Various locations around the World
In some groups secrets, and the sharing of secrets, is the currency of inclusion. For the most relevant countries in the world, who you include in certain discussions says a lot about your friends and your potential enemies.
This time was different. This time, the secret was kept within the group. No one dared leak out the information on concerns about cataclysmic retaliation. No threat had been issued, but everyone knew it was a possibility. France, England, Germany, Spain, Brazil, Mexico, Australia, Japan, Canada, Netherlands, Israel, India, and Italy all received a special envoy from the United States.
He came in, he shared information. There was a requirement the meeting be on his plane, and he left. No information shared was left behind, and at most, three people were ever invited to be a part of the meeting.
Always the head of state, the head of foreign relations and often the true head of national security. Why anyone found it strange the person behind the power was actually asked instead of their figurehead always humored Jimmy. The U.S. knew who the power was, it was usually surprising to those Jimmy spoke with that the requested attendee’s had not been selected by the U.S. itself.
But rather, TQB Enterprises. Any reluctance by the nation to meet with Jimmy went out the window when that name was shared.
China itself could not hide the massive destruction in the western part of their country because it was still causing problems for them, even in the mostly uninhabited areas. One story was floating around that a small nomadic family had been trapped by the water run-off caused by the ice caps melting. The rising water had stranded the family on a small hill with the flood waters eating up the available ground quickly.
A few hours from drowning, the family was rescued when a floating TQB shipping container came down, and four people in military gear ushered them into the container. They helped both the humans and the livestock by transferring them to another area approximately thirty kilometers away. The TQB personnel did not speak Chinese, and none of the nomadic family spoke English, so there was no more communication between the two groups except for much hand waving and gesturing between them.
Jimmy suspected there were many more examples, but if there were, then no one had spoken about the events or the stories were actively being censored.
Twice, Jimmy had to explain the U.S. was doing this as a way to reduce the escalation of tension that had flared up after the short Chinese War. Not that China had admitted to any such war at all. China said the destruction in the portion of the Kunlun Shan Mountains was caused by a massive earthquake set off by unfortunate events due to research they had been testing.
While a few scientists had been wondering aloud on national television what research could possibly destroy so much land, those who had seen the spy satellite photos had no doubts there was no research responsible for the destruction.
Further, the U.S. had shared some very secret video of their own regarding two ships that were even now somewhere above them in space. That alone had most of those Jimmy visited concerned.
It didn’t take a mathematician to add up two space capable warships and the destruction of China and realize that pissing these people off was a universally bad idea. All it did was make those foreign heads of state wonder how to handle the relationship with TQB, and how to get on their good side so that they could learn the secrets for themselves.
Only the United States and Australia had quietly stopped their efforts to continue any of the clandestine efforts to learn more about the company.
The U.S. and Australia had enough information from the bases located in their lands to understand they could be pleasant neighbors, but very bad enemies.
Australia had sent a delegation out to the TQB base in the Outback after the missile attacks a few weeks back. The Australian Government representatives had been invited in to sit and talk in the TQB cafeteria. One of the leaders of Australian group, the General from the military, had been invited inside the operations room by TQB’s Operations Officer, Lance Reynolds.
Once the Australian General had come back from his meeting with Lance, he gently steered the conversations away any of the more outlandish conditions for TQB’s continued ability to base on their own land.
After the meeting was over and on their way back to the Nations Capital in Canberra, the General had shared what he had been shown in the room.
The video, Lance Reynolds had told him, had been the true explanation for the destruction of the Chinese mountains. Lance explained TQB was absolutely willing to have civil discussions, but pushing them around tended to upset the CEO, and aggressive military force would be returned in like manner.
Then, the General continued, the TQB representative turned to him and pursed his lips to point at the mountains after the destruction and say, “That was a warning. The six hundred special operations military people that were killed, planes downed and ships destroyed were in response to the seven deaths the Chinese accomplished. They tried more, including the attack on this base and the small wet navy we had at the time. Their missiles failed,” he nodded to the video screen, “her’s did not.”
Then, he paused for a moment, “He told me one more thing.” The General made sure he had all of their attention, “He said to make damn sure if we had any idea’s of attacking, there had better not be one child, born or unborn, killed or we could probably kiss a quarter of our military good-bye.”
The hard stare from the General put the final exclamation point on the warning.
It was but a few moments when Parry Paterson, one of the younger members of the Australian House of Representatives asked a question, “Why would we kill children?”
The General looked over to him, “Because some of those in power have been there a long time, and get greedy thinking they can grab what they want. I’m not saying we have any like that in our government,” the General heard a snort from beside him but ignored it, “but it was a message with two parts.”
“Really, I get the first one, don’t kill children, but what is the second?” Parry asked.
“The second,” the General replied, “is that they are watching everybody.”