Subconsciously – Chapter 2
American Lee Cohn lies her way through England in order to acquire a football team endorsement for e-Pocalypse energy supplement e-cigarettes.
Chapter 2 – Tautology
(Lee Cohn is in a cab slowly crawling through downtown London. The sidewalks are packed with people crowded around TV’s in store windows and traffic is practically at a standstill…)
LEE: Is it always this busy?
CABBIE: (chewing soggy cigar) Royal wedding, luv.
LEE: Didn’t you just have one of those?
CABBIE: That was the one prince. This is the other one, inn’t.
LEE: Guess I missed my shot, heh.
CABBIE: (glances in rear-view mirror) Don’t think you had one to begin with, luv.
LEE: That’s a rude thing to say.
CABBIE: I’m just saying you don’t quite seem like Queen material.
LEE: I’ll have you know I would make a great Queen.
CABBIE: Well I wouldn’t bow to ya.
LEE: Then I’d have your head lopped off.
CABBIE: I’d start a revolution and we’d overthrow ya, ya git.
LEE: I’d infiltrate your revolutionary meetings and take you down from the inside. They’d call me “The Undercover Queen”.
CABBIE: This is all getting very confusing.
CABBIE: Where am I takin’ you anway, yankee? (sneers) Come to see Big Ben, have ya?
LEE: (thinking) The royal wedding.
CABBIE: (chokes on stogie) Wot?
LEE: (raises nose) The girl the prince is marrying.
CABBIE: Lady O’Shaughnessy?
LEE: (nods) I’m her cousin…from America.
CABBIE: Well, why didn’t you say so, m’lady? Why are you taking a cab to a wedding?
LEE: All the limos were broke. Now get me to the…..castle…place. At once, driver.
CABBIE: Buckingham Palace? But the wedding is at Westminster Abbey, m’lady.
LEE: The dog show place?
(Lee leans in the window, handing the cabbie his fare and an e-Pocalypse energy e-cigarette outside Westminster Abbey…)
LEE: Tell your friends!
CABBIE: (doffs cap) Thank you, miss. God save the Queen!
LEE: Yeah. (turns to face a crowd of paparazzi and ecstatic onlookers) Whatever.
(A member of the Royal Guard stops Lee…)
GUARD: This is a private affair, madam.
LEE: Not that private. It’s the royal damn wedding.
GUARD: Are you on the guest list?
LEE: I better be. I’m Lady O’Houlihan’s American cousin.
GUARD: You mean Lady O’Shaughnessy?
LEE: Yeah sure, her too.
(The guard glances down at Lee’s suitcase…)
LEE: (bashfully) Heh. Came straight from the airport. (swings an arm across her chest) Gotta support the family!
O’SHAUGHNESSY: There you are!
(The crowd gasps as a gorgeous young redhead holding her blinding white wedding dress in both hands bustles towards Lee and the guard…)
O’SHAUGHNESSY: (in an Irish lilt) Cousin Ginny! Oh Virginia, I’ve been looking for you everywhere!
LEE: (hesitating) Uh….well here I am, cuz!
O’SHAUGHNESSY: Come on, then. I’ve got your dress inside.
(Lady O’Shaughnessy drags Lee into the Abbey by the arm and back to her changing room…)
O’SHAUGHNESSY: Look, I know you’re not my cousin Ginny. I don’t have a cousin Ginny.
LEE: Well ya had me goin’ for a second there.
O’SHAUGHNESSY: My family isn’t here. Half that church is going to be empty. They sold all the seats to footie players and their wives. It’s embarrassing. I overheard you lying to that guard and I got inspired. Have you ever crashed a royal wedding before?
O’SHAUGHNESSY: I was being facetious.
LEE: God bless you.
(The two girls give each other a curious look…)
LEE: Have you ever had an e-Pocalypse energy e-cigarette?
(Lee Cohn is standing at the head of the Abbey before the English elite when the hall suddenly fills with Wu-Tang Clan’s “C.R.E.A.M.”. Lee fumbles for her phone as everyone’s glaring eyes turn on her…)
NELLIE: Lee, how was the flight. You push any e-cigarettes yet?
LEE: (turning away from glaring churchgoers to a glaring priest and back again, whispering) Nellie, now is not a good time.
NELLIE: I’m the boss, Lee. I say when it’s a good time. Now the e-Pocalypse folks are on my ass. We gotta sell some e-cigs, girl.
LEE: I promise I will, I just can’t talk now.
NELLIE: Lee, I sent you over there with the understanding that you will keep in constant contact with me.
LEE: I will, I just–oh. I’m, uh, going into a tunnel. Yup, I’m going into the London Tunnel. I can’t–I–uhbuh—aking up.
(Lee hangs up and mouths “I’m so sorry” at Lady O’Shaughnessy who stifles a giggle and winks…)
(After the ceremony, English noblemen and noblewomen are gathered at Buckingham Palace for the reception. Lee is dancing with Lady O’Shaughnessy — now Hortense, Duchess of Sussex — and laughing…)
HORTENSE: Frankly, I’m glad that happened. This family is too stuffy and uptight, it’s fun to see them get shaken up from time to time.
LEE: Well, I’m glad somebody enjoyed it. So why didn’t your family show up for your wedding day?
HORTENSE: My family aren’t exactly…supporters of the Royal Family.
QUEEN: Duchess Hortense, you haven’t introduced me to your rambunctious maid of honor.
(Lee gasps at the sight of the Queen and bows so deeply an e-cigarette drops out of her purse. The Queen bends over and picks it up in her white gloved hand…)
QUEEN: What’s this doodad?
LEE: It’s an e-cigarette, your majesty.
HORTENSE: Ginny’s the heir to the Philip Morris fortune in America. Meet my American cousin, Virginia Morris. Named after her grandmother, the original “Virginia Slim”.
(Lee nods admirably at Duchess Hortense’s nack for lying…)
LEE: It’s a new method of smoking, your majesty. No tobacco. The kids call it ‘vaping’.
QUEEN: Vaping, eh?
LEE: This particular line is called e-Pocalypse. It’s supposed to give you a slight energy boost.
QUEEN: Well, I could use a little boost after that drawn-out ceremony.
(The Queen hits the e-cigarette, lets out a cloud of vapor and promptly jitterbugs across the floor to the delight of the English nobles…)
HORTENSE: What exactly is in those things?
LEE: (frowns) I’m..not…sure.
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