“You dare to awaken me, stooge?” Washington said, pulling out his fryer and aiming it at the hapless youngster who had been ordered to his death by his more sensible superiors, who would much rather he die than they.
“I'm really really really sorry, General sir, your highness,” the cadet said, shaking and sweating, “but I was ordered... ordered, sir! To wake you and inform your worshipful majesty that the Martians have struck the first volley in the war. Everyone in the Southern hemisphere is dead!” he exclaimed, trembling, his eyed closed tightly.
The General smiled happily. “It's OK, cadet, I'm not going to kill you.” He adjusted a control on his microwave pistol and fired at the cadet, who fell to the floor screaming in agony from third degree burns.
“I'll bet you're wishing I'd killed you about now,” Washington said, chuckling. He ordered that the cadet be moved to the infirmary and promoted and that Ford be awakened and summoned. Ford showed up quickly.
“Hark!” he said, saluting as he entered.
“Shut up, Ford,” Washington said, “it's just us. You can set the formalities aside. I have some great news! Those foolish chalkies have done Venus a wonderful favor!
“Actually many favors! They've irradiated the entire southern half of the planet and killed everyone for us. Plus, we no longer need to cook up an excuse to exterminate them.”
“Exterminate them? But how, sir?” Ford asked incredulously. “If they have some kind of super microwave blaster that can kill half a planet...”
“It's already in motion, Ford. I came up with a plan months ago. Since we knew spies had infiltrated us and planted bugs, I've been careful to not let any man know any more than a tiny piece, only as much as he needed. Only I know the plan. Even the captains of the warships are in the dark. Each has a set of orders that he is to open, read, and carry out at the appropriate time.”
“What's the plan?” asked Ford.
“It's too soon and I don't want it thwarted. Set up a press conference. I'm making a formal declaration of war against the Martians and telling our fellow Venusians how they attacked us.”
“Yes sir,” he said, saluting.
“Knock it off, Ford. Get that conference going.
“Yes sir,” Ford replied, and left.
|28 - This is your Farmer on Drugs||30 - The Surface|