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The Hunt For Red Banana

“I don’t want the world, I just want your half.” Down goes another shot of cold vodka.

“Party foul! Quit quoting They Might Be Giants!” Dana Dastardly angrily cracks the ice from her drink between her molars. She sneers with narrowed eyes. “They’re one of those happy bands. No wonder they call you Commie Bastard.”

“That’s Lying Commie Bastard to you. I want all the halfs.” Commie Bastard crosses his brawny arms over his paunch and stained, ironic obscure rock band t-shirt.

Triple Agent 9000, country-club perfect in a blue polo, Beach Boys blonde hairdo, dimples and a smile with teeth so white and straight they could be used as a credit reference leans in. “Oh, if you’re a Commie, what’s up with that Red MAGA Hat?

“‘History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce.‘ Tell me Comrade. What is the official color of International Communism? Is it blue? Is it green? Besides, I appropriated it from a capitalist’s head.”

A 50-ish man with a pointy nose jabs into the conversation. “Can the chin-music, you ham sandwiches. We need a winner image. We need to beat someone.” Secret Nixon pounds the bar table and shouts into a tiny microphone on shirt collar. “Secret Agnew, take some notes on this!”

A figure in the darkest corner of the booth, face hidden behind a slouch hat and the extra-large collar of a full black coat smoothly suggests, “We are the Legion of All The Dooms. Why don’t we just take over the whole world?

Dapper Dana Dastardly pretends she’s twirling a long mustache. “What? You’ve got a giant laser or something? What about you Dr. Weevil? Giant laser?”

Dr. Weevil glances back and forth. “I’m really more into worms than lasers. Perhaps if we shot lasers at some worms…?”

You can almost see the smoke coming out of Secret Nixon’s ears. “If you take no risks, you will suffer no defeats! What are we willing to risk here, Legion?”

Dana Dastardly reaches into her large, clunky black purse. “I’ve got five dollars and twenty seven cents. Drat! Double drat!”

“I can risk anything I can claim as an expense to the other guys.” Adds Triple Agent 9000.

“Who are you working for anyway, Mr. 9000?” asks Shadowy Figure.

“Well, you guys of course. Legion of All The Dooms all the way. But you see,” he’s leaning in close to keep outsiders from listening in “I’m pretending to work for the Justice League of Justice as a double agent against you, but I’m really working for you which is what makes me a Triple Agent.” He’s making circular motions with his hands, pointing back and forth. “You see, it’s like a circle, or maybe a horseshoe. Möbius kinda thing.”

Megabarnacle barges in and drops his bulk into one of the plastic chairs. “Whatchoo cats talkin’ about?” A slight, dower Chinese man with greasy black hair and the suggestion of a mustache approaches the table. He looks like he just found a dead bird in his lunchbox. Knowing how things work at the Long Up Chuk Chinese-American Restaurant and Lounge he’s probably cracking hour 16 of his shift.

He drops a laminated menu on the table, worn from long use. The prices have been updated multiple times with white-out and ball point pen. “May I take your order, sir?”

“Yeah man, gimmie two orders of your chicken-fried noodles. And a Diet Coke.”

“Megabarnacle’s contribution to our efforts is a Diet Coke.” deadpans Shadowy Figure.

The waiter silently withdraws with a nod, his shoes hardly sticking to the carpet at all. Dana Dastardly pokes Commie Bastard in the ribs. “Hey buddy, workers of the world unite. There goes one of your people.”

“Feh.” Commie Bastard spits on the floor. “Look at that chump. There ain’t no real communists anymore.”

Shadowy Figure makes a questioning gesture with his hand. “What about Red Banana?

Dana Dastardly pounds the table with her gloved palm. “Red Banana! You mean, the anti-Banana Man? He loves grime, does he not?”

Commie Bastard is frowning over his gnarled forearms, leaning his chair back on two legs. “No one’s seen Red Banana since the Berlin Wall fell for the second time. Last I heard he was working at the dump.”

“Taking over the world may have to wait until we have more than five dollars, a Diet Coke and no lasers.” Shadowy Figure pauses, “but perhaps we could take over a bowling alley.”

Dr. Weevil gasps, “The Justice League of Justice! Man, I hate those guys. We could take them on.”

“Yes…” hisses Commie Bastard. He narrows his eyes and purses his lips in thought. “For that we need Red Banana.”

A well-dressed gentleman who looks a bit like The Penguin in his bowler hat and round glasses squeezes into the booth. “Hey, howdy fellers, I’m Roger Stone. Did I miss anything?”

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