Sunday, July 10, 2022

QHW, Day 13: Disaster

"This is a total disaster!"  Grimoire frowned at his manager, peering over the top of a glass bearing a very good, and pricey, Scotch.  Or at least, he assumed it was good.  This was the first time he had been able to find time for a drink in almost seven months and now it was being ruined.  "Ben, come on," he said.  "It's not that bad."  
    "You turned the Vice-President into a cockroach!"  
    "And then I turned him back."
Ben Shapiro, his overweight, balding manager in a suit worth more than what some African villages produce in a year paused his frantic pacing.  "Yes, it is!  You can't do that, especially in front of witnesses!  You've just put a massive target on your back."

Grimoire took a sip of the scotch.  It was good, to his delight, burning it's way through his throat down to his stomach, where it began to suffuse his body with a gentle warmth.  "I don't understand.  Everyone knew I was strong- I could fly, shoot lasers, create force shields and a few other things.  It's not like I was some street-tier chump."  Ben turned to him and rubbed his baldspot.  "Yeah, you were strong.  That's the point.  You were strong, but that was a fact.  You're precisely right."  He resumed his pacing, tracking back and forth, wearing out his three hundred dollar shoes.  "But those powers, they were known qualities.  The Secret Service felt that, should you lose it or have a psychotic break, they could stop you from turning the President inside out.  But then you did that!"

Ben gestured frantically to the widescreen TV squatting in the upper corner of the office, currently showing a feed of one of the more conservative news networks.  They were showing the clip of him facing off against Red Menace in the Rose Garden.  The latter was decked out in his chrome and vermillion armor, his shaved head adorned with an incoherent mishmash of tattoos ranging from Nazi iconography to Communist symbols to Occult and Religious markings, an Inverted Cross intersecting a Hammer and Sickle, which flowed into a pentacle and a Swatstika respectively.  The Vice-President, a silver-haired older gentleman, struggled in his grip.  Grimoire faced the both of them, black cape astir with astral wind, golden symbols flaring.  

Then a bolt of green light flew from his gauntlets.  It blasted the Veep, causing him to seemingly disappear in a flash of grasshopper green.  Red Menace frowned, confusion reigning, right before a streak of purple energy sent him flying backwards, plowing through a set of French Doors in a shower of broken glass and splintered wood.  

"You know, you were right about the gauntlets," Grimoire said.  He took another sip of whiskey.  "Those wands I carried really did look stupid.  These are much cooler, and don't make me look like a HP ripoff."  Ben blinked.  "What?"  Then, turning to look at his client, his face darkened.  "Could you at least pretend to take this seriously?  We need to talk about this."  
    "I'm pretty sure we don't."
    "Don't you want to go back to the Whitehouse?  What about the Inaugural Ball?  And how easy do you think it is going to be to get your contacts in Washington to go to bat for you when the Bureau starts poking around your finances!"  

Grimoire arched an eyebrow at his manager, then said a word in a language most humans couldn't pronounce.  Those that could would start bleeding from the nose or eyes if they tried.  The lights in the office flickered and the TV fuzzed, showing a haze of static.  A green bolt struck Ben, laying the manager out.  But what hit the ground was, instead of a balding, overweight man, was a yellow-cream tomcat.  The cat hissed in response and scrambled away, hiding behind the couch.  Grimoire put his feet up on the coffee table, watching the image on his TV return to normal.  "I'll give you a chance to cool off, Ben.  But I want you to understand, this isn't a problem.  All I did was teach the puppets where the real power is." 

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