: First, Do No Harm :

an excerpt by Gloria DeVidas Kirchheimer


It is strange to have an enemy.  Yet Vic feels that Gunilla, bearing down on him with her mutant pigeon walk and head bobbing, has targeted him.  Yes, he's sure of it.  She moves down the hall toward him, up to no good. He can tell from the way she leads with her chin and flaps her elbows.  In her hands a bit of newsprint.  It's the article in today's New York Times about the demonstration he participated in yesterday, not too far from this very office.  People got rowdy.  But Vic was standing well within the confines of the barricades.  Who knew the photographer would capture him as he raised his arm, about to wave to a friend, just before being taken to the police station.  He was identified by name and so was his place of employment.  Bad, very bad. 


“We keep a low profile,” Gunilla hissed when he came in this morning and he knew he was in for trouble.  She was going to accuse him of jeopardizing their chance of getting the mega-grant from the Ford Foundation.  Public engagement violates the mission of the Transnational Research Council, the nonprofit organization where Vic is director of information, archivist, and unofficial editor.