Protectors of the People, Prologue

Disclaimer; I don’t believe it’s possible to write any form of narrative that relates to Honduras, and the politicians within Honduras, without detailing the corruption, including in explicit details. This is not intended for anyone below 18.

This is a story I’ve begun working on, which is fictional, but discusses many important things about Honduras. Including the factionalism within the political parties. I suppose you could say it’s the baby of my research. It’s also a story I am excited to share. So I hope you enjoy it.

Prologue: A Man’s Mission

Mario Aguilar was honestly something of a quasi-mythological figure in Honduran business and politics. He was a fascinating figure, with a tremendous amount of charisma, and with a heavy presence. He currently sat in the restaurant of the Inter-Continental Hotel in Tegucigalpa, facing another up and coming political heavy-weight a young woman named Raquel Duron.
The two of them were a combination that sent shivers down the spines of older Honduran politicians. Some might have called them radicals, whereas others called them realists. But no matter what anyone called them, they were two of the most influential figures among the younger generations of Hondurans. Few had the contacts they did, among student leaders. Rumors had it, that one of the daughters of an influential Honduran business leader was in Mario’s pocket. Whereas there were whispered tales that Raquel had charmed her way into the heads of at least one major student leader in every private school in Tegucigalpa.

Mario was of particular interest to Honduran leaders, due to his lack of “dirt”. No one could find anything on him. No one could find anything on Raquel either, but she was born and raised in Honduras. He hadn’t been. He was actually a naturalized citizen, who came from Britain and had been the son of an ambassador many years ago. He had forsaken British citizenship, so that he could earn Honduran citizenship. Few figures in Honduras who were people to be feared and respected could say the same.

Raquel had been raised near Roatan. She had moved to Tegucigalpa, to go to UNAH at the University City Campus.  She was one of the individuals whose passion for politics had been inspired in part by Mario’s influence, his highly charged statements motivating her to be the change she knew Honduras needed. Many student leaders both at the University level and at the high-school level in public and private schools were similar to Raquel in that sense.

Part of the reason why the older Hondurans are weary of Mario, and are somewhat afraid of him, is his almost superhuman charisma. He could find ways to invoke patriotism in Hondurans of any age, and his statements had helped inspire quite a few Hondurans to stay in Honduras instead of leaving, especially ones who had the means to do so legally. He seemed to specialize in making people feel a level of passion which overwhelms any inclination to leave, a skill which frightened many of the Honduran politicians who somewhat enjoyed the notion of Hondurans who could bring about change leaving, and enabling the current system to remain in place. Mario however possessed many allies among politicians who sought change. He frequently enjoyed their company, and had hosted quite a few “tertulia” sessions where he discussed politics, and asked politicians of all parties their opinions. It was rumored that he was the “mastermind” behind many odd alliances which had shown up over time in the past 2 years.

The two of them were beautiful to look at, and that undoubtedly contributed to their success. Mario had the hard looks of someone who had forcibly modified their appearance. Mario’s internet profiles documented his transformation. He had once been somewhat ugly, plain in appearance, and round. But overtime he had begun to push his body to change. It was slow at first, over months and years he began to slim down. His face grew sharper, harder, and his fists began to harden. He had begun to force himself to learn martial arts, and gunplay so that he could be a one man fighting force. His style also began to change. He had once enjoyed causal clothing. But as he matured, his style refined and his appearance did so at roughly the same time. He began to appear a more mature figure, a more serious individual. At 25 he has the appearance of someone who’s much older, someone who’s mature enough to face darkness. By the time he was a Honduran citizen, some might even have called him a “hunk”. He didn’t have time for such nicknames. Instead he preferred to be called by his name, Mario.

Raquel was a stunning figure. She had a lovely face, and when she smiled few could resist the urge to smile back and lighten up, no matter what the context. She had the air of someone whose innocence never truly disappeared. Her passion had only helped her beauty, rather than age her, as the efforts of many others to combat the corruption hidden within Honduras had done to them. She seemed natural when she was busy planning legislation to battle drug cartels and protect Honduras. She didn’t seem scared, or worried, but rather she seemed like this was what she was meant to be doing.

The two of them had the air of a married couple. Despite this, they were never together. They had an odd, somewhat unspoken agreement. Mario had decided to ally himself with her, against the wishes of others their age who had also desired a political alliance with Mario. The two of them were virtually inseparable, and though they could separate, they rarely chose to, instead enjoying each other’s company. No one could truly approach them, they had the air of superhuman beings, creatures who resembled humanity in form only, but possessed the air of dangerous creatures, and alien intellects. Politicians had noticed that children, and people their own age approached them with ease, but older people weren’t so eager to meet them, unless they had similar goals and mentalities.

Raquel had begun the process of crafting her own following, composed of individuals she had met overtime, and some of Mario’s followers. The children of quite a few wealthy elites had allied themselves underneath Mario, and some of them had recruited others, meaning between the two of them, they possessed a shockingly powerful following. Mario’s scariest talent laid in his power to ally himself with those who protected human rights, and those who had left prison with a desire to aid their families. He possessed the power to convince people he was right, through careful rhetoric and through an understanding of the facts.

Mario finally glanced up at Raquel, taking a moment to enjoy the sight of her face, blissful as she prepared for a delicious meal before asking “Are you ready to order?” His English shockingly accent neutral, even without the refined sounding British accent he once possessed. “Of course!” She said eagerly, and he chuckled, the sound low and almost impossible to hear unless you were close to him.

Mario was dressed in a business suit, having taken on the mentality that it was never proper to leave ones place of residence unless he looked professional. Raquel was in a purely white sundress, which was a good contrast to her tanned skin. The two of them were shocking figures which drew quite a few whispers by men and women who walked by.

The waiter who came to serve them couldn’t help but admire both of them. He admired the aura of confidence and of power radiating off of Mario, and he admired the kind air that Raquel had taken time to cultivate around herself, from her soft smile, to the way she eagerly moved closer to people when they spoke, she was capable of putting people at ease without much effort. Mario’s Spanish was powerful and calm, whereas Raquel spoke with joy and with happiness. An intelligent person could tell this was equal parts training and natural. The reactions were organic, they genuinely were like that, but they had augmented their reactions to the fine edge between acting and clearly overdramatic. Mario enjoyed making people feel weak, unless he wanted to get along with someone. At this exact moment with the waiter he wasn’t attempting to make him feel weak, but his natural appearance did do that to some people. Whereas Raquel prided herself on making others feel greater, more impressive. It was a shocking contrast. The two of them were a good team.

In a small apartment not terribly far from the Inter-Continental Hotel sat an assassin. He wasn’t working, not right now anyway, but he was debating whether or not to try his next proposed contract. A hit on Mario Aguilar wouldn’t be easy. And even he wouldn’t be able to escape the neutral authorities who’d come after him. It’d be a hit akin to the botched assassination of rising beauty queen Maria Jose, and the idiot who whacked her nearly failed at making it look like an accident. Plutarco Ruiz was jailed almost instantly, because he didn’t have enough “favors” lined up to escape the authorities.

The assassin’s apartment was small and bare. He didn’t really live there, so he didn’t keep it furnished aside from a bed, and a weekly drop by his contacts who had fled when the Guevara brothers were captured and their cartel flushed out. Some of his contacts had managed to escape, and one offered weekly work, in exchange for a regular drop-off of coke.

Underneath the bed in his apartment, were two pistols. One had two bullets. He’d always kept them here, just in case he fucked up beyond his ability to fix. One bullet was for the first piece of shit to try and capture him. The last bullet was for him.  The other was a pistol he intended to use if he got the chance, on the person he intended to kill. Lorenzo was a clever man. He wouldn’t be brought down quickly.

Instead of figuring out whether or not he’d take the contract, he decided he’d call up one of his girls. She’d get his mind off of this. Maybe by the time he’d be done with her, he’d know what to do. So he sat down and hit speed-dial, holding the “1” key, for the woman he always called when he needed to blow off some steam. He grinned a crooked grin, when he heard the line connect and his lady said “Hola Fuad. Que quieres?”

Protectors of the People, Prologue

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