Saturday, July 30, 2011

Without You - Chapter 26: Signature

Are you insane?
They’ll come for her
Destroy your pathetic little playground
Before giving her away
Ignatius snaps

Relax Ignatius
Her secret is safe
In the shadows
Of the underverse
Creeley replies
Take her invitation
Work it into your own flesh
If you so choose

That’s not how it works
Her biological signature
Is encoded in the seal

If it’s no use to you
Don’t bid on it
All I offer
Is a chance for a better life
Use it
As you see fit
Creeley shrugs

To be any value
One would have to match
Her genetic makeup
Undergo convergence
And biochemical augmentation
Ignatius squawks

Oh the sacrifices
One has to make
For salvation
Wressen chuckles
A fine whore
You would make
Do it for your country
Take one for the team

Only a fool
Would consider
Such a ludicrous proposition
That is not the true value
Of what she has to offer
Even if one
Passes the biometrics
It is only the first
In a battery of tests
Sooner or later
Your deception
Will be uncovered
And you’ll be worse off
Than out here

I am reminded
Of the sacrifices
Our ancestors made
When coming to this land
Indentured servants
Many of them
Never seeing their debt clear
Dying a slave
In a free land

Unless you’re her biological twin
Or can assume her identity
With minor alterations
Then it cannot be used directly
What you have
Is a tool
To infiltrate their walls
And show us past
Their defenses
Tell me
By chance
Is she serviceable?

The golden passes
Were given to humans
Not clones
Or the like
They were meant
For The Chosen
Creeley replies

It would have been
If she was
It’s not every day
You come across
A golden pass
We can make her so
Wressen grins

I’m all in
I know
You’re not just going
To give her to me
I’ll double your highest offer
Come on now
I’ll be offended
If you don’t make a run at her

The remaining seven
Shake their heads
Kick chairs
Punch holes in walls
None have a shot
And they know it
Not even
If they pooled
Their resources together

Not fair
Says Roach
Another unwashed face
In dire need of a bath

Life’s not fair
Are you in need of the lesson?
Says Wressen
Why settle for a ticket
When you can have
Valtryst herself
Pledge your allegiance
To me now
And I’ll find
A way inside
For each of us
Rot in this hellhole
Until you are no different
Than the scavengers
Scattering through it

Do I hear another bid?
1.1 million?
Creeley looks around anxiously

Ignatius raises his hand and nods

2.5 million
Wressen counters

Anyone else?

3 million
Dr. Phil winces at his own words

A red light flashes
Invalid bid
Insufficient funds
An automated voice
Scolds him

2.5 million credits
Going once
A bead of sweat
Runs down Creeley’s cheek

What a delightful specimen
A D-24.8
If I’m not mistaken
Gyruss raises his head to the ceiling
I’ve serviced those before
In fact
I repaired
This very one

Shut him up!
Wressen finally loses his cool
Shoot him
I will not let him spoil
This fine moment
He’s just more rubbish
For the scrapheap

As Creeley repositions the gun
A silver sphere
With 10-inch spikes
And twin Gatling guns
Materializes from the darkness
Three red dots
Converge on his forehead
He freezes
Caught out of position
Not enough time
To reroute the guns
And raise his shields

The winning bid
Goes to Wressen Wight
Creeley utters
Have mercy on us

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