The objective and movement data was displayed before her, The tech having just finished the briefing. “So the teams have tried, with the same information we have and failed. Either we need more information or we need to make a better plan than they did.”
“Pretty much, unless you want to go for the definition of insanity. you know . . . doing the same thing and expecting different results . . .”
“Tell that to pregnant teens, they never expect the ‘different result’.” She stared at the wall, flipping a knife in her hand. “We all had the same training. Any ‘best’ plan I make will likely be very close to the one my predecessors made. That almost automatically makes it a bad idea.”
He watched the silvery blade spin with the fascination of a mouse watching the snake. “Um, so what do we do? Ask someone else to plan for us?”
She missed that catch and the blade clattered to the floor. “Sort of.” She looked down at the blade and then slowly raised her gaze to meet his frightened one. “You knew where this conversation would go before it started, didn’t you?”
He nodded. “Planning and options is what you have me for.”
“Do THEY know about this option?” Her voice was little more than a whisper.
“Their idea. I was to guide you to it so it seemed to be your plan.” His eyes flickered to the blade between them and then back to her face.
“Kind of messed that up, didn’t you? By telling me and all?” She was so very still he was not even sure she was breathing.
“I made the choice. You live and we succeed because I tell you what the situation is. After that, you make the field decisions as to who dies and when.” He bent over and scooped up the knife and held it out to her. “I do my job, you do yours.”
She took the knife and looked at it before slighting into its sheath. “You do your job, I do mine . . . but what about him?”
“I think the same applies as the last two times, tell him the truth and see what he does.” The tech shrugged. “Goes completely against what we have been taught.”
“And it worked out, both times.” She paused her hand absently still on the knife. “Do you think He might be the real purpose of this mission?”
“We told them they just had to ask if they need more isk from him.”
“No, I mean bringing him full in. Point him like a weapon.”
The tech paused. “If you die. How would he react?”
“His friends still haven’t told him about how his lover died, the truth about the cause. They are afraid of what might happen. If I died and that was the reason for all of this . . . someone would tell him everything. An anonymous friend.” She grimaced. “They’d do it. Might even be why we have this mission. I make it, they win. I die, they still win.”
“And they give us another impossible mission. We keep going till we break and they don’t mind.” He paused for a moment. “So what do we do?”
She grinned wolfishly. “We do what they don’t expect. We use the one thing that always works on him. Where is he right now.”
The tech did not even pretend to refer to his comms. “Cat, back where she died. Um, you know about his . . . um, I don’t mean he is a chain . . . ”
“Yes, I know he has slaves. I also know why and I approve. Why?”
“Somebody paid for several hundred of the freed ones and a fair number of indentured to the Fed Station in Cat as well. Facility bookings indicate a party. Thing is, the bookings last for five days.” He chuckled. “Man has stamina, I will give him that.”
“What the devil is he up to, now?” She went to pack knowing that bookings to the system would be ready before she was.
No lessons, just story
Think I should do an end of the year summary for those just tripping across the blog? Where it has gone, persona dramatis and such like?
fly it like you won it