SHADOW REVOLUTION–Episode six
Part Three of the story
Excerpts from chapter eight:
Idaho State Treasurer Lyda Evans and the state comptroller, Justin Wilson, perused the morning computer printouts of the state finances. They were interrupted by a buzz on Lyda’s intercom.
“Mrs. Evans, there is a gentleman here in my office who says he is from the Securities and Exchange Commission and insists on seeing you right away.”
“Does he say what he wants to see me about?”
“I asked him, but he insists on speaking only with you.”
Lyda’s, tone of voice reflected her annoyance. “Tell him that he has come at a very busy time, and that if he wishes to speak to me, he should call ahead and make an appointment.”
“OK, I’ll tell him.”
Lyda heard her secretary’s protest from the outer office. “Sir, you can’t go in there without an appointment!” She looked up from her desk as a man stormed into her office.
“Mrs. Evans!” the man shouted. “Do you realize who you are dealing with here?”
“Yes, sir, I think I do. I’m obviously dealing with a very rude and crude man who thinks that because he is a federal bureaucrat, he has the right to barge into my office and throw his weight around. If you have business with me, sir, you can make an appointment the same as anyone else. Now if you will excuse me, I have work to do.”
“Mrs. Evans, I’m with the Securities and Exchange Commission. I have a team with me, and we are here to audit your state books. After the fiasco that happened in Orange County, California, the commission feels it necessary to keep tabs on the states and their investments. We’re only here to help keep you out of trouble.”
“Mr., whatever your name is—”
“Aldrich,” he said.
“Mr. Aldrich, let me tell you something. When someone says to me, ‘I’m from the government, and we only want to help you,’ that’s when I become very wary. We here in the state of Idaho are very capable of managing our own financial affairs. We didn’t ask for your assistance. We don’t need your assistance. Above all, we don’t want your assistance, and I’ll thank you to leave my office immediately! Is that understood, Mr. Aldrich?”
“Yes, ma’am, I understand what you said, but I don’t think you understand what I said. I said we are here to audit your books and to help you stay out of trouble, financially and legally.”
“And again I say to you, Mr. Aldrich, please leave my office this instant, or I’ll call Security and have you removed for interrupting state business! Do I make myself clear?”
He looked at her; his stare was cold and hard. She felt an icy chill as her heart rate increased.
“Perfectly … clear … Mrs. Evans. I’ll be back, and next time I’ll have federal warrants for your and Mr. Wilson’s arrests for interfering with federal business. . . .”
. . . After Aldrich left, Justin Wilson walked over and filled his coffee mug. He turned and addressed Lyda, who, tough as she was, showed visible signs of uneasiness over her altercation with the federal bureaucrat. “Do you think he’ll be back?” he asked.
“Oh, yes, he’ll be back,” she answered. “Those federal bureaucrats don’t like being rebuked. He’ll be back all right. I think we need to let Titus know about this.”
She laid her bug de-activator on the desk and dialed Titus’ number. Maura answered the phone.. . .
. . . Lyda was stunned at what she was witnessing. It did not take Mr. Aldrich long to make good on his threat. One week after he was asked to leave the state treasurer’s office, he was back, accompanied by federal marshals with warrants for Lyda’s and Justin’s arrests as well as warrants giving them authority to seize state records. They marched right past the secretary and straight in to Lyda’s office. They served her with the warrants and immediately commandeered all the files and records.
“This can’t be happening. This is the United States of America,” she said.
Aldrich gave her a sinister look. “I warned you not to mess with me and my investigation, Mrs. Evans. We told you we only want to help. It would have been much easier with your cooperation, but since you chose not to offer it, we have to resort to other measures.”
“You’ll never get away with this, you’ll get yours. Believe me, you will.”
“Oh, but I am getting away with it, Mrs, Evans. It’s you and the comptroller who are being arrested, not me. You can’t say I didn’t give you a chance.”
“It is I, and the State of Idaho, who will have the last word in this, Mr. Aldrich. Just remember I warned you. You and the United States government will rue the day you ever tried your oppressive tactics with us.”
She spoke with a resolve and assurance that caused Aldrich to feel a sudden surge of doom, as though he had had a witch’s spell cast on him. Try as he might, he could not shake it. . . .
Tune in later for episode seven.
In the meantime, let me remind you again of my most recent release, a Western tale about Louisa Houston Earp. Although it is not an actual biography of Ms. Houston, it is an interesting adventure into the life of an interesting character. I think you’ll like LouIsa. She is a interesting blend of the softness of femininity and quiet strength.