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Posted by John on Thursday, 17 August

swamp, and seeing that panther with your own eyes. Whats more frightening: wondering where it is, or finding it The Indian didnt need it spelled out for him. Neither did Viceroy Wilson. They knew the magnitude of Bernals transgression. Judging by the paper this morning, yesterdays clumsy episode has taken some of the luster from our mission, Wiley said sardonically. In all my life Ive never heard of a professional terrorist being subdued by a putz with a tennis racket. Eaaamy, replied Jesus Bernal, probably in Spanish. Lucky he didnt kill you, Viceroy Wilson said. Luckys the right word, Wiley added. Lucky all we lost is a car. What Wilson cried. Im sorry, old man, but the cops put a BOLO out on the Caddy so I had Tommy get rid of the darn thing. No! I dumped it in a rockpit, the Indian said. With the roar of a wounded grizzly, Viceroy Wilson hurled himself upon Jesus Bernal and began pummeling him ferociously in the ribs and kidneys. Ged ob me, you addhoe! the toothless Cuban howled. Hep! With great effort Tommy Tigertail was able to pull Viceroy Wilson away from Jesus Bernal. Once separated, the two revolutionaries glowered at each other, panting like leopards. Skip Wiley rose to his feet. Look whats happening here! Ten days ago Las Noches was unstoppable, fearless, indivisible. Now were trying to maim and mutilate each other. Last week we were front-page news and today the papers making fun of us. Did you see the Sun Did you see the bloody cartoon Bearded guy supposed to look like Che Guevara, with a beret and machine gun, except hes got a tennis racket smashed over his head! Funny, huh Vaudeville terrorists, thats us. Thats the Nights of December. And instead of going out to redeem ourselves with some serious extremism, what do we do We sit in this rathole and hold our own tag-team wrestling match. Dont you see, this is exactly what they want! Theyre trying to destroy us from within! Tommy Tigertail thought Wiley was giving Garcia and the other white men entirely too much credit. Brian Keyes was the only one who worried Tommy. The sad truth is, weve lost our psychological advantage, Skip Wiley said, and weve got to get it back. Thats why Ive divined a new plan. What new plan asked Viceroy Wilson. He couldnt bear the thought of learning a whole new plan; he thought the old plan was all right. Nupid! Mus plain nupid! Jesus Bernal whined. Not only was it stupid, it was downright suicidal to change the plan so late in the game; it went against all basic terrorist training. It was unthinkable. Lighten up, comrades, Skip Wiley said. Were not tossing out the old plan, just embellishing it. Tell them, the Indian said. Tell them your idea. So Wiley told them all about it. Not just one princess, but two! he concluded merrily. Double your pleasure, double your fun! Viceroy Wilson liked what he heard; the new plan was Wileys cleverest yet. Phase One would wreak bedlam, knock everybody off-balance; the perfect setup. Phase One also required a helicopter, and Viceroy Wilson had always wanted to ride in a helicopter. Tommy Tigertail approved of the plan too, mainly because it afforded him a couple days of working deep in the Everglades, alone with his people. Only Jesus Bernal opposed Skip Wileys new plan. He lay on the warehouse floor, carping unintelligibly, growing more and more miserable as Wiley issued orders. The beating hed gotten from that maricon Keyes and the cruel scolding hed gotten from El Fuego had plunged Jesus Bernal into a familiar well of self-pity. Unable to be understood in any language, he found himself ignored. And worse, patronized. That Wiley had decided upon such a reckless change of strategy without consulting him him, the most seasoned of all the terrorists! infuriated Jesus Bernal. It was infamy repeating itself; it was the First Weekend in July Movement all over again. When it came time for the Cubans assignment, Skip Wiley announced that Las Noches once again would be needing Bernals u