Texas Wildfire

Chapter 2

By Dwayne MacInnes

The meeting lasted longer than Murdock expected. Negotiating the rights for joint oil extraction with the various Mexican oil companies in the Gulf of Mexico proved more difficult than expected. Texicorp had the technology and the means the Mexicans only had to agree to an equitable share of the profits and the funds for construction for the oil platforms.

Once the negotiations concluded, T.J. returned to his cabin. He walked over to the small wet bar and prepared himself a drink and then punched a button on his 4 inch by 3 inch computer-phone on a nearby desk. He figured he still had some time left before the airship docked to relax.

T.J. Murdock leaned back in the soft leather chair. He held a Scotch in one hand and stared at the holographic program emanating from his small compu-phone sitting on the small aluminum desk in the small cabin. Murdock lifted the glass with the amber liquid that contained two small ice cubes to his lips. He took a sip, placed the glass of Scotch on the desk next to the computer and closed his eyes. This was how he liked to relax after a long day of negotiations.

T.J. pushed the volume button on the computer to increase the sound in his remote ear buds. This was his favorite webcast, The Flash Limbeck Show. John "Flash" Limbeck was the most popular pundit broadcasting today and everyone had an opinion of him. You either loved or hated him there was no middle ground.

"So now the liberals are saying that our current economic meltdown is because of the last twenty years of conservatism," snorted Flash. "This is their own fault going back to the Obama administration and even the Clinton years last century. If they allowed the market place to perform without Big Brother watching over every Wall Street transaction the economy would be able to perform in a more natural state.

"It has taken the last 20 years just to roll back those artificial constraints...or should I say restraints. If we were allowed to continue the Reagan laisez-faire practices and stopped bailing out every business that failed, we would be a lot stronger now than we currently are.

"I see we have a caller. Hello Jack from Detroit."

"Hello, Flash. Do you really think that by letting companies fail our unemployment figures of 14 percent would be less?" a caller queried Flash.

"In the long term yes. Because a new and stronger company would move into the vacuum and replace these dinosaurs that were only around because Obama bailed them out thirty years ago."

T.J. smiled to himself. These liberals were always thinking that they could pull one over on Limbeck. However, before T.J. could enjoy more of the webcast the steward broke in over the intercom located in each cabin.

"Attention, Zephyr guests. We will be pulling into the Houston Aerodrome in 15 minutes. Please prepare to disembark if this is your stop. The captain and crew of Lone Star Skyways would like to thank you for flying aboard the Zephyr."

T.J. groaned. He turned off the computer and took a big swig of his Scotch.

* * * * *

People were bustling to exit down the gangway into the glass-dome of the Houston Aerodrome from the secured airship. Several other airships with a variety of logos from different airship airlines circled the spacious structure and were either taking on or disgorging passengers.

T.J. glanced at his watch and waited for the crowd to thin so that he could disembark. The oilman looked out a window and observed various crewmembers swarming over a nearby airship preparing it for takeoff.

"Excuse me," familiar voice said in a heavy Mexican accent.

T.J. turned to the familiar sound to see one of the representatives from the Tigre Petro oil company standing in front of him. Murdock put on a friendly smile and held out a hand.

"Señ or Vargas, correct?" T.J. asked shaking the Latino’s hand.

"Sí! sí!" exclaimed the smaller man with dark hair and a matching mustache. "Our company looks forward to working with yours Mr. Murdock."

"T.J., please," laughed Murdock. "Mr. Murdock is my father."

"Sí, T.J.," smiled Mr. Vargas. "However, some of my colleagues are concerned that the recent wave of anti-Latino sentiment in your country could endanger our relationship."

T.J. laughed, "Oh, that! That is nothing to worry about; it is just politics and the concern over illegal immigrants. It is nothing that concerns us."

Vargas's face turned sour shortly and then brightened. "Sí, of course, then the rumors of Texas seceding from the United States if Ramirez becomes president are not true."

It was now T.J’s turn to frown momentarily. He had heard these rumors and many in Texas believed they had the right to leave the union whenever they wanted. The state legislature even voted in certain language in its constitution to give it strength. With the anxiety over illegals and the growing number of Hispanics in the state helped fan the flames of fear amongst the white population. They felt that in a few years they would find themselves as a minority.

"I would not let that concern you," T.J. tried to reassure Vargas. "My father would never let politics overshadow business."

"Claro que Sí!" laughed Vargas unintentionally slipping into Spanish.

The crowd of passengers leaving the airship was now starting to thin. T.J. motioned for Mr. Vargas to follow him towards the gangway.

Vargas shook his head and said, "Sorry, I am continuing on to New Mexico and then south. However, I will be in Houston for some business in a few weeks. Maybe we could continue our conversation then."

T.J. gave the smaller man a wolfish grin, "I know just the place where we can meet. It is not too far from our corporate headquarters here in Houston. Give me a call and we can set up an appointment."

The two men shook hands before departing their separate ways.

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This page contains a single entry by Douglas Gogerty published on March 31, 2010 5:02 PM.

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