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 ....

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Yellentine's Day

Helen Yellen was walking up the aisle of St. Matthew's Cathedral, a beautiful church with enough Italian marble and devotional artwork to please her future mother-in-law.  The housesitter was on the arm of one of her favorite clients, Jon Bon Jovi, who was reluctantly giving her away even though he knew this meant she was unlikely to be able to keep a watchful eye on his New Jersey mansion ever again.  Bon Jovi knew he had been selected out of all her clients (rock star or otherwise) because of his Italian name, so it was a shame that Mrs. Talaverdi had told him at the rehearsal dinner that she didn't believe blondes were true Italians--his ancestors were clearly Swiss who had snuck over the Alps!  And Bon Jovi had promised to sing only Tony Bennett and Perry Como songs at the wedding reception, but he smiled to himself because he had a surprise planned anyway!

One way or another, nobody has the whole story walking up the aisle--that's what Maggie Smith had said on "Downtown Abbey"!  And as Helen walked towards the altar in a white velvet dress with Italian gloves and an Italian lace veil, she knew she probably should have told her groom that she believed their pot-bellied pig had ESP, but she would tell him that later.  She smiled at the guests in the pews--a motley assortment of hippies, punks, goths, international entrepreneurs, musicians, and actresses on her side, and a sea of somber business-attired types on his (including most of the members of Sense of Entitlement Anonymous, D.C. Chapter).  She recognized Janet Yellen, Chair of the Federal Reserve Board, sitting in the second row, just behind the groom's mother; Helen Yellen didn't know the entire courtship had been all about the other Yellen.

FRB economist Luciano Talaverdi watched his bride float up the aisle, a winter fairy queen vision.  He had never told her that his interest in her had stemmed from the mistaken belief she was related to his boss, and that Helen was supposed to be the marital magic to boost his career.  But after discovering the truth about Helen's tragic childhood abroad and possession of the name "Yellen" only by adoption, he had stuck with her out of a mix of stubbornness, dating fatigue, and affection.  A lot of relationships start for the wrong reasons, he told himself, and she didn't need to know!  He took her arm with a smile, nodded appreciatively at Bon Jovi, and turned to face the priest.

Two hours later, the reception was under way in the central foyer of the Federal Reserve Board building.  Though Talaverdi had been on the cheaper side about quantitative easing, he and Bon Jovi had spent lavishly to drown the cold marble in a sea of Italian lights and roses.  Fifty table cloths had been dyed pink for the wedding guests, and a cupid ice sculpture greeted the guests as they arrived--except for Dick Cheney, who had been stopped at the entrance when the dogs smelled traces of explosives on his sleeves.  ("I just took in a little target practice in my basement shooting range this morning!"  "Sorry, sir, you can't come in."  "I'm the Vice-President of the United States!"  "No, that's Joe Biden."  "Don't you recognize me?!"  "No, sir, please step back and put your hands in the air.")

It was all very lovely.  Bon Jovi dutifully sang other people's mellow ballads for an hour until he was satisfied that the elder Mrs. Talaverdi had downed sufficient champagne, and then he signaled for Petro Pig to be escorted in riding a model red Ferrari.  "This is a toy version of the car I bought you, Helen and Luciano!  Happy Yellentine's Day!"  And then Bon Jovi launched into a raucous version of "I'll Be There For You".  The pot-bellied pig, however, was being harassed by Pippin, the ghost of Condoleezza Rice's cat, and pulled a "fainting goat".  Helen screamed and ran over to check on Petro Pig while Talaverdi was absorbing the fact that he now owned a red Ferrari!  He grabbed a glass of water to splash in the pig's face and knelt by his bride's side.

"We need to change our name legally to be the same thing," Talaverdi blurted out to his bride.  "We're a family now!  Let's both take the name 'Talaverdi Yellen', okay?"

Helen, of course, thought he meant a hyphenated "Talaverdi-Yellen", and happily agreed, but Talaverdi was ready to become a Yellen.  In the FRB directory, he would be "Luciano T. Yellen", right after "Janet L. Yellen".  When people started typing emails to her, they would have his name pop up in the address field!  It was all so exciting, he could hardly contain himself!

"I love you, Helen! I am ecstaticified!" he exclaimed, suddenly faltering in his English.

"I love you, too," murmured Helen, her head resting on Petro Pig's chest, listening to the racing heartbeat.  But something's wrong, she thought.

Ghost Pippin raced up into the FRB offices in an unsuccessful attempt to rip Charles Wu's listening devices out of the carpeting and crush his robotic millipedes, hatred burning in her little spectral heart.

COMING UP:  The dark side of Charles Wu.


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