March 7, 1936:
Robert Asher wasn’t feeling well. His head was throbbing and his vision was blurred. Every subtle noise would send stabs of pain through his skull. A glass of Alka-Seltzer was foaming beside his hand. He absentmindedly rubbed the welt on the side of his face as he glanced at the morning paper. Last night did not go as planned.
The footsteps screamed at him. Harsh steps echoed down the hall, doing little to alleviate his condition. Two sets of patent leather shoes squeaked and snapped at the hardwood floors outside his office. A third pair was a little more forgiving, stepping lightly behind. The noise wasn’t helping Asher’s mood. It got even worse when the feet stopped at his door.
They hesitated before knocking. Despite the effort to whisper, Asher heard them plainly.
“I don’t know about this, Tom.”
“Don’t be a fool, Patrick. We came all this way to talk to the man.”
“You can’t really believe what they say about him,” said Tom. “About what he can do?”
“Of course not,” said Patrick, “but I’m not going back to Washington empty-handed.”
Asher sat up in his chair and focused his eyes on the door. Washington? This was getting interesting. The men called Tom and Patrick continued to bicker, until the third man intervened.