General No Man’s Land – AWidgetIHaveNot – Medium
Posted on October 04 2018
Our favourite lycanthropy lopper is today off to meet a veritable roundtable of bizarreness. Imagine the scene where we have many figments, usually those clothing themselves in shadows as they await the fall of man. Now, it just so happens that Little Red is a member of one of the many secret organisations that exist to combat the remaining noxious ghouls. Every few centuries these must join against a common enemy, before an antebellum of sorts. The shadows that walk in the world must not and cannot combine forces to destroy their common enemy. Because of the structure of these societies, these secret societies, they were by nature resentful of combining, even against their mutual enemy. In essence, these were separate species that mildly resisted humanity and agitated for their own benefit, they all wanted the maintenance of their own kin. And isn’t this human nature? There exists an algorithm internal to every creature that sorts for best survival matches and relates to the love of tribe as well as hatred of the enemy. We are all passionately partisan by nature. If you read Lord Byron’s Child Harolde you will find that love does not make amends for the distress caused by being an outsider.
Everyone is an outsider to someone. We Imagine that we are not in group blind, but this itself is blindness of epic proportions. It just so happens that we frame our minds in such a way that we favour those like us, an evolutionary bias, a sensible one but dangerous. Imagine how many wars would have been prevented if we didn’t otherise the nature of groups but saw them instead as merely a collection of individuals like ourselves. Wouldn’t this help us to form common views and recognise the faults of others are also that of ourselves? This was indeed a tragic part of nature in that even though our brains are neocomplex we cannot separate the minute differences between peoples and cultures successfully. If you imagine that of all things meta to humanity, it is the fact that we are all consistently human yet the most important thing about our understanding, at least for now, is that we are universally spiteful to each other. We may grow wise within on an individual basis yet on the Gestalt level we remain bound to the certainty of self-value and propagation, nothing is more important than our progeny. It’s observable that this matrix swathes across all life no matter how advanced. We may sacrifice for our own, but do little for the outgroup, hence the resistance to tackling global problems, some must suffer for all to profit in the long term. We cannot put aside short-termism for long-term gain, on a worldwide scale we are just not wired for it. Our base creature masters us. The vampires and werewolves are no different in their nature and resist equally the proposed combined force. Even within the military, a most unified force, in defence of the country, the nation-state, there are still factions within. They are trained to love the country and to loathe enemy yet even love of state doesn’t entirely squash intersectional service rivalry. The heuristics that run our minds are inferior to those of our nonhuman apex predators, and they find service to us and global values tasteless in the extreme. They see the need yet it is a bitter pill.
He banged the table and spoke with gravitas. The General was notionally in charge by rank despite being a virtual subhuman relative to those in the room who were giving him authority by dint of politeness.
“It has come to my attention, to all our attention, that there is a rising in the population of werewolves and it has exploded for some unexplainable reason. We are gathered here to chart a course how best to counter this advance since we are all prey to them.”
At this, the vampires in the room bridled silently. They weren’t preyed upon, but for reasons of security the General had not been briefed on their nature, he’d only just been made aware of werewolves, and his head was spinning. He was uncertain how to combat a creature who was quite plainly, from the videos he’d seen, impossible for even the most hardened combat soldier to kill. He looked at Little Red and was very respectful of her abilities. She was one tough cookie. What he would be doing straight after this meeting was going to his superiors, provided that it was classified to do so, and would seek the magical potions she was taking to benefit his troops. What he didn’t know of course was that they did not work on men, which meant that he would be subverting the military and that of the entire global army, one based on patriarchy and tilting it toward that of matriarchy. Little Red knew this, and she just didn’t think he was ready for the change. Once the forces were in possession of troops vastly superior in strength and resilience there’d be no going back, men would lose their dominance in that particular domain, a hierarchy based purely on peak strength. There is no single sport or event where women outcompete men on the physical plane, they weren’t quite ready for being back roomed in favour of women.
The General’s lobster brain was tweaking and twitching, he’d seen some bum intelligence in the past, and this brief seemed like some really mard notes. He was certain that it was a conspiracy by some anarchistic communist social justice warriors bent on destroying his precious patriarchy. One thing he suspected was that the video he’d seen was CGI. He could not relate at all what he’d seen on tape with human ability. He simply had no reference for it in his database. He knew there were people in positions of power, angling for his, and not beneath a frame-up job. To him, it bore all the hallmarks of the intelligence services. So he was very conservative, careful, with the information he received and took none of it as truth. The reason being was that he had lived through times when he’d seen plants positioned covertly to gather intelligence to bring down an organisation from within. Such covert operations were far from rare, as most people would guess if they even remotely observed the machinations of political life. The military was simply an extension of politics with overt force, the happy end as it cuts your throat, that’s what the military was used for now and historically. Geopolitical power always had to be at the end of the barrel in the same way taxation had to be a protection racket. The thing with being a General is that it gives you a scope of dynamic periods in history which in turn keys you to identify certain patterns. After the study of thousands and thousands of battle planning scenarios, you begin to see flaws not only in the individual battles but also in the political powers behind them. Failures in the leadership of nations can result in the defeat of even the most skilled army. He remembered reading a book by a historian named Will Durant who observed macro patterns and micro patterns. From within a period of history, the macro patterns do not seem at all obvious, revolutions seem to come from nowhere yet in retrospect this is not the case, causation can always be attributed. We look through the perverse lens of history and say to ourselves, that was obvious. But was it really? If it is so why do governments react so slowly or not at all when their primacy is threatened? Or make gross strategic errors? Power can crush dissent for some time, but subtle bubbles of uprising populate undercurrents which eventually drown the Emperor naked in the undertow of time. Overt political power was a dirty game with low rewards because you are always subject to greater forces of the economy. A Prime Minister can be ruined by a lousy economy and his legacy with it. He’d seen too that many military men become a victim of political manoeuvring, a sacrificial lamb. Well, one thing was for sure, there’s no way he would be a sacrificial lamb, bloody not on his life. So he watched Little Red with all the acuity he could muster and did not believe a word she said. How could he? Bloody werewolves, what a crock of shit. He was thinking about how he’d been chosen for this role or more precisely who had chosen him for the job. It was certainly a one that had no backend to it so he was working on the assumption that he would be out before his pension, or in jail, directly after this job was finished. He was a public servant meaning the obligation to continue despite his misgivings. In a way, this was far easier than being in the field getting shot at but as every soldier knows to be desk jockey brings no pleasure. Sitting looking at the odd crew collected around the octagon table, he admired the imperial majesty of the luminous ones. He felt tired all of a sudden. He had done his service to the army and for the most part well. He’d enjoyed combat very much the camaraderie was deeply bonding. But lately, he felt used by politicians he’d neither seen or heard from directly. This last job was merely one such example in a long line of what seemed to him pointless postings. He preferred being a hammer than a scalpel. He’d been trained of course as a high-level diplomat yet never felt comfortable. He admired British officers because they fought alongside the men whereas many in his country grew more and more remote from combat as they were promoted. Of course, all Generals were tough, they had to be, but he’d seen British Generals chain-smoking and eating from mess tins around the campfire and sharing with the men. This is what he missed. As with the Romans, a secondment to the British Isles was known as a raw deal. He missed America with all its flaws and really couldn’t wait to get out of the UK with its constant rain. He imagined that maybe he would grow used to it and even like the greenery, but he preferred desert, he was a Phoenix child and had spent his life at Fort Bragg. Since he’d been in the UK he hadn’t once seen the horizon, he felt claustrophobic as if in a submarine, everything was small, narrow-minded and lacking in opportunity. These miseries passed from generation to generation with a nonchalance that was alarming. But was America really better? He’d seen figures that indicated it was actually worse regarding social mobility, though he was not fully able to escape brainwashing. America was the best country in the world, wasn’t it? The actual data collected by statisticians and the world health organisation must be in some way corrupt. He understood the US ranked poorly on many measures of importance but didn’t believe. As a member of the forces, he’d been around the world and seen many things but always isolated from the truth by being on military bases with their discounted beer and fast food joints. What he’d seen was filtered by a comfort blanket. The true charge of life in countries he’d been to was never wholly apparent to him. The truth was that he looked upon civilians as lower than the lowest ranked soldier. What he saw when outside of base was chaos to a level that he could hardly bear. The military had inculcated into him an alarming work ethic of unusual nature, and he simply could not understand the slack-jawed peasantry who bumbled through life directionless. Of course, he understood the military had frameworks and structures and rules derived from necessity that were designed to save lives, people did what they were told. To him, this was a superb model for life and produced the finest men who had encoded within their core principles lacking in civilian life. He imagined that there was also a large vacuum in civilians lives and he could not understand how that would feel so long as he entrenched within the paradigms of obedience. In this way he supposed he was no different to a cult member, do as you’re told or be frozen out. The difference was that he served a wider purpose in that the agreement between the state as his employer and him was that he would defend it with his life if necessary, he drunk the Kool-Aid. From every grunt upwards in rank, they’d all drunk the Kool-Aid, and there was an implicit array of reverence for service in America, unlike in other countries. He could not imagine what it was like to be in the forces in America during the Vietnam era when they were fighting the evils of communism. Those returning from war with their shattered limbs and minds were vilified. To him, this was a terrible disgrace, a stain on America. Soldiers go where they are told to go and do what they are told to do, politicians should be the point of ire, not those whose boots were on the ground. He looked around the room at those present, and there was an obvious spook, a man in a beige trench coat with a Thomson and Thompson moustache. What was his role here? Was he to report on the conduct of the General? Possibly. In that case, he had to be even more careful the fictions herein presented were handled with care, the chain of command was unclear whenever spooks were present in the room.
“So it is clear that whatever threat we are dealing with now has grown not only in this country but also in America and as you may well be aware we have more open prairie space than here. There is an exponential factor we have to consider at the moment in that we do not yet know the scale of the problem. Does anyone have any idea how we might measure this potential catastrophe, we cannot really know what numbers we are dealing with, can we?
At this, the spook stood up and spoke,
“We have been liaising with certain parties,” he gestured to the pallid individual in the corner, “and it is understood the numbers are not insignificant nor is the threat. We may be talking in the thousands rather than the hundreds.”
Little Red stood up to speak, “this is highly irregular why have my organisation not been made aware of this?”
The General looked at the spook as if to say, well?
Thompson shifted and spoke in a cut glass clipped military accent,
“We are making you aware now.”
As if this was in itself sufficient.
This angered Little Red, it was inferred between the secret services that their organisation was so critical no information be withheld.
The moustache said, barely moving his mouth as he did so, “you must know that we only give you the information that we think you need at the time. No need to cause a panic unless at the time of our choosing.”
Little Red could barely contain herself, they both knew the threat they faced and the difficulty of retaining it. She was doing her best with the information provided.
The General was updating his mental model of what was going on and adjusting the paradigms under which he was operating. He was beginning to believe that the government was under some sort of pressure or would be soon and was attempting a diversion. It was evident that the media would whip up a frenzy if cats and dogs were found to be torn apart or mutilated, hence the reason why they’d let the population of werewolves run wild. It wasn’t precisely the familiar scare story, but it was likely to be effective. He wondered how bad the trouble was coming online if what was once hidden was exposed. He could not discount the seriousness of the problem in that case. Then it dawned on him, as it had to Little Red very quickly, the reason why the carelessness. The General had noticed a steep rise in his investments due to an increase in his silver holdings. The global spot price of silver had increased by 1000% making him a reasonably wealthy man. There had been a knock-on effect that developed countries were trying to overthrow governments in areas where there were silver mines to acquire the rights by causing defaults. Governments lend money to states to increase leverage over that country’s resources. If you can call in 90% of the debt that country owes and cause it a pariah status for decades you have almost entire political control over it. Western governments were trying to destabilise the developing world to profit. Being fully aware of this both Little Red and General now were able to view the werewolf crisis as a global conspiracy. The prices rise causing a shortage of silver bullets which in turn means a reduction in werewolf population control which results in savage attacks and media coverage with which to bury bad news, the bad news is that politicos and their ilk were making it rain private jets and Ferraris. For themselves. Ever wonder what those people who park their yachts in Monaco do for a living? Probably very little as it turns out, they developed wealth utilising skilled business advisers to leverage existing assets and resources to their maximum benefit. If you owe £200,000 the bank owns you but if you only £200 million they will negotiate rather than pull the plug on such a large sum. So smart businessman always find a way to hire individuals who are highly skilled. As with anything all qualities rise as prices increase meaning if you can afford an accountant or lawyer who charges £600 an hour the advice you receive will be exponentially superior to that of the low-priced less skilled individual. The difficulty is earning enough money to arrive at the point where you are able to network in this fashion. Your network is your net worth, so they say, and it’s proved right time and time again. A good adviser will save you far more than his retainer or hourly fee; however, his charges will be such that your income or assets need to reach a certain level before it’s worthwhile paying them. If you are earning £50 an hour, it is not worth rewarding £500 an hour. There is a rule, a very wise rule that states a person should always hire people more intelligent than them. The strategy is to engage people at a slightly higher fee than you can afford because this is iterative in that you can compound your investments or yield from your mentors.
Both Little Red and the General knew this, of course, it was merely an intelligent use of resources. The highest trap of all is one where a person has insufficient funds to leverage their time in this manner. Bizarrely many countries forbid testing job candidates for IQ, odd given that IQ is a predictor of success, all things being equal.
So if this was indeed a conspiracy of epic proportions and the global elite were using their privilege to increase their power once again that explained why she, and the economically powerless, felt massively aggrieved. And why wouldn’t she? She was subject to the whims of the economy the same as everyone else, and her personal inflation was enormous due to the amount of meat consumed to fuel her to terrific metabolism. The issue was that she was the one expected to deal with blood and gore and now was informed that her work rate would have to increase. She had already spoken to her grey watches in their towers, and they told her they would not pay piecework. She was a natural grafter and enjoyed her job, but a person needs monetary motivation. The corporate Goliaths expect their minions to work for no reward hence the rise of Patreon on YouTube. Ad revenue has tanked. All business models have their time. There is a tendency, and this happens a great deal, for corporations to build market share by good payment structures or good products and then once they’ve got sufficient market share to reduce partners profits, a variation of monopoly or state capture. It is nearly impossible to compete against a monopoly once up. The only hope is to squeeze into a tiny gap forgotten by the giant.
Our heroine was looking forward to the forthcoming action. It’s what she lived for, and Little Red was pissed off that all this time she’d not been told that there was an increase in lycanthropy.
“So what’s the plan?” She asked the General. You’re nominally in charge and liaising here on behalf of the greatest combat powerful country in the world. We both share the same problems now so does that mean you will be in on the action? Pearl Harbor all over again?”
The General sighed. Everyone criticised America for being proactive in war yet the one time they were lazy due to internal political reasons they will never live it down. The reality was that the world was not carrying the weight it should be, leaving America to pick up the pieces of every war overlooked or allowed to happen by the weakness of policy. It was right of course that America always acted in its best interests and like all countries aimed to use minimum resources to effectively police the world. This generated much criticism due to the perception that America either did too much or too little and picked fights that were easy to win which of course was nonsense. The US had entered wars when it was evident that lessons of history had not been learned. Afghanistan? Come on, they beat the British and the Soviet Union. The General had been openly critical of the fact that recent wars had no end goal in sight, he had told the president,
“Fighting in Afghanistan will be like fighting smoke.”
He’d told the President to remember what he said when they lost. It was rare for the President to receive such frank words and he marked in his file to keep an eye on this soldier. Revenge is best served cold, he thought.
The POTUS pressed the button on the telephone on his desk.
“Janet, send in my chief of staff.”
“Yes, Mr President.”
“You wanted to see me, sir?”
“Yes, about this General who was just in here. It seemed he was trying to give me advice which was unsolicited, I might add. He might find himself sliding into obscurity, don’t you think?”
“Yes, yes I do sir. In fact, the perfect posting has just passed across my desk.”
“That will be all.”
And so we come full circle to our present day meeting where for all intents and purposes the General thought he heard stories about Winnie the Pooh and Eeyore.
“I consider this meeting adjourned unless anyone else has something to say.”
The room was silent.
“We will draw up a plan over secure communications, and you will receive it by the end of business this week. “
There was scraping of chairs and murmuring as people departed.
Little Red body checked the General as he was leaving and gripped his arm.
“This is serious. This is real.”
She said firmly looking him in the eyes. He nodded.
Whatever it was the lady was taking was some serious juice. He was a huge man and never had a body check like that before. She was as hard as granite, her grip terrifying. Was she really the one in the videos he’d seen? Could these werewolf creatures be real?
Little Red doubted the military mind was flexible enough to parse the information divulged during the meeting and knew it was likely to be looking for reasons to disbelieve. It was only human nature to discount everything that was beyond experience, the world is flat because we can’t see it’s curved, any other belief a fantastic heresy until proven otherwise.
Leaving the building, she noted autumn was near, a refreshing nip to the air was present. She didn’t feel the cold due to her aggressive metabolism, but in some ways, she tried to be square. Pulling on one of her many women’s pullover sweatshirts, no hood, trying to blend in, she stepped forward with purpose.
Read about the blossoming romance between Little Red and the Vampire at our blog where you can look at our apparel too. Will Little Red fist the General or the Vampire first? Will she slay the rising werewolf pack of doom? Will she share a pack of Lucky Strikes with the Vampire or remain loyal to Snake Plissken?