Herman Monstag considered this for a second. "Down eighty points. Are you sure?"
"I'm positive," came the reply. This was from his stockbroker, James Norwood. "You have no option but to sell your shares now, before you're completely bankrupt."
The shares to which they were referring were government shares. The more shares you owned the more say you had about government business (new laws, taxes etc.). The person who owned the most shares would be the head of the Earth's board of directors. It was almost certain that these shares would always increase in value, irrespective of anything else that happened anywhere in the world. Herman Monstag had spent his life buying Earth Gov' shares and finally owned all of them, effectively making himself a sort of old style king. A king who ruled the entire planet.
"How can they be down? They shouldn't go down, should they?"
"It's caused by global monetary deflation, with modern super cheap manufacturing methods everything produced anywhere on this planet is naturally a lot cheaper than it used to be. The natural result of this is a reduction of wages and the natural result of that is a reduction of the value of money in general." James tipped his chair and put his feet on the desk, content with his answer.
"Put the shares on the market then," ordered Herman, glumly.
"Actually I already have a buyer."
"You do?" Herman was surprised.
"Yu huh," James' face had taken on a holier-than-thou expression, like the one he had when he was explaining the world's impending financial collapse.
"You mean, all of them?"
"Yu huh," James was practically laughing by this time.
James considered his answer for a second, trying to decide how to word it. "A secret investor. I don't exactly know who it is, I've never heard of him. Apparently, he's been a big time investor for years, all he gave me was a name." Herman was getting excited by this. Could it be that someone was richer than him, the ruler of all he surveyed.
"What's his name?"
"Cattle faeces, you're having me on," Herman blurted.
"Does it matter what his name is? The fact is, he wants to buy, and you want to sell."
Herman and James sat in chairs situated towards the rear of the podium, waiting to publicly congratulate the new Earth ruler (presumably congratulating him on the fact that he had more money than them. While the media questioned this, they decided it would be rude to pry. Although this had never stopped them before). Herman was getting restless. "Where is he?" he demanded of James. "I don't have all day!"
"Yes you do, you don't have a job anymore," came James' retort.
Suddenly there was a sound from above, and everyone turned their eyes skyward. What they saw shocked even the most avid ufologist on the planet. It was a flying saucer. An actual FLYING SAUCER, for crying out loud.
The aircraft (which is what everyone should have assumed, although nobody did) landed just beyond the crowd (and this was a BIG crowd, the first new shareholder in fifteen years) and out stepped a little orange-blue-yellow-red-green-purple alien with the tentacles and the eyes on the stalks and the biiiiiiiig teeth (unfortunately, the assumption of the masses was correct. Damnit!).
The alien stepped up onto the podium and positioned one of it's mouths next to the microphone. "My name is Et," Et said, in quite a pleasant, friendly voice, "fear me for I am your overseer." There were various claps and nervous giggles emanating from the crowd, but mostly there was just silence.
Herman turned to James. "You didn't tell me he was an alien."
"I didn't know."
James, who had coincidentally been put in the same mining tunnel as him placed his spade gently on the ground. "He's well within his rights to do this. He does own the Earth's government. Plus, since he took over as shareholder inflation has reached an all time high. In the last month alone, Earth gov' shares have gone up over two thousand points!"
"Huh! I've a good mind to lead a rebellion."
"You can't do that. His contract allows him to do this. If you rebel he'll sue you for every penny you've got."
Herman grabbed hold of his pickaxe and ran out of the mine as fast as he could. The supervisors made no effort to stop him.