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msknight

Michelle's corner

Michelle Knight. Writer, photographer, programmer, truck driver and general, all round nut case. Life is a journey and that's what this blog will probably end up being. Let's see where we go, eh? ;-)

Currently reading

Your Beauty Mark. All You Need to Get the Hair, Makeup, Glow, and Glam.
Dita von Teese
Progress: 208/256 pages

Excerpt - "Check Mate"

I thought I'd share with you an excerpt from "Check Mate" that I'm working on, where a chess program has been loaded in to a military robot. It is currently with a few people who are taking a look at it and will let me know where the holes are, so I can fill them in before it goes to the publisher, but long story short, this is the kind of humour that's coming up ... oh, and bacon glazed ring doughnuts, of course, but that's another part of the story...

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Elsewhere on the base, in the Hydra research laboratory, around twentiy-ish people sat round a table. Actually, “people,” would be a generous description as many of them were nursing hangovers, so they were still several cups of coffee away from being called human, let alone classifying as actual people.

Some of them had taken the day off specifically to recover from a hard nights partying and had deeply resented their pagers going off. Those unfortunate souls were closer to being classified as ursidae, all be it without the fur. They were certainly doing a fine job of growling like bad tempered grizzlies over having their days relaxation suspended.

Professor Hicks was bringing the assembled group of entities up to speed with the morning events. “So that, ladies and gentlemen, is how we now have a HYRDA, heavily armed, sat in the hanger that isn't responding to shut down orders. Anyone have any ideas?” He sat down, with Andy and Gary sat either side, still looking somewhat the worse for wear.

Harris, one of the people who had been hoping to have a quiet day off, ventured a barbed quip. “Yes. Walk in front of it with a crown on your head, then fall over and play dead. Maybe it would think you had conceded and end the program.”

Actually, that might be worth a shot.” Hicks smiled, much to Harris' annoyance. “Anyone else?”

Someone sympathetic with Harris' position, put forward the obvious. “We designed the damn thing to be impervious to anything short of a nuclear explosion. If it has closed its control panel and refuses to listen to commands to shut down, then I don't know what we can do.”

What about doing something that will drain its power?” came another voice.

Someone else quipped, “So you want us to design a giant treadmill, tune it in to the fitness channel and hope that it decides to go on an extended exercise program?”

At that point, the discussion turned in to a free for all. Voices started to raise as far as people's aching heads would allow, and the exchanges came thick and fast. Hicks just put his head in his hands. This was just too surreal for his alcohol addled skull.

Suddenly, the alarms went off. Lights started flashing and sirens flooded the lab. Everyone around the table, most of them with thumping headaches, wailed, slapped their hands over their ears and closed their eyes. The only ones unaffected by this were Gary and Andy, the former by his practised skill in the art of alcohol consumption, and the other because the smell of his own urine had been the brain equivalent of a defibrillator shock.

Someone on the other side of the table started to shout over the din. “I hadn't been told of a drill. How dare they do this unannounced.” The looks on various faces and lip reading of mouthed responses revealed that most of the room were in general agreement.

A woman on Gary's right stood up and shouted an observation to the assembled throng, “Well, as we haven't been told that there was a drill, I believe there is only one possible outcome that we can conclude as being a valid logical state.” She then fell silent.

The original naysayer spoke, or rather screamed, for the rest of the team. “Well don't just stand there shouting logic at us; kindly deliver the conclusion of your matrix.”

That this isn't a drill, you moron.”