Chandler sighed in his leather chair, watching the sunrise on the east horizon. He had been up nearly all night. He fiddled his fingers and tapped his pen. It had been worth it. He had drafted the entire thing and was certain it was ready.
Mr. Butler walked into his office. His eyes were bloodshot. He sat down on the leather sofa against the wall.
“How sure are you about this, Mr. Chandler?”
Chandler considered him and shook his head. “As sure as I’ve been about anything, which, I’ll admit, isn’t exactly positive. But it’s worth trying.”
Mr. Butler was rubbing his temples. “Chinese companies have been pulling out this year. Government scrutiny is at an all-time high.”
“I know—which is why the timing is perfect.” Chandler stood up and gestured with his arms out. “We have nothing to hide.”
“You have nothing to hide.”
“Don’t be silly, Mr. Butler. I am the company.”
Mr. Butler paused. He stared out the window for a moment, very still. Then he looked back at Chandler. “All right. The board meeting is at noon. You have until then to finalize a convincing argument.” He stood up. “And I would suggest covering every base you can think of, Mr. Chandler. You know these men. Distant relatives, friends of your father… traditional at best. Simply cantankerous on a bad day.”
“I know, Mr. Butler. Thank you. But… I think I’m ready.”
“Well, then… pull out all the stops, as you young people would say,” Mr. Butler said, nodding his head to Chandler. He walked toward the door.
“What are you going to do?” Chandler said.
Mr. Butler turned over his shoulder and gave him a half smile.
“I’m going to take a nap.”