Chapter 157

It took several hours to fill everyone in on my day at the Ghetto, it was the only name I could think of for the place they took me. That is what it had looked and smelled like, and reminded me of.

I paid much closer attention to Marcy’s financial report, along with the projected expenditures for the new cars we had ordered; we were in great shape. In fact Marcy wanted to move faster on adding several new car rental sites.

I was thinking about the closed shopping center across the street and put it out there for discussion. If the building was in good shape and could be purchased for the right price it could be a good investment. We could do a little clean up and possibly lease out the shops – there were 15 of them – at a rate more competitive to the eastern shore for a long term investment.

The current owner had run the shopping center into the ground by trying to charge Washington DC rates in an area that was economically depressed with a shrinking economy.

The thing I had in mind was to use it as part of our expanding business base. We could fence in the parking lot to store new cars and the ones removed for service. The parking lot could easily hold more than 150 cars. Two of the stores in there were big open grocery stores. We could just clean them out and park the new cars inside while they were set up for our rental sites. MAAR used an independent GPS system that was installed on all its cars that had to be installed after purchase and removed at disposal.

The next possibility was to convert some of the store fronts to office space for ourselves and also to lease out to others. We had done the last expansion here without closing the gym or moving it. We could move the gym over there or the offices over there. I really liked both where they were together at one location.

The center was to be open for inspection on the day before the sale. We decided to have a commercial inspector look at it that day. Marcy was going to talk with Jenna to see what the best route to finance the property would be.

The next discussion was about the graduation festivities. Marcy, Lorrie, Ching Lee and Vicky as well as our four Administrators were all graduating a week from Friday. All of them had a couple final exams to take on Friday and Monday. Rebecca and Randy were coming back tomorrow, a day later than the initial plan.

Randy had been busy while he was Naples. All the rental houses were now completely furnished and were rented most of the time. Jeanna or one of her personal secretaries had made regular trips to oversee the furnishings. I suspected that Randy was getting plenty of pussy when they were there. On our video conferences they all looked very tired and Randy looked pussy whipped.

The final exams were just a technicality. They had all the credits locked in to graduate and the college work program was going to be expanded next year, it had been so successful. Of all of the students, a full 100% that had joined the program had permanent jobs in their field after graduation while the employment rate for the others was 30%.

Marcy had rented the large dining hall at the Inn for a graduation dinner for all my mates, our administrators and all their families that were making the trip to the shore. She had even invited the clerks, temp secretaries and staff from our office that we worked with.

Thursday morning when I logged into the computer at the college there was a message that I had an important meeting with the board at 10. “Here is the bad news,” I thought. They had a day to digest all the events of Tuesday, from the sideways turn at the demo to the over-appreciative speech by Dean Skaggs. On top of that I wondered what kind of investigation was still in the works with the FBI and HLS. Patti had not said anything about any communication or rumors coming out of HR.

I continued through the e-mails until 10. Then I walked over to the administration building. They were still in the meeting when I arrived. I worked on the house computer getting my work caught up that I missed yesterday. At 11 I was asked to come in to the meeting room.

The mood was upbeat and some of the board members were joking and laughing. I immediately felt a little better but there were people that would laugh and carry on at a mass murder scene so I wasn’t completely at ease. I had brought the final safety and security statistics for the college year in case the e-mail had been misleading.

Bob Jackson started the meeting off by asking how my day went yesterday.

“Do you mean the strip search? Or the one on one interview with the Gibbs clone on steroids? Or the joy of building more bombs with dozens of engineers and experts looking over your shoulder?” I replied. “But I would have to say watching the Laurel and Hardy fire department try to put the bus out again with 2 pound fire extinguishers was hilarious, heck it might be still burning.”

“Other than that it went OK,” I replied.

“We received quite a few responses on the conference comment cards. There were a few that were critical of the bus event. But most of them were positive, even eye opening I believe several of them said. Most of the comments remarked on how realistic you made the terrorists attack look.

There were lots of requests in the sessions yesterday wanting to know if we would permit you to do security audits of their colleges. After that little speech by Dean Skaggs there may be more involved, we suspect,” Mr. Jackson said. “My secretary is putting together a list of them for you.”

“Dean Skaggs was impressed with your choice for Security Director at Frost Borough and was pleased to meet her on Tuesday. Apparently she has very good qualifications for the post,” Mr. Jackson said.

“She had a two year degree in criminal studies before going to the police academy, finishing in the top 5% of her class. Then completed a series of courses on gang violence and drug trafficking and their effect on society. She worked everything from traffic to undercover,” I replied. “The interviews for the first 10 positions there are starting tomorrow. We have to have half of the staff on site June first, the rest of the staff on September 1st.”

“Looks like the girls have a lot of things to keep them busy,” he said.

“So busy that we are expanding the offices at the gym again and hiring more people,” I said. “It is their business and they are doing very good with it. I’m proud of all of them.”

“There was a rumor that you might be leaving,” he said.

“No truth to that one, I will be here a long time,” I replied. “Jenny and I intend to keep our day jobs. The security division is under my part of the business but we have enough division of authority in the business that any one of them can run it.”

“We have approved the addition to your budget for more full time manpower to your department next year and the expansion of armed security guards for the sports trips,” Mr. Jackson said. “That is all we wanted to hear – that you were staying and to find out how things went yesterday.”

Edit by Alfmeister

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