A(nother) Year in Seattle – Week 06 – Friction

A(nother) Year in Seattle

Sunday – August 3, 2059 – Plotting

A few phone calls, a small transfer of money and we were ready. Well, Case was ready– I was to stay out of this since I was considered administrative. For the case to stick, Case needed a clear evidence trail and the funds they were supplying had to go through eligible members of my team.

Hugh and Dwight took great, if a bit perverse, pleasure of being the ones to supply the marked funds. It seems some friends of theirs had had some… experiences with one of the hate groups in question.

On the downside– Case was busy setting things up so Bri and I had to keep ourselves entertained. We ended up down at the arcade with PC’s cat watching Bri as we tweaked the interface for his drawing program. By the time we’d finished, Case had too.

He met us down there and was amazed at the techno-cat setup. I could see the gears in his head turning as he thought about the surveillance possibilities.

About two hours later, I managed to drag him and Bri away from PC and the arcade and get something to eat.

Sometimes I wonder how we manage.

Monday – August 4, 2059 – Set-up

I had a hard time concentrating on my job this morning. I kept thinking about Dwight and Hugh and the case Case was building against our unionizing friends.

If they were the people Case thought they were, I figured they would be sitting there feeling smug that they’d hoodwinked a couple of ‘dumb trogs’– It did my heart good to think about getting people like that off the streets. Life is crazy enough without more people preaching hate and insanity.

I muddled through my paperwork, and my official report on the unionizing meeting– my duty as a good little corporation lackey.

Patrick O’Hare dropped by around 14:00 to let me know that Dwight and Hugh had done their job and that Case was now following the money trail. I guessed that meant I was on my own for the evening and Pat’s nod confirmed it.

After that, I was back to pretending to work. I did set up an appointment from one of the architects from the Renraku Arcology project. Seems they’re putting the finishing touches on the main public areas and as such need to have approval from the city’s building commission.

In order to get that– they have to have someone from Emergency Medical Services go over the place. I guess that’s one of the problems with being a medic and an administrator– I have the knowledge and the rank to do inspections– and since I’m not really doing anything…

We’re meeting next Monday– should prove interesting.

Tuesday – August 5, 2059 – Administrative leave

Today started a lot earlier than I wanted to since Case wasn’t home. I finally got Bri to fall asleep and was about to join her when the phone rang.

I had to go down to the office and explain why I attended a union meeting since I am administrative and therefore unable to be a part of any union.

Yes– our con men even went as far as to file a grievance against me, claiming I was exerting undo pressure on my men by attending. Some people…

I mean– they invited me…

To top it all off, I couldn’t tell my boss about the investigation, because it was an ongoing federal case. I really hope Case gets something on them and soon.

I’ve been placed on administrative leave for the next three days– as an administrator. I still get to do my regular job at least.

Wednesday – August 6, 2059 – Accusations

Well– all I can really say about today is ‘its over’. Its early Thursday morning and I’m barely functional. I had to get in early because the unionizers had to have a mediated dialog with me about my reprehensible behavior.

They insisted that I should have known that as an administrator, I was not allowed to attend.

I tried to point out the fact that a) I wasn’t there as an administrator and b) that I was invited… They proceeded to argue that I should have known that it was a mistake.

They didn’t do their research– and it was all my fault.

I had a really hard time not spouting off at them. Here they are a bunch of con-men trying to take advantage of people who work their butts off for a living and they have the audacity to attack me in the interest of keeping things looking legit.

Heaven help them if they ever need medical services in my city!

Okay–I’m tired and I’m ticked off. Not a very good combination.

Case could tell as soon as I walked in the door that things hadn’t gone well. He handed me a cup of chamomile tea laced with honey… and rum.

“Won’t be much longer,” was all he told me as he hustled me off to bed.

“But Bri…” I objected.

“Bri is having a sleepover at Aunt Trina’s… you, my dear are going to bed.”

For a lunk-headed Federal Agent– Case can be a real sweetheart sometimes.

Thursday – August 7, 2059 – Nobody

You know– I’m not really the vindictive type… but sometimes– sometimes I take great pleasure in seeing people get their just deserts. This is one of those times.

Case and his people followed the money they’d given Dwight and Hugh– through many redirections and obscure transactions, was filtered through to an extremist branch of the Humanis Policlub.

Now Humanis is bad enough as it is– but when you go ‘extreme’ from there– it gets to the point that… They almost become a caricature. Hell, I almost expect them to sprout horns sometimes.

Do these people even listen to themselves?

Anyway– tracking the money to the club gave Case what he needed to subpoena their records and place more and better surveillance on our friends. It’s not an airtight case, not by a long shot– but it is now a fully open and backed investigation.

I also know that with Case on the job– nobody’s going to squash it.

Friday – August 8, 2059 – Almost nobody

I was once again called into the CEO’s office and once again had to face two angry men demanding that I be reprimanded for dirty and underhanded tricks. To hear them tell it I was trying to strong-arm them into leaving the area– denying our hardworking medics the right to unbiased representation.

This time Citywide was ready for them though– with a cease and desist order of their own. It seems their constant finger pointing is as much harassment as what they’re claiming I’m doing.

I really don’t believe the – audacity of these two. I mean– if I didn’t know better I’d think they were genuine. Maybe they were– at some point in their career. After they left I was questioned about what was going on.

All I could do was tell them that I was staying clear of the situation and that I would not and could not get involved.

The CEO gave me this cryptic smile and said, “I hope they can get them too.”

Then he laughed at the startled look I gave him. “You aren’t the only one with connections Miller. Now get out of my office and go do something productive.”

That was it, but I had to smile. It’s nice having a boss that more than understands.

Of course, I didn’t get nearly the sleep I needed– but adrenalin saw me through the first part of it. The meeting and a near miss on my way to one of the calls saw to that.

I couldn’t tell for sure– but the near miss looked rather intentional to me. Not that I really had any time to worry about it. We had about four calls back to back– the final one coming in just as the ambulance team arrived. As they loaded the patient, I was already packing up for the next call.

It wasn’t until an hour before quitting time that I realized there was no moon out. Sometimes I don’t know which is worse– full moons or new ones. Thinking about the last full moon– I think I’ll stick with new ones.

Saturday – August 9 , 2059 – Coping

Case and I did a pretty good job of not talking about last night until Bri was finally asleep for the night. There wasn’t anything we really could discuss after she’d gone to bed– but at least we could joke about the audacity.

Sometimes it helps– I mean there’s enough insanity in this world as it is, and I know these guys are just running a scam, but why did they have to be so good at it?

Anybody on the inside knows what they’re saying isn’t true– but they can’t say anything. To the courts and the press… if they take it that far… it’s going to look like they’re right.

I just don’t want to think about it. We do not need that kind of publicity.

I don’t want to think about it, but I am. Case knows it too.

It’s hard not to.

Hopefully, it won’t take Case’s people long to get this taken care of and I can go back to the normal chaos that I know and love.

Copyright 2000 M.T. Decker

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