As much as Empyreal City loves to celebrate the New Year, with the giant dropping discoball, I didn’t stick around for the festivities. I had a good excuse, too. See, New Year’s parties are a great time for people to go out in public and enjoy themselves with lots of drinking and stuff. Technolutionary was mildly disappointed, too, but I don’t think he really had a lot in mind. If I recall, I did have to stop the guy from ventilating his cranium during the holidays.
He came with me, as did Moai. I also changed up my appearance so Technolutionary didn’t connect me to Norma. Unfortunately, it led him to try and put the moves on me. He insisted, and still insists, that he and I would obviously make a good couple. He even hinted about populating my species once he’s sure the process works on himself.
Sure, sure, repopulation. Let’s take sex, and instead of the pleasure, we make it all about duty, obligation, and squirtin’ out babies. That’s a recipe for a good time. Given his usual level of enthusiasm, I decided to make sure he didn’t have anything to do with my meal and drink preparation. Most people wouldn’t dare try that on me, but this guy is just delusional enough to try something because he assumes he deserves sex with me.
Anyway, I left Empyreal City ahead of 2016 because, much like using the female body as a disguise, I wanted to take advantage of the transition. Washington parties it up on New Year’s all the more for being full of wealthy, powerful people. So after getting myself and my associates moved into a floor of a lovely and discreet hotel. Crash chose well, though I suspect Fortune Cookie helped her. Not sure how I feel about my personal assistant getting help from her. Then again, it’s probably not that hard to find a hotel in this city that’s willing to keep secrets. That goes hand in hand with being the home to some of the wealthiest and most powerful men in the United States.
I’m talking hookers. I’m talking cocaine. No matter what’s going on, I’ll guarantee you the word “blow” comes up. And that’s the best case scenario. If a politician isn’t fucking someone, they’re probably fucking their country instead. Though that leaves out the various aides, lobbyists, and dignitaries who also like pushing Little Willie down the slip ‘n slide.
But enough about the seedy underbelly of people you don’t want to imagine the underbellies of. I had to go find a way to worm my way into the private life of a Senator.
Hey, I know what y’all are thinking, but it’s more innocent than that. I got into the email of his staff and found out they were preparing for a New Year’s Eve party on a boat called the Spirit of Washington. It wasn’t technically Senator Powers’s party. Instead, a private security firm was having a party and named him the Guest of Honor. Contributors, aides, supporters, and family; many of them were asked to attend as a gesture of gratitude. I needed a way to get in, and I needed a nice dress. That’s one area where having Technolutionary came in handy. I sent him out to shop for me and it turned out as well as I expected.
I knew the easiest way to insert myself into the situation, and it involved exactly the sort of outfit Technolutionary wanted to see me wear. Then I camped out the dock where the partygoers embarked the Spirit of Washington. I thought I had a mark when this chubby guy with curly hair and an untrimmed mustache showed up, but then this smoking blonde ran over to him and gave him one of the grossest kisses I’ve ever seen. I don’t mean gross because of his physical appearance. I mean a raunchy, over-the-top kiss with tongues and hands flying everywhere.
Well, good for him. Made my job harder, until I ran across a really skinny guy hauled along as the third wheel with a couple. The woman in the first couple glanced at her phone and they then stood around, waiting. The third wheel drifted off a little to give them some space, at which point I approached him.
“Hey there. Kinda sucks, getting pulled along in all this. By the way, my name’s Candy.” I held out my hand. He looked at it, then shook.
“Terrence. You’re with the party?” he asked, looking over my slit dress and high heels.
I shrugged. “You could say I’m working. Don’t worry, I’m not assuming you’re buying. But you look like you could use a reason to get away from…” I flopped a hand in the direction of the couple.
He looked between me and his friends. “Pretend I hired a pros-…call…escort? What would they think?”
“Lucky Terrence, probably. You could even pretend you don’t realize it, so that when I slip away to do what I’m here to do, you can act all heartbroken. ‘Oh, poor Terrence. He’s too good for this sinful life.’ And you use their sympathy and be like, ‘I think I’m going to go home early. Somebody, fetch me a lifeboat.’ Problem solved. I won’t even charge you.”
So, in the end, I got onto the boat…on the arm of some sleazy asshole with gropey hands that approached me after Terrence turned me down. Darn human dignity.
I had trouble getting away from Hanz Assengroper, so I invited him to a bathroom on the yacht and left him there with his own hand sticking out of his throat. Out of common courtesy, I left an “Out of Order” sign on the door. He made quite a smell when his bowels dropped, and it’d be rude to let someone just waltz into that mess.
Not that waltzing was the dance of choice at this party. More a matter of a few young people hopping around while the older money exchanged pats on the back and crinkly handshakes.
Actually, that’s not completely accurate. I shouldn’t sell them short. They didn’t need to hide the money like some common drug dealer. They just exchanged checks made out to Super PACS. After all, he got this nice yacht party, with catering and a DJ, and didn’t have to pay a cent. One guy even invited him to see the new private airport screening methods his company used in Hawaii. Of course, it’d be rude not to comp the Senator a brief hotel stay while he was down there doing his job. But don’t dare bribe the Senator; that would be illegal. Oh look, more than $100,000 in door prizes to be handed out at the party. I’m sure the Senator will be no luckier than any other man when the cash prizes come up.
Free of the ass I rode in on, I wandered around and tried to spot Powers’ daughter. She was supposed to have been dragged along to this event, which got me to wondering if people in wheelchairs like going on boats. Might be something to explore sometime if I use that as a disguise sometime. At the very least, it gave me another point of identification to find her. Or it would have, but I couldn’t find the damn girl.
I checked the place over for the third time when I stopped to ask a suited security guard, “Excuse me, sir, but I’m looking for Priscilla Powers?” I held up a cell phone. “She dropped this, and I’m just trying to get it back to her.”
“Ma’am, any lost items should be turned over to security,” The man held out his hand for the phone. I didn’t oblige.
“I’m sorry, but I don’t see the problem in giving it back myself. It’ll get there quicker.” I smiled, fluttering my lashes.
The guard grabbed the phone from my hand, “You’re not my type and Miss Powers never came aboard for the party. Is there anything else I can do for you?”
I shook my head. “Nope. Thanks, hon.” I turned and walked away.
As I did, a woman stopped me, “Excuse me, do you have the time? I can’t find my phone.”
I held out a watch, “Here, take this, I have plenty of spares.”
She glanced down at the Rolex. “It’s not my style.”
I shrugged and pulled out a collection of watches from my purse, “That’s fine, I have a selection. Say, is it true the Senator’s daughter is a no-show?”
The woman selected a pretty little platinum number, “Yeah, watching him hide how pissed he got is so funny. She’s been trying to get out of this all week.”
I held my hands out, “Where could she possibly want to go more than this little get-together?”
“Ten to one, the Young Boys Club,” she said, admiring her new watch. “Thanks a lot. It’s beautiful.”
“You’re very welcome, but I think I hear my date calling for me.” I extricated myself from that situation to prematurely activate my escape. It wouldn’t pay to stick around with all the watches, wallets, and phones I carried in my purse. There’s just so much more room to fit stolen loot in these things. I rifled through it as I walked, securing them all in a waterproof bag for good measure. When I reached my destination, I reached under the railing and gave the hull of the yacht a couple of knocks. “Anchors away!”
When I jumped over the side, Moai caught me in a large sack insulated sack. He sealed it closed and dropped off the anchor chain. Inside, I slipped one of the diving masks, almost fumbling it when we hit the water and began to sink. It’s not as fast as a boat or helicopter, but it got me where I was going. To shore, at least.
I still had to try this “Young Boys Club” for the Powers kid. Now, prior to what y’all might be thinking, it had nothing to do with child molestation. It turned out to be a play on the term “Old Boys Club” and seemed to be the hip and/or groovy spot for the kids of the D.C. Upper middle class.
Moai and I both got carded, but we had no shortage of cash and expensive watches. We found Priscilla out on the dance floor, dancing. Yes, dancing. She spun her wheelchair around, then grabbed a pair of glowsticks out of her lap and started waving them around in the air like she just didn’t care, blowing a whistle to the music.
I tried to whisper to Moai, but I had to yell to make myself heard. “Leave the chair.” He nodded, then broke out a comfy burlap sack. He bounced out onto the dance floor, wrecking it with his hardcore moves. The nearest dancers started a ruckus of some sort when he threw the bag over Priscilla. Once he had her upper body in the bag, he didn’t even have to put up with her kicking.
I dealt with the phone once we got in the car we rented after getting out of the river. Now, to finish Technolutionary’s makeshift lab and work on some sort of speech toward the Senator. To quote Shakespeare or not to quote Shakespeare, that is the question.