Chapter 55: Happy Cooperation
“What machine is this? The manufacturing process is phenomenal. I’m amazed.” Howard was an expert in the fields of manufacturing amongst scientists. He thought the object was not so simple when examining the exquisite metal shell of the phone. Howard picked up the phone and fiddled ‘round with it.
“I call it a mobile phone.” Kyle smiled lightly and began explaining like a good salesman. “Despite its small fuselage, its an essential instrument that has hundreds of functions, including features such as fingerprint lock, face lock, simple voice control, video and photo recording, storage and decompression, transmission of information, alarm clock, computational recording, games, music, call service, search engine, and the likes…”
Taken aback, Howard looked at the phone carefully. “How can this highly advanced little machine have such practical functions?”
Kyle suppressed his chuckle at the thought of the genius befuddled with curious astonishment. The mobile phone was a mere green product card he’d managed to draw during the card sacrifice. As the world had yet to establish a telephone tower and the internet was more or less nonexistent, Kyle thought the mobile phone was useless ‘till he met Howard. Since then, an idea popped in his mind.
Mobile phones had no use for him, much less now, but for Howard, it was different. In the year 1943, mobile phones would be heralded as an advanced tech far from its times.
Howard operated on the mobile phone and looked at the lit-up screen. His eyes brightened and his fingers quickly performed various commands.
The sight surprised Kyle. He’d not even explained the basic operations of the phone to Howard, yet already, with his keen sense in hi-tech, Howard mastered the operations of the mobile phone.
“It is worthy indeed to invest in a man able to give birth to the creation of artificial intelligence,” Kyle thought.
Kyle watched Howard play with the phone in amusement. He’d already deleted the apps and private records. But if Howard were to discover any secrets, he would not care.
The trial lasted for a full ten minutes.
Kyle was on his fourth glass of wine when Howard turned off the phone.
Howard was lost in thought. He touched his chin and looked at Kyle thoughtfully. “The color resolution, precise screen controls, and the practical features, they’re all things that can’t be achieved with our current tech. I’m sure this machine belongs to a technologically advanced planet or maybe from the future, who knows.”
“Forgive me for not revealing its origins, but I can guarantee you three things…” In the face of doubt, Kyle smiled and pulled up three fingers. “First, its origin is safe; second, there is no other tech like this; and third, it’ll only bring you advantages. So long as you’re able to grasp this technology, Stark Industries will have enough capital to march toward the future as the leader after World War II.”
“I see…” Howard fell in deep thoughts.
Kyle was in no hurry. He turned his head, watching men and women flock together and dance to the slow tempo of the song, their bodies touching.
“Sir, would you like to dance?”
Many women took the initiative to chat with Kyle. He was young and a handsome fella, after all. Over time, he’d grown into his features, fine bone structures and perfectly symmetrical face that was all too manly.
“I’m sorry. I’m out with a friend right now.”
His rejection disappointed many pretty-faced women, but they braved on and mustered the courage to leave their contacts behind. Kyle smiled at the thought this. It was touching. He realized he’d grown as a person since coming to this world. Gone was the naive and hysterical boy.
A long while after, Howard raised his head and said, “How much shares at stake do you want in Stark Industries?”
Good. It means we can talk.
Kyle breathed a sigh of relief. He was nervous despite the calm disposition he exuded. He was confident in himself, but still, he lived in the Marvel World, a place full of energy weapons, anti-gravity devices, laser tanks, self-piloting planes, and so on… he wasn’t sure if he’d be able to impress Howard.
“Forty percent.” Kyle blinked.
“Forty?!” Howard choked on his glass of wine.
“Since its a partnership, of course, I’ll be investing in not just one tech, not two, but more,” Kyle said expressionlessly, “This mobile phone, it’s mainly a bargaining chip used to initiate a conversation. I’m sure you’re interested.”
“Can you give me a general idea?” Howard leaned over and asked.
“Of course. Introduction to the field of artificial intelligence. What do you think?” Kyle smiled and watched Howard’s body stiffen in shock, his glass falling on the floor.
Computers are being developed, the system in its infancy. But what does artificial intelligence represent? The future! Howard trembled with excitement. “If your words are true, my friend, then what you’re doing is investing in the future.”
Kyle smiled. “What do you think? Is it expensive to take a forty percent stake on Stark Industries based on this premise alone?”
“No, not at all. If you want fifty, I’d be more than willing!” Howard’s previous hesitation ceased to exist. He had no reasons to refuse. He vied for money, power, fame, and women, but in the face of technological invention, they were worthless.
“Forty is enough. The founder and the shareholder should still be you. Only when Stark Industries is under your control will it develop rapidly.” Kyle’s eyes twinkled. His investment of his, it’s like a chicken that’ll continue laying golden eggs. There would be no need to worry about his financial situations in the near future.
“It’s a deal. You’ll invest with the tech you have in exchange for a forty percent stake in Stark Industries.” Howard requested another wine from bartender then raised his glass high. “Here’s to a happy cooperation.”
“Happy cooperation,” Kyle responded and raised his glass.
The two clinked their drink and sipped on the wine. None knew that history had been made in an underground bar.