Friday, December 21, 2007

"Debt" Part 2 of 4

The next day the info was on the Desktop, a red folder that glowed and rotated. Hank tapped it twice, the holo-display paused for a brief second then opened the folder and tiled the icons: video, documents, contract papers, audio clips. It was the usual stuff: snippets of dialogue, fuzzy videos of the object in question. It was all useful as a wiffle bat to a mafia enforcer. That was OK though, he knew a guy who worked the graveyeard at the Metro Police evidence locker.

Freddy was what the human race would have looked like if we had taken a hard left early in the evolutionary tree and evolved from an overly ambitious set of raisins. He was sunken and wrinkled, and had the air of not really caring about anything. He did everything like an afterthought, Hank could almost believe Freddy didn't love the ponies as much as he did.

Greg kept lookout by pretending take himself offline for internal diagnostics. In the older models, such as Greg, it was expected (particularly anything from Maverick Light Industries).

Hank snuck inside the evidence room, apprehension played across his face. The room smelled of old mothballs and something that had gone mildewy and stashed under a hollow ceiling panel and forgotten. The lighting from a flickering panel gave as much light as a dimming Timex.

He reached the shelf, and right where the object was supposed to be was an empty cardboard box. The pit of his stomach did a few spins. There was more than one group looking for this little trinket, and one of them had found it.

The object was -- from what Hank could figure out from the info -- a small necklace with a piece of Perma-Ice as the pendant. Water wasn't meant to be worn, in Hank's opinion, but if people wanted to sell ice that was cooled by generators in another dimension, who was he to stand in the way of capitalism.

He looked at the shelf closer. There was a sizeable dent in it. A sizeable dent in a shelf made of tempered magtronic arcanium. Whoever was here was big, heavy, and didn't particularly care about leaving behind a trail.

************

The Zyoraption Mark IV was a sleek little number when it had come out; now it was just a sad craft driven by mid-life crisis addled men who were low on cash and high on crises. For Hank, it was just something to get around that was slightly faster than the average. It streaked around the airway, Hank focused on his nav-screen.

"I say, where are we off to in such a rush?" said Greg.

"The office. I think I know who swiped the goods."

"You don't think..."

"Yes."

"But he's a gadabout town, a nothing. They say he only puts on airs of his more shadowy dealings."

"It's a double cover. He acts like he puts on airs, but at the heart of it all, he's a ruthless mob boss."

"Clever."

2 comments:

Marilyn said...

Keep up the good work. Have a great 2008! Cheers :-)

andrea said...

so what's this gadabout about anyway?!!!!