The minister's future is in your hands!

Today we bring you the start of a complete novel! And not just any old novel - this is a genuinely interactive novel in which you, the reader, are the hero, and as such you play an important part. Why? Because at every juncture YOU have to make the correct choice for the next piece of action!

You'll get the idea as we go along, so here we go with this brilliantly up-to-date novel, entitled A Man For Today.

Chapter One

Your name is Jeremy Plinth, and you are the young, up-and-coming Junior Minister for Arms Deals at the Foreign Office. You live at a small house in Chelsea with your wife and two children (and you also live some of the time with your mistress in Fulham, but that is another story).

As an up-and-coming Tory politician, you have mixed feelings about the coming election. On the one hand, you want the Tory party to win, because they are your team. On the other hand, you will probably rise faster in opposition, because if the Tories lose the election a lot of the senior ones will get out of politics, leaving more space for your ambitions. So a Tory loss might be good for you. On the other hand ...

Things like this keep going through your mind so much that you even dream politics. One night you dream that you are in Parliament when the fire alarm goes off and the place fills with smoke. You are fighting your way out when you stumble over a body. It is the unconscious Prime Minister! You know you haven't a second to lose. What do you do?

a) Pick up the recumbent Mr Major and rescue him.

b) Shrug your shoulders and say, "Well, really, everybody should be responsible for his own welfare and not expect politicians to do it for him."

c) Fight your way to the nearest phone and ring the press with the major scoop: "PM perishes in fire!"

d) Panic.

The correct answer is that you panic. Without experience of senior office, what hope have you got of reacting coolly? But as you panic, you realise that you are being shaken awake by your wife, who is saying: "The phone has been ringing for hours! Answer it!"

Ah, so that's why you were dreaming about fire alarms! You answer the phone, noticing that it's still pitch black and only 6am, and a voice says: "Sorry to disturb you, minister, but it's the Today programme here, and we'd love to have you on the programme for your reaction to the William Waldegrave revelations - we could send a car round to fetch you!"

You've never been on Today before. You know an invitation means new status, new dignity. On the other hand you don't know what Waldegrave business he's talking about and you don't want to make a fool of yourself. You've got five seconds to decide. What do you say?

a) "Some mistake, I'm afraid. No minister here."

b) "I'll do it on condition you don't mention my mistress in Fulham."

c) "I'd love to do it as long as John Humphrys doesn't ask the questions."

d) "Get stuffed!"

Yes, the bed is so warm and the prospect of getting out of it so uninviting that with great courage you tell Today to get stuffed. And you go to sleep again. But five minutes later the phone rings again, and there is a soft Northern Irish accent at the other end, and you just KNOW in your heart of hearts that it's Dr Mawhinney, and he says:

"What's this I hear, Jeremy? Rejecting an invitation to appear on Today? For God's sake, man, we need every bit of publicity we can get and you're telling `Today' to get stuffed? Now listen to me, Plinth. You get out of bed and phone the Today people and tell them you'll do it, because if you don't I'll have your guts for garters! If you don't play ball, I may also have to talk to your wife about a certain lady in Fulham ..."

You are so shocked that the truth never occurs to you - namely, that it isn't Dr Mawhinney at all, but an Irish chap on the Today production team who can imitate Mawhinney very well, and has often used this impersonation to get ministers scurrying along. So how do you respond to the man you think is the dreaded doctor?

a) "Yes, sir, please, sir."

b) "Yes, sir, please, sir, sorry, sir."

c) "On my way now, sir."

d) "Piss off, you dreadful fake doctor from Northern Ireland, you puffed up little bully boy!"

Yes, you tell the man you think is Mawhinney that you will gladly do it and at that moment the doorbell rings and it is the radio car sent by the Today programme!

More of this gripping saga tomorrow!

Suggested Topics
News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Alexis Sanchez, Radamel Falcao, Diego Costa and Mario Balotelli
football
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
News
people Emma Watson addresses celebrity nude photo leak
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
Arts and Entertainment
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Infrastructure Lead, (Trading, VCE, Converged, Hyper V)

£600 - £900 per day: Harrington Starr: Infrastructure Lead, (Trading infrastru...

Software Solution Technician - Peterborough - up to £21,000

£20000 - £21000 per annum + Training: Ashdown Group: Graduate Software Solutio...

Supply teachers needed- Worthing!

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: Supply teachers needed for va...

Year 4 Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Year 4 Primary Teachers needed Rand...

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering