Finley: A Vote

They were late. When Parker and Finley found their seats in the uppermost strata of Parliament’s balcony, they found Alfred in heated debate on the floor. “This is most bewildering, I agree, but one does not throw out years of efficient tradition because of a swarthy sky. Parliament must, representing their constituents, find a solution to this problem. The answer is not to abolish Parliament and place our hopes on the head of one man. It’s preposterous. And we must act quickly. Have you, you privileged, looked outside? The streets are in disarray. The markets are closed. The ports have shutdown, and trade is suspended. Deviants are on the rampage, yet the police do nothing. Elaea is crumbling and we sit locked in debate over a new Monarchy. Are we so lost?” he pounded his fist on the podium. “We must cease to distract ourselves and move forward, in either darkness or light, by establishing the rule of law. If the Honorable Mr. de’Fleet feels that he can no longer lead, then I suggest we nominate and vote in a new and legal Prime Minister whom can see us through, but disbanding Parliament is not the answer.” This was met with cheers and applause from Alfred’s supporters.
Parker’s father, Gerard, the speaker of Parliament, pounded his gavel. “Are there any other positions to weigh before this house votes?” he said, waited the allotted time, then, “Therefore—”
“Hold,” said another Member of Parliament, “We’ve not heard the Speaker opine on the matter.”
“It is not customary,” began Gerard Lackamore, a man used to affluence and excess and who spoke with a deliberate eloquence, “that the Speaker should opine before his House. Yet, this is an extraordinary case.” He took his glasses off and rubbed the bridge of his nose, something he did when conflicted. He put his glasses back on, “I find both arguments compelling. I see the need for strong and unquestioned leadership, but I also see tradition as something to be upheld, not cast aside. I too, Alfred, have seen the state of our capital,” he was looking at the Guildmaster, “and I agree, we have a responsibility to those who have voted us into office.” He paused, took a deep breath, “It is, therefore, with deep reservation that I,” he shifted, “that I back de’Fleet in his proposed restoration of the Monarchy.” A great and collective gasp was heard throughout the House of Parliament. Parker turned to Finley, a look of confusion on his face. “Why?” he whispered, shaking his head. De’Fleet jumped to the Speaker’s platform, seized the gavel, and cried out, “A vote, we must vote!”

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