For a scary moment this morning, I completely forgot myself.
I heard a terrible alarm and assumed the worst. So I jumped out of the cunning bed my apparent captors had made for me, threw the katooey out of the prison cell that looked an awful lot like my actual room in the B.U.I.L.D.I.N.G., and shot the living !@#$ out of my alarm clock for having the total !@#$ gumption to go off at 5 in the !@#$ AM when I'd been out drinking, dancing, and !@#$ing my !@#$ off in Seoul the night before.
Then I heard METALMAID singing that one song she always sings when she makes my Hunter's breakfast (off an early Gary Numan album, I think) and realized that I was not in captivity. I was just experiencing another case of what people tend to call morning amnesia, only most people don't punctuate their fits with gunshots, roundhouse kicks, and SPYGOD vision.
(And how I got from there to here, and got something approximating a half a night's sleep, even after the President called me at 3 in the !@#$ AM is a bit of a trade secret, son. Don't ask.)
Back to the grind, then. Several head-sized screwdrivers. Enough coffee to sink a banana boat. Rum soaked fruit, eggs benedict, and good homemade speed. Tjbang sticks. Another quick goodbye !@#$ with the one who doesn't scream.
(Note to self: METALMAID no longer seems as cheery. What the !@#$ is up with that slaughterbot? Should have her checked out. Soon. When things settle down.)
Flier comes around on time, for once. I jump off the B.U.I.L.D.I.N.G. and onto the crash deck, narrowly missing a VTOL on its way out. A couple hand signals and we're all cool. I just tell him it was a training exercise. Really.
This morning is just chock full of excitement. First up is a pre-meeting meeting with section heads. Then I have a pre-meeting meeting with the Heptagon. Then the real meeting with Washington and the section heads and some two-headed zebra who speaks French, none of which goes according to any semblance of a plan.
Especially when the zebra starts singing Justin Bieber just to show us how hip he is. If he wasn't triple-endangered we'd be having zebra burgers for lunch in the commissary today, I swear to !@#$.
(And no, I am not on drugs. Well, more drugs than usual. This !@#$ zebra is real. But no one can tell me how he got this high of a clearance, which kind of worries me.)
After all that, we go over the data we got from our little adventure in Incheon. The good news is that we may be able to narrow down exactly what HONEYCOMB did to these people, which means we can extrapolate what they may have done to others. If we can do that, we can possibly detect the sleeper agents they've got out there, around the world, and do something to handle them before they wake up and start blowing !@#$ up.
By handle, I mean "not kill." I'd really rather we kept this as non-lethal as possible. But if that doesn't work, I've got the spin teams working on some possible ideas for explaining this one away.
(None of them sound like anything I'd want to say while looking at myself in the mirror. Not while sober, anyway.)
Lunchtime is a seminar about using our new portable consoles. I call a halt to it about halfway through when I realize the contractor telling us how to do our work doesn't have the right security clearances to be here in the first place. Hilarity ensues as I dangle his !@#$ out the window and ask him to tell us who he's really working for. He !@#$ himself but won't say anything but the name of his supervisor, who I call on the phone with the new portable console (just to show they've gotten their money's worth on that seminar) and send pictures to ensure he cooperates.
Yes, it turned out to be a false alarm. But you never can tell in this line of work. Also, the lunch being served was horrible, even by our standards, so it gives me an excuse to order up some decent food for a change. There is much rejoicing, even from the zebra, which strikes me as odd.
After lunch, there's more talking about what we've found in South Korea. The results can't come fast enough for me, but trying to get directly involved does not help. Neither does sticking guns in the faces of those doing the work, as I soon discover. I go back to my office, masturbate vigorously, and try to shoot down passing weather balloons with love pellets. I do not miss.
The President calls about something important a while later. I blow him off, and then wonder why. Then I realize that something really !@#$ weird has been staring me in the face all day long.
That !@#$ing zebra.
I go after the black and white striped !@#$ with extreme prejudice, but by the time I storm the conference room, guns dragging behind me like a ghost's chains, it's already gone. Turns out we were invaded, again. Clever thing came down and shifted our brains around to accept the absurdity of the situation.
Even mine, which is saying something.
Unfortunately for Mr. Zebra, my hat of alien invasions know no limit. I know what he looks like, and I know how to track him. So I call up the head of DAMOCLES and tell him to nail the thing that looks like a flying two-headed zebra in a big orange bubble that's just crossing the Moon's orbit at that very !@#$ moment.
For some weird reason, he complies. Scratch one flying two-headed French zebra with an unnatural interest in a young singer. This is also cause for celebration, once I have a few words with the jack!@#$es that run our security around this floating party barge. We clearly need something that will deal with these kinds of situations, and I won't be taking "IDK" for an answer this time around.
Around 8 in the PM I call the working day over, and have the Flier drop me off at The B.U.I.L.D.I.N.G. BeeBee's asleep on a pile of guns when I come in so I leave her the !@#$ alone, order up some Indian from the place that's now just down the block, and settle in for a night of taped TV shows, chicken curry so spicy it'll make the ceiling melt, and enough Kingfisher to get every Dalit in New Delhi drunker than !@#$.
I may also shoot out the TV if I don't like the cut of its jib, but after the day I've had, I think I'm entitled.
(SPYGOD is listening to One Nation Under a Groove (Parliament/Funkadelic) and enjoying that Kingfisher.)