There was absolutely no doubt that Henry Orpington liked politics. He talked about politics all the time. All the members of his family were pleased, therefore, when Henry was adopted as the prospective parliamentary candidate for the constituency in which they were living. One year later the date of the general election was announced by the Prime Minister. Throughout the election campaign Henry's wife and his two teenage daughters worked night and day for him and he finally won a seat in the House of Commons by a very large majority. Every day of the campaign was a challenge, but there was one day in particular that Henry would never forget. That was the day he thought he was going to be blown up by a bomb.
On a Friday morning at the beginning of the campaign, the phone rang in the Orpingtons' house at six-thirty in the morning. Henry got out of bed and ran down the stairs. He wondered who could possibly be ringing at that early hour in the morning.
Man's voice Is that Mr. Henry Orpington, the
Henry Yes, speaking.
Man's voice Oh, good morning. I want to warn you about
Henry A bomb? Where? Hello! We've been cut off.
Operator! Operator! Operator!
It was no good. The line had gone dead. As calmly as he could Henry went upstairs to tell his wife the alarming news. They decided to get dressed at once and take the two girls to their aunt's house. Henry informed the police but asked them to keep the news from the press. At half past eight Henry was in conference with his election agent, Andrew Higgins, at party headquarters.
Andrew If you want my opinion, I suggest you cancel all your
engagements for today and wait until the police
get to the bottom of the matter.
Henry Certainly not! I'm not going to let myself be scared by
some stupid crank.
Andrew What did the man sound like? Did you recognize his voice?
Henry No, I was half asleep. His voice wasn't familiar but he
sounded quite pleasant. He didn't seem to be threatening
Andrew That makes the whole business even more sinister.
Look here, Henry, one day won't make all that much
difference. I'll tell people that you've lost your voice
Henry No, I'm going to carry on as usual. Think of the
advantage it would give my opponents if I were out of the
campaign even for one day.
Andrew If you say so. But I'd like to make it clear that I'm
dead against it.
The Parliamentary Candidate
The Parliamentary Candidate (2)
The Parliamentary Candidate (3)
The Parliamentary Candidate (4)
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