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, September 10, 2012

Chapter 111

“Ah, Miss Adams.  I was hoping to see you again,” the bossman said, glaring at Business Woman.  His chest was pinned against his desk and his arm was barred behind his back by Corporate Man.  “So I could have the pleasure of firing you myself.”
He gave a low, almost inaudible, chuckle and held his stare for a long moment.  Then, with an air of smug righteousness, he said, “You’re fired.  Now get out of my office.  I’ve got business to attend to.”
Senior Executive took a step forward, leaned toward the bossman and whispered, “Yes, that’s all well and good, but Miss Adams is actually Business Woman, and she’s with us.”
Showing no sign of shock or revelation or even embarrassment, the bossman said, “Business Woman, huh.  In the future, Miss Adams, it would serve you well to include such information on your personnel sheet.”
“Would it?” said Business Woman, not really fighting off the urge to grin.
“I know I would have avoided much inconvenience had you been forthright,” he replied.
“I’ll keep that in mind,” she said. “Now, shall we get down to business?”
“Let’s,” said the bossman, retaining his overconfident glare.
Corporate Man released the arm bar and shoved the bossman into the office chair.  The bossman winced but did not clutch his side.  Corporate Man held the vibrating, greed-filled ray gun to the bossman’s chin and said, “This little device, which we’ll call our corporate analyst, has reported that you are the top executive of this establishment.  We know, however, that you are not the head of the empire.  Our reports indicate that you are one or four limbs in the Incorporated Business Corporation Incorporated enterprise, merely an arm or a leg.  Where’s the head?”
The bossman shrugged, “Your information is not only incorrect, it is confidential.”
“If it’s incorrect, there would be no reason to assert that it is, likewise, confidential,” said Senior Executive.
“Yes,” said the bossman.  Then he sat, motionless.
Business Woman slapped him and, almost as an afterthought, she said, “I personally scouted the west and south side branches and, as you know, I infiltrated this north side location whereby I ascertained the location of the east side facility.  We’ve pinpointed the four corners.  All signs indicate a central office.  Where is it?”
“I would assume that your ‘corporate analyst’ would be able to advise you of the central office location,” said the bossman, gesturing flippantly to the greed-filled ray gun.  “Provided that the assumption of the existence of a central office is conceded to.”
“This is pointless,” said Business Woman.  “We’ll never get anything out of him.  I once listened to this prick pull crap like this on a conference call for an entire afternoon.”
“Then why can’t we use that corporate analyst gun thing to find it?” Franklin Buck asked.
“We could, but the process would take a long time and lead us through an endless succession of greedy companies and people until we were close enough to the central figure head for it to lock on to that signal through all the greedy corporate interference,” said Corporate Man.
Senior Executive tapped Corporate Man on the shoulder and signaled him into a huddle with himself and Business Woman.  In a hushed tone he said, “We need to get some financial records.  There’s going to be an ass-load of paperwork flowing from this place to that.  Invoices, expenses, shipping records, something will point us there.”
“But won’t we need data from all the other branches to find the intersecting location?” Business Woman asked.
“Yeah, we’ll have to go break into one of the other three, access their files, and from there–”
“Uh guys,” said Franklin Buck, “this may seem stupid, but what about this?”  He was pointing to a framed, poster-sized map, hanging on the wall. “Here’s us, right?” he said, tapping the map.  Then he grabbed a black marker from the bossman’s desk and circled the location.
“Hey!  You can’t vandalize company property!” the bossman shouted.
They all ignored his protests.
“Now,” said Franklin Buck, “circle the locations of the other branches.”
He handed the marker to Business Woman and while she circled the locations on the map, Franklin Buck removed an oversized calendar from the wall.  He returned to the map and used the calendar like a straight edge, drawing a black line connecting the north and south locations.  Then he did the same for the east and west branches.
“There.  The lines intersect at… Jacob Center.  I bet that’s the central office,” Franklin said and turned to face the others.  No one said anything.  Then, after a painfully long moment, they all turned toward the bossman as if his expression might reveal something.
Finally, the bossman spoke, “Are you currently seeking gainful employment?  Because we could always use a good man.  Of course we’ll have to garnish your first paycheck to pay for the map vandalism, but the–”
“No freaking way,” Business Woman said.  “Can’t be that simple.”
“Yeah, how stupid can these corporate types really be?” asked Senior Executive.
They all paused again and looked at each other, and then at the bossman.  He was busy digging out a form from a set of files in his desk drawer.
“Of course, you’ll need to fill out this application.  Is your resume up to date? Oh, and references.  We’ll need references,” said the bossman.  He glanced back and forth between the others in the room, eyeing them with suspicion.  “It would probably be best if your references did not include the names of those in our company at present.”