Boss Citadel sat pensively as Sammy recounted the minutes of the meeting. After each meeting the two usually had an update between themselves of the matters with the chance to touch on more delicate and confidential topics. Not all present at the meeting should be privy to the full disclosure at times and it helped to have this freedom to flesh out the issues. Of course these one on one meetings were generally a case of Sammy talks and Boss listens which Boss often found quite grating in a purely primal sense. He hated the sense of being talked down to like a teacher lecturing his pupil but was generally helpless to improve his position as Sammy was more informed and a better talker.
But on this occasion it was more than just a pissing contest that was chipping away at his patience. A thought had come to him recently while watching a Walter Wallace special. Walter had been asked how he handles the weight of responsibility in helping so many people. He replied by mentioning that he had recently considered the idea of ‘what if he was no longer the happiest man in the world?’ – He still had things in life that he found important and if he knew someone might be able to help him achieve them then he could only hope that they might care to do so, and the only way he could justify his position was to do his best while he could.
Boss was struck by the notion; it was a question born out of the self but instead of broadcasting it to the world for help, it was simply reflected back inward as its own answer. Boss had spent the night pensive and unnaturally selfless. He had dinner with Ms Citadel and talked to her. Instead of finding Sally the cleaner or some other hooker to give him a blowjob that night he had let his wife do it. He went to sleep with a clear and calm mind, intent on changing his ways tomorrow. The next day however was the shit storm with Chips and the motivation was directed to business and the positivity was soon evaporated into stress and finally the bitter comfort of resignation.
But the feeling managed to resurface that very morning after the meeting. He considered the manner in which he looked down upon the attendees as uninformed rabble; they would listen to him but he would not listen to them. Was he not just like the rest of them when Sammy came to his office or suite and discussed the minutes? What did Sammy know on his pedestal of condescension? What was he planning?
“The ‘Cit Soldiers’,” Sammy continued, a hint of contempt in his voice as he said the title, “Chips has been effectively covered up and is no longer traceable to Citadel. We’re still not clear on what exactly led to the breach of protocol apart from the unproven theory of human retention. Problem there is it suggests it is not a lone case. His partner Whisker has been brought in for analysis and maybe-”
“Maybe Walter had an effect on them.” Boss interjected.
Sammy almost looked thrown, “Sorry?”
“I said maybe Walter is having the effect on the soldiers.”
“It’s possible.” Sammy replied.
“It would make sense wouldn’t it?” Boss continued, annoyed by Sammy’s neutralising responses. “Can we test for that on the other one, Whisker? Maybe get that Doctor Lady back in to inspect.”
“It wouldn’t- Dr Blues no longer wishes to liaise with us. She has discontinued her participation in the Walter specials and has showed little interest in our science department.”
“Well we could surely find something interesting for her,” Boss said. He couldn’t understand why Sammy had to be such a cunt all the time. The condescension continued to click a spark next to Boss’ highly flammable temper. He was on the point of ordering him to do it but backed out instinctively at the last breath, “Look into it,” he concluded weakly.
“Right. Moving on, Walter’s popularity has reportedly hit lows, nothing drastic. Interest levels have still continued to rise almost to the levels reached when he was first unveiled.”
Boss was now turning away, his face flaring slightly. He knew Sammy could tell but Sammy showed no signs of knowing – this only made it worse. “What do you do when you go home, Sammy?” Boss asked aggressively, cutting off his associate mid sentence.
“Pardon?” Sammy replied politely, stalling.
But Boss wasn’t going to give him the time, he was figuring out Sammy’s little game of cock and ass. “Does the money really excite you?”
Sammy looked Boss in the eye and gave a cheeky smile, as if they were friends, “A man’s motivations should remain his own, lest somebody steal them away from him.”
“Fuck you. What pussy have you bought? What boat have you sunk?” Boss said, his voice rising forcefully.
“Sammy remained passive, “Money is not my currency, you know that.”
“Well why are you here? Why do what you do like you’re the only fuckwit who can do it? You want power? You want to be me?
A flash of emotion passed through Sammy’s face. Boss narrowed his eyes in glee.
“I doubt there are many who would wish themselves such a fate. Your successes have fuelled your vices and you garner more pity then you should command in your status. I don’t envy you or your name because I know you so well. You on the other hand must envy something, otherwise you wouldn’t ask your questions, searching for more. Do you watch Walter Wallace hoping like a billion others for a signpost to contentment? Do you think I do? Are you so arrogant to demand his status? So stupid to think anyone who knew better would demand yours? Many would and would be equally vain, equally self entitled and equally envious.
Boss leapt from his seat and had Sammy by the collar, driving his small frame into the wall behind him. He squared him up and punched him in the jaw. He cocked back and swung again but Sammy had ducked in time and his fist wedged into the poorly re-enforced wall space. Sammy pushed Boss with surprising strength and he was turned around, pivoting at his caught right fist and extending his elbow painfully. Sammy pulled Boss down by his own collar and headbutted him in the nose. Boss felt it pop and dropped to his knee clasping at his elbow.
“Fuck!” he said, tasting the blood in the back of his mouth.
Sammy was standing a few feet away, clutching at his jaw like a prize fighter shaking off a point. “My motivations are my own. My duty keeps me content in this fucked up world. You can have your money and power and pin Walter to his fame, but I will keep doing what I do well. Now if you will excuse me I think we should continue this meeting at a later date.”