F   I   C   T   I   O   N 

The Statement

There was a serious buzz in Senator Frank Merrin’s hotel room. His staff was prepping him for the press conference, and no outsiders were allowed in the room. In a far corner, his wife and two daughters were being readied. They had that anticipation – the glazed eyes, the hurried answers to the dressers and hair people and event arrangers circling around them.

In another corner, Frank looked at some papers, then hurriedly signed one and handed it to an aide who rushed off into the crowd. A young woman came up to him with a makeup kit and applied pancake to his forehead, which had beaded up with perspiration. “Don’t worry, Mr. Merrin… Frank…” but Frank was worried then calmed a bit when he looked into her eyes and, as she finished, slid his hand off her waist.

Outside in the hotel lobby the press clamor rose as in the distance a door opened and the Merrin family, surrounded by security, made its way to a low podium. Cameras clacked madly as Frank stepped up to the microphones.

“Thank you all for coming. Let me start off by saying that I love my family dearly, and the recent revelations about my infidelity and financial impropriety do not diminish that love one bit. One bit. The drug and pedophilia charges, however, are completely false. Having said that, my message to you today is to not dwell in the past but to embrace the future, which is where I’m headed today.”

The police then escorted him away. Frank’s family looked at him, stone-faced.

In jail he works on a large sculpture from a photo of them in that same exact pose, a sculpture made entirely out of soap.