Two

I woke up the next day feeling exhausted like I spent the entire day at the gym. I turned around to face my clock when the American flag was waving from the wall. God damn it! I pushed the intercom.

"Mr. Smith!" I shouted.

"Master Alderige, sir." 

"My room. Now."

I heard the knob turning, showing a worried old man. He's like my second grandfather here. My mom and dad are on their retirement vacation somewhere around the world and as the only child to the family, I inherited everything including the fucking family problems. Mr. Smith has been with the family for as long as I can remember.

"Is there anything you need, sir?" I groaned at him, pointed the flag at his upper area waving ominously.

"Remove that cursed thing." 

He looked at me like I've grown another head.

"The flag of the United States of America, sir?" He clarified like what I just said was pretty stupid. It was. But that flag is ruining my morning.

"Yes. Burned it. Throw it. I don't care. I don't want to see it." 

"That's quite offensive considering you are American yourself, Master Vincent." 

I snapped back at him with a visible frown and disgust this time. I don't care what it implies if I get rid of it. It's reminding me of what happened yesterday.

"Just do it, Mr. Smith." I coldly ordered.

He summoned two more men since he could not manage to carry a portable ladder and climb it himself. The two men glanced at me oddly why of all the things I have in my room the flag is what I chose to remove.

"I'm planning to change my nationality." I mumbled.

"And what do you have in mind as replacement, sir?" I can really feel his sarcasm. Mr. Smith has this talent of pissing me off.

"I want to be a Roman. I read the history of Julius Caesar last night. Very remarkable man." I answered in sarcasm too. 

"What an impeccable choice of role model." Mr. Smith countered. I heard the two men suppressed a chuckle.

I removed the blanket from my face. Glared at the three insolence in front of me.

"If you are done. You may leave." 

Mr. Smith left with an amuse expression on his face. I knew it. That old man is always trying to piss me off. I knew he deliberately misplaced my suit. 

"Don't give me that smile, Mr. Smith!" I shouted before he closed the door.

I received a call from my secretary regarding my engagements for the entire day and I never felt so tired. I want to call my parents and tell them to let my cousins take over the company. Good heavens, Alderige Corporation is so hard to handle. Why are we even this rich? 

The shower improved my mood, thankfully. I can now manage to smile a bit whenever I come across the house staff. Just when I thought I'm having a nice start, Mr. Smith put the flag from my room to the flower vase in the dining area.

"Oh, I'm sorry, master Vincent. I completely forgot you're quite sensitive with this kind of, materials." I can sense the amusement on his voice. I'm calling my dad if I can fire this old man.

"How thoughtful of you, Mr. Smith." 

The staff served me breakfast with my daily newspaper. The headline worsen my mood. They are all still not over with US and Mexico dispute. How frustrating.

"You should stop reading newspaper in the morning, sir. It can ruin your fresh morning start." Mr. Smith suggested beside me. I quite agree because I feel very terrible after I folded the paper. 

The morning rush was epic as always. The students hurrying not to be late. Employees crossing the streets. Dirty politicians entering a familiar building. Probably working on their next elections leeching on some rich businessmen. 

My car entered a very secure area. The driver was asked to lower his side. He pointed me as his key card so I lowered mine. The officer looked at me.

"Good morning, sir. May I see your pass? You are not in the appointment lists." 

"I'm sorry, officer. I don't have a pass. I'm here to pay a visit." I chirped.

"To the president?" He looked like he heard a stupid noise or something.

"Yes. I have a direct line to him if you're having doubt. I promised I won't be that long." I assured him.

After a long a silence and an exchange of weird looks with his colleagues and spoke a few times on their mouthpiece, they let me in. I waved at them and we parked in front. I really don't like the president personally but our family have supported his candidacy so here we are collecting the bargain.

Luckily, he is at the groundfloor so I don't have to climb and headbang the security details. He recognized me at the first glance. Good. A smile formed on his lips. 

The security was about to wave me off when the president stopped and motioned them to stand somewhere. I formed my business dealings facade.

"Mr. Alderige. What a surprise?" He seems glad to see me. I wished I could reciprocate.

"I'm very sorry for this unannounced visit, Mr. President, but I need to discuss with you a few things." 

"That sounds important. Would you like to have some tea first?" He offered. 

"That won't be necessary. This will be quick." 

We walked beside the building turning to the west wing. Our family has been a Democrat since I can remember and we supported this man financially and morally. To put it clearly, he owes us a lot.

"What would you like to discuss, Mr. Alderige? Is this about the incident involving the Alderige Corporation?" I had to commend his bluntness.

"Yes. Since I don't have a choice but to manage things personally, I would like this mission on my terms. I get you what you want but do as I want." 

He stopped his tracks and faced me. 

"I have to admit, you really do sound like your father. Why would you want that, Mr. Alderige?" 

"The military plans are always at best, I always knew that. But I cannot risk this one. Don Juan doesn't know my link to the government and the moment he will get the light of that, everything will crumble to us. Our company has stood for generations and I would like to keep it for the next one." 

He licked his lips while contemplating my request. A very simple request actually compared to the favors we have done for him just to put him where he is. 

"If that's what you want. I will inform the general. But you will still have military escorts to that mission."

"On my own choosen men, in the military." I emphasized. 

"That sounds logical. Agreed."

"Thank you, Mr. President."

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