Sitting behind a large empty desk in a large over furnished office, Ray Purvis felt good. Sure Purvis Holdings still didn’t own all the land, and the finance for the shopping centre project was still to be found, but everything seemed to be in hand until this morning.
Across the desk, his personal assistant, Ralph Fly, was pecking at the keys of his notebook computer, with a precise finger action. Peck, peck, click, click, the numbers for survival were crunched with merciless efficiency. A clean cut young man in a suit and tie, Ralph had the lean body and gaunt face of a gym addict: A look common to the elite of screen jockeys; late night traders in money and commodities. Ray Purvis liked the young Fly, seeing in him something of himself; the ability to recognise a good deal and the willingness to make it happen regardless of what it takes.
“Christ! It’s not like we after the national debt or anything.” Purvis exclaimed in frustration at the news from his assistant.
“I’m sorry Mr Purvis,” Ralph Fly explained. “But the bank is refusing to lend any more money until the interest payments for the last half year have been met in full.”
“What about derivatives or swaps, you know all that fancy stuff the clever yanks are doing now?” Purvis asked.
“We haven’t really got much to play with in the market, apart from the shopping centre project of course, but that could see you loosing control.”
“Shit! We don’t want that”, Purvis exploded. “I’m sure Fleece Industrial will eventually come through, too much in management fees for Price and his greedy mates to ignore.”
“I don’t think we can wait that long Mr Purvis. We need to get the drainage and environment reports asap, but they won’t release them without payment”.
“Yes I know Fly, nobody trusts anyone anymore. It’s not your fault.” This ever so brief moment of reflection quickly passed. “They want full payment?” Purvis asked, with the glint of battle in his eye.
Ralph Fly nodded as pushed a letter across the desk towards Purvis.
Ignoring the proffered letter, Purvis rose to the challenge. “We’ll see about that, won’t we? Some money is always better than none, isn’t that so Fly?”
The master of the financial soft shoe and his apprentice shared a conspiratorial laugh as the master turned his thoughts to one of Purvis Holdings other projects, a retirement village.
“We’ll get something to those greedy buggers by the end of the week.” Purvis said with the glee of a man who has just spotted where the rainbow comes to earth. Another pot of gold which he felt sure would keep the creditors at bay.
“What about ‘Tranquil Estate’, how much can we take from the deposit account?”
“Still three and half million there, but we owe more.” Ralph Fly said as he tapped at the computer keyboard. “The previous owner of the land is getting anxious and so is the earth moving contractor. They’ve both got court orders out for their money.”
“Good. Pay’em a hundred thou each, that’ll slow them down.” Purvis said knowing that they would then have to start afresh the drawn out process of obtaining court orders. “And two million should keep the bank happy for awhile. Get it to them today.”
In the next episode, “Sky at dawn”, Sky Crystal, a new millennium flower-child in search of the nineteen sixties, prepares for the day.