24 May 1973
"So where _do_ we go from here?" asked Richard Patten. [FN1]
"There are two possibilities," answered Alistair Reid. "The
Democrats have approached me about forming a national unity
"In which they're the nurse and we're the charge, I expect."
"Quiet, Richard," said John Amalfi. In the week since the
election, the caretaker foreign minister had subtly taken over
the day-to-day leadership of the Victoria United Party. "Let's
hear their terms."
"They want the Prime Minister's chair, of course," Reid said.
"They'll let you have the foreign ministry, and half the cabinet
less one, but they insist on Interior and Education. They want
an end to martial law in Mombasa..."
"We were going to do that anyway," interrupted Amalfi.
"... and a reduction of the income qualification for non-white
voters to three hundred pounds per year." [FN2]
"Can they _do_ that?" Amalfi asked. "I thought the constitution
said five hundred."
"The constitution says that non-whites with incomes of five
hundred pounds or more can't be denied the vote," Reid explained.
"The Democrats' interpretation is that blacks who make less than
five hundred can be denied the franchise, but don't have to be."
"I'll tell you frankly, I won't brook it," said Patten. "We'd be
signing our bloody death warrant if we go along with that -
there'll be six hundred thousand more niggers to vote against us
in the next election."
"I'm sure the terms are negotiable..."
"I won't brook it, Alistair. I assume the other alternative is
the Conservatives. What do the bastards want?"
"They're willing to allow us to keep the premiership..."
"Nice of the bloody gits." The Conservatives were something of
a sore point with Patten, having run against their coalition
partner in the election and gained twelve seats at its expense.
"How many ministries do they want?"
"That's almost half the sodding cabinet! Do they honestly think
they have any choice besides us?"
"The way they see it," reminded Amalfi quietly, "we're in much
the same position."
"All right, then," Patten said. "Go on with it."
"They want us to endorse their racial platform..." [FN3]
"... and to guarantee a job to every white worker at four hundred
pounds a year."
"That would break the treasury! And besides, even if they join
us, we'd still only have fifty-nine seats..."
"No," said Alistair. "We'd have sixty. I had a chat with
"And he answered?" said Amalfi. "What did you do to make him
open his mouth?"
"Torture. But notwithstanding, he agreed to support us if we
joined with the Conservatives."
"Does he want a ministry?" asked Patten.
"Heavens, no," Amalfi said. "That would be far too much like
work." Lionel Mellor had represented Mombasa South as an
independent for more than forty years, and had spent at least
half that time asleep at his bench.
"It would," confirmed Reid. "He doesn't want to be part of the
government, and he won't commit himself to supporting our
initiatives, but he will promise not to bring us down if we
approve certain funding for his district. I've looked at his
wish list, and I think we can accommodate it without very much
"What about the United Empire vote?" There was somewhat more
hope in the caretaker prime minister's voice than before, but it
was still tinged with an edge of nervousness.
"Oh, he won't oppose that," Reid said. "You know Lionel - more
British than the king. On the other hand, he won't go along with
the Conservatives' racial plan, which will give us a bloody good
excuse for not passing it, won't it?"
"And the Conservatives' jobs legislation?"
"I've been assured - privately, of course - that Lionel won't
countenance any raid on the exchequer."
Amalfi looked around the table and managed a thin smile. "It
looks like we just managed to buy ourselves four more years,
gentlemen. I wouldn't have thought it, but it looks like we've
16 June 1973
Lord Carrington made a point of not inviting Ambassador Sir John
Gilmore to sit at the reviewing stand when he welcomed Victoria
back to the United Empire. _The _Goldie_ diplomats are up there_,
Gilmore realized from his position in the crowd. _I've been put
in my place, I guess_.
The thought, on further reflection, didn't bother Gilmore a great
deal. His place put some distance between him and Richard Patten,
which reflected his government's attitude quite nicely. It also
put some distance between him and Lord Carrington, which meant
that he could tune out the bloody bastard's blather and catch up
with his aide instead.
"It certainly hasn't hurt Patten," Patrick Garrigan said. "The
Empire vote was popular, even with the blacks - they remember the
British as something before the war, before all the pass laws and
"Has it helped him? In Parliament, I mean."
"You'd know better than me, but I don't think so. The opposition
backed him on the United Empire for two reasons - because they're
sentimental, and because they want the trade benefits. From all
I've heard, they aren't any fonder of the rest of his program than
they were. He's still one vote short of a real government - and
if the United Empire vote had made him _popular_, he wouldn't need
Gilmore looked where Garrigan was gesturing, and saw the machine
gun nests scattered around the square and its surrounding
buildings. The government was obviously taking no chances on a
repeat of the April riots.
_Still, it's saying something that the blacks are here at all_.
Gilmore was sure that part of the reason for their presence was
simple relief; the last of the emergency restrictions on non-
citizen assemblies in the capital had been lifted in honor of the
occasion, and the working-class blacks were relishing the chance
to be outside with their friends and families and without fear of
harassment. The government had even laid on a picnic for them
for after the speeches, although only citizens were invited to the
official reception at Government House. But there was something
else as well - an expectation, as Patrick had said, that becoming
an associate of the United Empire might make things better.
"... one people," came Lord Carrington's voice from the podium.
"We were one people the day Victoria was founded, and now we are
one people again..."
19 July 1973
"I suppose you're wondering why I called you here," said Donald
"Yes, sir," said Antonio Marques, taking in the opulence of the
Agriculture Minister's office. In the past three months, he had
grown accustomed to middle-class comforts, but Allen's office was
well beyond his means. The minister owned forty-six thousand
acres in the westlands and made an easy million a year growing
cotton, and he had spent lavishly from his personal fortune to
furnish his work space. For Marques, the transition from the
drab hallways of the parliament building to Allen's indoor manor
was like a passage into an enchanted world.
"Michael Ruffin tells me you've been doing very good work for the
party," Allen continued, pretending not to notice Marques' flush
of embarrassed pride. "I'd like to offer you the chance to do
"I'd be pleased, sir..."
"Don't say yes until you've heard what I have in mind," said Allen
with the easy manner of a country squire. "This will seem like
changing the subject, but have you ever heard of my grandmother?"
"Quite a woman, Mary." He pointed to a fine oil portrait hanging
to the right of his chair. "She may not look it, but she
organized the first women's police battalion in Britain. [FN4]
They didn't want to have her at first, but she just kept at it
until they had no choice. After she came here, of course, she
was quite instrumental in setting up the Victorian constabulary.
At any rate, there are two things she always used to tell me when
I was a child..." He paused and waited expectantly.
Marques judged it best to live up to expectations. "What were
"Very good, Marques. The first was that when you need to do
something, you don't wait for permission - you just do it. And
the second is that law and order are two different things. Do
"I'm afraid not, sir."
"You will, you will. The key, for now, is that order is something
above and beyond the law. Sometimes, the law isn't enough to
maintain order - but without order, we have no society, don't we?
We need to maintain order, Marques, and you're the one to help me
do it. I may be agriculture minister, Marques, and I think I'm a
damned good one, but I'll let you in on a secret - my duties to
the party don't all involve farming. Charles Nicholson - you've
met him? No? You will - has asked me to organize a neighborhood
watch. A crime prevention patrol, if you will."
"Like the police, sir?"
"Like them, but then again, _not_ like them. The police do a fine
job enforcing the law, but as I said, sometimes it's necessary to
do more to maintain order. This neighborhood watch of mine will
be called the Order Guards, and I'd like you to run it for West
Nairobi. Are you in, Marques?"
It took only a moment for Marques to realize how far he might go
under the Agriculture Minister's patronage. "Of course I am, sir,"
he said. "I'd be honored."
26 August 1973
If Hans Stoller had lived in the Cape Kingdom, he would have been
called _Kleurling_ - Coloured. In Fernando Po, he would have
been a _fernandino_, one of the true people of the island. In
Victoria, he was nothing.
There was no category for mixed-race people in Victoria. In
theory, at least, they did not exist. Marriage and sexual
relations between the races were prohibited by law, with severe
penalties for all concerned in the event of violation. In the
census and in racial legislation, they were simply described as
"non-white," and subject to the same restrictions as the blackest
But mixed-race children still happened. Mixed-race people
weren't "born" in Victoria - they "happened." Sometimes, they
happened when a master and his maid became amorous behind closed
doors - the sort of happening that had lately led to Harry
Keller's downfall. Other times, they were the children of
prostitutes - a class of people that no society, no matter how
strict its laws, had ever succeeded in stamping out. And then
there were the Mombasa Bastards.
There had been two German garrisons in Victoria during the Global
War, one at Nairobi and another at Mombasa. The Mombasa garrison,
which also served the Indian Ocean fleet, was by far the larger of
the two, and many local women had worked on the base during the
war. The German soldiers had been rich by Victorian standards,
and much kinder than the local whites - and they'd been exempt
from the Victorian racial laws. Editors and politicians had
fulminated, but nature had taken its course; six thousand part-
German children had been born before their fathers left forever.
The fathers were in Germany now, and the children had been left
behind, to be doubly despised as non-whites and as the offspring
Stoller was luckier than most; his father still sent money. He'd
been able to go to school and become a paramedic at the Mombasa
hospital; his income was just enough to qualify for citizenship.
As far as he knew, no more than three of his childhood friends
were citizens; there were no statistics, but the proportion of
Mombasa Bastards who were enfranchised was quite possibly less
than the blacks. _The middle-class blacks, at least, help each
Often, the Bastards didn't even get the help the _lower_ class
blacks got. On the weekends, Stoller volunteered at one of the
community clinics the Victoria National Congress had set up in
the working-class suburb where he lived. It was in a black
neighborhood, like all the VNC projects. Stoller had asked for
their help in founding a clinic in his own neighborhood, but they
hadn't accepted. They'd had a hard enough time accepting _him_,
even when he almost got himself shot stealing medicines from the
hospital during martial law. For all too many of the VNC,
Victoria's struggle was a _black_ struggle, and half-German
bastards weren't wanted.
_Things would be simpler if my father and mother had been decently
married. Then I'd be in Germany now, and worrying about where to
go for dinner..._
Extract from Hansard
Parliament of Victoria
19 September 1973
SPEAKER: The Chair recognizes the Education Minister.
THE EDUCATION MINISTER (MR. CHARLES NICHOLSON): I have a question
for the honorable Prime Minister. Mr. Patten, it has been four
months since the elections, and the government has yet to pass
many key parts of its program.
[Cries of "Shame!" from the Conservative benches]
MR. NICHOLSON: I refer, specifically, to the national security
and jobs legislation that this government - and the Prime
Minister personally - swore it would enact. I ask the Prime
Minister why it has not passed?
THE PRIME MINISTER (MR. RICHARD PATTEN): I yield to none in my
determination to see the government's platform enacted into law.
However, I'm sure it cannot have escaped the honorable Education
Minister's notice that the government holds only fifty-nine
mandates. There is only so much a minority government can
accomplish, and the wonder in this case is how much we have done
rather than how much we have failed to do. We have passed a
budget with tax relief and jobs programs, we have healed the
wounds of the Global War by rejoining the United Empire...
[Sustained cheers from the Victoria United and Democratic benches]
MR. PATTEN: ... we have promoted law and order by putting a
thousand new police officers on the streets. I remind the
honorable Education Minister that the government of Victoria is a
functioning government, and that the nation of Victoria is moving
[Cheers from the Victoria United benches]
MR. NICHOLSON: If I may be permitted to ask the Prime Minister
one more question. The Prime Minister, just now, mentioned jobs
legislation. There has been some of that, yes. But does the
Prime Minister deny that the majority of new jobs in Victoria
have been low-wage jobs filled by niggers? Where is the white
man's jobs program? What happened to this government's promise
to guarantee every white citizen an income of four hundred pounds
[Sustained cheering and stamping from the Conservative benches]
MR. PATTEN: I believe I have already explained this to the
honorable Education Minister, and I suggest that he take it up
with Lionel Mellor if and when that honorable member holds
question time. And I also remind the Education Minister that he
is a minister of the Victorian government and not a member of the
MR. NICHOLSON: The honorable Prime Minister is correct. I am not
a member of the opposition - which is all the more reason why, as
a government minister, I reserve the right to call the government
to account for falling short of its promises. And if the Prime
Minister is not willing to be called to account, it may be that
he should step aside in favor of someone who is...
8 October 1973
Anand Rajaram didn't like coming home late. The Nairobi suburb
where he lived was infrequently policed and poorly lit; by two in
the morning - which it now was - the streets were dangerous. It
was on foggy nights like this that the government's expansion of
the police force seemed most like a joke.
He heard the approaching figures before they appeared out of the
fog; they were making no effort at stealth. Fair enough -
neither was he. As the shapes came closer, they resolved into
three men dressed in shirts of the same color. To Rajaram's
reporter's eye, they looked almost like they were wearing
"Are you Anand Rajaram?" asked the largest of them, stumbling
slightly over the unfamiliar name.
_So this is personal. Ho, bloody ho_. "Yes," he said, "although
I prefer to take calls during office hours."
"The bloody raghead's a joker," said another one. "We don't like
the articles we've been seeing in the Guardian."
"Who are 'we?'" asked Rajaram, slowly backing away. In fact, he
knew who had accosted him; he had written a number of stories
about the Order Guards' growing depredations in Nairobi's black
neighborhoods. Evidently, one of them had hit close to home.
"Oh, we'll tell you - after we deliver a message from our boss..."
Rajaram had reached the entrance to an alleyway, where garbage
was often thrown. He looked carefully to one side, keeping the
three Order Guards in view, and then he saw it. _Thank God for
He knew he didn't have long before he was attacked, but he'd been
in the kind of fighting where people were killed, and the Order
Guards were too young to have that sort of experience. _Bloody
amateurs._ He bent quickly to the ground, seized the length of
pipe, and swung it around just as the Order Guards were on him.
He smashed one of them in the head and punched the pipe at a
second, hitting him below the ribs. The third, evidently having
no desire for an even fight, turned and ran away.
_I'll have to carry something from now on_, Rajaram decided. He
didn't have a weapon permit; as a citizen, he was entitled to
apply for one, but they weren't often given to people with his
last name. _Still, it's better to carry than to be carried._
He looked down at his two former assailants - only one of them
conscious - and spat on the ground between them. "Order Guards
attack Guardian reporter," he said. "Page one tomorrow, you
16 November 1973
Caroline Boyle gave two kinds of parties - political and social.
Her political soirees were always liberal, with both a small and
a capital L, as befitted one of Victoria's leading supporters of
progressive causes. Her social events, on the other hand, were
_social_, and it would hardly be polite to snub a pillar of
society because of an indelicate political affiliation. So
tonight, she found herself exchanging pleasantries with Gloria
Patten and discussing the disappointing theater season.
"Another cup of tea... oh, thank you, Sandra."
"What happened to Sharon?" inquired Gloria offhandedly.
"I had to let her go. She came to me last week and demanded -
_demanded_ - two pounds a week. She said that all the factory
workers were getting more money because of the British trade."
"I've heard that, actually - Richard tells me that skilled workers
are commanding good wages now."
"But there are still plenty of people waiting in line to be
domestic help, thank goodness..."
"Excuse me, ladies." Both women looked up from their teacups to
see the Agriculture Minister, accompanied by an unfamiliar figure.
"I'm sorry to interrupt your conversation, but I thought I might
introduce Antonio Marques, who is here as my guest. Mr. Marques;
Mrs. Patten, and our charming hostess, Miss Boyle."
"A pleasure, Mr. Marques," answered Caroline. "May I ask how you
came to know Donald?"
"Mr. Marques is the Order Guard commander for West Nairobi and
Abingdon," the minister explained.
"The Order Guards?"
"Yes, I've forgotten, there isn't a chapter of them in Carrollton
as yet. They're a neighborhood watch; an anti-crime patrol,
assistants to the police. They aren't needed here, certainly, but
they do very good work in the rougher neighborhoods. We're quite
proud of them at Government House."
"That sounds like quite a worthy endeavor, Mr. Marques," Caroline
said. She looked at him with renewed interest; she had originally
classified him as not worth knowing thanks to his clothes and
accent, but the fact that Donald Allen was taking the time to
introduce him counted for something. And then, although he wore a
wedding ring, there was no wife in evidence, and his gaze held a
very ill-concealed interest.
Maybe he _was_ worth knowing, after all.
24 December 1973
"The very finest compliments of the season," said Magistrate Ian
Douglas. "And might I add, Victoria, that you look good."
Victoria took the judge's arm and ushered him into an apartment
already filled with her family and friends. "My appeals were
decided yesterday, you know."
"Dismissed, I presume?"
"Of course. But so were the Public Prosecutor's. The conviction
stands, but so does the sentence."
"And since they're my conviction and my sentence, I find myself in
firm agreement," Douglas said. "Seriously, though, I suppose it's
the best you could hope for. I hope everything else is better?"
"Substantially. I've finally registered Letitia's children as
living with me, and they'll start school in the winter term.
They've never gone, but I've tutored them at home for most of a
year; I'm sure they'll do well."
_They'd do better with their mother home_, Victoria thought, but
there was nothing to be done about that now. If things went
according to plan, Letitia Ntimana would come up for trial at the
beginning of the year, and with the way things were going these
days, it wasn't likely that a jury would let her go. With the
right judge, she might get two years; with the wrong judge, six.
It was likely that the Ntimana children would be living with
Victoria for some time.
_At least they seem to be having fun_. Six-year-old Dorothy was
entertaining some of the older guests on the piano and, from what
Victoria could hear, doing a creditable job. Like most children,
she had adapted easily - although, ten minutes from now, she might
be crying for her mother. She hadn't stopped doing that yet.
"I haven't seen you in court much lately," said Douglas, bringing
Victoria back to herself.
"I've had a shortage of criminal cases," she answered. "I've also
been concentrating on my legal aid scheme, and it's taken time
away from courtroom work."
"I think I've heard something about that..."
"For the neighborhood. I've been helping people with official
forms, eviction cases, small claims, that sort of thing. I've
been trying to get the All Citizens' Party to expand the program,
actually - we can't concentrate so much on representing citizens
that we forget the people who _will_ be citizens. It's a crime
that the VNC is the only one doing anything..."
"You sound like you're making a speech, Victoria," Douglas said.
"Will you be running for office next?"
"It's a possibility," she replied, ignoring his surprise. "The
All Citizens' committee for Kibera riding has asked me to stand
for Parliament in 1977; Mr. Ngilu is almost seventy, and he
doesn't want a second term. I have four years to decide, and I'll
probably change my mind at least ten times, but it's possible."
"That's funny. I was actually going to ask you if you might be
interested in standing as a Democrat."
"Now _I'm_ the one surprised. I hadn't thought that the
Democratic Party fielded black candidates."
"We haven't yet. But your party doesn't have a monopoly on
rethinking its practices. Black citizens have been quite an
important part of our constituency for years now, and they'll be
more of one in four years; it's about time we recognized them when
we put together our candidate lists... I see you're being called
to entertain, so we'll discuss it later."
Victoria looked around and saw that she was being demanded at the
piano; it had become a tradition for her to begin the caroling at
her Christmas parties. She decided to play the Coventry carol
first; despite its mournful lyrics, it had been her favorite since
the time when her mother had sung her to sleep with it. In a
strange way, it had always given her a feeling of warm
satisfaction, which seemed especially appropriate in light of
It was clear now that the government was on borrowed time. The
stream of immigrants from the Gold Republics was drying up, and by
the next election, the growth of the black middle class would
change the electorate beyond alteration. The economic benefits
from United Empire membership alone should put half a million
blacks over the income threshold by then; the VUP and the
Conservatives would fume ineffectually for the next four years,
and then time would sweep them away and Victoria would be set on
course to become a state of all citizens. If even the old-line
Democrats knew that...
Only one thought marred her satisfaction as she sat down to play.
_The Conservatives know it, too_.
[FN1] See the end of FAN # 51n.
[FN2] The rate of exchange between the Victorian and CNA pound is
approximately 2.5 to 1. Given the lower prices in Victoria, an
annual income of three hundred pounds is just enough to support a
working-class standard of living. Three hundred pounds a year
would be considered rock-bottom for Victorian whites, but out of
reach for three quarters of the black population.
[FN3] If anyone is offended by the fact that the Conservatives
are the most overtly racist party in Victoria, please address all
complaints to Dr. Andries Treurnicht.
[FN4] Strictly speaking, the odds of Mary Allen existing in
recognizable form in the FANTL are rather low, but if Sobel can
have Queen Victoria and Thomas Edison, then I can have her. So
here's to you, Chris Williams.
Jonathan I. Edelstein in Kew Gardens, NY
"It's been a lot of fun." -- in memoriam, Alison Brooks