Corporate Man is called in to investigate reports of vile, unethical business practices at Great American Business Company. What he finds there just might destroy him (except we all know the ending to The Tragic Death of Corporate Man so it should be fairly obvious that it can't really destroy him, though it can come close).

Enslaved by the Bonus Whores is an all new Corporate Man Adventure Serial. Chapters will post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

After nearly a decade of imprisonment, Corporate Man returns to find the economy in ruins and his deadliest enemies in control of all but a fraction of society's wealth. He embarks upon a quest to set right the wrongs of the business world; a task that will ultimately destroy him.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Chapter 33

“Why’s it so hot in here?” Tanya asked.
“Yeah, I know,” said Mr. Jones.  “I’m sweating.”
“Hey.  Is it always this hot in here?” Tanya asked one of the Jolene’s employees nearby.  The lady was stocking obnoxiously small packets of notions from an obscenely large cardboard box.  She tugged on her forest green polo, scratching at the embroidered Jolene’s logo.  Her blue-white, cottony hair frizzed fromthe humidity of her scalp sweat and her face flushed a rashy red.
“The air conditioning is broken again,” said the cottony haired woman.
“Yeah, I’ll say,” said Tanya.  “When is it supposed to get fixed?”
“Oh, about three weeks ago.”
“Three weeks.  Are you kidding me?”
“Gosh no, I’d never insult a guest,” she said glancing at the box of notions sitting on a cart, still unworked.
“Honey, you aren’t insulting me.  But this ridiculousness with the AC is not only insulting, it’s dangerous.”
“You look like you’re ready to pass out,” Mr. Jones said.
“I’ve come close a couple of times, but I haven’t gone down yet,” the cottony haired woman said.  “I can’t afford to.  Regina passed out three times and she was let go.”
“They fired her?” Tanya asked.
“Oh yes.  Keep in mind, she was given several warnings not to do it again and… well, she went and did it again.  So I guess it was her fault really.”
“No.  That’s bullshit,” Tanya said.
“What’s your name, sweetie?” Mr. Jones asked.
“Margaret,” the cottony haired woman said.
“Margaret, who’s your manager?”
“Tina.  She’s probably up at customer service.  By the registers.”
“Can we bring you a glass of water?” Tanya asked.
“Oh we’re not allowed water on the floor,” Margaret said.  Her tongue made pasty smacking sounds against the roof of her mouth when she spoke and small sweat beads bedazzled her brow.
“I’m getting you some anyway,” Tanya said and stormed off.
“I better get back to work,” said Margaret and she turned back to her box full of notions.
Mr. Jones grit his teeth and marched toward the front of the store.  The manager was nowhere to be found so he had one of the sweaty checkers page her. 
In a few moments a haggard looking, middle-aged woman with sweat matted hair and pit stains soaking through her polo, scampered to the front.
“Hi, Tina,” Mr. Jones said, his voice failing to disguise his anger.  “I’m a concerned party and I was wondering about a couple of things.  The first of those things being the very uncomfortable temperature in this place.  The second is the limited access to water that you allow your employees.”
Tina shook her head and grimaced.  After a drawn out, calming breath she said, “Are you from corporate?”
“I am not affiliated with Jolene’s in any way.”
“Well, unless you’re from the head office and are here to personally oversee the so-called repair of our air conditioning system, I don’t care what your concerns are.  If, on the other hand, you’re a loyal customer and find the heat unbearable, then I apologize and assure you that we are working on it.”
“That’s a hell of an attitude.”
“Don’t blame me.  Corporate won’t let me simply call in a repairman.”
“Are you saying that all of this,” Mr. Jones said, gesturing toward and through the air, “isn’t your doing?”
“You got that right.  I don’t make policy.  And I sure as heck wouldn’t adhere to any mandate to keep the heating and cooling systems in a constant state of non-repair to cut expenses.  I sweat just as much as the other employees.  Keeping it cozy for the sweater set is one thing, but this sort of heat poses serious health risks as far as I’m concerned.”
“And the water?” Mr. Jones asked.
“What water?” said Tina.
“Exactly.  These employees don’t have access to water while they’re working.”
“Yeah.  Ridiculous, I know.  Talk to Sean.”
“Who’s Sean?”
“He’s our resident douche,” a young girl behind the register called out.  Tina shot her a glare, but smirked at the same time.
“A douche?  As in… bag?”
“That’s the one,” the young girl said.  Then she and the other ladies up front started giggling.
“District Operational Supervisor.  D.O.S.  He likes to tell the newbies D.O.S. for dos.  As in, dos and don’ts and if you have any questions about what you should and should not do… go to him.  Molly made the leap from dos to douche within the first week of employment.  Which is probably why I keep her around.  Lord knows I don’t get much work out of her.”
“And where is this douche?”
“Can’t say.  Just try to think of something douchey a douche-bag supervisor would do and that’s probably what King Douche is doing.”