The Unfortunate Billionare

Written by: Lailah Ligons

The peculiar thing about being stalked is that: if you don’t know who’s stalking you, then it seems like everyone is stalking you at once. Matter of fact, when you have as much money as I have weighing on my shoulders, everyone really is stalking you.

I know you’re wondering: why would I be followed? To answer that I’d have to start from the beginning. My name is Michael Rutherford and I own 65.9 billion dollars. Well, that’s just what I estimate I own. All I know is that a lot of people paid me a lot of money and are expecting a lot of merchandise that I don’t have in return.

All throughout college and into my early career as an entrepreneur, I believed that drug lords were cheaters. Illegally dealing a substance with a market so large is the most juvenile activity a man could engage in. Becoming the owner of Impala Enterprise, I thought, proved me to be a much more hard working and dedicated specimen. Within only 3 years, I had become the most popular fiber-optics company in the western hemisphere. It was easy, compared to what I’m going through now. Now, though, I have a new respect for those in the drug dealing business. Ever since I became one, I learned that every day is that last day of my life.

I didn’t ask to become a drug lord. It happened like this. “Bitcoins! One of them; seven hundred and eighty-one U.S dollars.” my accountant, Richard, boasted. I paced around my office, peering out the large window pane to look at the city.

“I.. I just don’t see the benefit.” I shook my head.

“It’s simple. You can buy and sell anything without the government knowing. No taxes. No fees. You can be rich in minutes.” Richard pleaded.

“I’m already rich, but you’re not. And, you’ll be completely broke if you lose your job, so speak to your boss more appropriately.”

“You’ve got to think bigger. Billions, Rutherford, billions!”

“Alright. We’ll try it out. But, only one for now. Even eight hundred dollars is a lot of money to take out of a bank out with no excuses. We’ll look suspicious already.” I sighed. I had no Idea what I was getting myself into.

Meanwhile, somewhere in Mexico, Joaquín Guzmán, head of the Sinaloa Cartel, was being arrested for everything someone related to drugs could be arrested for. His accountant was an idiot, just like mine. Coincidentally, this same day, Guzmán’s accountant entered 84,275,410 bitcoins on sale for $10 on a website most drug dealers call the ‘deep web’. What he meant to do, I had no idea. But when I saw it, I had to jump at the chance.

“Sorry Boss,” Richard trembled with fear as he entered my room the next morning. “I think I might have made a numerical error. When checking your bitcoin account this morning I saw numbers in the billions. I just.. please don’t fire me.”

“It wasn’t you.” I responded kindly. Richard’s jaw dropped a few feet when he heard that I wasn’t angry. “You see, I was doing research last night and I saw a deal. An incredible deal. I thought it was a hoax, honestly… but I just clicked it and bought all of these bitcoins for about $10,” I tried to explain.

“Rutherford. You bought bitcoins with money? Like, American dollars money? Are you insane? 59 billion dollars in bitcoins? We’re going to jail!” Richard began to shout.

“I’m still your superior. Lower your voice.” I snapped. I massaged my hand into my temple, contemplating what I should do. That money could’ve been stolen. That money could’ve been drug money. Matter of fact, it is drug money. As a sunk into my chair, the alert on my computer began to ring rapidly.

‘You owe me a lot of cheese, Guzmán.’ The first message read. Soon, more with a similar message flowed in.

‘Heard you got busted, bud. Too bad. I’m going to need my dope by tomorrow though.’

Thousands of messages flooded in through the rest of the evening with threats for numerous drugs. Drugs I haven’t even heard of.

“What is it?” Richard ran by my side to view the computer screen. “The.. the account information must’ve transferred along with the transaction. They must think that you’re Guzmán.” Richard shook his head in disbelief.

“Richard. I’m so sorry. I’ve failed you. I want you to divide the money into at least one bank account into every country of the world you can. Then, I want your resignation. I’m so sorry. I have to get out of here.”

So, that’s where I am now. I’ve been notified by the federal government 143 times in the past month through my black market account. The FBI has showed up at 2 of my previous homes.

Recently, I’ve moved to a small town in Nicaragua. I know it’ll be time to leave soon. I can tell they’ve found me. Whether it’s the feds, or Guzmán’s clients, I have been found. They stalk me now, everywhere I go. They stand in line at the grocery store behind me, live in my neighbors homes, and even speak to me through the T.V screen.

On days like these, when I sit alone in my living room, smiling at the eyes staring at me through the window, I like to think that I’m invincible. They could kill me, but why would they do that? I have billions of their dollars. They protect me in a way. I’ve never felt more happy. The success I see for Impala Enterprise through news articles is astonishing. Richard Culligan, the new owner and my old accountant, has made extreme advances in technology I’d never had imagined. Being a billionaire, with a successful business, and people to guard your life, feels just as great as it sounds.

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