Mar 26, 2012


While smaller than Isadora's, Goodwin's office was still substantial and impressive. Like hers, it had windows looking out over Boston, but it lacked the lounge area and personal bathroom. Also, unlike Isadora's office, there were three entrances rather than just the one. Goodwin sat behind his large mahogany desk as Isadora paced the room. Unlike Hank and Lena, Isadora had not been sent away for interrogation. Goodwin knew how dangerous his former boss could be, so he kept a pair of heavily-armed soldiers in the room with him.

Thanks to a team of dedicated technicians, command control of the Fujikawa Network had been rerouted. Power was back on to the Network, but the system refused to activate without the input of a password. Goodwin tried guessing it and some of the techs looked for ways to bypass it, but the security measures put in place held solid. Goodwin ordered Captain Mitchell and his wife to be interrogated. One of them knew the password and he was going to get it.

“You are such a fool, Peter,” Isadora said as she stopped her pacing. “You think I haven't planned for something like this?”

“Yes. What could you possibly do?” Goodwin grumbled. “Soon, the Fujikawa Network will be mine and then we start work on getting the world back to the way it was.”

Isadora scoffed, “It's because of people like you we can't get the world on its feet! We're crawling along because we're held down by something long gone. Peter, honestly, think about it. The world's changed, it's gone. It's been twenty-five years! We can't go back to the way thing's were, we have to move on.”

“Yes, I know that,” Goodwin said. “Step one to moving on is to consolidate control, to tighten an iron fist, and clear out the monsters. That's the first step. Then we need to bring order, to establish law. Then we can have a world controlled by order, by law-”

“You're talking about a dictatorship.”

“Yes, if that's what it takes, then that's what it takes. Your way isn't working.”

“Yes, it is, Peter. We have cities, safe havens, all around the world. It's a slow process, but we're rebuilding piece by piece. Humanity is evolving and adapting to the world around it. What you're trying to do is force that and it won't work. And, Peter, wipe out the monsters? There are billions of them against a few million of us! You and I know both know what a gross misappropriation of resources that-”

“It would be a slow process, yes, but we could do it. We could take back what is ours. Imagine seeing the world back to the way it was!”

“Peter, will you just listen to yourself?! There's, what, two or three million people in the world today? We can't possibly restore the world! We don't have enough people to populate the old world. Hell, we've barely populated Boston, let alone the other cities still standing. We need to let the world rebuild itself, to let this happen naturally! The zombie population has been decreasing, we've seen that and we know that problem is working itself out.”

“People are still out there dying,” Goodwin argued. “We need to get this under control.”

“The way you propose going about it is just going to get more killed and for nothing!”

“It's not for nothing!” Goodwin slammed his fist into the desk as he came to his feet. “I'm trying to rebuild the world!”

“What you're going to do is destroy it!” Isadora refused to back down. “Bloody hell, when I hired you, I had no idea you could possibly this egomaniacally stupid! Peter, just listen to-”

“Enough!” Goodwin snapped. “There is nothing, nothing you can do about it now. Steelewood is mine and soon, so will the Fujikawa Network.”

Isadora grit her teeth.

Goodwin pressed the intercom button, “Have you got the password yet?”

After a moment, a man with a slight German accent answered, “No, not yet. I need time.”

“I don't,” Goodwin snarled. “Bring the prisoners in here.” He released the intercom button. “Let's see how your friends respond to me!”

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