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Goodbye, Owen
by K.V. Douglass

Yes, Owen?

Mr. President, France is gone, much of Israel, The Czech Republic, all of South Africa. Here’s the report.

Thank you. An orderly end for all those people?

As best we can determine, Sir.

Well, looting and such is no use now, is it? I imagine people are stunned, finally, into civilized behavior. Unlike a lost soccer match, this time we all lose.

Yes, Sir, even the Catholics have dispensation for non-violent suicide. Many of the cardinals have gone. I understand that parish priests are asked to wait, last rites, you know?

Yes, yes. Your family’s Catholic, Owen?

Right, Sir. I’m going to Boston to be with them. However long we can stand it. You’ll stay here, Sir?

At the helm to the last. The First Lady has left for Iowa to be with her parents, as you say, as long as . . .

Ah, Sir, go with her! In all this horror since the news, I’ve not even been able to part with my dog. I’ll take Lucy home with me.

She’ll suffer. This trajectory, this wobble in the orbit, will cook us all. The ocean, Owen, the ocean will boil! We won’t live to see it. That crew at MIT, are they alive?

No, Sir, they were quick to take the lethal dose. Poor bastards! Pardon my language, but imagine having to make that announcement. Sir, I want to thank you for your leadership. I’m honored to have served with you.
And I thank you, Owen. You’ve done an excellent job. Now, go! Be with your dog and your family.

Goodbye, Mr. President.

Goodbye, Owen.

the end

Karen Douglass
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