Red Acorn had left the house the same time as Dusty that morning to go to his office. Not knowing of Dusty’s fate, he started his usual routine that morning reaching his office, whistling softly to himself.
About 10am that morning, Red received a knock on his door. A black shirt entered smiling as Red told him to take a seat. “What can I do for you today?” Red inquired. Being an accountant who owned his own firm, Red was sure the black shirt had come for advice.
The black shirt produced two documents and handed one of them to Red to look over. While Red studied the document, he felt his face burning. He looked at the black shirt in amazement and said, “Surely this is wrong”. The black shirt assured him it was not. Red squeaked out to the black shirt, “I’m to give up my house for a less fortunate family?” The black shirt nodded but told him he had a second document and that he would be given a choice. He handed Red the second document which ordered Red to do community service for a year in payment for him being able to attend university and earn an MBA.
Red stared at the black shirt and told him he had received all of his degrees long before President No Blame became president so he did not understand. The black shirt told him the community service was retroactive and that indeed he would have to give to his community. It was either that or lose his house to a larger family who needed his big house with all that space.
Red felt trapped and looked all over his office for what reason he didn’t know. He kept thinking this was a nightmare. “I supported Mr. No Blame and gave to his campaign.” said Red. The black shirt thanked him for his generosity.
Red’s face dropped and he felt as though he might scream, but he held it together asking the black shirt what kind of community service would be necessary. The black shirt told him that he would merely have to board several workers for a year. Red asked what kind of workers. The black shirt assured him it was no real problem. Just four Mexicans and three Muslims, just for a year while they worked their jobs.
You have plenty of space in your big house, 6 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms. It will be no real problem. All he had to do is give these workers rooms and food the black shirt assured him.
Red thought about the problem and decided there was no way out. He didn’t want to lose the home for which he had worked so hard. But three Muslims and four Mexicans? In the same house?
He looked at the black shirt and asked when President No Blame had decided to order these types of services. The black shirt looked at him as if he had no head and told him that Mr. No Blame had discussed this during his campaign and Red did not listen to Mr. No Blame’s policies. Red said he never heard this. The black shirt asked Red, “Do you not remember Joe Wurzelbacher who asked the question to Mr. No Blame about sharing the wealth?” No, Red told the man he had never heard of that. “Oh, don’t worry about that plumber; he is in Gitmo for now”. Red gazed back in shock at the black shirt.
The black shirt continued to stare at him waiting for an answer. Red asked him if he could consult with his wife first before he decided. The black shirt told him no, these documents needed his signature today and arrangements were already in the process. If he chose not to comply today, the house would be taken away immediately and he would be detained.
Red quickly decided he had better sign the second document. The black shirt asked him to step outside after he had signed the document. Once outside, the black shirt pointed to a 10 passenger van and told Red that would now be his vehicle. His Volvo would be confiscated until Red finished his community service. He would need the bus van for hauling the boarders back and forth to their jobs.
Red squinted in the sunny, but cold air at the leftovers of the passenger van. The van had a back missing bumper. One of the front bumpers hung part way off into space. There were dents all over the van; On one side the van showed it had been hit with a caved in side. The back broken window flapped with plastic tape. All Red could think about was what his neighbors would think of him driving that piece of junk.
Red was now very angry, but the black shirt had already taken off while Red was in his reverie. Red noticed that his Volvo was now gone.
He rushed back into his office to call Dusty. But, the bank told him she had never arrived at work. Red called home, thinking perhaps the baby had gotten sick on the way and Dusty had returned home but there was no answer.
Red called everyone they knew and the doctor’s office and no one had seen her. Now Red was really worried about his wife and child being missing. He decided he should call the police although he figured they would laugh at him and tell him he had to wait until she was missing for 24 hours, that she probably had just run off with another man. Red laughed thinking how dumb were the police to think a woman with a baby would run off with another man.
But, when he talked to the police officer at the station he told him that indeed his wife had been there this morning, but she went to the state hospital. Red, now in a panic, asked what happened to his wife, had she been in an accident, was she hurt, what was wrong? The police officer told Red that Dusty had come in with a false complaint, did not like the answer she had gotten and had just gone mad. One of the female officers tranquilized and shipped her off to the state hospital for observation. He told Red to just go to the hospital where he could see his wife and find out more.
“Wait; wait,” Red screamed over the phone, “what false complaint”? The police officer said she falsely accused a black shirt of taking her child. “What”? Red yelled now being fired up and so angry he nearly dropped the phone. The officer told him Dusty did not want to turn the baby over to the state and she got a bit riled up about it. Nothing to worry about, he said. She’s being taken care of and the hospital has her quiet now. Red dropped the phone and ran out of his office.
Without even looking back or locking his office door, Red jumped into the old bus van and veered off into the traffic to rush to the state hospital wondering all the way what had happened to his wife and child. Fear was crawling over every inch of his body now realizing all that occurred this morning came down on him like a heavy black tarp covering him in a dark, inky gloom.
To be continued………….