Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Brave New World

“no no No No No NO NO!”

A calculator flew threw the air in our common room, impacting on the wall in front of me, shattering into dozens of pieces. It came so close to my head, I spilled half of my drink.

I sighed - only one person could get angry enough to violence a harmless piece of corporate machinery...

“Ok, Sis - spit it out.”

“The material market!”, she bellowed, waving a bundle of spreadsheets at me. I couldn’t read any of the writing from this distance, but the diagrams were visible enough: colorful curves of averages and channels, and all pointing downwards. “Might as well not bother reacting anything,” continued Eta, “by the time it’s done, I can be lucky to just break even.”

She threw the sheets back onto her desk, and leaned back. “I knew PI would mess things up, but this...”

“Shush, there must be something still worthwhile...”, I walked the few steps over to here, ignoring the wisps of smoke emanating from my tunic. “Let me see - how about this? PPD Fullerene Fibers - they make a decent profit still.”

“Yes, but - ”, she pulled up the current market prices, “there’s hardly enough of the gases out there to make it worth the effort of switching the reactor around. It’d be easier to just raid a w-space system or three.”

“Hmm...”, leaning back I pondered the situation. “Well, guess you’re screwed then.”

She harrumphed. “Gee, thanks! I’ll just have to try these to materials and hope for the best. But I wonder what POS fuel is doing now...”

“You may not want to...” I started in alarm, but too late: she pulled up the market information before I could stop her. Quickly I ducked behind a chair in anticipation of the next domestic projectile - but to my surprise nothing happened.

As I carefully peeked over the top of the chair, Eta was absentmindedly doodling on a piece of paper.

“You know,” she said to noone in particular, “Sometimes I wonder if shouldn’t just forget about this stuff, and do something less stressful. Like joining Hellfleet, or so.”

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