Washington Horror Blog

SEMI-FICTIONAL CHRONICLE of the EVIL THAT INFECTS WASHINGTON, D.C. To read Prologue and Character Guide, please see www.washingtonhorrorblog.com, updated 6/6//2017. Follow Washington Water Woman on Twitter @HorrorDC ....

Thursday, April 18, 2013

The Drumbeat of Violence in America

"Look, it's bad enough Prince and Prowling is billing us over a million dollars for the Senate lobbying, but what's this 44 cents?!"  The Vice-President of the Gun and Ammunition Alliance waved the bill in Bridezilla's face, with the .44 portion of the $1,001,000.44 invoice highlighted in yellow.

"That was for a stamp," said Bridezilla.  "My paralegal is meticulous about billing accuracy."

"I'm not paying the 44 cents!" he fumed.

"The gun lobby scored total victory in the Senate this week, sir!  I expected to see you a little more chipper!"

"For these prices, I'd expect to see Rand Paul and Marco Rubio shooting paintball at each other and singin' the Marine Corps song on the floor of the Senate!"

"Well, sir, considering we were up against hysteria-driven opinion polls of 86%--"

"And Lisa Murkowski naked mud-wrestling with Mitch McConnell on Fox News!"  (Bridezilla arched her eyebrows and said nothing.)  "Well, you know what I mean," her client said, a little more quietly, "if you put that kind of money in their pockets."

"Prince and Prowling does not put money in the pockets of U.S. Senators, sir!"  (Actually, most of the money went to former Senator Evermore Breadman's salary, and he put the money into, well, not pockets per se, but that's a long story involving political action committees, Charles Wu, and shell corporations in the Cayman Islands....)  "However, our clients' satisfaction means everything to us, so I'd be happy to take $1,000 off the bill."

Before her client could answer, her boyfriend, Colonel Alexander Wolfbugler of the Defense Intelligence Agency, burst into her office with a bouquet of red roses.

"Oh, honey!" exclaimed Bridezilla.  "I thought I wasn't gonna see you until you found the Boston terrorist!"

"I have read 17,000 emails since Monday afternoon, and they were all irrelevant!" he exclaimed, with a wild look in his eye and tomato sauce encrusted into his 3-day beard.  "They told me to take a day off to shower and rest my eyes."

"My hero!" exclaimed Bridezilla.

"When are you gonna take that shower?" asked the Gun and Ammunition Alliance V.P., wrinkling his nose.

"I just had the Pentagon barber shave my head, and then I ran through the armored vehicle car wash."  (Wolfbugler dropped to both knees, then clumsily raised one knee back up.)  "Life is too short!"  (He tossed the roses in Bridezilla's lap and fumbled in his breast pocket.)  "We're never gonna catch all these damned terrorists!  If we put off the rest of our lives, they've already won!  Will you marry me?"  (He extracted a Target jewelry box and popped it open to reveal a tiny diamond ring.)  "Now, I know that's a cheapo ring, but that's because I want to buy you an armored vehicle, a state-of-the-art bullet-proof vest, and a briefcase with a built-in explosives detector and alarm system.  I am never gonna let you spend a day of your life unsafe, baby!"

Bridezilla looked up at the people now in her doorway:  her paralegal was giving the thumbs up sign (she had bet on a May wedding in the annual Bridezilla office pool), but Bridezilla's secretary was giving her the thumbs down sign (he had bet on September).  She looked over at her client, who stood up and said, "Lye, Cheit, and Steele warned me it would be like this at Prince and Prowling!"  (He left the office in a huff, shoving his way past the growing gaggle of gawkers.)

"We could live in a CIA safe house," added Wolfbugler.  "I would just have to label you a terrorist informant."

(Bridezilla's mind was already on its way, and she just heard "house".)  "Could we have a May wedding?" she asked, demurely.  (Her secretary was waving his arms vigorously and shaking his head.)

"Do we have to wait that long?" asked Wolfbugler.  "Why not tomorrow?"  (Now the paralegal was waving her arms and shaking her head.)  "Oh, wait, I have to go back to work."

(All Bridezilla heard was "why not".)  "Oh, darling!"  She crouched down on the floor with him.  "Yes!"

"May!" shouted Bridezilla's paralegal, pumping her fists in the air.  "She's saying 'yes' to a May wedding!"

"She can't possibly have the wedding of her dreams next month!" protested the secretary.  "Not unless she holds the reception at Prince and Prowling!"

"God no!" said Wolfbugler, pushing his kissing fiancee away and turning to the interlopers.  "This office is across the street from the White House!  Are you out of your minds?  We'll hold it at the fake mosque convention center in Virginia.  It's a CIA thing, but I can pull some strings and get a free afternoon there."

"What about Musharraf?" asked former Senator Evermore Breadman, who could not care less about Bridezilla's latest wedding plans.  (He was pulling the peons out of Bridezilla's doorway.)  "Do you think he'll flee Pakistan?"  (He was trying to glean some Defense Intelligence Agency information out of Wolfbugler's befuddled state:  Musharraf wouldn't be the first wealthy dictator-in-exile to seek the counsel of Prince and Prowling!)

"Ummm...."

Meanwhile, a different security-related drama was unfolding a couple miles away at the office of Congressman Herrmark, who had placed himself in lockdown.  "Call the cops!  Call the FBI!"

"Sir, I think your bodyguards can handle this," said Ann Bishis, Chief of Staff.

"My bodyguards!?  Are you out of your mind!?  First Boston, now Texas!"

"Those are completely unrelated--"

"And the gun lobby victory, financed by domestic terrorists!"

"No, sir, really--"

"Call the FBI!"

"OK!  OK!"

She closed his office door behind her, leaving one bodyguard (cousin Nick) inside and taking the other (twin cousin Costas) outside.  "This has spiraled out of control!" she whispered, pulling him into her own office and shutting the door.

"All I did was push the envelope under his front door on Monday morning, like you said!" whined Costas.

"I know, I know!" exclaimed Bishis.  "Let me think!"  (She had written a vaguely threatening letter from "the frackers" after the Representative had speculated that he might shift her twin cousins from security detail to legislative correspondence after the Sequester slammed his staff budget.)  "OK.  Go buy a disposable cellphone, and hire a voice actor to call Congressman Herrmark and say he's the FBI guy conducting the investigation.  Here."  (She wrote down "William Smith" on a piece of paper.)  "This is the agent's name."  (Costas looked at his cousin--an attorney--dubiously, having gleaned from television shows that it was illegal to impersonate a federal officer.)  "Tell the actor it's a birthday prank.  No, wait!  Don't tell him he's an FBI officer.  Just tell him to pretend he's a bodyguard.  But I'll tell Herrmark that William Smith of the FBI is on the case and will phone him."

"What if Herrmark asks questions?"

"Tell the actor to get off the call quickly, saying he'll call back later with more information.  Tell him we're only paying for a one-minute acting job.  Then I'll feed Herrmark messages about it until he calms down."

Costas went out with some residual anxiety, but their livelihood was at stake and there was no way they were going back to Greece!

Over at the White House, butler Clio also had security on her mind.  She was catching up on inventory and thinking about what she would have been telling her own twins about Boston.  She would have told them that President Obama wasn't home today because he went to Boston to pray for the victims.  And Ferguson would have asked her about bad guys, and Regina would have asked about guns, and Clio would have been thinking that the no-voters in the U.S. Senate had just as much blood on their hands as the terrorists--and they were worse because they did it for gun lobby money, not even a misguided but sincere belief.  But that was too complicated to tell pre-schoolers.  Guns are bad.  Bombs are bad.  That's what you tell pre-schoolers.  She sighed, trying to think about Fergie and Reggie as ghosts.  Were they grown up now?  Were they in Heaven?  Were they wise?

Not quite, thought Ghost Dennis, who had met a lot of ghosts at the White House, but none like Fergie and Reggie.

And so the drumbeat of violence in America continued pushing the perpetual parade of pugnacious policy in Washington, much to the delight of Ardua of the Potomac.

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