Her skin was black, deep like the night sky, jeweled with stars of bursting energy and turbulent memory. It rolled like dunes, smooth, shifting in every step. The Queen of Atlantic City was beautiful, even though some could not see it behind their ivory glasses.
She had come to power through unconventional means. In the whispering dungeons of every casino, by the fountains of crystal and stairs of gold, she dealt her cards with such precision that no one noticed what she hid in her white gloves. This was a plan long in the making. Her mother and father were the descendants of the high halls of Africa, this she knew in her soul, but they were taken, by men in white masks, to serve a master that still lives today. The sins of the master, Washington, Jefferson, Adams, are never recognized, but she remembers them, fully, like a scar on her face to be gleaned as she sees herself in any reflection. And so, she chose to die, after the swift passing of her parents when she was young, and be reborn like a rain on a desert, to change the course of history, that of her city and her people.
The Kings of old (I only say Kings, as never before had there been a Queen) maintained a system of inheritance through wealth. From the young days of the kingdom of the fathers, each King, in his way, collected power, influence, votes, and favors. They were ruthless, but as time passed, those that came closer to the age of the robot came to forget the sword and knew only the zeros. AC became a den for princes to feast and indulge, and power a crumbling thing.
As they forgot the sword, they lost their absolute dominance. Loyalty was to the zero, the dollar, the euro, the pound, the abstract worth of paper that the Gods of old scoffed at, for it was in reality worthless. The Queen, the beautiful Queen, used this to her advantage.
Like time, she came to win the love of the people of the city. The poor were her allies, her people, her council. And as she rose amongst them, she made a promise, a promise to them only – that one day the city would finally be theirs. With poisonous words she began to slay the petty lords of the boardwalk, the captains of the casinos, and eventually, the King himself.
Politics, the dark, underground, true politics of AC was a dangerous game. The recently usurped King of AC was not as cunning as his father, arguably the last of the Great Blue Bloods. His young, playboy mind was too worried about women, the occasional man, and living a life of indulgence. The game played by his council (other rich white men) was something that he did not worry about. He was King, one that drank its elixir but seldom harvested the necessary ingredients for its creation.
The Queen broke council members and replaced them with individuals who deceived the King. She had gained control, laid waste the aristocracy, especially those who rejected her claim, and sat upon the red throne in the unseeable tower.
A year had passed since the expulsion of the King. He fled north, to New York, where his cousins dwelled. Lords from the Blood Bloods bowed their heads or just crept into the shadows. The people, in their own way, rejoiced at the hope the Queen brought. For the first time in many years, all was well.
Far off, in the deep sea, Poseidon saw the Queen touch him through the sand.
He said nothing.