A cadre of government officials plotting to secure unimagined wealth and power; an innocent woman’s death, and a grieving journalist who soon finds himself a nation’s only hope to avert unimagined political catastrophe.
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I’m pleased to offer you another excerpt from my eBook entitled:
THE TRETIAK AGENDA
Turning to his personal assistant, seated off to the side of the conference room table and dutifully transcribing notes, Tretiak issued instructions for the benefit of everyone present. “Mary, please be certain that you are in contact with everyone at least once each week from now on. I’d like to be updated more frequently, and it will be important that we all are fully aware of what each member is dealing with on a more timely basis going forward. I don’t want anything being overlooked and I want us to be able to react quickly if need be.”
Mary Brava nodded in acknowledgement, and then addressed the group. “I’m assuming everyone’s responsibilities will increase, and to ensure accuracy and timeliness, let me handle the preparation of all reports. That will allow me to stay on top of matters and free you from having to submit updates more frequently than you’ve been accustomed to.”
“And we all know that she likes to be on top, isn’t that right, Mary?” Gregg Danko’s comment was greeted with silence. Mary looked across at him impassively to be certain he would derive no satisfaction from the crude remark. Danko broadened what passed for a smile.
“Always count on you to add a touch of class, right, Gregg?” Philip McKenna shook his head contemptuously.
“Gentlemen, that conversation is over! Gregg, that comment has no place here, and certainly not directed to Mary.” It was a rare rebuke from Anatoly Tretiak, and Danko predictably did not take kindly to it. He looked at Tretiak for several seconds. Even an expressionless stare from Danko was a menacing one. The look he then shot Philip McKenna’s way left no doubts. No one spoke for nearly half a minute.
Philip McKenna finished the third serving of his preferred Connemara single malt Irish whiskey, pointedly ignoring Danko. Untroubled as always by Danko’s hostility, McKenna then raised his empty glass in a mock toast to his nemesis.
“‘Too much of anything is bad, but too much of good whiskey is barely enough.’ I always liked that Mark Twain adage!” He laughed as he turned to John Delaney’s Executive Producer, who had arrived twenty minutes earlier.
“Bob, do you think Delaney’s return is going to cause us any problems? If he starts poking around Rose’s background as he’s likely to do—if the hint he dropped to you indicates his intentions—we could have a hornet’s nest on our hands!” McKenna then removed his thick eyeglasses and rubbed his face, stifling a yawn.
“John Delaney will be neutralized as will any others who interfere. There’s no need for any of you to worry about him. If his probings get too close, he’ll be dealt with appropriately,” Tretiak replied.
“Although it’s clear that he’s going to continue covering Daniel, I’m not concerned yet,” Robert Marino replied confidently. “I’ll keep an eye on him, but I’m not expecting John to do any hatchet jobs. The last two op-eds he’s written about Daniel have been fairly tame. If he ramps up his pursuit, I can finesse that as needed.”
McKenna, a former high-ranking Central Intelligence Agency executive and a prior target of Delaney’s determined investigative efforts, was particularly sensitive to the journalist’s involvement. “Some of us,” he added with a grimace borne of experience, “more so than others, are painfully aware of his, ah … unique abilities. He’s as persistent as any human alive. His return to the national stage, given his somewhat antagonistic history with the Vice President, makes me nervous.”
“He’ll be allotted the proper respect, and he will be managed,” was Anatoly Tretiak’s terse reply.
“If ‘management’ of him proves inadequate, then I’ll take care of him.”
Gregg Danko’s threat was clear. McKenna stifled a retort. Danko glared at him but said nothing—behavior which by now served as the extent of most of their interactions.
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NOTE: Excerpts have been posted weekly throughout the summer. This is the final one. I hope it has piqued your interest!
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* I invite you to enjoy this political fiction thriller [here]