“Situation normal. How are you guys doing?”
“Flight 4641, this is High Command. Patch me through to your system NOW!”
“Roger, Commander. #$%^& What do you mean we are unable to get a link? Commander, we are having technical difficulties”
“Flight 4641, I find your lack of cooperation disturbing”
“Commander, we are being hacked. We are losing… <kssshbzzt>”
Myst: (shouting) Kaze, what kind of a lame ass faceman are you?!
And so they are never gonna let me forget it.
Talking to Captain Rafiq of SMS Song of Somalia didn’t help either.
“Song of Somalia, we request permission to land”
“Negative Flight 4641. You are being chased by corporate attack elements”
“Song of Somalia, is our authorization and authentication insufficient?”
“Flight 4641. They are sufficient. But you are being chased by corporate elements. We are neutral and will not be involved”
“Song of Somalia, this is an emergency”
“Flight 4641, that is your business. Veer away NOW”
“Song of Somalia, we have damage, and if you do not allow us to land, we will crash into your side”
“Flight 4641. This ship can handle it”
“Song of Somalia, Can it also handle the t-bird that is following, chock full of munitions, with a missile malfunction and about to blow, that we are currently hacking into to gain control, crashing into your waterline as well?”
“… cursing in Swahili… cursing in Aramaic… cursing in Afrikaans… Flight 4641, you are bluffing”
“Song of Somalia, sure we are! Remember that when you hear the big kaboom. The earth-shattering kaboom.”
“more cursing in several languages… Flight 4641, you have permission to land”
See what I mean?
Anyway, we landed to a warm reception, and had to wait for Captain Rafiq to receive us. During that time, the somewhat-broken Link regained consciousness with a throbbing shoulder, a terrible pain in his left buttcheek, and sans underwear. (Don’t ask)
As expected, Link immediately tried to hack everything. Without his commlink. Just proving a point that reflex sometimes can get the better of any man/woman/kid. Myrad and Dice managed to calm him down somewhat, with Myst trying to find out what happened to her KE squeeze.
Meanwhile, Captain Rafiq was a little mollified after we explained the situation and how close we were to blowing Smoke out of our ass. He then set his purser, Sameed, to cut a deal with us.
While Dice and I were bargaining to offload the T-bird to them (whole team agreed), Link started checking all his stuff to make sure all was in order. The paydata that he hacked for us only exists in three places: In the switched-off commlink in a bus station locker; in his missing underwear; and with his digital friend. And then he realized something.
Just as Dice & I closed the deal with Sameed for $750k cash & $750k in trade, we heard a howl coming from the T-bird.
“Dudes! Where’s my underwear?!”