It’s ridiculous the amount of tension I feel over the potential reunion with Levi. This is someone that under ordinary circumstances, I’d run up to and throw my arms around. I was never his best friend—Eve would safely stake the claim to that—but I’ll be thrilled to see him. Still, I can’t walk into his headquarters because of his intermediaries. When I speak to him, it has to be without anyone else knowing.
I saw my patients today and have to admit I was a bit short with them. It’s hard to concentrate on someone else’s qi when my mind is reeling with the effort of undermining Beefcake’s campaign and aligning myself with Levi.
The election is only twenty-four days away now. Beefcake is in the lead in the mayoral race, bizarrely enough—although what passes for independent polling in this era is laughable. Still, Beefcake comes across well while Levi apparently is regarded as too passive. The other two candidates who came on strong early have both since disassembled. One admitted to having been hospitalized in the past with depression and to continuing to have suicidal thoughts; this came in the wake of a scandal where her campaign manager was accused of zombie abuse. The other candidate failed to raise enough money to keep going. She offered her support to whomever would retire her campaign debt, and then rashly moved out of state.
Beefcake stepped up to say he’d retire her campaign debt and champion her issues. He’ll never do any such thing, but lying is effective. He’ll never be called to accounts. That was true back in the days when everything was normal, and it’s more true now.
Jill Riddell is a writer in Chicago. She teaches at the School of the Art Institute and has a weakness for nature, magic, and pennies abandoned in sidewalk cracks.