A man in a military looking uniform walked into a boardroom on the top floor of a very tall building. The building overlooked a city in which no other building came close to it in height. This boardroom was obviously positioned in the corner of the building, since two sidewalls were constructed entirely of glass, and it afforded its occupants a spectacular view of all they surveyed. Survey was a good word for it, for very few were privileged enough to know of its existence, let alone be familiar with it. The man in the uniform was familiar with its existence, however. He owned it.
You could say that he owned the world, in fact. Well, co-owned the world. It had been easy for the politicians to sell him the world to save their asses after the terminal war. As easy as pressing those little red buttons on either side of the globe. They’d peddled him everything - from the jails to the powerstations, everything that was left standing after the fall out.
What hadn’t been easy, of course, was coming up with money alone. Obviously, he was going to need partners, survivors like bankers, people who had access to gold deposits, etc, had to be convinced of the long term wisdom of banding together; had to be persuaded to ignore their natural greed and the temptations that went along with it.
But in the end, the money was no good anyway, there being nothing to spend it on. And soon, groups of survivors would begin to band together into fighting groups, and there was some security to be gained by joining The Cartel, as he called it.
The Cartel, despite the military accoutrements of its founder, was really a serendipitous business opportunity than an army. and the uniform worn by its leader was window dressing, pure image.
But people emerging from a war expect to see a military leader, and he had read once that Yassar Arafat, a leader some 500 years ago, had also worn a military uniform even though he was not military man. It worked for Arafat, and it would give him the edge he needed with the bankers.
That was then, and this was now, and there were more pressing things to attend to than nostalgic nightmares. Any minute now, he expected his partners to arrive. They had a problem that needed urgent attention, and he had called an urgent board meeting.