Jan. 18th, 2012

tayastorm: (caffeine)
"SerraTec."

"I have a parcel I'd like delivered. It's small and relatively unimportant, but urgent delivery is required for reasons I would prefer not to go into."

"I'd prefer not to hear them. Send through the coordinates and description. Make sure it's somewhere close to the road with no obstacles. I only make one attempt at pick up. After that it's your problem."

"Ah, I would be willing to pay whatever price you required if that occurred."

"Use the money to make sure it doesn't happen. You have one hour to arrange it. SerraTec out."

I tossed the phone on the bed as I climbed out of it, renewing my vows to throttle Bull when I saw him next. Become a courier, he says. See the world, all expenses paid, and you can turn down any jobs you like. Of course he doesn't mention that I'd /like/ to turn them all down, because the sorts of people who hire an unlicensed courier weren't the likeable ones.

And of course no one mentioned that it became a sort of addiction. There were times when taking a job from even the slimiest of the dirtsacks was better than one more day doing anything else.

That was the only reason I'd said yes to that job. The guy was obviously up to no good, and I was either the bait or the target. But I'd had nothing to do for a full week. I already knew the area - I went through it to get pretty much everywhere in these parts - so sightseeing was pointless, and I'd missed the heaven lights - some sort of weather phenomenon and the only thing that happened that could be called any sort of interesting - by two days. Tossing myself into the crosshairs would be a vast improvement, and quite possibly the highlight of my month.

My datpad - and if I ever met the people responsible for giving them a name like that I was going to make sure they never did it again - flashed and chirped happily as it received the job, sifting through the file for any bugs and filing the details into the program my brother had designed for me.

"Destination?" I asked.

"Location name withheld," my brother's voice said. "Coordinates match the corporate territories of the Bowson Industries. Estimated travel time four hours and twenty three minutes."

"Estimate basis?" I asked, smiling at the precise estimate. I'd asked him once how it worked out the estimate and it took three days to make him stop trying to explain it. That was before it had occurred to him to offer several estimate options for distance, speed limits, and my favourite...

"Based on your driving record," he said, "with a mandatory reminder that this state has road laws."

I laughed, remembering all the times my brother had reminded me of that fact, though he'd chosen much more elaborate ways, most of which involved threats of various sorts.

Which of course reminded me why I was alone on the road, and my mood took a nosedive. Well fuck.

Leaving the datpad to sort everything out I went to shower and pack my stuff. I always left most of it in the car, but somehow no matter how little I brought into the motels it turned into a puzzle solving game to get it all back into the bags. When I got back to a networked state I'd have to see if anyone had worked out a reason for it. Odd sort of thing to expect people to know, but couriers were an odd sort, and we certainly had enough time to ponder things like that. When I left a group had been working out a mathematical explanation for socks lost in the wash.

I did mention we were strange, right?

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Tundra

April 2012

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