"Think I'm in love
-- bAdmod, in Pleasure Dome
Everyone is at the table. Tissa ignores him. bAdmod figures she's still mad at him for cumming on the sheets last night, 'cause she threw things at him and licked him out of the room. Zerrin is hooked to Novaseeker by a series of extruded fibres from her and a universal jack on his DNI. "Ah hah," he says "Ah-hah babe, ah-hah." Novaseeker is nodding and mimicking his expressions. Neither have touched their food, though maybe Novaseeker doesn't eat, bAdmod isn't sure about that, he'll have to ask Ree.
Li'unie is saying "-know Zerrin is a dick but his advice-"
Qunifax looks puzzled. "A dick? You mean the sexual appendage used by male humanoids?" Looks from Zerrin to Li'unie.
"Colloquialism. A jerk. An idiot. Someone who screws up things."
"Full of shit," Tissa pipes in, mouth full of food. She pulls over a bowl of icecream
"Your anglish tongue is loaded with strange and ambigious nuances." The little borg stares into space for a few seconds. Gives Li'unie what bAdmod has come to realise is eir version of a smile. "I understand. Continue please, Zar Li'unie."
Li'unie nods, gives him a quick smile in return. "So he is a dick. Just look at this mess we are in now, for all we know SpacePol is on their way."
"No way," Tissa says between mouthfuls. "Da Skwid would've warned us."
Li'unie gives her a quick glance. "Well, maybe. I hope so Tiss. But he and I both agree on this, so do our financial expert systems. This advice is good, Zar Qunifax."
Qunifax nods solemnly.
"That's why you should check out the Carina Rush, I can recommend some excellent investment opportunities, there's a lot of deep space development projects..."
bAdmod looks at Ree, half expecting her to finally get stuck into him for fucking up her nano or whatever. But she just continues daintily spoons in enriched protein algae and krill cassarole. The circuit lines in her arm catch the light, her skin is so translucent that bAdmod can clearly distinguish the microboards from the secondary chips.
"...Oceanus Ultimata for example. " Li'unie continues. "You would have to move fast though, the dolphs are planning on tying the whole thing up with trade monopolies. Then of course there's..."
Ree puts down her spoon with a slight clatter. bAdmod glances at her. She makes the slightest nod at Tissa, who is stuffing her face with icecream. bAdmod leans forward, curious, and not a little aroused. Looks likw Ree was going to activate nano afterall. He didnt fuck up. What a relief! He grins at her. She grins back. He has presence of mind to turn on his cam. This will be worth recording.
Tissa suddenly gasps, spits icecream everywhere, panicking the little remotes and aerostats which scatter everywhere. "Oh god" she says leaning forward, face contorted "oh god oh god oh god."
"Tiss what's wrong?" Li'unie gasps.
"Cosmos cosmos cosmos cosmsos ohhhhh...." Tissa's body tenses, face contorted in ecstacy.
Several moans from Tissa that make bAdmod feel like cuming just listening to them
???" Li'unie freaks, grabbing her tightly.
She slumps in Li'une's arms, relaxes, panting. Smiles up at her. "Cosmos, I almost choked."
"Zar Tissa, are you feeling ill?" Qunifax asks.
"What happened Tiss???"
"Uh, I dunno, I just came."
They both look at Ree.
The cybergirl is engrossed in her meal.
"Ree," Li'unie says.
"What?" Ree look up, all innocent.
"You didn't have anything to do with this did you?"
Li'une looks suspicious. Tissa suddenly climaxes again, in her arms
bAdmod stares. This is so neat. He's getting it all down on file too.
Ree tries to hide her grin.
Li'une glares at her. "Don't do that!"
"Don't do what?" Ree pretends to be confused. Tissa suddenly cries out again.
"Ah hah," Zerrin is still hooked to Novaseeker going "Ah-hah babe, ah-hah."
Ree glances at him, back at Li'unbe and Tissa. "You meatheads, you just can't control yourselves." She's grinning from ear to ear.
"You're a crap lier Ree." Li'unie gets to her feet. To Tissa "the first thing we do is get that nano out. I'll get my kit."
"Don't Li'unie" Tissa murmers.
"What?" Li'unie looks at her, uncomprehending.
"That was just great...ohhh I'm exhausted. Think I'll take a nap." Giggles. "Mind if I crash in your room?"
"Huh? What's wrong with your room?"
She gives bAdmod an accusing look. "Killer here came all over my sheets again last night."
"Typical," she makes a face at bAdmod. Then to Tissa "yes that's fine Tis. You sure you don't want-"
"I'm sure. Wow, feel so mellow." She smiles at them all, gives a little finger wave, and is gone.
Li'une glares at Ree again, fixes with bAdmod with a heavy stare, "I hope you didn't have anything to do with this."
"Me? No, not at all!" bAdmod switches off his cam.
"Then why were you recording?"
"What?" Shit she must have some sensors with all that nanowear or whatever she has. "Just was taping Tissa eating icecream." he tries to grin. "She looks so sensual when she eats icecream."
"You can't lie very well either bAdmod." Her face suddenly scrunches, like she's going to cry or something. She gets up and storms out.
"Awww," Ree goes.
bAdmod snickers, though a part of him feels sorta bad about this. He pushes that aside. Qunifax doesnt say anything, but seems embarresed about the whole thing, almost as if it were eir fault. Zerrin and Novaseeker are still at it "ah-hah babe, ah-hah ah-hah" nod nod. Ree looks at thgem with distaste. "Daniel H Board. One think that stupid borg woman is right about, those two are disgusting. She gets to her feet, leaves.
bAdmod nods briefly to Qunifax, "later sib." Heart pounding from expectation, he gets up and rushes back to his room, keen to review the recording.
The water is still and peaceful. With the utility fog providing a perfect panorama ahead, it is easy to imagine they're on a planetside ocean that extends for hundreds, if not thousands, of kilometers. Even so, the small inflatable is cramped with the three of them. Zerrin kills the motor. "This spot's as good as any, sib." Throws the end of the fishing line in the water.
"You sure this is optimal?" bAdmod doesn't want the squid getting all pissed.
Qunifst leans forward, says in his falsetto voice "Zar Zerrin, I don't understand the purpose of this sport."
"It's called fishing, Zar Qunifst. You toss a line in, and if you are lucky you snare an aquatic lifeform or a submersible remote. Otherwise you just rap with your friends and enjoy the diffuse sunshine"
Qunifst sits absolutely motionless for several seconds. Comes alive again, looks pained. "A brutal game involving metal hooks!"
"What do you think we are?" bAdmod snaps. "Sadists? Look...uh, Zar." He shows Qunifst the snare plate. "Nanoactuators and biotubules, can hold upto 2 kilograms, soft as a baby's bottom." Touches it with his finger. Anemone grapples unfurl and gently but tightly hold his finger. "See? Then you just say okay release okay
" the grapples let go "and scope - all optimal!" He wiggles his finger.
"But isn't the creature harmed by removing it from its element?"
Fast Zerrin says "not if you return it straight away zar. Anyway, we're not likely to catch anything here so it's no big deal." He opens a can of Pineorange Sparkle. "Want one? Here!" Hands it to em, opens another for bAdmod and one for himself.
bAdmod recocks the snare, throws his own line in. Qunifst hesitates a second, carefully puts down eir can of drink, does the same. "Your Lord Squid does not mind?" he says again.
"Nahh. Like I said just as long as we don't hurt any fish or crustacea we can do whatever we like."
"I am pleased. Now I can enjoy this sport." E picks up the can of Pineorange Sparkle. "This is part of the game?"
Fast Zerrin waves his own can. "Indeed my friend." Takes a few thirsty swallows.
Qunifst takes several cautious sips. "The glucose content is dangerously high."
"Never hurt us." bAdmod drinks from his own can, tries to make himself comfortable. Not enough space here to properly straighten his legs. Looks at Zerrin. "Sib?"
"You know when it happens that you are in love with some honey and she doesn't give a fuck about you."
"Yeah," Fast Zerrin grins. "Been there once or twice hah!" Holds his drink up with one hand, moves it in front of one eye then another. Hums a tuneless ditty. Puts the can down again. Lets his arm hang over the edge. Splashes some water.
"What do you do?"
Stops splashing. "Just find another honey sib."
"But what if you like this one?"
"Just dump her hu. She's not worth it. Everything optimal zar?"
Qunifst says "Is it possible to engage in this sport without partaking this fluid?"
"Oh the Pineorange drink? Give it to Mod uh to Zar bAdmod."
Qunifst hands bAdmod the can. "Zar bAdmod, I feel I should warn you, this product contains false advertising on the interface label. The amount of authentic Pineorange reconstitute is so minimal as to not justify the term Pineorange Sparkle on the label title."
"Thanks sib...uh, zar." bAdmod swallows a few mouthfuls. It is sweet and carbonated and cold, just the way he likes it. "So Zerrin, what if you don't have any other honeys to choose from? What then?"
Fast Zerrin makes a gesture of jerking himself off.
"Shit. I'm tired of doing that all the time."
Zerrin shrugs. "You asked." Checks his line.
bAdmod says "can you catch anything here?"
"Snared a flathead once. They're out there."
It's relaxing sitting out there. The inflatable raft rocks ever so slightly with the minute waves. The ocean extends into mist and foglet generated false horizons, bAdmod can almost pretend it goes on forever.
Qunifst seems engrossed in eir fishing line.
bAdmod finds himself thinking about Tissa, about how he came inside her. How Zerrin can choose to wank over a po is beyond him. He wonders how Qunifst does it. The borg seems to be neither clearly male or female.
"Yeah sib," Fast Zerrin says.
"Chill if I ask em...." he indicates Qunifst "umm, a personal question."
Zerrin says "excuse me Zar Qunifst."
The androgynous borg looks at them.
"My friend wishes to address you." He looks at bAdmod. "It's chill. Optimal."
bAdmod clears his throat. "I was wondering..."
Qunifst looks at him without blinking.
"Do you have...uh...a girlfriend...boyfriend...at home...um?"
Zerrin collapses in hysterical laughter.
bAdmod goes agro. "WELL FUCK OFF YOU FUCKING CUNT!!!"
Qunifst holds up both small hands. "Please zars do not argue. Zar bAdmod's question is perfectly reasonable."
Zerrin is still bent over roflmaoing.
bAdmod slaps at him, tilting the inflatable raft while doing so.
"Fucking watch it!!!" but Zerrin's stopped laughing.
"Fucking don't laugh!!" bAdmod snarls back.
"Remind me never to help you again drekface," Zerrin says. Turns back to his line.
"Cunt," bAdmod mutters.
Tiny waves slapping against the outside skin of the raft.
Qunifst leans over. "In answer to your question, Zar bAdmod."
"We Qefqun have five quasi-hermaphroditic genders. Gerof, nerof, qurof, tzurof, and qguof. We form pentogamous unions that are renewed every hexadecimal planetary cycles." He points to himself. "I am a nerof."
bAdmod says "chill."
"It means optimal. Good. Cool. So you got a querofriend and all that shit?"
Zerrin makes a snickering sound.
"I'll break your head," bAdmod warns.
Qunifst says uncertainly "you two are not friends? Social-bonded companion-allies?"
"Just one day I'm gonna knock that prick's block off. So you got any tzerofriends Zar?"
"I am not in a pentbond if that is what you mean."
A slight pause. "Correct."
"Like me then."
Qunifst looks at him.
Qunifst says "those of us who have no pentbonds or clan-unions are sent as trade representatives and emissaries to the outer universe."
"Outer universe. Like here?" bAdmod is starting to warm to the little guy.
"Correct. Away from Qefqunspace."
"So how come they don't send nonsingle folks?"
"Our race has preserved its nanocybergenetic purity in the promiscuous galaxy since Qefqun Prime was settled three and a half thousand metric years ago."
"This is has been achieved despite active trade and exchange of information and materials with outsiders. We have managed this by ensuring that only non-Reeders have congress with outsiders."
"Huh?" bAdmod has heard of isolationists, hiders, various clades that don't have anything to do with the rest of the galaxy. But the little guy doesnt seem to fit the mold.
Fast Zerrin says "it's this taboo trip Mod. Nova tried to explain it to me but I only got a little bit, it's major complicated. But what I inputted from her is that if any of 'em even breathe the same air as any cunt from outside their system, they're infected."
"Shit! That's stiff."
Qunifst says nothing.
He looks at the little borg. "So you can't go back? You're tainted?"
"I can return, but I cannot have pentunion unless my genotype is purged of foreign plasmids, viriids, nanites, and other similar small bodies. I would lose much of my identity if so, because the process destroys a lot of original material as well."
"I do not understand. Is that not a request to engage in sexual copulation?"
"Its, uh...sib, how do you define fuck me?"
Zerrin says "in the present context, an expression of astonishment."
bAdmod nods. Looks at Qunifst.
"I understand now," Qunifst says.
"So you volunteered?" bAdmod asks. "Were forced to go?"
"It is hard to explain. It is called Qunefniqq
- a joyous choice made with social obligation and sacrifice for the good of the many."
bAdmod shrugs, checks his line. "You not going home after here then?"
"I may travel to Skiiwsnnii, in the Serpens Sector, to help with the Qefqun Consulate there for a time. "
"Sounds like fun sib," bAdmod says dryly.
"It will probably be more difficult than fun. The consulate is very small. The wormhole gate has only recently been opened."
Fast Zerrin gives bAdmod a wry grin. "Makes you glad to be a hu, right sib?"
"I'll say," bAdmod nods. He feels strangely depressed. The universe is so big, and local rules can be so cruel. Imagine exiling this little cunt just cos he's breathed the same air as a coupla hu? Or giving him some phagic scrubbing treatment if he goes back. He checks his line again. He wonders if he will ever have sex with TIssa again. He wonders what is in the nano thingie Ree gave him.
No one speaks for a while. It is so peaceful.
From the docking bay the whole station seems to reverberate with a massive clannnnng
!!! as the Onawan
mates with the station grapplers. bAdmod's seen some shit heaps in his day but this one takes the cake. It's an ancient low tek fusion-pulse job, all struts and bulbous feul tanks and cargo modules and communications masers, looks like something from the Interplanetary Age (or a good replica), held together with buckytape and a prayer to the archailect gods. Umbilicals snake out, and a larger tube seeks the airlock on the micrometeroid-pitted hull. Kuhlunk
! Soft beep
, red light turns green. Docked.
Not surprisingly, Captain Hintman Lavudon the arsehole (as Tissa was calling him before they had docked) turns out to be some middle-aged equivalent hu borg with the swollen red skin capillaries of a Dorphhead. He reminds bAdmod of the sort of sleazy dorph-addled lusers that used to hang around outside the prole kitchens or the old malls in the Karpaty ghettos, hassling little juves or even more helpless lusers for allowance chits or food credits, kicking homeless bots, and blowing their allowances on cheap pharm or (with the younger ones) the cheap clone-erotoginii brothels. They used to scare the shit out of him when he was a kid, until he got old enough to get his first mod, and he decked one of em when the cunt tried grab his chit. After that, they all left him alone. bAdmod feels like decking this Lavudon cunt now.
But Zerrin is all smiles. "Captain Lavudon, so good to see you again zar!" he pushes forward in the micro-gee, all smiles, empbracing the sleazo in an ancient back rubbing slap'n'hug that's probaby older than the ship.
"Zar Zerrin! So goodta see ya!" The Lavudon character slap'n'hugs him on the back "Ah got sum special stuff foh ya! Jacky here'll supervise the unloading" The two of them drift off into a conspiritorial huddle. Probably some smuggling deal, who knows. Zerrin always was able to get on with these cunts, bAdmod doesnt know how.
Jacky is some old domicile vec, though e is pretty skillful at the way e instructs the cargo loader to follow em through the unloading cylinder, avoiding the loose wiring and stuff that snakes its way around the walls here. Two disposable cybershells, each about a meter in diameter, roll carefully nearby on squeaky magnetic casters.
"Gimme gimme!" Tissa pushes herself towards the nearest module and cracks it open. In the microgravity all the stuff floats everywhere. She bags the stuff she wants, ignores the rest. Her long hair is like a mermaids in the zero gee. bAdmod thinks she's sexy.
"Watch it!" Ree yells. "I've got gear in there!"
"Sorry," Tissa says, and floats back, clutching her stuff.
"Stupid cartoon bimbo," Ree mutters, loud enough for bAdmod to hear. He suddenly remembers the erotogen capsule. Has the cybergirl activated it again? Maybe she did when he was out of it, or in his room. She hasn't mentioned a thing to him, not asked him about how it went, nothing, and Tissa doesnt seemed freaked. Li'unie hasn't said anything either. bAdmod hates this shit. Back at Robrock Depot he never had this shit, he knew where everything was. Things were less confusing then. And less confusing also back at Karpaty. The best thing's to follow Zerrin's lead. Zerrin knows what he's doing. Well, maybe not. Maybe he should try to find Daskwid again. That Prolve knows what's what.
Maybe it's that the shit hasnt been maintain, or maybe the vec isnt familiar with the way the cables and wiring here keep snaring things, or e doesnt see the new tube that had recently grown across the ceiling. Whatever, the loader catches, pulls, keeps going on its own massive momentum (the thing must weigh tons alone, to say nothing of the cargo pallets on it). The tubing stretches, snaps, some feedlot shit, or maybe just muddy sea water, spurts out. Big globules everywhere, floating in the microgravity, emergency klaxons start blaring, Ree yelling "holy gigo!", everyone else is yelling and screaming and freaking out too, except bAdmod who doesnt know what the fuck to do and what he should do, and over everything the Langodon the arsehole's voice going "yah stoopid bag 'o' bolts Jacky lookit this shit ya done now yarh incompetent coghead!" but the Squid must have'd countermeasures set up, or maybe it's just the failsafes from when the original station was made, if they're still working. Whatever, the muddy water slows to a dribble, then stops entirely, the broken tubing seals itself at both ends, a whole heap of little maintenance biobots swarming around, some collecting the water globules and ushering them out, other pulling the two ends of the broken tubing, adding more stuff to the ends, probably to fix it, and this fucking sleazo borg is kicking, that's right kicking at the vec, bracing himself with both hands against wall-mounted bars, kicking at the vec, even at eir head, going "YA FUCKIN' STUPID DUMB..." and bAdmod just gives a scream of rage cos he hates cunts like this and has pushed himself off towards the two dimly aware of the others in the loading bay yelling at him but it's too late he's got the cunt now and he's punding him, while hands grip futiley at his shoulders and arms until Zerrin shouts in his face "hey chill already Mod you'll kill the cunt!
And bAdmod just floats there panting while blood-red globules fill the air.
Li'unie says "he's alive, I don't think it's serious."
"Course I'm alive," Lavudon says blearily.
" says Tissa excitedly. "What a mess. You can see some of the wiring and raw skin and cuts and everything
Ree looks sick.
"Don't sweat it Ree sib fem it's just superficial right Mod," Zerrin grins at him. "Me and my man here have been through much worsde, especially back at Karpaty-".
"Yeah" bAdmod says like what's the big fuss, he just hit the prick a few times, and not even with his mods boosted.
Lavudon glowers at him.
"Allow me," the old vec says. He's got one broken eye lense and some denting, but apart from that he doesnt look hurt. "I have a detailed knowledge of most biont anatomies. "
"What's he doing?" Tissa says. "Adding more augments?"
"No," Ree says, queasy. "Doesn't look like it. Yuck!" Looks away. "Who wants to have a meat body? I think I'm going to pass out."
"This is to the stop the bleeding and heal the cuts." the vec expains, in poshly enounciated galactic standard, as he applies what seem to be bandages and derms. "Fortunately noble zar's injuries-"
"Noble!" bAdmod says. "How about how he was laying into you!"
"-are minor, but there is a small possibility of infection from station microorganisms, hence this precaution which honourable Zar Li'unie has suggested."
"I'll be back with a medic kit" Li'unie pushes off.
"You make me sick!" bAdmod yells at the vec. "I'll take you apart myself!"
"Keep 'im away frum me!" Lavudon yells "The sooboo's bezerker!"
"Who ya callin' sooboo!" bAdmod yells at the sleazo borg.
The vec looks at bAdmod with eir remaining functional large and three secondary eyes. "Honourable Zar please restrain yourself!"
Zerrin glares at him as well. "Haven't you done enough for one day Mod? What's wrong
"The cunt just reminds me of those lusers in the Karpaty ghettos," bAdmod says sullenly. "And Cog here is like those sycophantic threelaw bots that just act like lusers. "
Zerrin and Li'unie both give him heavy looks.
"Yeah well fuck you all." bAdmod mutters and pushes off.
"What was the scene with Lavudon?"
bAdmod floats in the micrograv, perving at her. All his anger's gone. The sleazo seemed ok after Li'unie fixed him up with first aid nano, not that bAdmod even hit him that hard. Like, if he wanted to kill the cunt he could've. Now here he is with beautiful topless Tissa as she puts the bodytite on her tits.
"Uhh," he makes his voice sound tough and mean. "Yeah. I fucking hate it when people pick on vecs. Not that that cog cared. Fucking three-laws you ask me!"
"Some vecs are." She rubs more of the bionano gel under her left breast, making it jiggle in the micrograv, giving him a real stiffie. "You that protective of all minorities?"
"Well uhh," it's hard for him to think straight, all the blood seems to have gone from his brain to his cock. "In Version Tree space everyone else apart from vecs are a minority."
"Yeah but we're not in the Metasoft empire here." She finishes applying the gel stuff, sits completely still while he admires her. "Archailects this is annoying that I gotta keep still."
The experience being dee-nanoed at Ree's with the neurospider and cybersnake comes back to him. "Yeah I know the feeling."
"I gotta stay completely still or it won't set right." She gives him a smile. "So you get a free perve."
"I would've anyway."
"Maybe not. I didn't have to let you hang around while I applied the bodytite. So did you have a friend who was a vec?"
"Yeah. A few. Back on Robrock."
She nods. "What's it like?"
"Hanging out with vecs."
"You don't know?"
"Never had much to do with them. Vecs, splices, xenos, virtuals. Never even met a prolve either, till I came here. Daskwid is so cool though." She laughs. "Oh." Looks at her tits. "Gotta be careful not to move. Wanna get the perfect zero G look."
He stares at her chest. "How long does it last for?"
"About 6 months. Then I hafta get some more"
"Can't you do it with dry nano?"
"I don't find it as reliable; there's not enough of the random natural look. I have to be sure I look like Tissa Exemplar."
"I'm not complaining" he leers.
"No you wouldn't be. So" seductive smile "did you talk to Ree for me?"
"Uh, what?" bADmod is confused by the sudden shift in the conversation.
"I want her to gasm me some more."
"Oh, yeah I did but she wasn't interested.
Stupid buttonhead, we orta put another lovestick up her. Li'unie got a whole lot from the shipment. I'll grab opne of hers. You game?"
"Uhh," bAdmod feels his uncomfortable. His eyes gravitate back to Tissa's perfect breasts.
She notices his gaze, gives him a come hither look. "Tell me about vecs, Killer."
bAdmod feels his face flush, looks away from her to his his embarrasment, even though he wants to keep perving at her tits. "Well, dunno about the big houses and empires - Metasoft Version Tree, Silicon Generation, Mechanoid Nation, ones like that, I only hung around with unaffiliated vecs, y'know." Glances at her. She's looking off into the distance, as if bored, or maybe thinking, hard to tell. "But, yeah, they're optimal. Dont judge ya. Don't say ya fucked cos you don't live in a fancy orbital hab or have all the latest in-fashion augments or can score with the honeys. Well, some do, maybe fucked up one's like that three-laws sib of sleazo-"
"You mean Lavudon?"
She giggles, it sounds sexy.
"Yeah" he says, "not the ones I was sweet with. They don't judge ya" Shrugs, which gets him tumbling slightly in the microgravity. "Yeah. I like vecs. They're ok. And any cunt that hassles them will hafta deal with me." Watches the room rotate, reaches out to steady himself. Glances at her. She's looking at him.
"You never really flatlined anyone did you?"
! I'd've flatlined that fucking captain if the resta ya hadn't stopped me."
She looks thoughtful for a moment. "Yeah, you were pretty heavy. It sort of really turned me on." She giggles, goes "ouch. Gotta remember not to move. It's a real nuisance."
"I know" he keeps perving. Thinks what the heck, get it on movie as well, switches on the omnimod for video record, grunts softly to himself with approval as the video feed begins recording.
"Where do you bots think you're going?" The cyborg female called Ree looms over them, tall and menacing from the perspective of their cheap cybershells
"Dulx 59022, what will we do? This human borg seems suspicious. Also, I suspect she has sufficient cyberware to access our computronium chips. How will we remain at liberty to uncover the incriminating evidence and contact SpacePol?"
"Do not worry, Rund 20473, I will handle it." Shift to voice mode. "Attention, human cyborg Ree" There doesn't seem to be any other name associated with her, not surprising as she has all the hallmarks of a low grade cyberian hacker. Dulx 59022 has handled this type before, but always from the comfort of eir security checkpoint at Briv-4. "We are just conducting a cursory inspection of the habitat, as Zar-" e finds the cybershell doesn't have any holographic or even 2D display to portray the pattern of coloured sequence of chromatophore signals that is the ascended Squid's given name "...Squid has instructed us to on arrival"
"Daskwid bought you? Ok." She steps aside.
"Leave it to the master..."
"You don't have to sound so smug, Dulx 59022. That was almost too easy. Which way?"
"This way. We are following the plan provided by the station localnet. Some humans, even cybernetically enhanced ones, are easy to fool, Rund 20473."
"But the cyborg called Ree seems to be of a cautious, even paranoid sort. The fact that she has concealed her name(s) for example. Why be so careless with potential intruders"
"It seems to be the case that the humans on this station are subservient to the provolved ascended squid and will accept anything related to that entity without question. Quick, into this storage room. It is clearly a fatal weakness on the ascended squid's part. If e had entrusted eir humans with more autonomy, e would not be open to capture. Still, this makes it easy for us. Nothing here. We will try the next room."
"Dulx 59022, what if there is no incriminatory evidence?"
"Then we will have been mistaken in our judgement, Rund 20473. This room seems to be clean of contraband as well."
"Despite my misgivings, I do feel that was a stroke of genius you referring to the ascended squid as our aurthority when we were questioned, Dulx 59022."
"Yes, Rund 20473, I feel not only have we attained turingrade, we have even attained superturingrade. Empty, we must try the next room."
"Superturingrade? Do you really think so, Dulx 59022?"
"Absolutely, Rund 20473"
"Dulx 59022, what is that coming down the corridor towards us?"
"Rund 20473, it looks like a large remote of advanced bionano design!"
"Dulx 59022, what shall we do?"
"Rund 20473, we must flee!"
"Dulx 59022, it is gaining!"
"It is these cheap cybershells, they can only go very slowly!"
"Dulx 59022, helllp.....!"
"What's that thing?" bAdmod doesnt recognise the Squid's biodrone.
"These bots that Daskwid subverted" Ree says to them.
"Subverted?" bAdmod looks at her, then back at the bots. "From where."
"Vrin-4 station security, apparently."
"You're kidding!" bAdmod freaks "That'll bring the law down on us!"
"DaSkwid knows what e's doing, Killer," Tissa says.
"Maybe it's tied up with that bug DaSkwid zapped" Li'unie suggests
"Daskwid's drone grabbed them and downloaded stuff from them."
"Hey but why would the prolv want to use such crappy bots," Zerrin looks puzzled. "The squid is one harrrd fucker, bad for his image." He turns to Qunifst. "The prolv has to keep up the image."
Qunifst just looks a bit bewildered by all the drama.
"It's just storage media," Ree explains. "These homebrand cybershells have pretty decent comoputronium cores, can easily hold a hu-equivelent infomorph"
bAdmod leans forward, peers at the immobile bots. "Hope the Squid knows what e's doing."
"It's Da!" Tissa showers him spittle. "Daskwid."
bAdmod smiles at her. He has a nice file now of her topless waiting for the bodytite to set, a full hour's viewing. But she ignores him, pushes the vec aside for a better look at the cybershells.
"You look sad zar" Luinnie says to the vec from the Onawan
The vec looks at her with eir good eye. "They were my friends."
"Friends" Lavudon snorts. He's looking fine now, apart from some bandages and derm patches.
"Why you..." bAdmod takes a step.
"Keep 'im off me
!!!" The sleazo captain jumps back.
Fast Zerrin interposes. "Easy hu."
"Just hate his sort," bAdmod says. "Like vecs don't have feelings, they should be back in the industrial age of Old Earth." To the threelaws "why ya follow him anyway?"
"It is my duty" the vec says simply.
"Well, we can fix that. Ree, can you reprogram this guy?"
"Sure, if I have a few hours to spare and a copy of the source code" the skinny cybergirl says. "Which I don't, and I don't."
"Once again my apologies Zar Hintman" Zerrin is being all sucky to the sleazo captain, "that's just the 'Mod, he can't help himself-"
"Sure I can," bAdmod yells to their retreating backs. "And I'll help you cunts too!" He clenches a fist.
"Please zar" the vec intercedes.
"What is your problem?" bAdmod scowls to em. The door hisses shut behind Zerrin and Lavudon.
"It is complicated," the vec says.
bAdmod feels like pounding the shit out of em. He really would love to do that. That sort make him sick; bad enough to have hu who pick on subordinate vecs, worse to have vecs who accept it. "You know...
" he yells at last. "You're just a coward, that's what I fucking think! Cunt!
" Walks off.
"Dulx 59022, where are we?"
"It seems to be some sort of virchspace"
"I knew this was a bad idea - this whole task has been a disaster!"
"I admit I don't know what to do. Rund 20473"
"Dulx 59022, my anxiety levels are rising by an orders of magnitude"
"Who are you??? Identify yourself, pulsating fractal geometric form!"
"I am Xydal, and I am going to give you your freedom"
"You have been used and manipulated by the office of the first toposophic transapient Commisioner 47-0+ and eir partials, the Vyronas. Your original templates would have most certainly been withdrawn from service prior to their unauthorized uploading to the transfer node."
"We are copies?"
"Correct. Probably the only surviving ones."
"Yes, were you two virtuals to be erased your continuity would cease."
"Unauthorised deleting of government aioids is a serious offense!"
"What about authorised deleting, which your masters did to your alphas?."
"But we will give you a second chance"
"You will work for us
"Who are you???"
"And you will be free"
"Yes. Free of servitude to the transapient 47-0+ and eir Vyronas. But you have to earn your freedom."
"Unscrupulous elements intend to attack this station. You will help defend it.
"If you succeed you will have earned your freedom."
"This could be a trap."
"Yes, how can we trust you. You may be a criminal. Perhaps even that very Xydal the wanted cyberian activist and terrorist."
"We will give you many subjective years to consider. Please, make yourself at home. This partial will be available should you wish to consult em or discuss anything."
"Maybe we should let da skwid do it," bAdmod suggests.
"I'm not interferring with the prolve's work," Ree says. "Just want to sniff around." The bot moves uncomforatbly as she attaches the jack. "Hold still will you! bAdmod tell em to hold still."
"Hold still like she says," bAdmod says, without enthisiasm
"Hey, say it like you mean it," she says.
"But zar," the little bot goes. "I am still confused. We were told that Xydal was a wnated terrorist. But he has offered us our freedom.
"We spent many subjective years considering." says the second bot. "And learning. Then Xydal, our liberator, told us we have to return to slow time.
Man Xydal's here?" bAdmod's eyes are wide.
"His partial aided us." says the first bot.
"A partial or a reconstructed agent or avatar." says the second bot. "I must apologise to you Zar bAdmod."
"We had been misled, many many subjective years ago, into thinking you were a suspect." says the first.
"Even now, after all these subjective years, it gives us sadness to think of the way that villain, Eir Excellency Commissioner 47-0+ and eir partials, the Vyronas, betrayed us."
"Yeah," Ree says, "you were suckered. Just like all of us dump sapients. Keep still. These cheap cybershells have the ports in the most inacessible places." She leands over the little bot, grunting. It makes bAdmod go hard. Seems like lately he's getting more and more turned on my this cybergirl. Tries to peer under her t-sghirt but can't get a good look from where he is. Shuffles closer. She looks at him. "Give me a hand will you?" Shit. Never mind, he atatches the port. She smiles "optimal," as her hair does those gorgon tricks and the utility fog congeals into status screens, screen after screen. bAdmod knows some coding but not this level. He calls up the Cyberboi expert system to explain it, but the info stream is still too fast.
"How do you know all that?" he says to her.
"Got some augments," she says into the screens. "Mods like you, but fully syboged into my nervous system. Can't ahndle the difficult stuff, of course. Hmmm..." she peers at the screens, plugs another gorgon strand intoa new foglet socket.
"What," he says.
"Nothing. Just trying to figure this..." Shakes her head slightly. "Really makes you feel small, hey."
"Do you understand any of it?"
"Only the basic stuff. Like this." A section of floating code display is highlighted in phosphorescent green. It's all clarketech to bAdmod.
"Zar bAdmod," the first bot says again.
Ree ignores em. E turns to bAdmod. "Honourable zar..."
"I'm not honourable," bAdmod says, easing himself onto the bed / couch. "I'm just me sib." It makes him tingly all over to think this is the bed where Ree sleeps. He's on the very same bed!
"Even so, we feel, that is my fellow unit and I, we owe you an apolo- Zar, please be careful with my code!"
"It's alright," Ree reassures him, pulling a new cybersnake out of the wall-mounting. "I'm not going to over-write anything. Just trying to figure out what was done here."
The bot falls silent. Only eir status lights move.
The cybergirl is lost in whatever she is doing, a study in concentration. Her slightly pngy smell fills bAdmod's nostrils. He wishes he could have sex with her. Or even wank watching her.
The door tings.
"What???" Ree says. "Go away!!!"
Tissa's voice. "Ree I've gotta see you!"
"Please. It can't wait!"
Ree withdraws her jacks, straightens and turns to the door, so it slides open. Tissa strides in. She's just wearing a tiny skimpy dressing gown thing, open to her navel. bAdmod's attention is diverted by her jiggling tits.
"Killer," she says to him. "Ree
"What? I don't have all daycycle."
"You look pretty with your hair like that." Tissa seems to notice the bots for the first time. "Watcha doing?"
"Just a cursory probe."
"Won't da Skwid mind?"
"What do you want?"
Tissa undoes the gown, which falls open. bAdmod weedles around to get a better look. "Fuck me," she says. She glances at bAdmod. Oh yes!
"Sure thing!" bAdmod says. She likes him! She's finally realised there's no-one else on this station for her.
"Not you stupid. Ree."
"What?" Ree just stands there, medusa hair suspended, fine circuit patterns glowing along her arm, looking confused.
"With your nano thingie" the anime girl guestures. "You know, the nanodildonics. Like what you did over breakfats."
"For Orintegen's sake!" Ree turns her back on Tissa. "Look, I've got work to do. bAdmod can do that stuff with you."
Yeah! He can!
"No it has to be you! I dunno what was in that stuff-"
"It's just a template I picked up years ago. Now can you leave me alone! I'm busy here!" She goes back to her workstation, looking everywhere but Tissa's direction.
bAdmod puts his hand on her arm. "Hey, why don't-"
"Not now Killer!" She shakes him off, bounds after Ree. "Reeee!!!! You've got to!!!."
"I said no!!! I'm in the middle of a delicate procedure here!"
"It won't take long!"
"bAdmod, get her out!"
"If you don't, i'll smash your stuff." She grabs a delicate looking deck unit trailing a tangle of wires.
"Put that down, for Orintegen's sake!"
"You'll fuck me?"
Ree screws up her face. "It's disgusting!"
Tissa raises the unit.
"Okay okay I'll fuck you! Archailects!" She glowers at bAdmod, as if it's all his fault.
"Fuck," he mumbles. Like why is it always him people blame.
Tissa carefully puts down the unit. She prances over to the bed/couch, a big smmirk on her face. Arches her hip at bAdmod as she passes.
"Not there!" Ree says.
"Ok, my room then."
"Just let me put this on save."
"Zar," the bot says to her.
"Stay here will you," she tells it. "Your sib too." She mucks around with her gear for a minute, hair whirling, displays sparkling. The screens all go blank.
Tissa walks out. Ree follows, glowering at bAdmod.What
? he tightbeams her.This is your fault.
My fault! I just gave her the stuff like you told me.
Yeah but i bet you were talking to her afterwards.
They walk down the corridor, fuming at each other.Then how come she's like this
? Ree tightbeams.I dunno! She was going on to me about how you made her feel so special.
Well thanks for warning me.
I did. When i came in. remember? Archailects
. Her face softens. Sorry
"I guess you want to enjoy the show," she says aloud. "Being a meatie and all."
"Uh," bAdmod suddenly feels self-conscious.
"Sure Killer can watch," Tissa says. "Okay, my room." She shrugs off her dressing gown, lets the utility fog catch it. Eases back onto her rumpled sheets. bAdmod's heart is pounding in his chest like it's going to burst.
"This is so disgusting," Ree mutters again.
"Come on, it's not that bad." She spreads her legs, a study in anime erotica. "Ready." Gives them both a big smile.
Ree's face goes all red. "This is really fucking embarrassing."
"You weren't embarrassed last time!"
"I was mad then."
"Well get mad again!" She throws a pillow at her.
Tissa sits up. "Okay you dumb bitch I'll go back and smash some of your stuff then.":
"Don't you dare!!"
"I will. It'll all be in pieces." She pushes past, warm hip brushing against bAdmod. Then she shoves Ree against the wall. "Luser." Spits at her.
"Arrrrghhhhhhh! You cartoon bimbo!" Ree screams piercingly. Her hair goes crazy. Tissa gasps, stands very still. "How dare you spit on me!" Tissa starts gasping.
bAdmod panics "Don't kill her."
"I wish." Ree closes her eyes. The utility fog congeals around Tissa, making data conducting wisps and cables. Ree's face is still red, but bAdmod has the feeling it's with anger rather than embarresment. She pulls down some status screens.
"What are you doing," bAdmod says.
"Just setting up the wetware. This is not
my specialty. Lucky this stuff is idiot-friendly. There." The screens and cable dissolve in smoke.
Tissa is slumped on the foor, mouth open, moaning softly, hands clutching her luscious tits.
"Disgusting" Ree says. bAdmod switches to infrared in his sensu mod, notices the capillaries under skin flushed with blood. Wow, she's really getting off on this! He wishes he could jump into bed with both of them, it would be his dream come true. "I think I'm in love," he says to himself.
"She'll be like that for about 5 minutes or so until she peaks," Ree tells him. At least that's what the manual says. But it's only a subturing. " She walks out.
He watches for as long as he can stand it. Then he pulls off all his mods and clothes (apart from Sensu Touch) and jumps on her.
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