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.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Chapter 172

“Let’s try something different this time,” said Commander Credit.  How about we all go on the offensive?  Not just me.”
His comment was met with looks of bitter assent and the Union fanned out into practiced positioning, ready to engage preplanned maneuvers. 
Franklin Buck had to fake it.
Commander Credit pulled open the panel and Corporate Man lunged through the opening.  But there was no one behind the wall.  Business Woman and Senior Executive spun into defensive postures, facing empty hallways, expecting panels to shift and Outsourcer proxies to pour in.
“I don’t get it,” said Commander Credit.  According to this reading, we’re right on top of him.”
There was a subtle shift in the stance of each Union member.  Their attention turned to the ground beneath Commander Credit’s feet.
No one breathed.
They shifted, ninja-like and in unison, positioning themselves around Commander Credit.  Corporate Man and Business Woman leaned down and carefully felt for a trap door; a secret panel.
Senior Executive and Fair Wage arranged themselves behind Business Woman.  Supply and Demand acted as backup for Corporate Man.  Franklin Buck instinctively took up the covering position for Commander Credit in case the attack came there and felt proud of himself for doing so.
Corporate Man found a seam in the industrial carpeting and mouthed a countdown to Business Woman.  On three he tore the carpeting away and Business Woman lurched forward, fists cocked.
But there was only sub-floor and glue remnants beneath the carpet.
“Jesus you guys,” said Franklin Buck.  “Made my ass all clenchy with that–”
The ceiling panel above Commander Credit shattered and The Outsourcer dropped onto the shoulder of the cybernetic arm, hammering with fists and feet.  He snatched the greed-gun, leapt onto Senior Executive, delivering a kick to Business Woman on the way.  He chopped Senior Executive on the neck while thrusting a foot into Corporate Man’s chest, then dove onto Fair Wage, smacking both Supply and Demand while in mid air.
The Outsourcer wrapped his legs around Fair Wage’s throat and shouted, “Don’t move or I’ll snap his neck.”
The Union froze.
Cautiously, The Outsourcer examined the greed-gun, tightening his choke hold when Fair Wage tried to move.  Then he sniffed the air.  His eyes pinched with a sudden realization and he snuffled the greed-gun, an enthusiastic chortle escaping his throat.
“I know what this is,” he said in an oily voice. 
Fair Wage groped at the legs wrapped around his neck.  The Outsourcers nonchalantly reached down and flicked Fair Wage’s nose.
“I know what’s in here,” he said and slammed his fist into the toy gun.
Corporate Man and Business Woman surged forward but The Outsourcer tightened his leg-grip and hissed, “Back!  Back!”
The small, runty man fished the greed chunks out of the ruined toy gun and held them like a fistful of dirty dollars.
“I wondered what happened to him,” said The Outsourcer, jostling the pieces as if estimating their weight.  “Do any of you truly comprehend what it is that you’ve brought here?”
The Outsourcer unclamped his legs and yanked on Fair Wage’s hair.  The old man screamed but his call was silenced.  The Outsourcer forced the remnants of The Greed into Fair Wage’s mouth.
It was like cookie dough mixed with hair and mashed up spaghetti squash.  It tasted like filthy pinched pennies and the greasy collar sweat of unscrupulous financiers.  It stank of exploitation and cow manure.
A dozen cubicle walls flew open and a score of Outsourcer stand-ins rushed into the corridor slapping and hissing.  The ensuing struggle between the Union and the Outsourcers was violent and brief.  This was not because one side decisively triumphed over the other, it was because the fight was merely a diversion set up to grant the actual Outsourcer his escape.  The altercation was cut short when a near seismic gurgling noise erupted somewhere deep within the body of Fair Wage.