The CAP: Retrieving the Chancellors
 

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The CAP: Retrieving the Chancellors
by AC-Bt

Early one morning Jackie been minding her own business instructing a couple of lower level Debs in a particularly devious exercise when she received a urgent message to report to GBt’s office. Entering the room, she saw her grandmother in an uncharacteristically somber mood idling passing a pen between the fingers of her right hand while looking out the window.

“GBt?” she began, not knowing what to expect.

“Ah, Jackie,” her grandmother responded, turning to face her. “Sit down, I’ve just received very bad news.” Sighing deeply she continued, “The chancellors, Astraea, Nanaea and Hebea are dead. I’ve just had a message from the hotel in Lost Wages where they were staying.”

Jackie just sat for a moment, trying to absorb what she’d heard, and then said, “When? How could this happen? We didn’t ever intend for anyone to get hurt, much less die!”

Quietly, Bt told her that the Chancellors had been found in a hot tub that one of them had been cleaning. “The hotel suspects foul play,” Bt continued, “Since both the Android O.M.A.R and the Alt. Ladybug are missing, they assume there was a falling out among the group and that  O.M.A.R and Ladybug drowned the others and put them in the tub.
Someone smashed the heat controls for the tub to make it appear to be an accident caused by faulty controls.” Bt, sighed again, “I don’t know what to think.”

“The hotel wants to keep this quiet as possible and has sent tickets to transport one of us there to claim the bodies. You are the Devious Deb’s Doyenne. I can’t think of anyone better qualified to find out what really happened. That’s why I want you to go to Lost Wages. You can arrange to transport the bodies back here for internment and don’t
forget to include their luggage and personal effects. Maybe we can learn something from them. Oh, you’d better also try to find out where O.M.A.R and the Alt Ladybug are and get them back here, too. They both have a lot of explaining to do.”

“Your ship leaves tonight when the tide turns so you’d better get packed. I’ve got to tell the rest about this now, but I wanted to get you on your way first.”

After Jackie had left Bt continued to nervously play with the pen and stare out her window. She had told Jackie the truth, up to a point, but in the academic world of high intrigue there were some things, like her conversation with HoD the previous night, which were better kept to ones self. Absently, she affixed her signature to some routine documents and added the Acting Chancellor designation after it. “But with this development,” she mused, “Maybe not acting for long.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Jackie stood in the prow of the small ship with her hair streaming out behind her. The early morning sun glinted off the waves as the ship knifed through the water and stirred it to a frothy wake which spread behind the rapidly moving vessel. This was her second morning at sea. The captain had assured her they were making excellent time and if the wind held as it was, they would come into the port closest to Lost Wages by night fall.

A very well dressed but somehow still greasy looking man, who identified himself as an employee of the hotel, met her at the dock. He hurried her into a covered coach which left the waterfront area at such a high rate of speed, sparks flew from the iron shod hooves of the animals pulling the coach.

The coach stopped next to long flat field on the outskirts of town. Crouched on the field was the largest aerial dragon Jackie had ever seen. It turned its huge, many faceted eyes in her direction as they left the coach and just the thought of being that close to such a beast sent
shivers up Jac’s spine. Before she could protest, the man hurried her to the side of the dragon and up a metal ladder. On the back of the dragon there was perched a small box or perhaps, a house. It was secured by several straps running around the dragon’s belly and back up to the other side of the box. The inside was quite luxurious with padded seats facing small windows in the box. The man assured her that flying by Dragon-Airline was the quickest and easiest way to reach Lost Wages.

He showed her how to fasten the seat-belt about her waist. “Just a precaution,” he assured her, “these take-offs are sometimes a little bumpy.” He then signaled to a man who was mounted on the dragon’s neck. The dragon began to run down the field and after several hops and jumps accompanied by massive down-strokes of its wings managed to get off the ground.

“Well, that wasn’t too bad,” Jackie thought to herself. “I think I could get used to this kind of pampering, too.” She smiled and sipped the drink brought to her by a scantily clad muscular waiter.

to be continued.....



Posted on Oct 12 1999, 09:09 AM

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