Killing Times OST – 10c – Dance

<< 10b – Dance

“You’re better than I thought at this undercover thing,” I murmured as Vexx and I strode along the empty hallways. He shot me a questioning glance. “The kiss. You adapted quickly. That’s good.”
“Yeah… sure.”
His hesitation led me to believe he was more nervous than I thought. I could understand. We had fifteen minutes to get to the secure floor, do our thing and return to the ballroom; that was how long the opening speech lasted each year. Everyone was currently looking at the cover identity of Merrilyn Tech’s president. After that, they would sit down for the banquet. We could always explain our lateness with ruffled clothes and disheveled hair but the paparazzi would have a field day.
Missing the host’s speech for a make-out session? My reputation would bear the smut forever and then some.
Vexx had uploaded the blueprint of the building on his tweaked PDA. He switched between the floor plan and the hacking interface, guiding our progression and looping the camera feed as we went. I almost revealed our presence when Vexx stopped without warning. Luckily, I stopped myself from rounding the corner and watched him deactivate a new security measure – or so I guessed.
“You need to improve your teamwork, chomp,” I muttered.
“I’m busy. All you have to do is follow.” I refrained from smacking the back of his head. Where did that sour mood come from? Or was that the visage of Vexx under pressure? I didn’t like it at all.
I shouldn’t have let him take the lead for a waltz.
He started again, without a word. I sighed and walked behind him. I knew from the plan that I was meant to be the “get in and out of jail” free card; he couldn’t get in without me and I’d pull his ass out of trouble should any arise. Nevertheless, I didn’t appreciate being treated like a burden. This was my infiltration plan; I just hadn’t bothered to memorize the blue prints since Vexx carried them.
We finally reached our target – the most non-descript office door ever known to men – and I performed my most important task of the night; I picked the lock. Yay me!
Maybe I should have asked Vexx to teach me hacking instead of Surgery 101. I shivered. Maybe not.
The door opened on a small room, an ante-chamber to the wider space spreading behind a glass wall. Vexx dropped the second spider to the floor and it flattened to writhe through the joint between the glass and the floor. In the middle of the next room, a podium occasionally shone. A safe door broke the even gray of the far wall.
“Looks like there’s an X-ray motion detector in there,” I said in a low voice.
“I saw that,” Vexx replied at a similar volume. The phrase still rubbed me the wrong way. “According to this, there are also some very sensitive mikes monitoring the sound level.” He intensely studied the information coming from the spider. “BluePrint the far wall.” He plucked the cylinder out of his inner pocket and put it in my hand. I waited for a “please” that never came.
I should smash the BluePrinter on his little techie’s head. But I wanted the prize – crippling Merrilyn Tech – so I sucked in some air and held my breath until the desire to yell at Vexx passed. He wanted to be in charge, fine. I’d make him regret it soon enough.
The only bitch I tolerated was me.
I snapped a picture of the target before Vexx reminded me to do it. A minute later, the spider crawled back under the glass and returned to Vexx’s pocket. I dropped the BluePrinter in my clutch with my lock picks. We were out and back to the ballroom as the speech ended.
The lack of security made me doubt the value of the device Vexx talked about. No search to speak of at the ballroom’s entrance, minimal surveillance in the hallways… sure, the interesting room had pricey detectors but they couldn’t be worth that much if Vexx could hack them under a minute. That left me with three options. A, there was nothing there. B, there was something so valuable Merrilyn Tech wanted everyone to believe there was nothing there. C, something really fishy was going on.
Maybe the analysis of the info we gathered would enlighten us.
Vexx resumed his ‘boyfriendly’ attitude as we applauded the speech with the rest of the crowd. He kept a bit more distance than before but it didn’t matter as much now that the deed was done.
A funny twist of fate made it so that we sat at the table next to my FBI agent, who looked bored a ninth grader in math class. I doubted he was here for the party. It was probably another one of those wide nets to catch my alter ego. How many random events and locations had he been sent to in the hope to find me? And here I was but unless we danced really close together, he’d have no way to associate me to his memories.
Nothing tied my real personality to Nightshade. Or Nightshade to the high society, for that matter. Except when murders happened.
“Vexx,” I murmured in the techie’s ear. I wrapped my arms around his shoulders for dramatic effect. “Would the BluePrinter work on people?”
“Sure. Why?”
“Curiosity.” Or maybe it was a hunch.
The BluePrinter went up a notch in my appreciation. The only reason it wasn’t widely produced – as Vexx explained in the car on the way over – was that it was a bitch to program and build for rather imprecise results. Companies developed scanners to detect imperfection in a specific product but never pushed the technology further.
“Not profitable,” Vexx had said.
“Depends for who,” I thought as I subtly snapped a shot of my FBI agent. He looked splendid in his suit. Un-Tasered. The BluePrinter would reveal if he was pretty on the inside too. I leaned back in my chair.
Despite Vexx’s weird moods, this was the beginning of a good night. I smiled at my father and clinked my glass with his for the toast he called. I hoped the alcohol and good food would soften Vexx’s humor or else the evening might be long. I was ready to postpone the “don’t ever be rude with me again” lesson.
I loved to tango that much.

11a – Deception >>


About Aheïla

Somewhere in Quebec City, Aheïla works as a Game Design Director by day and writes by night. Known for her blue hair, unyielding dynamism and tasty cooking (quails, anyone?), she’s convinced “prose is the new crack”. She satisfies her addiction daily on The Writeaholic’s Blog and weekly on Games' Bustles View all posts by Aheïla

8 responses to “Killing Times OST – 10c – Dance

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