Broken Code

INT. OVAL OFFICE – NIGHT

Hunched over the Kennedy desk working on some official documents is PRESIDENT WAHOO SHITKICKER, an amiable grey-haired redneck who has somehow wound up as Commander-in-Chief.

He looks up at the sound of a gentle rap on the door.  Standing in the doorway are two security advisors, CHET and SCOOTER.

CHET

Excuse me sir, do you have a moment?

PRESIDENT

Sure thing.  Come on in, boys.

The advisors shuffle in nervously and stand in front of the President’s desk.  Neither wants to be the first to speak, so they pause a moment as the President continues to work.

ANGLE ON the president, diligently staying within the lines of his colouring book.

Chet nudges Scooter.

SCOOTER

Uh, sir… We need to talk to you about the Phoenix Cypher.

PRESIDENT

Whassat?

CHET

The NSA code that protects all the classified information, sir.  You approved it in the budget last year.

PRESIDENT

Oh yeah.  I remember.  What’s going on?

CHET

Well sir, it appears… I mean…

SCOOTER

It’s been broken sir.  Someone seems to have decoded it.

PRESIDENT

Huh.

(beat)

This thing’s supposed to be unbreakable, right?

CHET

Yessir.

PRESIDENT

I mean you told me that.

CHET

Yes sir.  It appears we were wrong.  A coded message somehow got into a puzzle magazine.

PRESIDENT

A what?

SCOOTER

A puzzle magazine, sir – a regular publication featuring crosswords, word searches and other conundrums.

The president looks incredulous, as if unable to believe that such a thing exists.

PRESIDENT

Well, I’ll be damned.

CHET

Someone called in a solution.  To the Phoenix Cypher.

The president leans back in his chair, digesting the news.

PRESIDENT

Who was it?  The Russians?  Al-Qaida?  What kind of intelligence are we looking at?

SCOOTER

Actually, sir, we believe it was a savant.

PRESIDENT

Huh?

CHET

A savant, sir.  Someone with generally impaired mental functions-

His eyes drop to the coloring book on the president’s desk.

CHET
(cont’d)

-but with genius-level abilities when it comes to mathematics.

SCOOTER

They probably don’t realize what they’ve done.

PRESIDENT

Well, that’s all well and good, but we’ve got an unbreakable code that’s just been broke.  A code which cost me 30 billion dollars and which you said would keep our military safe!

SCOOTER

Yes, sir.

PRESIDENT

I want this fixed – ASAP.

CHET

Yes, Mr President.

The president  picks up his phone and dismisses the two intelligence analysts.  When they reach the door, the President gives them a stern warning.

PRESIDENT

Find this Savant, or I swear to God I’m gonna bomb Paris.

Chet and Scooter glance at each other.

BOTH

Yes, Mr. President.

FADE OUT

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