Author Topic: Corporate Folly: Chapter 1: Reconstruction, Part 1 (2025-2028 CE)  (Read 643 times)

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Offline Malikane

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Note: this is not the original game I had played.    As time went on, I found myself less and less willing to write up the notes for it.    However, I really liked the premise of the original, so here we are.    Changes include: conventional start, with no NPRs to start.    Trans Newtonian Technology was given to FDI at the start to reflect the backstory.   

December 26th, 2024 CE
Caroline was scared.    Not the “boogieman-in-the-dark” or “alone-in-the-city” kind of fear.    She was gripped by the fear that only comes from being in way over your head.    The cold, marble walls of the former United Nations building in Manhattan offered no solace as she looked around, trying to think of how she should act.    At 21 years old, she was about to become the most powerful person in human history.    How does anyone reconcile with that? Just remember, her mentor and friend Edmund Riggs had told her, this is only a formality.    Your appointment is as much about your hard work as it is the compromise amongst the corporations.     It was easy for him to claim that, however.    He was a founding partner and CEO of McDaniel-Riggs, the only major company left that dealt with agriculture and pharmaceuticals.    At 64, he was one of the more venerable voices of the group attempting to unite humanity.   

“Caroline Gibson?”

She almost jumped at the mention of her name.    She was so focused on being calm that she lost herself in her own thoughts.   

“Yes, that’s me,” she responded, taking a moment to look at the man addressing her.    He carried himself with his chin high and shoulders back, but Caroline did not get the impression it was done with arrogance.    Even if it had been arrogance, the sheer number of medals on his dress uniform would have allowed that sentiment justification.     
  
“Please follow me.  ”  

As they proceeded through the door into the room that had at one time housed the Security Council of the UN, she did her best to ignore the multitude of eyes that fell on her.    Forty-one leaders had congregated in that room.    Forty-one of the most successful businesspeople, politicians, soldiers, and scientists to ever live.     

“Ms.   Caroline Gibson.    Welcome to the Corporate Assembly.  ” The man speaking was addressing the rest of the room as much as her.    She recognized him to be Nataniel Márquez, President of Bell Solutions—the company behind some of the most complex engineering marvels of the 21st century.    “You have been chosen by this committee to be the first in a new, unique role.    We are offering you the position of Chief Executive Office of Frontier Dynamics, Incorporated.    In this role, as defined by the Articles of Incorporation, you will oversee the coordination of the multitude of companies represented here with regards to trans-Newtonian minerals, research and development therein, and, eventually, our next steps into space.    Your experiences have proven you to be the ideal candidate, despite your age.  ” One of the men in the room coughed roughly.    Nataniel continued without reacting.    “You have already achieved a doctorate in materials engineering, you were on the team that proved how trans-Newtonian minerals could be applied to combat the Ebola pandemic, and you have already had economic papers published on how these new materials will affect monetary interactions in a depopulated world.    It is important to note, however, that your jurisdiction with regards to domestic policy is extremely limited.    We—,“ he motioned to the council around him, “—are the ones who will determine how best to proceed with regards to our individual businesses.    You will receive funding from a percentage of our income, and in return you will help guide humanity through the next stages of our reconstruction.    Do you accept this role, Ms.   Gibson?”

She responded before her thoughts could catch up.    “I am honored to accept the position, directors of the Assembly.  ”  As they applauded around her, she took the time to meet as many of their eyes as possible.    Even as naïve to politics as she admitted she was, it was shocking how many of those eyes returned a cold, hard stare.   

---

January 1st, 2025 CE
Six days later, it was publically announced.   In the intervening time, it had been a whirlwind of effort for Caroline to learn the new organization.    Frontier Dynamics as an organization was convoluted and bureaucratic, but she was determined to make this political experiment as successful as possible.    Her primary staff members included five renowned scientists and a whole host of former military personnel.   Chief among them was the man she met outside the Corporate Assembly.    Commander Christopher Siegl was nominally in charge of whatever operations they had in space.    At the moment, that was exactly zero.    Still, his background as a Green Beret meant that he was also her advisor on security and military development.    After the official ceremony and reception earlier that day, he had accompanied her and several others to a much more exclusive meeting at her new personal residence.    Along with Commander Siegl and Caroline, three CEOs sat in her parlor.    First among them was Edmund Riggs, her mentor.    She knew now how influential he had been in getting her appointed—more than a few people were upset that someone like her had been.    Second, Moira Collins, owner of Collins Materials Corporation.    While there were multiple companies posed to take advantage of the mining and refining of TN minerals and fuel, Collins Materials was in the best position to take the lead.    By all accounts, after her husband passed away two decades prior she had led the company his grandfather had founded into record levels of profitability.   Last among the five was Charles Rainier.    Fairly young (he was in his early 30s), Charles was the owner and president of Rainier International, a paramilitary group that had a record of successes as long as any in the history books.    The company claimed to have been in the mercenary business since the reign of Napoleon, passed down through the generations.    Caroline knew from his dossier that Charles himself had been on the ground in Afghanistan in 2010, Iraq from 2011 to 2012, Iran during the Mashhad Crisis in 2017, and Pakistan in 2023.    Their specialty was occupation and policing, and from all reports they were the best at controlling not only their ‘tenants’ but their troops as well.    No complaints had been registered against them in decades.    No official complaints, at least.   

The room had been quiet for several minutes as they enjoyed drinks and peace.    It had been a long day.    However, they still had things to discuss.    “Hawkins?” Moira Collins asked, referring to one of the scientists in FDI.   

“Survey sensors.    We have sizeable deposits of TNs here, but we need to reach out into space to look for more.    We will run out soon if we are not careful.  ” Caroline responded.    The other four nodded in agreement with the rationale.    Caroline went on.    “Ishinomori is working on power reactor designs to prepare a new engine for space travel.    Houghton is looking into terraforming, with an emphasis on Mars and Luna.    Miles is working on improving our construction methods using TNs; we need to update our current systems as soon as possible.    Ebner is working on capacitors at the special request of Windsor Hampson.  ” At this last one, Charles Rainier sighed.    “LM Apex is working on power storage, then?” he asked the room.   

Edmund looked at him for a moment before responding, “I imagine that he has some kind of defense contract in mind.   Militarized lasers, or similar.  ”  There was a pause before he continued.    “I wonder if there would be some better use for Bianka Ebner.   Her mind is a great one for power systems.  ”

Moira commented back, “Unfortunately, we already are looking into power systems from the non-military side.    Perhaps she is best suited on capacitors.    ”

“No, this research will not help us at the moment, even with a military goal in mind.    What we need,“ Edmund looked to the other members of the room in turn before continuing, “is a better way of policing our citizens.    Surely some application of trans-Newtonian minerals can be used to help ensure that peace and order remain.    ”

Christopher spoke up at this.    “We could look into developing powered armor units for garrisoning the various political entities, but we would need to make the technology available to the various groups that can bid on the protection contracts.    This includes both Rainier International and Suhi Multinational.    ”

Fils de salope,” was the agitated response from Charles.    The rivalry between his company and the other paramilitary police force was well known.    Following the collapse of true enforcement agencies in the chaos of the pandemic, police work had been contracted out to a variety of companies by whatever political system held sway in a region.    Rainier and Suhi were the two most successful.    “Very well.    If it means that we do our job better, I support it.    ”

“Not to mention LM Apex, and Hampson, would be set back in whatever their plans are,” Edmund stated nonchalantly, glancing at the French mercenary.     

Caroline saw the slight smile cross Charles Rainier’s face before it vanished.    Addressing the room, she responded to their advice.    “So it is settled then? I’ll just reassign one of our experts on power systems and propulsion into…military armor research?” The others in the room looked slightly sheepish, but ultimately that is exactly what they all agreed with.    Caroline shook her head and continued  “Very well.    So research and construction goals are set for the near future then.    Go follow through with your parts of the reconstruction, and I’ll take care of mine.  ”

---

January 2nd, 2026 CE
New York Times
“Gibson says ‘Keep the Course’ in Company Address”
New York, Eastern American Confederation – Yesterday afternoon CEO of Frontier Dynamics Caroline Gibson addressed the world with her State of the Globe.    While not committing strongly to any one course of action, Gibson has firmly held to her message of conversion to the future.    Expansion of capacity increases from research labs to construction facilities, all looking to modernize and use Trans-Newtonian Minerals.    Along these same lines, Gibson has promised to maintain support for William Hamilton & Co.   Ltd.    , the newly constructed shipyard currently in orbit around the Earth.    The shipyard has doubled in size in the past year, although it is uncertain to what end the as-of-now top secret shipyard will be used towards.   

---

August 21st, 2026 CE
Los Angeles Chronicle
“Scientist Killed in Tragic Accident”
Santa Monica, Republic of California – It has been confirmed that Joel Houghton, one of the lead scientists at Frontier Dynamics, died early this morning in a car accident.    While no details are available, nothing said so far has pointed to any foul play.    CEO Caroline Gibson has released a statement, saying, “Joel’s death is a tragedy, and he will be sorely missed.    His work into terraforming has built a strong foundation on which we will build in the future.  ”  According to the FDI press release, arraignments have been made for Houghton’s family.   
In related news, Windsor Hampson, legendary founder of laser technology firm LM Apex, has gone on record confirming that his company will be working with FDI scientists using both a new lab that is going online in the next several days as well as Houghton’s old lab.    He stated, “Despite the tragedy that occurred this morning, this marks a bright new future in laser technology.    With further research into capacitors, we can provide safer, more reliable lasers for a variety of commercial uses from medical to industrial.  ”  With this announcement, share price of LM Apex (NYSE: LMAX) has jumped almost 18%.    No official word is out regarding what will happen to Houghton’s old terraforming research.     

---

November 16th, 2026
Alexander Kysely and Windsor Hampson sat together on the top of a high-rise in a private dining room of the exclusive Anavenetro Restaurante, the Los Angeles skyline in the background.    The leader of Suhi Multinational and the leader of LM Apex were discussing a great many things, among them the new fiscal policies announced by Caroline Gibson that morning.    The two men could not deny that the new policies were ambitious—they might even generate some more wealth creation.    Not that either of their companies needed it.    Thanks to some mutually beneficial arraignments, Kysely had access to new, handheld laser rifles that would give his policing forces the edge in negotiating contracts with the various states.    In return, Suhi Multinational provided security for LM Apex essential staff and premises, as well as a certain expertise in other (greyer) areas.     

In the last two years, Hampson had done his best to research what he needed in secret, away from the prying eyes of FDI.    While he was nominally a shareholder of FDI, like the other big corporations, he hated the way it was all being implemented.    Or maybe he just hated the fact that the research he needed FDI to do had been delayed for so long.    Either way, once the scientist was taken care of things got back on schedule for him.   Still, his resentment towards Gibson burned strong—not simply because he felt the woman was unqualified for the position, but rather because she had proven surprisingly resilient to his manipulation.    It was her cursed small council, Hampson mused to himself.    Especially Edmund Riggs.    The old man was well known to be Gibson’s closest advisor.    If Riggs was out of the way, Hampson had every reason to believe that Gibson would become more malleable.   

Hampson brought his idea up carefully to Kysely.    The former Slovakian showed little reservation towards it, as Hampson expected.    Weakening Gibson would, by proxy, also weaken Charles Rainier, another noted member of the CEO’s small council.    That could be an advantage exploitable by both of the men sitting there.     

---

July 24th, 2028
Tears poured down her face.    For the first time, Caroline was beginning to understand just how dangerous politics could be.    She had been in her office when she heard the news.    Edmund Riggs, dead.   Terrorist attack.    She just couldn't believe it.    Here humanity was, three decades into the 21st century, and still terrorists acted in accordance with. . . whatever their plans were.    Commander Seigl was looking into it with some of his best investigators, and he was coordinating with both Rainier and Suhi's forensics teams.    All they had told her was to stay in her personal residence, behind the protection of her guards.    So here she was--alone, drunk, and pathetically weak, sobbing on the floor of her study.    Her communicator picked that moment to go off, startling her out of her own head with its notification of an incoming call.    Taking a moment to collect herself as best she could, she answered.   

"Turn on GNN.    A group is taking credit for the attack.  "  Seigl's voice came across calmly.    Caroline responded numbly, turning on her screen on the wall across from where she was sitting and adjusting to the right website for the broadcast.     

The news anchor, a pretty blonde with bright eyes and poorly done wrinkle correction, was talking to a man in a suit aptly labeled as an 'analyst.  '  They were in the middle of discussing motivation, something that the analyst seemed confident of knowing.   "--it is clearly religious fanatics.    Look at the symbolism! Uh-A six-winged angel? That points directly to some new cult group trying to, trying to prove themselves.    It must be done in response to this, this corporatocracy, that has developed the past several years.   'Where are the morals?' this group claims.   'Where are the ethics?'  What better way for them to protest materialism and a return to so-called 'righteousness' then by targeting the President of McDaniel-Riggs? If this group believes--and they do believe it, mark my words--if they believe that the pandemic was a purging by God, then what better victim than the man who did the most to cure it?"  The poor anchor kept trying to interject with more questions for the analyst, but his diatribe kept going without break.    After several minutes of non-stop speculation, the anchor finally forcefully cut him off, explaining that they had to go to break.    Before they did, however, they showed the video that had been sent to the news station--a video that was apparently viral across all media at the moment.   

A montage of images.    A poor starving child.    A group of people kneeling in worship.    A picture of sick and dead people in a dark room, the sound of flies buzzing.    A nuclear explosion.    Pills on an assembly line.    Screaming and crying people running from a cloud of dust from an explosion.    A flash of Edmund's face.    A flickering black screen, with Edmund coming in and out of focus.    Edmund in focus again.    A red X appearing across his face.    Fade to black.    A dark human figure with six wings, surrounded by a bright background.    Fade to black.    Words in a language that Caroline didn't understand.    Fade to black.     

The anchor was back, saying something about sponsored messages.    Caroline turned off the news stream and took in a deep breath.   

"Ma'am?" A voice came across her communicator.    She had left it on while she was watching.   

"I'm here, Commander," she replied.    "What do we know about. . . this?"  

"It appears that the group who made the video did the attack, too.    We found a similar image of a six-winged figure at the scene.    It seems to reference a 'Seraph,' an angelic being from Abrahamic religions.  " There was a pause.    ”We will keep looking into it.    We'll find 'em.    "

"Do whatever it takes.  " The words came from her mouth almost of their own accord.   

"Yes, ma'am.    One last thing--those words, at the end of the video.    Aramaic.    They meant, 'We are coming.   '"
« Last Edit: April 14, 2014, 08:23:17 AM by Malikane »
To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.
 

 

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