the riders: war, pt. 2

Rich, and powerful. I was never interested in power, which is probably why I was so perfect for this, at least as far as War was concerned. We worked for several months, after hours, and eventually cutting into our work days. She provided me with anything I'd need, and I never bothered to ask how, and she never presented me with a bill because this would recoup all of our costs eventually, wouldn't it?

When we had a working prototype, every world leader in the country contacted me asking for it, offering me more money than I'd ever really known existed, power, titles, prestige, wealth. Always just me--War was very insistent that I take the credit for this. She didn't want the limelight and anyway I'd done all the work, she said.

And I told everyone the same thing, that we were working on mass-production. I figured that if everyone had one it wouldn't cause any problems. And meanwhile War was always coming up with new ideas and running them past me, little improvements on the design for the future. "Just think," she said. "In a few short months we'll have made the world a better place!"

A few short months happened. We built a secret lab, sold thousands of the new devices to anyone who wanted one and had the money. She did a short tour abroad, demonstrating the product. And then the bombs fell, and suddenly the lab was the only safe place on earth, and I found myself the most powerful man on the planet, with War leading up the increasingly ineffectual peacekeeping efforts.

It's the sort of thing that goes to a man's head, and suddenly he believes that he can actually save the world he's just destroyed.

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