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.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Chapter 212

The Union decided to accept the offer of new clothes.  General Apathy spoke a command toward the decorations on his uniform and a few moments later a small staff appeared with a rack of clothes and privacy screens.  The suits on the rack were crisp clean replicas of the overworked clothing each member of the Union currently employed.
When the rack was wheeled away, three suits, two of purple and mauve, one of brown, still hung from it, swaying slow and melancholy.
They stood, facing the General.  An awkward silence hovering about them.
“Shall we?” said General Apathy after a painfully long time.
“What?  Go to the meeting?” said Corporate Man.
“Exactly.  I’m sure the Big Bossman is eager to get things started.”
“Who’s this Big Bossman?” asked Business Woman.
General Apathy gestured toward the black diamond shape at the apex of the building and said, “Why the head of the company, of course.  The man in charge of it all.  Let’s not keep him waiting.”
The General turned abruptly and strolled toward the center of the fifty-second floor and the odd tiered pyramid that stood there.  The Union followed, though with noticeable reluctance.  When they were halfway across the floor, the General tossed a look over his shoulder.
“Junior.  You’ve been quiet this whole time,” he said.
“It’s Senior Executive now.  And eat shit.”
“Hmm.  What a remarkable financial recovery.  Congratulations.  As to you latter comment, I think I will politely decline,” said General Apathy.  A moment later her cast another look back and added, “Do you think I could still call you Junior, just for old time’s sake?”
The resulting glare from Senior Executive bought a wry grin from the General.  They continued the trek across the floor in silence and when they reached the base of the pyramid structure they halted at the bottom of a set of stairs.
The pyramid stood four stories high.
“Those steps will take us up to the first level,” said General Apathy.  “A mix of top level financial advisors and corporate strategists are seated there.  Please do not interrupt their work or encourage them in any way.  It will only delay us.”
He turned, without much conviction, and walked up the steps.
Corporate Man and the rest of the Union began to follow.
“Oh, I’m sorry,” said General Apathy, turning back.  “Commander Credit.  You’re dismissed.  Have some diagnostics–”
“Wait a second.  What are you–” Senior Executive started.
General Apathy held up his hand and silenced him.  “Did you think the Commander was your ally?”
“He doesn’t work for you,” Senior Executive shouted.
“Not exclusively, no,” General Apathy said.  “Technically he’s a freelance agent, but who do you think pays the majority of his salary?  Which agency was responsible for all of his repairs and upgrades?”
Senior Executive shot a look at Commander Credit.  The Commander shrugged.  Senior Executive reddened and started to shake.
“Why was he helping us then?” asked Corporate Man.  “The Crash is your operative.  He’d never–”
“What?  Work for those who employ The Crash?”  General Apathy asked.  “Think of it as a squabble between employees.  Something that’s been escalating for a decade or two.”
“I took the job to get another crack at the bastard who took my arm.”
“Yeah.  You did a bang up job getting your revenge,” said Franklin Buck.
“Beaten into unconsciousness.  That’s quite the comeback,” Business Woman said.
“Doesn’t matter,” said Commander Credit.  “My contract with Senior Executive ended on the twenty-sixth floor.  Check the paperwork.  I stuck with you because I knew what lay in wait on floor thirty-nine.  Now…  Now I’m done.”
Commander Credit walked off, strolling leisurely across the open floor.  A team of tech boys appeared with diagnostic machines on wheeled carts and began attending him.
“Ah… Such a tricky, dangerous thing to manage that Commander Credit,” said General Apathy.  “Oh well.  Shall we?”
He turned and strode up the stairs.