She closed the conference room doors and knelt on the meeting table. A packet of salt provided a circle around her. She called upon the forces of plenty, of power, of clever, strategic war, and lit a green candle in the center of the table.

Outside, visible through the floor to ceiling glass, there was traffic thirteen floors below. The big meeting was soon.

The ritual ended. She left the candle burning in the center of the table, climbed down, smoothed out her power suit—green jacket, green blazer, white blouse, black shoes. She swept the salt into a wastebasket.

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