Chong was certainly not expecting this, but he was a bit more prepared. He touched his tounge to a sub-molar notification device in his mouth that would summon the guards.
“Your wife’s dead,” Chong tried.
“Of course she is. But that didn’t stop her from popping on your train and having  alittle talk did it?” Ford got up and waved his gun as he talked.
“How do you know that?”
“Thanks to your vigilant protection of the lunar populace, you have a camera on every train, no? I have connections.  It’s not hard to get copies of the video.  Although, I must say,” and here Ford frowned, “the audio is awful.  Enough to hear what you were saying, but still,” he shrugged.
“So you know your wife is not dead?” Where were the guards.  Chong touched his molar again.
“Don’t strain your tounge muscle, Mr. President. The frequency’s jammed. Good idea and all, but I was ready.”
“Why so much talk then.  Why don’t you shoot?”
“Good tactics Mr. president.  Youv’e been trained well.  And I must give you credit.  You’ve seen through me.  I don’t really want to kill you.  I needed to make you believe that.  And it doesn’t mean I won’t kill you.” Suddenly an invisible knife cut into Chong’s leg and casued him to fall to the ground in brief pain. Ford’s gun was capable of subsonics.  It could use sub-audible sound waves to incapacitate or kill the victim.
“A low setting Mr. President.  Just to show you I’m serious. Now.  I’m going to shoot you again, just to knock you out.”
Chong was screaming, but no sound came out. Then he realized he was in the back seat of a car.  The ride was very turbulent, he was bouncing around all over the place. He opened his eyes and sat up.  He was handcuffed in the back part of  truck cab.  It was an old fashioned ground car.  John Ford sat in the front driving.
“Good morning Mr. President.  Sorry for the acommodations.  I imagine you’re used to much better.  However it was necessary to get where we’re going unnoticed.
“And where’s that exactly?” Chong mangled the words as he worked the sleep out of his mouth.
“you’re probably working off the drug I gave you.  Perenity.  No lasting effects, but you will have a bit of a hangover.”
“I asked where we were.”
“Yes you did. We’re in Oakland, California. Uh… Grand and Harrison right at this point.”
“Why are we in Oakland, California?” Chong’s geography was good, but he wasn’t exactly sure where Oakland was.  He vaguely remembered it being in northern California.  Somewhere near San Francisco?”
“Well, Oakland has become a favorite for people to hide out in.  It’s got an old reputation for violent crime that long ago became untrue. So it’s instead become a perfect place for people to hide out for awhile. Nobody bothers you.  Everyone’s nice.  The restaurants are good.  Only issue is the police. You can’t get away with much here in the way of violence.  That should comfort you.  Killing someone in Oakland, is tantamount to turning yourself in.  However, non-violent crimes? Petty crimes?  That’s a different story.  You’ll understand. Amazing city, this Oakland.  One of the few untouched by the war.  Fundys focused all their might and anger on San Francisco, right across the bay.  Left Oakland untouched.  Sort of treated it as unimportant.  Another advantage in my mind. Closest the war came to me here was the internment camp at Emeryville. A few Fundys still over there actually. But I do ramble.  There’s water in the flap of the backseat for you.  I think you should be able to open it even with the handcuffs, but let me know.”
Chong opened the water and rank.  He noticed Ford was much different.  Much more affable.  A closer approximation to the Ford that was the negotiator before the war. Chong thought mayb e he imagined it but he looked a little different too.  Older maybe?  Chong couldn’t put his finger on it, but something was odd.
They pulled up next to an old power station downtown.  The truck moved through an alleyway, around the back and into a private garage. Ford helped Chong out of the truck and walked him through a door into an empty warehouse.
“Used to be the Western Power Station way way back in the day. Was used for all sorts of artsy and not so artsy things for a long time.  Now it’s my little laboratory.” Ford sat Chong and himself down on a set of church pews in one caroner of the empty hall. The rest of it was dark and gloomy.
“Here’s the thing Chong.  I can’t explain to you everything that’s going on.  You’ll have to piece it together for yourself.  And there’s no way you’re going to trust me right away, so I’m going to have to keep you locked up for now.  But I assure you,” Ford moved in closer to Chong with a determined almost manic look in his eyes, “I assure you with all I know and believe, there was no other way.  What I’m doing only I could do. And it’s not only for your benefit, but for the benefit of both worlds. The war is far from over. In fact, if you had attended the peace conference without incident, the worlds would be in dire straits now.  You did defeat the Fundys.  You did kill Touareg.  But there was a faction.  One even Touareg distanced himself from, that has persisted.  They have not surrendered.  They’re far too clever for that. You’ve met one now.  My wife.  And she was my wife, in a way.  You’ll understand.  But she’s not to be trusted. They may be impossible to defeat.  But I may know the way.  if I’m right, it’s the only way. And it must happen just so.”
Chong was overwhelmed with the mad rant. He felt mor ein danger here than when confronted by Ford previously.  At least he felt he understood the homicidal Ford.  But this Ford seemed insane and capable of just about anything.  He wasn;t just mad, but mad with an invented cause.  Chong tried to remember his training in psychology, but he had never meant to go into the discipline and only really mastered the interpesonal methods, not the clinical methods for dealing with the truly ill.
“Stand up,” Ford seemed nervous now. Chong obeyed.  He had not other choice but disobeying and that didn’t seem to gain him anything.
“Walk…” Ford tapped at his head compulsively as if he ahd a tic. “I’m sorry, it’s just that nobody’s ever seen this before.  I have to be confident I’m doign the right thing.  Walk forward about 10 feet.  Stop when I say stop.”
“Because I said so!” screamed Ford.
Chong had little choice now.  He could procoke and get into an argument with a man who claimed he didn’t want to kill him anymore, but acted like a madman.  Or hecould walk forward 10 feet and see what happened. He walked.
“Stop!” Ford commanded.
Chong was surrounded by darkness.  He could hear a low hum near him and felt the presence of something large in the gloom.  His heart raced.
“President Chong, Meet… the rest of me.”
A bank of lights came on suddenyl causing Chong to squint.  When he could see again, he faced a row of refirgeration units with translucent doors. In each unit was a copy of John Ford.  There were about a dozen in all with three units empty.
Chong gaped.  Ford was engaging in illegal cloning.  Or were these androids? It seemed more like cloning.  You wouldn’t need to refrigerate androids.
He felt a hand on his shoulder and turned around to see three versions of Ford.  He immediately recognized two of them.  The youngest was the Ford who had attempted to kill him. Another was the older Ford who had driven him here.  The third stepped in front of the others.  His voice rasped out like dry paper.
“President Chong, it’s a pleasure to meet you.  I’m John ford.  The original John Ford.”