Bond and Madeleine Swann, enjoying their honeymoon in the Bahamas, are dining at a beachfront restaurant. Bond pays the bill, Madeleine disappears to use the ladies’ room, and Bond goes to the bar to wait for her. Feigning ignorance of a suspicious man with a scar at the other end of the bar, he orders a martini. The man stands up and approaches Bond from behind, unsheathing a dagger from his jacket, but before he can strike, Bond removes the olive from the red plastic sword, whirls around, and stabs him in the neck. Two more thugs are closing in, so he rushes to the ladies’ room to collect Madeleine and they flee together along the beach. He tells Madeleine to keep running, and draws off the pursuers, vaulting over a sandcastle which one of them then runs into, before using a hammock slung between two palm trees to fire a coconut at the other, with deadly accuracy. He and Madeleine take the next flight to London.
Franz Oberhauser (Ernst Stavro Blofeld) languishes at HM Belmarsh Prison stroking a photo of his beloved white Persian cat. In the dead of night, masked men come to his room to release him. He is dropped off in a quiet alleyway, left to fend for himself. As they pull away in a black SUV, he calls out, demanding to know why he has been freed. “Friends in high places, Mr. Oberhauser,” is the only reply. Midflight, Bond is alerted on his Sony Xperia Z5 Android smartphone. He is about to contact M when he realizes that an app bearing the SPECTRE octopus logo has been remotely downloaded onto his phone. He opens it to discover a gif of the octopus dancing, with the text “A House Restored”.
Brexit deliberations in Parliament. A sudden commotion as the floor rumbles. Quaking all over the UK that day, confounding geologists and climate scientists. Meanwhile a former housekeeper who worked for Prince Harry and Princess Meghan Markle appears in the tabloids, raving mad and shortly committed to an asylum. Q watches the news with furrowed eyebrows over his cup of tea. He types with furious speed at his laptop, which he is using to monitor some strange trends: British supermarkets and pharmacies are stocking up on suntan lotion, and Ray-Ban have opened up five new stores in London.
A sparsely appointed Regency-style apartment in Chelsea. Bond plays scrabble with Madeleine. He has the letters “p”, “r”, “t”, “e” “e”, “s”, and “c”, which he rearranges to form the word “spectre”. He hesitates, taking a sip of his drink. Recalling poetry from his school days (“This royal throne of kings, this scepter’d isle”), he switches the “c” with the “p”, forming the word “scepter.” Horror breaks upon his features. He rushes out of the apartment, ignoring Madeleine’s protestations, and goes to meet M in a sewer. He explains to his skeptical superior a theory that unifies the strange occurrences: “Spectre” was really “Sceptre”, a neo-nationalist organization that seeks to restore the power of the monarchy through the Brexit debacle and the resultant loss of faith in Parliament. The thugs in the Bahamas, Bond speculates, are part of a Commonwealth security force that works to conceal the plans at the behest of the Royal Family. M is doubtful, telling Bond that the Queen has lately expressed to him her desperate unhappiness with the prospect of Brexit. They decide that Bond will go to the Royal Variety Performance at the London Palladium, to gather more information. Bond first meets with Q, who updates him on his own observations, and equips him with a parasol that doubles as a mini helicopter. At the gala, Bond ingratiates himself backstage, where members of the Royal Family speak to the performers. He notices that Sir Rowan Atkinson is wearing a Spectre (scepter) ring, though the distinguished comedian tries to turn it around to conceal it. The time has come for the show to begin, and Bond returns to his seat. Madeleine seems upset as the lights go down, greeting Bonds quips with silence. Bond sees a twinkle in the box opposite, and looking through his opera glasses, discovers that it is Oberhauser, raising a glass to him and smirking. Madeleine is dead, poisoned. Fighting back tears, Bond leaves her and tries to reach Oberhauser, who escapes in an Italian supercar—vulgar, yes, but admittedly faster than Bond’s restored DB5.
MI5 arranges a secretive funeral for Swann, which is disrupted by another earthquake. Bond contacts Q, who has found that the tremors are occurring on a line across Britain from one coast to another, originating thousands of meters below sea level. Bond takes a speedboat on the Thames to investigate, but is intercepted by Scepter’s submarine commanded by Oberhauser, who detains him. Bond awakens bound to a chair in the submarine to be greeted by Oberhauser putting on a powerpoint presentation explaining the scheme. Scepter is indeed working with the royal family to orchestrate Brexit, using a massive laser to cut Great Britain away from the seabed, so that the entire island can then be towed to the Carribbean, where it will be ruled by Prince Harry as a restored Empire, with Jamaica, the Bahamas, etc. as colonies. Oberhauser bows as the Prince and Meghan Markle enter, and Bond notices that Meghan seems anguished. He gives her the imploring eyes and she frees him while Oberhauser and the Prince are busy turning the laser on in the control room. Bond kills Oberhauser and sets the submarine to self-destruct while Harry flees to the roof. Bond puts Meghan on the escape capsule, and confronts Harry, who has gone mad and now wields a 17th century sword. Bond battles him, knocks him into the sea, and escapes from the exploding submarine using Q’s umbrella. He rendezvous with Megan at the evacuated Nando’s in Southend-on-Sea, and they share a romantic dinner raided from the fridge as the sun sets over Britain.
Kaz is a humor and fiction writer based in New York. His work can be found on Robotbutt, Little Old Lady Comedy, and Points in Case. Please follow him on twitter @rudedaubings