feminine_menace: (Thrasher Girl)
2017-01-06 04:42 pm
Entry tags:

On the Wrong End of Creative Revenge

There's this particular red VW microbus in the garage. Some creative person took out the back two rows of seats and installed shag carpeting and bean bag chairs. YT will sometimes hang out in there with the side doors open, usually when she wants to study.

With a post-winter-break quiz looming (because YT's Italian teacher is a fucking sadist), YT decides it's time to retreat to the microbus with her language textbook. She opens the side doors, places the books inside, and jumps into the back, like usual.

The side doors slam shut behind her, which is not usual. Nor is the steady beep, beep, beep coming from the front end of the vehicle. Puzzled and annoyed, YT leans over the front bench seat to see 'sup.

Under the dashboard is something that wasn't there before. It's a collection of wires and little bits of machinery about the size of a thick briefcase. On it, angled upward so she can see it, is a little digital readout that says 1:52, then 1:51, and then 1:50. Each time the number decrements the device makes a beep noise.

It takes YT to the count of 1:49 to process what she's seeing, and when she does, her stomach shrinks to the size of a fist and her heart tries to climb out her throat. Shit shit shit!

YT darts to the side door and tries the handle. No dice. She notices that the little door lock posts are down, so she tries to pull them up. They're stuck - no matter how hard she pulls, she can't get them to come up.

"Fuck!" she shouts, throwing herself at the back door - no good - and then at the driver and front passenger doors. She feels like she's going to be sick, but she doesn't have time to be sick, there's only...

1:12

seconds left.

"Shit shit shit!" YT looks around frantically for a way out. Her throat is dry, her heart feels like it's trying to bust through her ribcage, and the beeping of the timer is loud in her ears.

It comes to her: the only way out is to break a window. There really isn't anything in the microbus that she can use to smash the windows, so she'll have to rely on her own muscles. YT vaults into the front seat and curls up her legs with her feet pointing at the windshield. She takes a deep breath, braces her back against the seat, and kicks. Once. Twice. Three times. She makes a small spiderweb of cracks, which gets bigger and bigger with each kick.

Finally the windshield gives, shards spraying outwards and tinkling on the floor of the garage. YT pushes through the opening, arms held up to protect her face, her blood pounding in her ears. Luckily her coverall keeps her from taking any glass-related damage on the way through the hole. But when she lands badly and hits the broken glass on the garage floor, she manages to open a nasty gash in her cheek. She's so freaked out she doesn't even feel it. She just stumbles to her feet, running around the side of the VW, trying frantically to get out of range before the bomb goes off.

She doesn't make it in time.

There are three loud THOOMS that she feels more than hears, in quick succession, and a breath of intense heat. YT is knocked off her feet, or maybe she just does a total BSOD, because the next thing she knows she's curled up in a ball on the garage floor, shaking and struggling to breathe, head aching, ears ringing. There's a smell of burned metal and plastic in the air so strong it makes her want to barf. She also feels like she may have pissed herself.

YT looks up and around, blinking slowly. The VW microbus is intact. What the fuck? But three other nearby vehicles - a Hummer, a Corvette, and a minivan - have been reduced to smoking, burning husks.

Something silvery flashes in the corner of YT's eye as it speeds away. She's not sure what it was.

YT's mind goes back to Christmas, when someone sent her a countdown timer with no note. She had a pretty good idea of who sent it, but she didn't know what it meant.

Well, now she knows.

Jim Moriarty. Fuck.
feminine_menace: (Default)
2007-04-09 09:55 am
Entry tags:

The Other Kung Fu Chick

The doc said YT is okay for skateboarding practice, as long as she doesn't do anything too crazy, so she's been just sort of cruising over the hills. She's roaming further than usual, because she's looking for someone.

She hasn't seen the kung fu chick since she went to the infirmary the other day. YT's kind of curious about her. And she also wants to learn her name, if possible. Maybe learn some of that cool stuff she was doing. After all, YT's planning to join a war effort soon, and afterward, being able to fight like that - or at least half so well, maybe even a quarter - would certainly be useful in her own world.

YT returns to the spot where she first saw the kung fu girl practicing, hoping that maybe she's back there today.
feminine_menace: (Default)
2007-02-02 07:18 pm
Entry tags:

In from the Street

YT walks out of the Port in which she's just materialized, right into the busiest part of Downtown. It's early Friday evening on the West Coast, the part of Reality she hails from, so there are lots of other Americans on the Street right now, done up in their flashiest avatars.

Her avatar is not flashy: it looks just like she does, right down to the blue-and-orange RadiKS coverall she wears for work. It's a high-quality job, though, crafted with painstaking care by a veteran designer and rendered by a cutting-edge personal computer. Most skateboard Kouriers have to make do with fuzzy black-and-white avatars from public terminals. But YT has connections - to two of the most prominent hackers in the Metaverse, among others.

Muttering a special command, she summons a virtual replica of the skateboard she uses in Reality. When it materializes in front of her, she steps on, kicks off and coasts down the Street.

The Port she came out of isn't the closest one to her destination, but sometimes she likes to take the scenic route. There's always something interesting or weird to check out in the Metaverse. More to the point, there's a part of her that never fails to be fascinated by the whole place - not that she'd ever admit it.

YT passes by mile-high structures laced with neon and covered with giant screens displaying everything from advertisements to indie films; by something that vaguely resembles a Gothic cathedral, with its gargoyles and sculptures clambering all over the roof, walls and alcoves; by an open-air theater where there is a jazz concert in progress. She goes by (and through) crowds of avatars of varying quality and degrees of humanness; there are dragons, movie stars, aliens, geisha, deities from various pantheons, wizards, businessmen, elves, and the inevitable Brandys, Clints and giant ambulatory penises. It's Halloween and Carnival all at once, all the time.

She is fast approaching her destination: she shifts her weight to make a minor course correction. Since certain rules of physics - like friction and momentum - are only enforced on an arbitrary basis here, her plank is still going at the same speed it was when she gave it the initial push. Even the adaptive smartwheels on her real-world skateboard couldn't have managed that.

The entrance to The Black Sun is, as always, surrounded by a crowd of gawkers, wannabes and hangers-on who don't have permission to cross the property line. The building is a simple matte black pyramid with the top cut off: the only decoration is a circle in bas-relief, with the name of the place engraved under it, above the door. Although it doesn't look like much, it's one of the oldest, most important and most exclusive places in the Metaverse. And it happens to be run by two of her close personal friends: they're usually hanging out in there at this time of day, which is why YT is here.

YT puts her foot down, stops her plank, picks it up, and saunters through the crowd of avatars packed around the door. Another bit of physics that the Street generally ignores is collision between people, which is convenient for both the system and the people themselves. Crowds like this just sort of turn into fogbanks, from the perspective of the person going through them.

Unlike the rest of the fogbank, though, YT can get across the property line and into the doorway. When she does, the whole crowd goes nuts, cheering and waving like they've just spotted a celebrity. Of course, none of them have any idea who YT is, but as far as they're concerned, if she can get into the Black Sun, she's an Important person. There was a time when she got a real kick out of this, but now she just finds it mildly annoying, if she happens to be in a mood to care at all.

Right now she isn't. She ignores the crowds and steps through the door, into the Black Sun.

Or, rather, that's what was supposed to happen. What has actually happened, and where she actually is, are entirely different...