Relations: McEmpire (online version)
Robert J. Minton 
Liz had been hard at work on the paystub reconfiguration for about twenty
minutes when the red alert alarm suddenly went off. The next moment a 3D projection
of Robert J. Minton appeared in the middle of her office.
"Employees of Infocation Corporation and all Infocation Subsidiaries, be advised
that Infocation has just placed a bid for BMI Relations of $53,800 per share. You
will be alerted to developments in the bidding process as necessary."
Then the image disappeared and Liz waited for it to reappear. It reappeared
almost instantly. "Executives and officers of all Infocation subsidiaries, as
you have just heard, we have entered a takeover bid for Burson Marsteller
Intercontinental Relations Incorporated. Please divert all fluid capital
resources into the Infocation acquisition fund immediately."
Liz Cohen had already done so. All officers with financial clearance had
probably already funneled every available dollar into the acquisition fund.
But they liked the imperious nature of the projection of Mr. Minton that
reminded them to do so. Liz Cohen had an extra charge of excitement because
she owned thousands of shares of BMI Relations already and if a bidding war
was breaking our for the Relations firm she was going to be a lot wealthier
by the end of the day.
The 3D projection disappeared again and then to her absolute astonishment
it appeared again. "Ms. Cohen," it addressed her directly. Suddenly her heart
rate accelerated and she began to sweat all over. She became conscious of the
fact that Mr. Minton was seeing a 3D projection of her and she began
self-consciously fidgeting with her hair. Through a dry throat and
with a wavering voice she replied "Yes?" meekly.
"What do you know about
Sharon Shafer?" Mr. Minton demanded. "You've worked with
her before. Would she bring DarqueOps into a bidding war?"
"Well, I don't even know for sure if Mrs. Shafer is in
DarqueOps for certain."
"Don't be stupid! OF COURSE Sharon Shafer is in DarqueOps, but
obviously you don't know the answer to my question."
With that the projection disappeared again. Her shell-shocked eyes
remained fixed on the place where Mr. Minton's projection had been
with a look of contempt upon his face. She suddenly hated herself.
She wished she could call her words back into her mouth and try to
answer the question again. She could have at last tried to guess
about what Mrs. Shafer might do. Mr. Minton seemed like the perfect
human being to Liz Cohen. He made the world function properly, and
she had been given an opportunity to assist him and she had blanched
and given a weaker answer than Mr. Minton needed. She was deeply,
She saw her reflection in the
window to the right of her desk and she cursed her Asian features
again. And then cursed her parents for having adopted her from such
an awful place as southeast Asia full of such hideously ugly people.
Why couldn't they have just had her the natural way and then she
could be Jewish like her sister Janet. Better yet, why couldn't she
have been born into a proper Christian family like almost everyone
else she knew. She was sure that Mr. Minton hated to look at her
foreign looking face, and hated her because of it.
Mr. Minton actually cared very little about Ms. Cohen's
appearance. He viewed her as a commodity. She made money for
Infocation so she was necessary. If there was anything he hated about
her it was the fact that he suspected she had sexual thoughts about him.
Robert J. Minton viewed himself as a proper Christian in a world of
sinners. He was chased, still virginal at age 46, and intended to
remain that way always. Human sexuality was repugnant and he felt
that all of his success in life was directly attributable to the fact
that he spent all of his time in pursuit of power while others
distracted themselves with the pursuit of sins of the flesh.
Robert J. Minton had become the youngest president of the United States
at age 29 by amassing such power that he could alter the make up of what
he felt was an antiquated document: the U.S. Constitution. And after
presiding over the United States as its commander-in-chief through Holy
War II, he saw fit to dissolve it: the U.S. Constitution and then the
United States of America itself for good measure.
Mr. Minton sat at the head of a lengthy table in a darkened conference
room in the headquarters of Infocation Corporation. Directly across from
him was a wall that was taken up entirely by an illuminated vibrant blue
flag. In the center of the flag was a large, white number 1. Along
the bottom of the flag was a row of corporate logos. This was the
flag of 1WG, One World Government. One World Government had been a
huge leap forward for corporations, it got rid of many of the old
rules that interfered with business. And there had been one president
of 1WG since its creation in 2031: Robert J. Minton.
Directly to his right sat Mr. Minton's mother, Ruth. She was chairman
of the board of directors. There were two other men and four other women
who made up the board of directors but they were inconsequential; spectators.
Mr. Minton's mother was the only director who dared speak, and she would
always differ to her son's decisions. His will was absolute. Infocation
had a board of directors only because all corporations had one. But they
knew better than to have an opinion without permission.