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In the Light of the Fading Sun Part III

Posted on Mon Feb 20th, 2023 @ 3:00pm by President Tomás Garcia Cardoso

Mission: September, 2022
Location: Samaritano Barr Hospital, Rio de Janeiro
Timeline: Date 2022-09-03 at 2230

The officers of the Presidential Guard pulled Tomas off the stage very quickly, allowing on-staff medical personnel to bring out a stretcher and to take him very quickly to Samaritano Barr Hospital near the coast of Rio. The man who shot him had quickly been tackled and disarmed by the crowd of supporters and it was the Presidential Guard who pulled the people off of him and placed him under arrest. The Cardoso family was quickly waved, with security protection, into a black car. The children were taken to Tomas’ parents’ house under guard while Mariana was taken directly to the hospital.

The surgery had begun immediately, and the only thing Mariana could do was sit anxiously in the VIP waiting room, worrying about what came next and praying. Others quickly joined her including Leonel, Desiree, and half an army of security guards. About an hour and a half after the surgery had begun, Leonel stepped out into the hallway to speak with the head of the Cardoso security detail. Now he entered again, his lips tight and his face lined with obvious anger. Mariana looked at him with stress written on her youthful features. She was expectant; waiting for something.

“Do they know who did this, Leonel?” she asked, running her fingers through her long-abandoned hair, her styled updo long gone and replaced by ragged curls which matched her mood.

“Yeah, they do.” Leonel said, nodding his head tensely. He sat down across from her and leaned forward with his elbows on his knees. “Sorry, there’s media lining the streets out there and security’s been busy securing the hospital to keep everyone out of our hair. Technically, as campaign manager, I have no authority to tell them what to do. I was able to corner the Head of the Detail and get some information from him before he shooed me out of the room.”

He sighed then.

“It was a man by the name of Natal Meireles. They weren’t able to get anything from him at all; had to run his prints and go from there. Police have searched his apartment and found his manifesto, additional weapons, and a multi-page plan to assassinate your husband. He’s a dedicated communist. Whether he was working alone or under someone else’s direction we don’t know. That’s all I could get.”

“A Communist?” She asked, a look of scorn in her eye about the idea. “Is this some random nobody or does he have some history? What does his manifesto say?”

“Look, all I know is that his mission was to destroy what he sees as the beginnings of a fascist regime in Brazil. Apparently, he curses God many times in his papers and was motivated by hate for the Catholic religion and our party’s political philosophy.”

The presented facts rested on Mariana as she processed what she had just been told. She raised her eyebrows and nodded slowly.

“Well, if Tom dies, at least he does so as a martyr.” She said, but was interrupted by Leonel’s interjection.

“He’s not going to die, Mariana. He’s strong and the doctors know what they’re doing.” He responded, reaching out and placing a hand on her shoulder

“They said the surgeon will be out to speak with us as soon as he’s out of surgery.” Desiree said, hoping to give comfort to her boss’s wife, if such a thing could genuinely be offered in a situation like this.

A half hour later, Desiree’s announcement was fulfilled as the surgeon, a dark skinned man in a white coat, stepped into the room. He explained that the bullet punctured Tom’s lung and made a clean exit. He told them he was stable and assured them that he would make a full recovery. After the surgeon was gone, the family’s parish priest, Father Locas Roi was allowed back and discussions about the future began amongst the campaign staff.



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