Number 43

His footfalls echoed down dark marble corridors as the gilded elevator doors shut behind him. “Good luck…” the elevator man had said with a tinge of sarcasm as they arrived at the 41st floor. Now he was at the massive oak doors, and he paused before taking an apprehensive breath and stepping inside.

His father was seated behind a large black desk, staring out the window at the view across the icy river. “Sit,” he commanded.

“It’s time you lived up to your promise. All the best schooling, the family name, wealth and influence,” he said in a deadpan voice, “and still…here you are.”

“Hello, Father,” he began but his greeting was not returned.

His father spun around in his chair. “Yet another company run into the ground by your ineptitude,” he said with disgust. “Do you know how embarrassing this is? Do you think this is the legacy I intended to leave?”

“But I gave –“

“What do you know about giving? You know about getting. Yes, you certainly know that. You never knew what it is to give all you have to a commitment, to your family, to your country. Never knew the sacrifice I gave by going to war. You were given a ticket out of that quandary, or perhaps you have forgotten?”

“My brother –“

Your ineffectual brother is not the issue!!” he bellowed, slamming a clenched fist down on his desk, rattling the dagger-like letter opener, emblazoned with the insignia of the secret fraternal order known as the Skull and Bones.

“We have something greater planned for you. You will not fail like you have countless times before. Prominence is in our blood, it is our birthright. You will lead, you will do as you are told, and you will become part of history. Is this clear?”

“Yes,” he said, trying to sound as confident and stoic as he could muster.

“You may go now.”

He paused for a second as if considering saying something, but instead he rose obediently from the large, red, leather chair. Just as his hand grasped the knob on the door to make his exit he heard his father say:

“Oh, and George?”

“Yes?”

“Send Jeb in next. I have something in mind for him as well. That will be all.”


 

Written in response to the Daily Prompt on the topic of: Legacy

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