The Prince of Light
The sunrise shone brightly like an omelette, steam rising from the skillet as the cheese melted into its surface. No, wait. More like a sponge cake rising in the oven. Yeah, that sounded better.
It was a brilliant winter morning in New Hampshire. Just hours before the primary polls opened, and the snow had melted. The cold was gone, and the sparkling morning had come. It was as if springtime had decided to grace the great Granite State gently greeting it in the early hours of February, like lovers that simply could not wait until later to meet and fall for each other once again. This beautiful green weather was something that John Kasich felt more warmth towards than anything else and his entire life– and he was already governor of the greatest state in the Union.
John Kasich’s one-hundred and tenth town hall meeting was in one hour. They said it was a waste to bother campaigning after the polls had already opened, and he was flirting dangerously with the campaigning-too-close-to-a-precinct law, but if there were any converts he could get at the last-second, he would take it.
He stood at the curb, waiting for his campaign bus to pick him up and whisk him off to the town hall. It was supposed to have been here half an hour ago, but it wasn’t. This didn’t worry John at all.
A paperboy bicycled by and tossed a newspaper at his feet. It seemed to be aimed towards the house on the other side of the street, but the boy must have been so enamored by John’s presence that he forgot about his job and wanted only to support the man any way he could. It was nice to see the young people going out and being political, even if they were too young to vote.
He picked up the beautiful gray hunk of paper and looked at the front page. It couldn’t hurt to be informed, after all. He saw the newspaper’s headline: “The New Hampshire Herald Endorses John Kasich for President.” He wasn’t expecting it, but he got yet another endorsement. Exciting times. With any luck, people would see the endorsement and that would help him at the polls.
The campaign bus finally arrived and pulled up in front of where John stood. He put the newspaper back in its plastic bag, raised his arm behind his head, and lobbed it over the bus, where it hopefully landed right in the correct yard where it belonged.
He got on the bus, waving to the bus driver, Hank, as he passed by and went into the seating area. Right in his usual spot by the mini-fridge was his campaign manager John Weaver looked furiously at some papers filled with statistics and charts.
John nodded to the other John and the other John nodded back. They didn’t speak but instead let themselves carry their activities simultaneously. Talking was not always the most important thing in the world, and silence was oftentimes the most valuable way to carry an election. Silence when needed, silence when not needed. It was a simple but effective tactic, especially when certain other people in the campaign made it their goal to talk up a hurricane every single day.
The bus ride was bumpy but it was warm, and that was what John cared about most. In the Motherland, weather was always nice. Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland were almost always considered the best cities in the country, and their nice and sunny climates were no small part in making people feel happy about everything they did while they lived in the state. Ah, how he missed his home. New Hampshire was a fun realm but he was most excited to return to his roots.
The TV screen up above the mini-fridge flashed on suddenly. It must have been one of the other campaign volunteers on the bus, since all the TVs were linked together. If he had one of the fancy buses like Jeb! he’d be able to program a dozen channels at once, but he was certainly fine with what he had now.
Wolf Blitzer, effective and shiny-white as always, monologued to the camera about the latest breaking news. The TV was muted, and John didn’t feel the motivation to pick up the remote and turn it on, but he did read the headlines that flashed onto the screen every few seconds.
Those headlines were not exactly shedding a kind light on the Presidential campaign: “Chris Christie: ‘I place a curse on all Americans’”; “Donald Trump calls Carly Fiorina a ‘total cunt’”; “‘Jeb! is mad!,’ says Jeb!.” It was enough negativity to make John barf right there where he sat. Almost. He was exaggerating a little bit; he didn’t actually barf or even throw up in his mouth a little.
But he just wanted the dark, the cold snow, to go away. New Hampshire today, if only today, was a tropical paradise where his life would not be created, nor be forged, but be codified. It was only a matter of time, at this point.
Outside the window were three churches in a row, all next to each other. One was Lutheran, one was Catholic, one was Anglican. That was the America he grew up in with a mailman for a father; one with freedom through prosperity, prosperity through diversity, and diversity through… Well, he hadn’t thought the slogan all the way through yet, but he was sure it was a good one.
He tried to think of some good jokes to tell at the town hall. Yeah.. yeah, he had one. As soon as everyone quieted down, he was going to go up to the first middle-aged woman he saw and ask her how she was today. She would probably reply with “Okay” or “Good” or something. So he would respond by saying, “Hi Good, I’m John,” which already sounded hilarious in his head; it’d probably play over really well with the audience.
John was tempted to look at the poll numbers and start reading the latest Politico articles. But he decided that would be a waste. Why get down his groove when he could just sit back, relax, and sip on a Bud Light? Well, besides the last part. He probably shouldn’t get drunk on the day of the election. He didn’t want to become another Huntsman, after all.
The bus started to slow to a crawl. Was it a stoplight? He looked back out at the window and saw some people in #John4Us t-shirts. Ah, it looked like they were finally here at the town hall. He took a few deep breaths and got ready to answer the great people of New Hampshire about all the wonderful stuff they wanted to know about.
Look, people, it’s gonna be a great time in America… See, this is how we can succeed… I hope you’ll go out and vote for me at the polls today… Yes. John knew exactly what to say, and he knew he was going to do well.
He stood up, nodded to the other John once again as he continued to study the charts in front of him, and then stepped off the campaign bus. There were dozens of people cheering for him and he gave one of those wide smiles that he was so famous for.
The sun was high-up in the sky by now, and it cast a ray of brightness over John’s head as he approached the town hall. He saw Chris Christie sulking off in the distance, peeking out from behind a tree and sticking out his tongue, but he ignored it. Today was a new day in New Hampshire, and one of the most important days of American political history.
The princes (and princesses) of darkness could not stand it when John entered the fray. They attacked, but he parried every time. He was like a tennis player, ready to shoot back the bad mojo with a flick of his wrist, transforming it into a ball of glowing white optimism. It would take a lot more than Super PAC attacks and surrogate surges to break him. A lot more.
The town hall was even warmer than outside, enough to make John take off his teal jacket and throw it to the side. He had to make sure he remembered to pick it up before he left, though. He would have tied it around his waist like his daughters used to always do, but he didn’t want to run with his teal between his legs. He chuckled softly.
A big crowd of people had gathered around the circle where he would soon begin speaking at this town hall meeting. He wasn’t prepared for such enthusiasm, and it caught him off-guard– in a good way, of course.
Well, with his sleeves rolled up and a microphone in his hand, he let the crowd clap for his entrance. He turned the microphone on and began to speak.