Saturday, September 5, 2009

Fur Wars - Chapter 24

It was unmistakable, the PING!… shhhhhhhhhhhhh…PING!… shhhhhhhhhh... PING! of the distress signal had come back on at coordinates of exactly BZT173690-HRW373028. Distress signals don’t just turn themselves off and on again all by themselves, just as crack teams of elite Imperial soldiers don’t get overrun by creatures so technologically retarded that they still live among the branches of trees. Something was happening on the planet below. “It’s him, I know it’s him,” intoned a deep, unseen, metallic voice.

The screen flickered and blinked into life illuminating the flight controls of an Imperial Landing Craft. Lord Vimto looked down as the disfigured face of his direct Imperial Line Manager, ruler of the known universe, Emperor Mong fizzled into pixelated view.

Vimto spoke: “Master, I believe I have located a Rebel stronghold at the coordinates BZT173690-HRW373028. I intend to go down to the planet’s surface, however, I may well require ground support. A number of our elite forces were over-powered during an earlier reconnaissance mission.”

Mong stared silently out of the holographic display unit for a moment, his lips started moving, his face scowling with disapproval, but nothing came out.

Vimto spoke once more: “…er sorry Emperor Mong, but can you say that again? I’ve got a bit of a weak signal, you’re cutting out a bit. These new holographic display units are OK over a couple of parsecs, but the antennae leave a lot to be desired. Hang on, I’ll move the aerial over to the window. Go on,” said Vimto, “try now.”
“BZT173690-HRW373028,” said Mong, “why do I know those cooridinates?”
“…er, no reason really. It’s just some coordinates. Could be anywhere.”
“No. No, I’ve definitely heard those coordinates somewhere before.”
“Well, it’s just that, well, it’s just that those happen to, y’know, quite coincidentally, be the same ones that the recon droids said they’d found. And I er…”
“SILENCE VIMTO!” ordered Mong, “You have disobeyed me. The Rebel leader Dale Harden is ready to capitulate. This prophecy that you pursue so relentlessly will be your undoing ..”
“Nope,” said Vimto taping his thumb against the screen, “you’re cutting out again.”
“I demand that you return immediately to the ..”
“No, no. Sorry my Lord, it’s no good, we’ll have to try another ..” Vimto reached down and pulled the plug of his holographic display unit before reaching up and punching the coordinates BZT173690-HRW373028 into his navi droid.

“BEEP! Re-calculating….BEEP! Re-calculating” squawked the droid.

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