Trustee Watts survives confrontation with sentient tree bartenders (Fiction)


The Bolingbrook Board of Trustees approved a liquor license for The Sacred Succulent plant bar, despite its sentient trees attacking Trustee Sheldon Watts. 

“That was just a little misunderstanding,” said an employee who asked not to be identified.  “We made some changes and the Board created a special liquor license for us.  Sure, it means ordering drinks from a human server, but our plant bar will sell the only pots you can legally buy in Bolingbrook.”

According to sources within Village Hall, village inspectors contacted Watts after they were told The Sacred Succulent planned on employing “exotic tree bartenders.”

“I thought they were just trees with silly names,” said one of the inspectors.  “But they were moving trees!  They used their roots to crawl across the floor, and used their branches like hands and arms!  We figured we should ask for Sheldon’s help because he’s the president of the Bolingbrook STEM Association.  He would know if they were safe or dangerous, like Triffids.”

When Watts arrived, he asked Alice, the manager, why the trees were serving alcohol without a license.  Alice replied that they were merely demonstrating how the trees would serve the public and that the inspectors didn’t have to accept the drinks.  Alice claimed the trees were from an exotic location and would be the first tree bartenders in Illinois.

Watts then examined the trees and asked them to mix common alcoholic drinks.  The trees silently complied.  The manager argued that state and local liquor laws only applied to humans, not trees.  Watts then typed on his smartphone and showed it to the manager.

“You taught the trees how to mix drinks?”

“Yes,” replied Alice.

“Are you familiar with these drinks?”

“No.”

Watts then asked the trees to serve him a Giggling Yoda, an Aurora Jungle Juice, and a Buzzed Aldrin with a Winterfell chaser.  The trees didn’t move.  About fifteen minutes later, an Instacart driver arrived with the ingredients for the drinks.  The trees then served the drinks to Watts.

“Perfect,” Watts said.  “However, that means you had to look these drinks up on the Internet.  There’s only one kind of sentient tree that can do that.  So that means both of you are members of the Lisle Treeocracy!”

The trees turned towards each other.

“You’re not bartenders,” continued Watts.  “You’re abominations before God!”

The trees replied by attacking Watts.  Seconds later, Men in Blue arrived and freed Watts from the trees.  Mayor Mary Alexander-Basta ran into the building.  

After she asked if Watts was okay, he replied, “How did you know I was here?”

Alexander-Basta looked around:  “Odd.  A little girl in a green dress said you were in trouble.  She was beside me a moment ago, but now she’s gone.”

Alexander-Basta introduced herself to the trees and said: “I am honored to greet members of the Lisle Treeocarcy.  I apologize for my fellow trustee’s judgmental temperament.  At the same time, I can’t have you attacking members of my community.  So let’s make a deal.  The backroom has a skylight and plenty of room.  That will be your embassy, which we will treat as sovereign Treeocracy territory.  As long as you don’t try to expand your territory, we’ll be fine.  I’ll make sure to send dignitaries to discuss any issues that may exist between Bolingbrook and the Treeocarcy.  Deal?”

The trees nodded and moved to the backroom.  Basta told the manager that in exchange for a liquor license, the trees were not allowed to serve the general public.  She added that The Sacred Succulent could turn the backroom into a private club and the trees could serve the club members.

Watts was not pleased.  “You may have averted war with Lisle, but Trustee Mayors are still an abomination!”

“Stay positive, Sheldon.”

A receptionist from Lisle Village Hall denied the existence of sentient trees:  “What a silly thing to say.  We love our trees.  The trees love us.  They’re normal trees.  They won’t hurt us as long as we do as they say—I mean they can’t hurt us.  They’re trees.  We love trees.  If they could talk we would do exactly what they said because they’re smart.  And strong.  Yes!  Smart and strong!”

A receptionist for Alexander-Basta said she was busy and didn’t know when she would have time for an interview:

“You know…Even though there’s a pandemic raging across the country, and residents are marching in the street, I’m not worried. I know there’s a higher power watching over our great village.”

In the background, a man screamed:  “Village Hall is haunted!”

A man who sounded like former Mayor Roger Claar replied:  “I’m not a ghost.  I’m the Mayor Emeritus of Bolingbrook!”

Also in the Babbler:

Alexander-Basta signs first permit for UFOs to display political ads
Palatine UFO Base refuses refunds to aliens visiting for the Democratic Convention
Mayor Lightfoot threatens to deploy giant robots to protect the Loop
God to smite Bolingbrook on 8/20/20

 Note:  This is a work of fiction. All opinions expressed are my own. They do not reflect the views of any organization I work for or of my employer.  Feel free to leave a comment here or in the Bolingbrook Babbler Readers Group.