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 ....

Friday, March 20, 2015

Cuba Libre!

The Cuba Practices Group at Prince and Prowling was off to a spectacular start, and junior partner Bridezilla was quite pleased with herself.  She had already arranged a dozen visits to the island by potential business investors, and their clients had already purchased several investment options which could be activated immediately once the relevant government restrictions were removed.  She had arranged the major publicity stunt of Paris Hilton--the ultimate high-spending capitalism princess!--visiting Cuba.  She had made two semi-successful trips to Miami to network with the Cuban immigrants and their descendants who still harbored a burning hatred of the Castro regime, convincing at least a few that happiness--and smart business investments now!--were the best revenge.  She had dined privately with Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban three times, and believed she had a good chance of convincing him that he had the personal branding opportunity of a lifetime right now if he played his cards right.

And now she was in John Boehner's bunker (man cave) trying to convince his secretly convened Cuba Caucus to stop hating President Obama long enough to embrace the historic opening.

"Imagine if you will, ladies and gentlemen, a world where the Cuba Libre again becomes the most popular drink on the island," said Bridezilla, hand-squeezing limes into the glasses of rum and Coke she was handing out.  "A world where Cuba imports a billion cases of Coca-Cola a year to stock the world-class hotels run by American companies:  Hilton, Marriott, Holiday Inn, The Four Seasons.  A world where American tour companies take vacationers diving in pristine coral reefs and hiking through pristine jungles.  A world where American airlines run ten flights a day to Cuba.  A world where American tech companies bring high-speed Internet to--"

"Look, Missy, our American companies can do all that with the good ole U.S. Virgin Islands," protested a Representative from Oklahoma.  "Why should we be helping Cuba?  What did they ever do for us except give us Guantanamo?"

"The U.S. Virgin Islands are tiny," replied Bridezilla, "and most of the businesses there are owned by Augustus Bush's family.  There are investment opportunities now in Cuba, and if your constituents can't take advantage of them, we are just ceding all that business to Europe, Japan, China, and Brazil."

"But they're still Commies!" protested a Representative from Texas.

"So is China," said Bridezilla.

"That's different!" he retorted.

"How?" asked Bridezilla.  This stumped everybody, so she moved on.  "The Speaker of the House invited you here because he believes you are the political mavericks with enough business acumen to see what is possible here.  Don't you want to bring capitalism back to Cuba?"  She waited while they quietly finished their cocktails and started flushing in the face.  "Our law firm has set up three different political action committees dedicated to promoting Cuban-American trade, and I'm not supposed to be telling you this, but we are talking about millions of dollars already banked for the next election cycle."

"Well, why didn't you say so before?!" cried the Representative from Florida.  "That changes everything!"

Yes it does, thought a smiling Bridezilla.  Thank you, Supreme Court!

Meanwhile, Cedric, a former CIA agent and current resident of the Arlington Group Home for the Mentally Challenged, was decidedly in the anti-Cuba caucus.  For one thing, he had been taught to hate Cuba as a Soviet proxy.  For another thing, the ghost of Henry Samuelson had been making weekly visits to discuss the situation since Obama had announced the diplomatic breakthrough.

"I told you:  there's nothing I can do about it!" shouted Cedric, shaking Aloysius (his teddy bear) at Ghost Henry.  "You've already got the Ghost CIA stirring up trouble, and nobody is returning my phone calls!"

"Condoleezza Rice will, and she's in the Heurich Society!" exclaimed Ghost Henry, who knew that some of the founders' fortunes had been expropriated by Fidel Castro after the Revolution.  "I can give them insider information they can't get from anybody else."

"I thought you hated the Heurich Society?"

"Most of the time, but sometimes they serve my strategic purposes.  I know they want to derail this Cuba thing, but they need more ammo."

"Won't your daughter listen to you?" asked Cedric, referring to Henrietta ("Button") Samuelson, who was the current Chair of the Heurich Society.

"She can't hear me," sighed Ghost Henry.

"What about that witch girl?" asked Cedric, referring to Angela de la Paz.

"The Heurich Society kicked her out," sighed Ghost Henry.

"Well, maybe I could persuade Prudence to get Charles Wu involved," said Cedric, referring to the Chinese triple agent's governess, Mrs. Higgety-Cheshire.

"Charles Wu?!  Never!"

"I don't like him, either, but you said strategic alliances!"

"Never!  Bad alliances lead to things like the Vietnam War and Manuel Noriega!"

"I never thought Manny was so bad," said Cedric.  "Aloysius used to spend his winter vacation down there."

"That's a stuffed bear!" shouted Ghost Henry.

"Well, he's more real than you are!" exclaimed Cedric.

Back in Washington, business had slowed considerably at Fat John's Lake under Dupont Circle, what with the return of winter weather and the increasingly pungent smell emanating from the mystical waters.  But security guard Glenn Michael Beckmann liked the quieter atmosphere, and the semi-asphyxiated visitors (and more permanent residents of Dupont Down Under) were giving him very little trouble.  It gave him time to think about his failed attempt to hijack a boat to Cuba to mine the harbors there.  If I could just get back with the Heurich Society, he thought, they could buy me a boat to go do it!

Just then, Angela de la Paz arrived, straight off a vision about impending doom.  "Everybody out!" she shouted, which accomplished nothing since everybody was lethargic from the massive build-up of methane and carbon monoxide in the fetid air.

"Hey!" exclaimed Beckmann, pointing his gun at her.  (He had no idea she was the daughter of an illegal immigrant he had murdered years earlier.)  "I'm in charge here!"

"There's not going to be a here, here!" she exclaimed, telekinetically ripping the gun from his hand.  "Everybody out!" she repeated, this time with a concentration of psychic force which began shoving people like a gale force wind towards the exit.

A few minutes later, she had succeeded in herding everyone to the surface just before the methane ignited and Fat John's Lake exploded into a pond of fire.

"How did you do that?!" shouted Beckmann, eyeing Angela with the suspicion she was a Cuban terrorist spy.

"It was the methane that exploded," she said, eyeing Beckmann with the suspicion that this well-known loony would (a) not call 911 and (b) blame it all on a government conspiracy.  But there was no voice in her head telling her that anybody else needed help, so she left.

"All hail Wonder Woman!" cried Fearless Leader, and the Freaks repeated his cry with a salute to the departing Angela, while Beckmann continued to seethe.

COMING UP:  Spring Dreams.


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