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Yet another teaser from Chapter Four
Yet another teaser from Chapter Four
#1
As I close in on the ending of this chapter, here's a little tidbit as a holiday present.  



The four of us were across the street from the shop in question,
which was closed up tight -- right down to the clock-painted
metal shutter rolled down over the storefront and locked
securely.  Well.  Given that it was late afternoon on a Monday,
and the store had only had its grand opening two days ago, was
pretty solid evidence that something hinky was going on, as far
as I was concerned.  "I think we're better off debating that
later, girls," I said.  "We have more important matters at hand."

"He's right."  Luna laid a hand on each girl's shoulder.  "We'll
talk about it in the after-action briefing."

Usagi's eyes lit up, no doubt at thought of the brownie waiting
for her at the Hard Rock.  "Right," she echoed, then glanced at
me.  "What's next, sensei?"

"Oh, no," I chuckled.  "I'm not in command, Teishi.  *You* are.
Take what you've been learning the last few weeks and apply it." 
Ami gave me a curious look, but I didn't react to it.

Usagi bit her lip as she thought.  "Well, first thing is we need
intelligence on the enemy.  No!" she interrupted herself. 
"There's something else, first."  She grabbed Ami's hand and
dragged her back into the alley behind us.  As first Usagi and
then Ami called out the trigger phrases for their transformations
I shared a grin with Luna, after which we joined the girls in the
alley.

"...ways transform *before* you start an operation," Sailor Moon
was lecturing Sailor Mercury.  "*That way we're protected both
physically and identity-wise if something goes wrong right from
the start."  I suppressed a proud smile at hearing her repeat my
words almost exactly, and I noticed that Luna wasn't even
bothering.

Mercury had a very serious expression on her face, and nodded
solemnly when Moon finished.  "And now we gather intelligence?"
she asked.

"Yeah!" Moon replied with a brisk nod.  "Now, what I've done
before is use the disguise pen to go in looking like someone who
belongs wherever the Enemy is set up.  I find out what I'm
facing, then leave and come back as me.  But I can't do that this
time."  She waved toward the steel-shuttered shop across the
street.

"But this time we have my computer!" Mercury said, producing the
gizmo in question out of a little blur of magic in the small of
her back.

"Exactly!" Moon declared triumphantly as Mercury was already
suiting actions to words.  Luna and I stood back and watched
the two of them as she flipped it open, then touched the stud in
her ear to turn on the "goggles" that wrapped her face in a
bubble of blue light.  I seriously wanted to look over her
shoulder as she used the device, but that could wait until later.
This was a learning experience for the two of them, and didn't
need me sticking my nose in. 

Yet.

Mercury held the tiny terminal in both hands like a game
controller or a cell phone with the text messaging app open, and
operated it in much the same manner.  Her thumbs danced across
the keys with a practiced speed -- I briefly wondered if muscle
memory carried over across reincarnation -- then she paused for a
moment, apparently studying something displayed on her HUD.  She
tilted her head, then began rapidly keying again.

"I hope I'm reading this right," she muttered.  "It looks like
there's some kind of space-time distortion inside the shop.  It
makes it hard to scan anything past the first few meters inside
the shutter, but I can make out two non-human entities inside."

Moon nodded thoughtfully.  "Just like at the Crystal seminar,"
she said softly.  "One to guard, and one to drain."

"Yes," Mercury replied.  "That does seem reasonable."

"One question," Moon added.

Mercury looked up at her from the computer.  "Yes?"

Moon smiled sheepishly.  "What's a space-time thingy?"
-- Bob

I have been Roland, Beowulf, Achilles, Gilgamesh, Clark Kent, Mary Sue, DJ Croft, Skysaber.  I have been 
called a hundred names and will be called a thousand more before the sun grows dim and cold....

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RE: Yet another teaser from Chapter Four
#2
(grin) That's our girl, all right.
--
‎noli esse culus
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RE: Yet another teaser from Chapter Four
#3
The Cat : [to Rimmer] What *is* it?

Rimmer : It's a rent in the space-time continuum.

The Cat : [to Lister] What *is* it?

Lister : The stasis room freezes time, you know, makes time stand still. So whenever you have a leak, it must preserve whatever it's leaked into, and it's leaked into this room.

The Cat : [to Rimmer] What *is* it?

Rimmer : It's singularity, a point in the Universe where the normal laws of space and time don't apply.

The Cat : [to Lister] What *is* it?

Lister : It's a hole back into the past.

The Cat : Oh, a magic door! Well, why didn't you say?
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