five thousand-"
"Four or five hours?" I snorted. "The longest one I've seen ran one hundred minutes - an hour and a half - what happens to the rest of the film?"
"It gets cut. Someone ejaculates inside an ass instead of pulling out. The man being fucked makes a mess. They cut the mistakes. But the cost of personnel and production - even advertising and distribution - wouldn't cost more than a total of a hundred thousand. If you sell ten thousand videos, that makes your cost only ten dollars a video-"
"I follow the mathematics," I told him.
"But you sell each video for sixty-nine dollars US, earning a profit of fifty-nine each. Now, multiply that times the ten thousand videos you sold."
I raised my brow in surprise. I definitely understood nearly six hundred percent profit, merchant or no.
"Would you show your ass in one of those things?" Tom asked him in exasperation at the appearance of my interest.
"No!" Emil growled. "There are only two men allowed that privilege."
"You sure do watch the damned things, though."
"I would be interested in the money they earn for the producer."
"God! Making smut like that-"
"I haven't seen you leaving when I turn one on," Emil offered quietly and I watched the American blush deeply.
"But making them? Catering to-"
"Tom, it would be but a means to an end. I would hope Karl would build an all-media empire that spans America and Europe-"
"I don't remember seeing anything like that in Zürich last year," the American volleyed.
Emil grinned wryly. "I think we were both trying to hide from what we like, yes?" Tom blushed again. "What I would have us do is expend the least amount of venture capital setting ourselves up in business. A hundred thousand American dollars makes half a million to a million. Three or four of those a year would give us two to four million to finance more acceptable ventures."
"It's not a sure thing," Tom groaned.
"Nothing ever is."
"Mine is. If the HIV-virus dies in vampire blood, there is no way we wouldn't be sitting on top of the world within a year. Even if it doesn't, a serum from your blood would cure syphilis and just about everything else that kills men. Shit! It'd probably even give everybody immortality."
"Who'd be left for us to feed on?" I asked and grinned.
"I remember-" He frowned. "From Sergei. You drank cow's blood, Karl. You guys don't have to feed on humans."
"Setting up a pharmaceutical company would cost nearly twenty million dollars, Tom," Emil growled. "You'd seriously cut into Karl's money."
"You know how much money he's got?" the American asked dubiously.
"Not really." Emil shrugged. "He said one time something about a hundred million Swiss - that's about seventy to eighty million American."
Tom glanced at me for confirmation. "Let's say I could afford that, if I had to," I said refusing on principle to divulge my worth.
"Besides," Emil continued, "we could use profits from the media production company to fund your pharmaceutical company - leaving his capital alone."
"After how many years?" he grunted.
I stood and glanced from one to the other. "Tom, your idea is a good one and not just because it would make us money. It would save people and that has a lot of merit - a lot more in my mind that paying rent boys to have sex on camera."
Tom grinned, sensing victory for his pet project.
"But I see one problem with it, one that's insurmountable in my mind right now."
He watched me, a panther prepared to leap at the first sign of weakness.
"I simply am not going to submit myself or Emil to the publicity - even the knowledge in just the scientific community - that such a cure would bring. I don't want to be known publicly as a vampire."
"We could set up safeguards. Nobody would know."
"Tom, something as shattering as the elixir you see us making could never be kept silent. Scientists have egos and publishing their findings is their way of stroking them. No matter how much we paid the team that discovered how to turn our blood into a serum, someone would talk, tell of his discovery. It's the very nature of man. Emil and I would be exposed as something that isn't supposed to exist."
Emil's eyes rounded in surprise. "They'd never leave us alone," he grunted as if he had been hit in the solar plexus.
I nodded. "We'd never again have anonymity again."
"But you'd save the world."
"At what cost?"
The American fell back against the sofa crestfallen. "So, you're going to make fuck flicks?"
"I don't know. I'd have to see much more detailed figures on the industry before I did that - and I'd have to know both of you were working on it together."
"And it'd only be the stepping stone to making tele-dramas and cinema that're simply gay-themed," Emil injected quickly.
I rose and left the room, walking through the house into the fenced backyard. Life teemed here as May began to wane. I could smell it in every blade of grass and the blooms threatening to explode into roses in the untended garden. Unnoticed, the earth had become warm and alive again.
Before Tom had decided he was horny enough to try sex with us, he and Emil had sparred with humor, each attempting to best the other with a put-down. But, once the American decided he liked our sex and, through it, opened himself to loving us, their sparring had taken the face of different commercial stratagems.
Their competition made me uncomfortable. I feared it could disrupt the love I knew each of us felt for the other. The fact they did love each other even as they loved me, but continued their sparring, left me confused.
I was already bored and it was barely night. I was barely through my shower and dressed. The house felt empty. The boys were gone - Emil to San Francisco to research his idea of a pornographic video production company by digging deep into the files of the largest, most successful producers and bringing back the data he would use to convince me. Tom was gone to visit his parents in Baltimore for the week-end. It was only Friday.
Boys? Why did I think of them as children? Emil was twenty-two and Tom twenty-three. Physically, they were but a few years younger than me; and I was certainly nowhere close to looking or feeling old and worn-out.
I forced the thought away; I had lived 150 years and they hadn't. I had seen much and learnt much they still faced even in a future I was part of. I called them boys because I did carry those years inside my head, if not on my body. It was just a word - and a habit - I had slipped into.
I was bored - and lonely.
So, what was I to do to while away the hours and days before I again had the companionship of at least one of them?
I watched the news on the television and found twenty feet of an interstate parkway in Arizona had exploded into boulders of tarmacadam, killing three motorists and injuring a score more. I turned it off. I did not want to hear how unsafe America had become in its heartland. I did not want to think of the country's destabilisation.
I entered the music room and forced myself to sit before the piano, exposing the keys that gleamed up at me. Beethoven?
No! Too strong. Even overpowering for how I felt now in my loneliness.
Never! Too dark and foreboding. I would have Slavic dæmons threatening me the rest of the night and in my dreams through tomorrow.
I smiled as my fingers touched the keys and brought forth the unabashed joy only Mozart gave his every composition. I played Eines Kleine Nachtmusik in its entirety, uplifting my spirit and feeling his joy touching me from across the centuries. The music lifted me from the doldrums I had descended into as I had watched my lads leave me with the sun sinking beyond the city of Washington last night.
And put me in the mood to dance the light fantastic.
With whom? Who did I know? Emil and Tom - but they lived with me and were gone.
Joe McCarthy, Bob Treman, and Hank Broussard - I knew them as well. Too well. I knew them from their orgies and McCarthy in the additional roles of Koughlin's organiser and apologist - Martin Bormann, Rudolf Hess, and Josef McCarthy reincarnated in one body.
They were it. I had single-mindedly immersed myself into the American fascist movement and, doing so, denied myself friends and acquaintances I could enjoy for themselves. I wondered if Emil and Tom had limited themselves as I had. I hoped not.
I became pensive when lonely - and morose. A Russian with his bottle of vodka, crying in it before it was half gone. My Slavic ancestry exposing itself.
I found myself in the sitting room - trying to understand what had led me onto Koughlin's trail and castigating myself for having no idea of what I intended to do with the travelers who trod his path of hate and fear. A path I had put together from tidbits stolen from the minds of others the past five months I had been on this hunt.
It would serve the American would-be Führer right to have his throat torn out by a wolf. Such a fate, however, would be a dab too much if I visited it on him and those of his followers I could reach together. And it would not serve a purpose - not really.
That alone negated the most direct and immediate approach for me. His hate organisations were linked together in ways that even he probably didn't understand. I had no doubt they were designed to feed themselves as they grew to siphon off the unity of the country in bits and dabs, leaving it destabilised in ever smaller increments. They took orders of course, but those would not be direct. Those orders would come by the most indirect routes imaginable, ensuring the preacher remained unscathed by bombings and murders until he was called to march on Washington and throw the corrupt and evil out in the name of his God and the people.
Having nothing else to do as I roamed the house, I forced myself to consider it and decided that was the most probable course events would take. Mussolini had waited until his minions had Italy on its knees before he marched on Rome; Hitler waited until von Papen convinced the senile Hindenberg to call him to power. Koughlin would almost assuredly continue to follow the historical path that was already working so well before him. His plans as Joe understood them were laid along that path, calling for him to be appointed Vice-President in but four years and assuming the reins of power in six.
Unlike his two best-known predecessors though, the preacher had technology that made 1922 and 1933 appear as the dark ages. Koughlin could ride a Hydra to power not even a Herakles could slay.
Bombings and political murders in the southwest, the Klan in backwaters of the south and mid-west, swastika-emblemed churchmen and self-styled Nazis in the sparsely settled northwest. They were all their own organisations, independent of each other and any connection was invisible to the bureaucratic eye.
In addition, there was the Christian Circle - sweet little old ladies and pretty, nubile girls who believed Jesus told them to picket an abortion clinic across the city from where they lived and telephone threats to their doctors at all hours of the night. Ignorant men unwilling to open their minds to reality who feared for their families as their country became increasingly paralysed. The public political union that worked to take over the party of Abraham Lincoln and was poised to become its own party - publicly devoted to the preacher. Free of taint and as American as apple pie.
Each organisation led back to the preacher and was controlled by him by the most convoluted paths imaginable. He gave them their marching orders; but, like Hitler, he remained above the fray.
Unlike Hitler, however, he and his most trusted lieutenants would have even greater control - because of technology. Because of the computer.
If the head were torn from the body of the American Hydra and destroyed, the body would but grow another head. I saw clearly it's various parts would function without Koughlin - bombing buildings, killing radio and television personalities one or another part didn't like, intimidating people simply doing what was legal under American law. A new head would quickly rise from among the lieutenants already in position.
Even if they were removed along with Koughlin, the various parts of the body would continue to function, disrupting life in America, frightening its citizens, continuing to destroy the country's political fabric. Thousands of men and women would need to disappear together to dismantle the monster the preacher and his lieutenants had created.
I smiled as my thoughts suddenly turned to Marcus Eichmann. If the computer had insulated the Christian mullah in Tidewater, Virginia, from the hell his minions were visiting upon America, the fat Swiss hacker could remove that insulation for me - for anyone who would look.
Exposure was the way to dismantle the Hydra Koughlin had built to bring America to its knees before him. Herr Eichmann could give me the means to that exposure. It was a far more destructive plan for destroying the American fascists than simply killing their Führer.
Eichmann's grandfather would turn over in his grave were he to know what I would have Marcus doing. I laughed at the image of that.
Tomorrow I would again be Zürich and again Herr Eichmann would be unpleasantly surprised.
Yet, it was already become Friday night and I did not want to sit at home alone. I smiled. Joe McCarthy, despite the monster he was, had a pretty face and willing libido. Somehow, he learnt to hide the monster behind that pretty, innocuous face.
And I did so enjoy feeding his fantasies - even as I kept my body removed from them.
Joe McCarthy was locking his car as I turned the corner and strolled past him toward the Treman house.
"Good God, it's you!" he groaned from behind me.
I turned, recognising his voice, and smiled. "I was thinking of you, Joe," I allowed.
"I've been thinking about you the past week and a half," he answered. "Since you pissed off the preacher."
"Pissed him off?"
"He's had the word put out the organisation has no interest in you."
My eyes rounded in surprise with no mental effort on my part. "What does that mean?" I asked quietly and wished I kept up my attendance to these orgies of Treman's.
"It means, Prince von Muribor, that no right-thinking Christian better have anything to do with you."
"That sounds ominous, Joe. What's he going to do, put out a-" I tried to remember the term as used in the awful American gangster flicks to which the lads were addicted. "A contract out on me?"
The leader of two million Christian Circlists snorted. "We don't do things like that." I caught a wisp of a thought behind his bland exterior that said they certainly did do such things and that Joe had been involved in the discussion of doing it to me.
I decided I wanted much more information - and wanted it immediately. You want me, I told him. You need me ploughing you.
The blandly cute, naive face contorted with his struggle between duty and desire. His manhood tented the front of his trousers having no such struggle.
Drive me to my house, I told him. You'll have all of me - all night, if you can handle it.
"Why don't I drive you back to your place, Karl?" he asked huskily, his mind leaping into my bed.
I smiled knowingly. "I think I'd like that," I told him.
At the house, he had his shirt unbuttoned before we were inside.
I had led him, yes; but I could not make him this willing.
"You don't know how I've missed you this past week and a half," he mumbled as I opened the door. "It's been hell, imagining you with that - that boy of yours." His fingers pulled my shirt out of my pants and crept under its material to caress my back. "And then the preacher's decision came down. I didn't know what to do I hurt so bad."
He giggled girlishly. "Now, I've got you back, Karl. I'm going to feel good again."
"Just for the night," I warned him gently.
"No!" he grunted, misunderstanding me. "I'll find some way to make the preacher reconsider your involvement with us. You'll see-" His fingers were past my hip and trying to work their way beneath my belt to get inside my trousers. "I want you more than you'll ever know, Karl. You bring out the good in me, better than anybody ever has."
He stayed with me as I stepped inside the house, his fingers groping their way down my abdomen as I shut the door behind us. He gripped my erection as I led him into the sitting room.
He stared at me as he pushed his clothes from his body. "I've just about stayed celibate since our last time. I've kept myself pure for you, you bring me so close to Jesus."
I nuzzled his neck as he pushed his y-fronts over his hips and wiggled out of them. I touched his thoughts as he began to undress me but was unable to find anything but a tidal wave of sexual anticipation.
He struggled with desire-driven fingers to peel the condom along my shaft and, sighing when he had it on me, leant back against the sofa and raising his legs in invitation. "Fuck me good, baby," he breathed as I helped him see me pushing into him. My lips returned to his neck. "I want to feel Jesus with us tonight."
Even fantasised sex brought out the hunger in me and I had not thought to feed before I met up with him in front of Treman's house.
He imagined that I entered him. "Oh, sweet Jesus!" he gushed beneath what he thought of as me, already reaching for rapture before his fantasy of me could begin to move against his cheeks.
I could let myself taste him a little. Not too deep. Just enough.
"Sit with me, Jesus! Oh, yes! I'm so close. Thank you, Jesus! I need it to do right. Oh, God!"
I sat beside him and my fangs pressed into the soft base of his neck as his first orgasm sprayed over his abdomen.
The preacher didn't trust me. He thought I was naive or frivolous or both. A dilettante. Or a plant.
He wanted to know what I knew. Who in the organisation I knew. And he doubted Joe because of the man's defense of me. His first thought was to dispense with me. Joe had responded by defending me even more. Pat Koughlin responded by doubting him even more.
They had left it that I could live if the preacher didn't hear any more about me. If I simply faded into the nothingness from which I had come.
"Sweet Jesus!" Joe cried, immersed in his rapture as I lapped at his soul's life-force. "Do it again - it's so good!"
I quit, letting the punctures clot before he was seriously weakened. His fantasy of me continued to plough him with a constant, unchanging tempo. As he talked to the dead rabbi who was de-Judafied and divine to him, I pushed through the frothing sexual thoughts surging through the forefront of his mind. I went deeper than I had ever gone, careless in my search as I knew he'd remember nothing of it.
When he wanted something done but didn't dare bring the preacher into it, he went to Broussard. The Congressman from Mississippi had connections Joe was hazy about, that he didn't want to understand. He suspected his fellow orgiast had his own connection to the preacher, separate from his. That was all right, though - they both liked dick and that bound them together as tightly as their devotion to Koughlin, even if Broussard wanted nigger dick.
He had seen the banks of new computers at the headquarters of the preacher's media empire in Tidewater, Virginia, a month ago and was amazed at the size of the room and the thirty people constantly feeding information into them. The preacher had been smiling as he pointed out over the plain of machines and men and told him everything was here, including a back-up of every CC file in Joe's own office.
Another thought lay beneath the surface of sexual emotions sweeping and crashing over him, his instinct trying to keep it hidden. The Semitic-looking rent boy, one of the FBI agent's boys, had told him he saw me with two men.
I kept the movement of his image of me ploughing him even and explored the thought further. Joe had raged at my having two boys while I kept my relationship with him to our meetings at Treman's home on Capitol Hill.
"Oh, Jesus! I'm close. I'm real close," he gasped under me, his fist flailing his manhood. "Watch me shoot, Jesus!"
I held the thought his instinct didn't want to consider, looking at it again and hearing the boy's description of Tom as well as of Emil.
He knew about Tom!
I searched for a connecting thought, one that showed him doing something about the rent boy's report. But, if there was one, it was lost in the whipped waves crashing over him as he achieved his second orgasm.
He smiled beatifically and reached fingers up to touch my face. "I've fallen in love with you, Karl," he mumbled softly as he lowered his legs.
His image of me lay pressed against him, its lips and nose against his neck below his ear, its breathing slowing. His fingers traced random circles across its back.
My breathing returned slowly to a mortal normality, I sat on the sofa and smiled down at him, marveling at the pretty, naive face that peered up at me.
Pretty face, monstrous soul. That was Joe McCarthy.
He pushed himself into a sitting position so his eyes met mine on an equal level. "Who's this new boy you've added to your harem?" he asked, his voice carefully neutral as he sought to peer into my soul.
I had seen his question coming. His rage had been in his thoughts even as the Arab boy was taking him on the couch only two nights earlier as, on either side of him, the Mississippian accommodated his Negroes and Bob Treman pumped the pre-pubescent boy the FBI man had loaned him.
I smiled at him. "Does he matter?" My fingers trailed upward along his thighs.
His tumescence was stretching again toward erection. "He does," he answered but found it difficult to maintain his anger as both his body and thoughts began to want more sex. "If I'm going to run interference with the preacher for you, I want more than just a piece of you at some orgy now and then."
"Tom's just a nice boy I met in Baltimore," I allowed.
Sleep, I told him. His eyes closed and, a moment later, I was rewarded with a soft snore as his head sank back into the pillows of the sofa.
I stood and began to pace. So, Joe McCarthy knew about Tom. That knowledge brought no fear with it. I still thought of myself, from the vantage point of my being a vampire. Without knowing what I was and the specifics of how to kill me, this man and his fascist friends held no threat for me.
What did concern me at the moment was the pervasiveness of the FBI man's presence at Bob Treman's house on Capitol Hill - even in his absence - as he pimped for the orgiasts in Koughlin's new order.
Did it mean anything?
Agent Boyd possessed one of the most organised minds I had ever found in a mortal. I had observed him watching Treman's guests and listening attentively to discussions about him in the house, even as he spanked the child. Such organisation lent itself to covert information-gathering, even when he was known to be a policeman and a spy.
I imagined a pimp would be cognizant of his surroundings but found myself doubting someone from that occupation and the class it implied would have learnt to developed the compartments the FBI agent used to organise his mind.
Why was Mr. Boyd to be found at Congressman Treman's orgies?
I belatedly remembered he was known to be a spy master. Suddenly, I doubted his reputation of passing out on his third drink. I found myself wondering if the American government might be a bit more alert than I or Koughlin and his minions had given it credit for.
But I was still suspicious of anything that involved the federal police; the memories of another national police with immense powers were still strong in me.
And what had I done to make the preacher suspicious of me?
I had searched Joe's thoughts as deeply as I dared. Without the immediacy of sex and his desire, he would have known I was there, I delved so deep. But I still had little. I needed my own spy as he and Boyd had theirs.
I was not willing to continue being that spy. Controlling libidos and having them imagine things not happening was admittedly fun, but the companionship was unpleasant at best.
Before I would examine those thoughts further, however, I was going to feed. I was hungrier now than when I encountered Joe McCarthy in front of the Treman house
There are 8 more chapters to come. I'll space them out over 3 installments - a fortnight apiece. The sequel to Confessions, a bit more American even though most of it takes place in Germany, will not appear on Nifty. You'll only be able to get that from my website.
Gods!!! But I hope that I have managed to connect with at least one of you American readers out there. PLEASE!!!! If I have succeeded in getting you to think, go out and vote in November. Don't think of yourself as Republican, Democrat, or Independent. Be an American - just this once - your country needs you. Vote for the only ticket that has a chance to stop the new American fascism. Help your country reject the hatemongers who have gone to ground for this election. The Pat Robertsons, Jimmy Swaggerts, Lou Sheldons, and Don Wildemons can afford to wait, they've got Ralph Reed advising George W. Remember cute little Ralph with the silver tongue? Pat Robertson's handpicked stooge who made the Christian Coalition seem almost coherent? Well, he's had his marching orders for several years now ; he's teamed up with Texas oil and is intent on giving America up to his masters.
Only you and your vote can prevent that. VOTE for Gore and Lieberman!!!