M’s Office, 8.45pm
M hands Bond a martini. “Shaken, of course,” she purrs.
Bond nods his thanks. “Not having one yourself?”
M shakes her head. “I’m not like you, Bond. I can’t keep a clear head after a drink.” She gives Bond a lingering look. He smiles quietly back at her. She moves towards her desk, gesturing for Bond to take a seat.
Bond sits. Places his gun on the table. It’s pointing towards the door. He takes a sip of his martini. He looks at M and nods. It’s a good martini. Satisfied, M turns her attention to a file on the table. She opens it to reveal a pile of photos, newspaper cuttings and documents, some stamped “Secret”. M slides a photo towards Bond.
“Magnus Squeeze. Ruthless businessman. Marketing genius.”
Bond takes another sip of his martini. “Spreader of fear and panic about our little credit crunch… Very savvy. It’s the kind of stuff you expect from a ruthless businessman. Why are we interested?”
M nods. “We weren’t initially, but we’ve gathered intelligence about his master plan. He’s been secretly buying up financial institutions in trouble. Those banks that went bust? He’s picked them up for peanuts.”
Bond swirls his martini thoughtfully. “Control the money markets, control the world.”
M slides the whole file towards Bond. “He’s got to be stopped.”
Bond reaches for his gun. M calmly places her hand on top of Bond’s. “We’re fighting smart. You’ll be working with someone.”
Bond doesn’t look too impressed. “I don’t work with anyone, M. You know that. I’m best alone.”
“Well, that’s too bad.” M presses a button and the door to her office slides open.
A dazzling woman strides in. Cream fitted suit. Killer heels. A light waft of expensive perfume. Bond rises to his feet. A tiny smile plays around his lips as he takes in the woman’s dark hair, her ruby lips. She glances at Bond’s gun on the desk.
“You’re pointing your gun at me. Is it loaded?”
Bond laughs. He picks up the gun and puts it in his pocket. The woman simply raises an eyebrow. Bond extends his hand.
“The name’s Bond…”
“I know perfectly well who you are.” The woman slides her hand into Bond’s. Their eyes lock for a moment. “I am Foxy Lingua.”
Bond’s turn to raise an eyebrow. “I can see you have a cunning way with words…”
M taps on her desk. “That’s enough.” Her voice is a little stern. “Agent Foxy Lingua is one of our finest marketing experts. This is how we’ll start countering Magnus Squeeze.”
Bond pulls a face. “Can’t I just do what I’m good at? You know, parachute in, guns blazing, and take him out?”
Foxy smiles at Bond. “You’re wonderfully old-school, Bond. But we’re doing it my way. We’ll hit Magnus Squeeze where it hurts – by neutralising his message. What we need is a marketing campaign. A lethal marketing campaign.”