By the horns

The President of Mar-a-Lago works on his legal strategy

[The Trump office at Mar-a-Lago — as previously described here, a gigantic, garishly-appointed room with a huge bed, a huge TV, and a large, well-padded wooden throne painted gold on which TRUMP sits in his business suit, playing with his phone. JULIO, his Cuban-American flunky, stands nearby. A golf cart drives up to the bench in front of the throne, driven by a YOUNG GOON and containing JAKE AGNELI, the guy in the horned helmet at the Capitol — though he is currently dressed in business casual and without makeup. The cart stops and the GOON escorts AGNELI to the bench and gestures for him to sit, which AGNELI does. The GOON stands a couple of yards away. No one, of course, is masked. Pause.]

AGNELI: Wow. Just wow.

TRUMP: [Still engrossed in phone] Sit.

AGNELI: I’m sitting, Mr. President!

JULIO: Shhh!

GOON: [Stage whisper] Don’t contradict.

AGNELI: [Stage whisper] Sorry.

[Eventually TRUMP puts away his phone, looks at AGNELI, blinks.]

TRUMP: So you’re the horns guy.

AGNELI: [Delighted] Yes, sir. Loud and proud!

TRUMP: What, you had a wig at the thing, or they shaved your head in jail?

AGNELI: No, sir, the headdress just made my hair look crazy long in pictures. [Touches his own chin]. Shaved my beard, though. Hadda stand tall before the man, so my lawyer said Jake, dial it back.

TRUMP: I see.

AGNELI: [Bowing his head and pressing his palms together] Sir, much, much, much love and gratitude and respect for getting me out of jail, sir.

TRUMP: [To GOON] He knows the story, right?

GOON: [To AGNELI] Your mother’s dying. Capisce?

AGNELI: [Startled] What?

TRUMP: Relax, it’s just a story. When you get back, you tell ‘em she's dead, though.

GOON: [To AGNELI, as if he’s simple-minded] That’s why they let you out.

[AGNELI looks around, then bursts into laughter.]

AGNELI: Wooooo! Oh, man, Mr. President, that is so Art of the Deal amazing! [Points at TRUMP] YOU are the MAN!

[AGNELI does some kind of ululation.]

TRUMP: That’s enough.

[AGNELI seems not to notice. GOON smacks him on the back of his head. AGNELI stops, looks at him, then at TRUMP.]

AGNELI: Sorry, sir, very sorry, no disrespect, it’s just, you know, I’m, whew, I’m you’re, it’s just, you know, I mean you’re my fucking hero, man —

[GOON smacks him harder; AGNELI almost falls off the stool.]

TRUMP: Hey. Hey. You don’t talk to me like that. I’m the President of the United States.


Your trial, that’s not for a while, is it?

AGNELI: July, my lawyer says.

TRUMP: Okay, listen. I want you to testify for me at the thing they have at Congress.

AGNELI: Thing? You mean the impeachment?

[GOON looks at TRUMP, ready to smack AGNELI again.]

TRUMP: Some people call it that. Listen. You’re gonna tell ‘em that you’re in Antifa, that you were always in Antifa, that the whole plan was to make me look bad and that’s why everybody did the thing.

AGNELI: I’m in Antifa?

TRUMP: We got it written down. You just have to sign.

AGNELI: But we did it all for you!

[GOON hits him again.]


[AGNELI pushes GOON away, stands up, makes his case to TRUMP.]

Mr. President! Dude! Don’t you remember, we’re your crew! Your dogs! You said we were patriots! You were proud of us! Look, forget these lawyers and all these other jerks, you don’t have to go out like this! Just tell these people to get fucked, that you’re the President and we’re gonna put you back in and if they try to stop us then we’re gonna burn the motherfucker down!

[AGNELI flexes and ululates. No one stops him. He finally runs out of gas. Beat.]

TRUMP: You know what an asshole you look like now? Without your injun costume and your makeup, yelling and making faces? With your cheap suit and your receding hairline? You’re a joke. A clown. Know what’s not funny though? Your mother. Maybe she really is dying. I don’t know. Things happen. Think about it.

[TRUMP gets out his phone.]

You better get back to jail before someone tells them it was all a big joke.

[TRUMP fiddles with the phone. GOON takes the dazed AGNELI’s arm, pulls him to the golf cart and puts him in. JULIO overtakes them, motions GOON aside, gets in the driver’s seat and starts it. As they drive away:]

JULIO: See, he’s not so bad. You just gotta agree with him. Maybe when this whole thing blows over you can work down here. ‘Cause that shaman thing? The ladies in the spa go crazy for it.