50% Being A Greengrocer during the last 90 days of the Apocalypse / Chapter 5: A Short Ride Home (Part 3)

Read Being A Greengrocer during the last 90 days of the Apocalypse - Chapter 5 online

Chapter 5: A Short Ride Home (Part 3)

"Let's try this again," Simon said, "I won't rush through the information, and you're not going to snap at me. Okay?"

Yeung-Sung took his eyes off the monitor and looked to him. He tried to discern whether he should agree or not from Simon's face. Rather than being shadowed, now it almost seemed to glow, and it wasn't just his sweat. Yeung looked out the window again, making up his mind. There was nothing, nothing but black out there. It might as well have been a backdrop. He went back to Simon, sighing. "Sure"

"Great." His pockets jingled with happiness as he took his hands out and began weaving them about as he talked. It helped.

"Since we lost money, it became difficult to do several things: Figure out the exact worth, or in other words, a fair price of goods; Track how much wealth an individual has; Prove who owned what; Who owed what, or how much; debtors and the people in debt alike could lie to each other endlessly, because how could you prove anything, really, beyond a shadow of a doubt?"

He paused with purpose, resting his hands on his lap. "Do you follow me so far?"

Yeung-Sung nodded. "Yes. I know this already."

Simon continued, "Of course, you could always barter, or take things by force," his hands were active again, swiping about, "and because 'you're the government', not much will get in your way, but that leads to, ehh- "

"My life for the past couple years," finished Yeung-Sung. "Yes. I know. So what is your company's plan to fix this?"

Simon wagged his index finger playfully, nearly tickling his nose, and corrected him, "Jordan's plan, actually, is to restart, first of all. Place everyone on the same level. We use our resources, -which are pretty much endless at this point- to establish widespread social policies, enforcing a minimum standard of living for everyone. Food-clothes-accommodation, enough for you to survive on but not enough to be comfortable with, incentivising you to want to move on to better things. It's quite clever, really."

"What, everyone?" Yeung-Sung asked, still focusing on the first of the revelations, "Can you really do that? You say it like it's nothing. Like you can just," he almost snapped his fingers, but stopped.

"Well, yes." He stared at Yeung-Sung as if he didn't understand how why he couldn't believe him. No, that's exactly the way he stared. It was a blinding look. He fully believed in this dream. Yeung-Sung winced and blinked his eyes, trying to look away, to stop them drying out. He has had his pride hurt before, but never has someone else's pride hurt him.

"At the start, it'll be a web to the majority, the masses who have been left to the mercy of the government," Simon explained further, "The high and mighty are hardly going to hoist themselves out of their mansions to live with the rest, so we won't force them. It is their property."

He laughed, and looked up menacingly, as if speaking to the future. "Not much point, I'll be honest. They'll have no valid currency to fall back on anyway, and it's not like they will retain much influence once the new system takes hold anyway. They'll have to let them go and join the rest of the world." He made a clown's frown.

Yeung- Sung barely noticed, trying to comprehend and catch up in the conversation. "So, this economy… it is something that is built on top of this social system, then?"

"Precisely! We got there in the end, haha!" Simon clapped his hands together. He was getting a bit too excited.

"Jordan, when he envisioned the system, his goal was to change the way money functions at a conceptual level. He wanted it not to represent value, but actually be something that inherits value."

He produced a banana and was starting to peel it. Yeung-Sung almost didn't notice.

"Our old money was just numbers. They initially represented real wealth, but after a while became something backed by faith in your country and kept in check by political handshakes."

"You want some?" He offered the banana to Yeung-Sung. He didn't want any. Simon took a bite, shrugging, but his momentum was hardly affected,

"Of cour-sh I'm gros-shly overshimplifying things," he paused to swallow, then continued, "But anyway, we came up with an innovation over the traditional cryptocurrency model,".

He took another bite, but wasn't finished, "To acc-ch-ount for di-sht-ribution based on me-gh-rit".

"Wait a minute," Yeung-Sung set aside his disgust to focus on something, "is that what this is? Cryptocurrency? Seriously"

He groaned, sitting tense in his seat and crossed his arms. Simon had almost had him believe that he was going to be part of something big, something worthwhile. You really are an idiot.

"How is that better?" he yelled out. "I would argue that it's even less of a real currency. At least you could hold old money, carry it around."

His headache was back, only worse. Yeung-Sung tried to squeeze it out, crunching his hair with his hands like he was trying to take the wrapper off a sweet. "How would you buy or sell it without another money system already in place? Do you people think about anything at all?"

Again, people with too much power used it to abuse. These people just want to be a new, overwhelming government.

Simon placed a hand on his shoulder. He patted him softly until Yeung-Sung looked back up, with his face blotched, his cheeks flushing dark red and his eyes burnt out husks. The banana had disappeared, and Simons was handing out a new phone.

He simply said, "I'll show you".

He asked for his SIM. Yeung pelted his folder into the seat in front, to Simon's left. After a little rummage, Simon brought out an unlocking key. He placed the phone in Yeung-Sung's hand, told him to keep it steady as he fiddled about and popped open the SIM latch.

Yeung-Sung didn't resist. He was unable to think, to say anything in anger. He had lost any urge to complain, to try and leave. He was neither pet nor prisoner. He was both. All he was able to do was mindlessly stare at this unknown phone that was in his hand.

It didn't look like much, only some off-brand smartphone. Chinese made, most likely. It was a sleek industrial grey, not quite as big as Samsung's and a little curvier than any others. Simon turned it over in his hand and Yeung-Sung noticed three silver initials; GLI, embossed under the camera. He felt it shake- it must have turned on- and so he flipped it back.

His new phone loaded up immediately, opening up with his fingerprint and had only one app on the home screen, sitting above the basic clock; browser; settings sidebar. Airgead. Its emblem was three stacks of cartoon-yellow coins.

Simon tapped on it for him.

"He made it a game".

SleepyRus SleepyRus

Hope you're enjoying the project so far! Apologies for being a little late too upload, I've been working extra hours recently and felt exhausted.

Appreciate any feedback or reviews!

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