The Billion Dollar Omelet Part II
Secretary Ahmat Burkai Anumi the Minister of Tourism Development of the Government of The Republic of Chad sat in chair next to a desk in a tiny office at the Ministry. There was a shelf filled with paperwork and a large poster reading, in English, “Chad, a world away from the world!” His handler stood at his side and there were two other empty chairs. On the desk was a briefcase of money. That was not an altogether unfamiliar situation for Mr. Anumi; what was odd was that the money was not for him.
Two gentlemen were escorted in. One was tall, pale, with receding hair cut to a stubble. The other was a small stooped, gnomish man with wire-rimmed glasses and a thick white beard. The small man was carrying a briefcase.
“Yes. This is my associate, Mr. Vespers. Mr. Vespers, Mr. Anumi.”
“Pleased to meet you, Mr. Vespers.”
Mr. Vespers had a very smooth face; it certainly did not look as though it had been lined by too many smiles. He did not attempt one now. “Pleased to see you alive, Secretary Anumi. There have been…counteroffers. I feared for your life, as well as ours. Our price has gone up.”
“So you are negotiating for the both of you?”
Professor Chimes winced. “Mr. Vespers and I have become full partners in this venture.”
“Very well. I have anticipated the increase. I heard about your exploits.”
Mr. Vespers squinted at Anumi. “Word does get around.”
“Here is your money.”
Chimes gently placed his suitcase on the desk. “Here is your product.”
Vespers opened the briefcase of money, scanned the stacks of bills. “We of course have duplicate DNA kept with another associate. If we disappear or have any trouble leaving the country, it goes to some very interested parties who would like to produce the product on the Black Market.”
“It cannot be so easy to grow them?”
“Easier than you think.”
With that, the transaction was accomplished. Vespers and Chimes were excorted to the lobby, where eleven masked men carrying rifles were shooting a number of Ministry of Tourism Development security guards.