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How Morgan stole Planetfall Day

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  • How Morgan stole Planetfall Day

    Nwabudike Morgan was unhappy. Sitting in his spacious office he had just read all of the data of his current earnings. In almost every market, Morgan Industries was leading. The Morgan Faction was raking in energy credits at an incredible rate. Enough to fund the building of several new bases. That should be making Morgan happen. But there was one markert in which Morgan Industries was not leading in....and in fact, falling into a long second....spirits.

    Although mankind had made startling advancements since planetfall, spirits were a commodity that was not readily available. There was of course, fungal gin, fungal wine, even fungal ales made from the native xenofungus of planet. But the process was time consuming and costly. Morgan had his researchers working hard to create new flavors and to make it cheaper but still taste good. But he couldn’t hope to match the quality and price of Brother Lal’s Specail Fungal Gin.

    Lal! Sitting at his desk, Morgan slammed his fist on the polished Planet Oak surface. Lal’s peacekeeper faction had devised a formaula for Fungal Gin of high quality that defied anaylasis. Lal was keeping the secret. Even Morganite Elite Probe teams had failed to steal the formula. And morgan knew that Lal was laughing about it. The Peacekeepers were making a fortune selling the stuff to every faction on planet and threatening Morgan’s ultimate goal of Economic domination. Granted, realizing that goal was centuries off, but if Lal continued to outsell him in this market as the population grew larger on planet...Morgan may not live to see his dream come to fruition even with the Longevity treatments! To make matter worse, a planetwide celebration was coming in a little more than a solar month.

    For once, it seemed all of the Factions were living in relative peace. The Faction Leaders all agreed on a holiday...Planetfall Day...to be initiated. Marking the anniversary of the human arrival on Planet every citizen in every faction was anticipating this day of celebration and partying. People were buying Planetfall Presents for each other, selling Planetfall Cards and singing Planetfall Carols. Even the warlike spartans were telling their children that on Planetfall day Santiago Clause would bring the presents to put around their Planet Trees! Hell, Morgan entertainment was preparing a special holovid called ‘Morgan’s Dreams’, loosely based on a story from the datalinks about a man named Scrooge. This special was to run on Planetfall Day along with Morgan’s biggest planetday moneymaker...the old Earth movie special! Morgan Entertainment had transferred several hours of old earth movie classics to Holo-video and the expectation was that it would be a smash success. Nothing on Planetfall Day would make more money, except for Brother Lal’s Special Fungal Gin.

    Morgan stood and slowly walked over to his private bar. On it he surveyed the bottles of gin, whiskey and wines. Some of it was Morgan’s own brand, but most of it was Brother’s Lals. Wanting a drink, Morgan opted for Lal’s fungal gin. He may be upset that Lal was outselling him, but he had to admit his alchohol was better. As Morgan picked up a glass, his door chimed. A voice came over the speaker, that of his secretary.

    “Mister Morgan, Stu Golonsky is hear to see you now.” the secretary announced.

    “Send him in.” Morgan sighed. “Damn it.” He thought. “I forgot I told Golonsky i’d speak with him today. I may as well get it over with so I can have some peace for the rest of the afternnon.”

    Stu Golonsky walked in the door. He was a young man with a huge head of reddiash blond hair and a giant smile. Currently he was working as a market analyst. Golonsky was a good businessman. He was intelligent, well educated and determined. But he was also highly energetic and excirtable. Everything seemed to be a game for him and his constant peppiness grated on Morgan’s nerves. Morgan liked him...he just didn’t like to be around him for more than ten minutes at a time. Golonsky could never sit still....he was always in motion with a high degree of enthusiasm that made Morgan want to have him nerve stapled.

    “Stu...what can I do for you?” Morgan turned and greeted the young man. “Would you like to join me in a glass of Lal’s fungal gin?”

    “Mr. Morgan, good to see you...are you sure theres enough room in the glass for both of us? Hahahaha! Golonsky joked, shaking Morgan’s hand.

    Morgan forced a chuckle. He got the joke, he just didn’t think it was funny. But he tried to put on a facade, as not to hurt Golonsky’s feelings. Then he noticed that Golonsky had something behind his back.

    “What is you’re hiding, Stu?” Morgan asked.

    “Your Planetfall day present. Close your eyes and hold out that glass, sir.” Golonsky said, with a toothy grin. “Please.”

    “Oh, God, not a Planetfall day present.” Morgan thought. He knew Golonsky idolized him, but he didn’t want him buying gifts. Morgan complied, if only to hurry up and get Golonsky out of his office. He could feel Golonsky pouring something in the glass, and so he peeked.

    Golonsky was pouring a golden liquid into the glass Morgan was holding. It bubbled up a little bit and a big white foamy head formed on top and dripped over the edge of the glass. And the smell...Morgan hadn’t smelt that smell since before they all left Earth, long, long time ago.

    “Is it?”..Morgan began, and then took a sip. Dear lord, he thought...it is...BEER!

    “HOW!?” Morgan asked. No one could make beer...EARTH beer on Planet. Though the colonists had achieved great things in farming techniques the needed materials just weren’t available in large enough quantities. Oh, there was Fungal Ale, and it was the chosen drink for Drones. It was pink, had no head and tasted rather awful. But it got the Drones drunk and helped keep them from rioting too much. But this was honest-to-God beer in Morgan’s glass and it was the best beer he had ever tasted. Morgan thought for a moment that maybe it was becasue he hadn’t tasted a beer in two centuries...but then he decided “No...this is some damn good beer!”

    “Sir, you won’t believe this!” Golonsky began, “I was helping my buddy, Pete Keole over at Morgan Entertainment...you see he was archiving some of the shows for our planetfall day special...well, we started talking about Fungal Ale and how bad it was...so Pete says, its too bad we don’t have real beer, like the stuff we read about in the datalinks...seems it was real popular on Old Earth....so I get an idea. I call up another friend of mine, Rosa...she’s gaian and lives over at the Flower’s Preach base...and ask her if she can manage to scrape together the ingredients for old earth style beer....”

    “Yes, Yes,” Morgan said impatientently. “And?”

    “Well, Rosa only wanted a free few hours at Morgan entertainments Rec Commons...so I send her a free ticket voucher and she ships over a boatload of barley and hops and stuff. It seems the Gaians had most of the seedlings and plants from the Unity when thet landed on Planet. Only they don’t know how to make beer, or they weren’t interested in trying....so Pete and I went over to Morgan Metagenics and hired some drones to build us a hydropnic garden and some brewery equipment in one of the lower levels...huge space, all unused. We got the specs from a buddy at University Base...you might nknow him....Herb something or other....he’s the guy that runs Zakharov’s terminal maintenance teams there and he sends us...

    “Golonsky!” Morgan gritted through his teeth. He didn’t need every single detail of all of Golonsky’s friends.

    “Oh, sorry, sir.” Golonsky stammered. “ Well, Herb sends us info on some old company called Hofbrau and another company called Anheiser Busch...with that we made the kegs and stuff....then we got a break...using some technology that Herb snuck out of Zak’s labs, we used a photon light accelerator to speed up the brewing process...we got the stuff to ferment a whole six months worth in three days...and now, viola.”

    “Incredible!” Morgan said, truly impressed. How much of this did you make?”

    “Sir, we have enough now to get this entire faction smashed. We can make enough of this stuff in a week to ship all over planet. The guys at Morgan Metagenics sent over some botanists and they used a variation of the Longevity Vaccine to speed up the plant growth on the needed materials. We can honestly continuosly supply the barley, hops, yeast and materials to brew this beer. To make it even better, the cost is dirt cheap. Think about it...Pete and I made this batch out of our own pockets...if Morgan Industries threw a few energy credits in we could market this stuff for a pittance...about 10 percent the cost of Fungal Ale.”

    Morgan smiled. He gulped the glass of beer down in one motion and put his arm around golonsky. “Stu, how would you like an office with a window? Now, get together a marketing staff....I have an idea...”

    A month later, Planetfall day was rapidly approaching. Brother Lal reclined in his private quarters nursing a huge glass of his special fungal gin. He was going to shame Morgan out of existance. He knew that Morgan was extremely jealous of his special gin. Lal also knew that with the energy credits made from all of the orders of his fungal gin for planet day he’d have twice as many energy reserves as Morgan. Lal didn’t care about the money too much, but humiliating Morgan...oh, he could taste it.

    Just then his personal butler entered.

    “A gift for you sir, from Morgan.” The butler said, handing Lal a sdmall box.

    Lal opened it and pulled out a cannister. The can was golden with a picture of Morgan on it. In the picture Morgan was holding an oldstyle beer stien, like those from old europe. Ornate letters on the can spelled out the name “Morgan Brau”.

    “What is this?” Lal asked.

    “Sir, perhaps you should see this.” The butler picked up Lal’s remote from a nearby table and turned on the Datalinks Netwatch video Service. A holographic commercial was airing right now, and in it there were vignettes of drones, common citizens and the elite talents, all of them partying and drinking a golden frothy liquid. Over it, there was a plesent jingle:

    “Heres to good friends
    Tonight is kind of special
    The beer we’ll pour, must be something more, somehow...
    So tonight let it be Morgan Brau...”

    “Morgan Brau...Planet’s best beer...on sale now for your Planetfall day parties!”

    Lal looked at the can then at the butler and then at the vid.

    Deflated, he sighed. “He did it to me again.”
    "I know nobody likes me...why do we have to have Valentines Day to emphasize it?"- Charlie Brown

  • #2
    My favorite short story

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