140 Mile Stretch
Secretary Harris was nervous as he walked in to the heart of the nation’s intelligence building. He couldn’t imagine how many covert operations had been carried out here. “Good morning Mr. Secretary, she will see you now.” Director Wilson’s secretary pressed a button to open the inner door.
“Good morning Tom, it’s good to see you again.” She wheeled around from behind the desk, Phyllis Wilson was a formidable ally to have. She was eighty four, but still had the strength of a person much younger. Her slate gray curly hair flowed over her shoulders, her green eyes seemed to be aware of everything in the room.
She lost the use of her legs in the line of duty, a secret service agent who saved the President. Then she went into politics, first Governor of California, then Senator. She was a third generation American. Her Grandparents immigrated from Harare, Zimbabwe. Her Grandfather, Dr. Wilson, moved to the states to head up medical research at John Hopkins.
Although friends for years, like most Washington veterans, they sized each other up. Tom was losing his hair, but not his nerve. What he had left was white, he was eating to many doughnuts, but he knew that Alice was trying to get him to cut down. His blue eyes and pleasant smile would make you underestimate him if you weren’t careful. Some of his opponents had made that mistake, right before losing the election.
“Thank you Phyllis, I don’t mind telling you I’m a little nervous.” She smiled, “You should be, you’re the first Secretary of Agriculture to ever enter this building.” He smiled back, “True, there’s only one thing that reassures me my friend, the fact that for once, you need me more than I need you. Shall we go?”