MAGNIFICENT MILE — In a surprise press release this morning, Brookfield Properties, owner of Magnificent Mile shopping staple Water Tower Place, announced that the wing left empty by the departure of Macy’s will be occupied by mountains of plundered gold and gems, accumulated over ages by reviled wyrm and scourge of several realms, Blightscale the Vile. The decision arrives after outcry over a potential deal with Target to fill the space, as neighboring Gold Coast residents would prefer the smoldering visage of the devil-lizard lounging upon his spoils to the potential that North Michigan Avenue would lose its high-end reputation.
In the release, Brookfield further explained that the pending Target deal had been “seriously considered” by all parties, as the retailer would offer “variety and convenience” to the luxury-focused 800 block of the Magnificent Mile. However, when the surrounding community caught wind of the deal and began to protest, the developer quickly decided to reverse course. “Water Tower Place remains a characteristically elegant edifice anchoring one of the finest luxury shopping districts in the world,” the release said, “and our new tenant will only lift that legacy higher on his scaly wings, May They Blot Out The Very Sun And Strike Us Dead With Fear.”
An acrid cloud of sulfurous smoke billowed from several windows in the upper floors of the building this morning as building resident and Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas surveyed the initial excavations for Mr. The Vile’s accursed new lair, giving the Chicago Genius Herald an idea of what visitors can expect in the coming months.
“He’s been a joy so far, and seems to really be a great fit for the Gold Coast,” Pappas said of the massive, obsidian-scaled dragon, known primarily for causing several Esgaroth-the-lake-town-beneath-the-Mountain-scale humanitarian crises and the sadistic trickery of any adventurers foolish enough to treat with him. “We’ve already installed an utterly-still black lake in the sub-basement, and plenty of cathedral-like, torch-lit caverns for the hoard to occupy when it’s brought in by funeral barges up the river. What class! And some people would rather embarrass themselves at Target? Puh-lease.”
Pappas declined to comment further, claiming that she has “no idea why [she] got dragged into this, I’m just a concerned resident with the word ‘Treasure’ in my job title.”
For his part, the great beast himself is grateful to have a new home for his sea of coins from lost Dwarven cities, sentient magic swords speaking in forgotten tongues, and fire-opals that reflect only the sunless sky of a distant, cursed dimension. Of course, Mr. The Vile is also looking forward to meeting his new, like-minded neighbors. “I issue my sincerest appreciation to my most gracious hosts” hissed Mr. The Vile during a Zoom call with the Genius Herald, “and invite them to entrust their own considerable riches to me for safekeeping upon my arrival.” The dragon’s giant, crimson eye, the only feature visible on the video feed, narrowed with disgust. “I am similarly anxious in proximity to minuscule, greasy hands, pawing and pinching...and I am something of an expert in assessing and exterminating such threats.” With this, the dragon sneered, baring a massive set of teeth slicked with the blood of his most recent victim.
As the construction on Water Tower Place to accommodate Mr. The Vile proceeds to its next phase, Brookfield promises that the gathering storm clouds will abate in monthly intervals, and shoppers are in no danger of being mercilessly devoured for at least another six months. Magnificent Mile authorities forecast an opening date in July, although these dates are subject to change as the sky blackens and our concept of time erodes beneath the oncoming specter of Blightscale the Vile’s tyranny.