Sitting in her KCON office cube, Morrigan McBride pecks at the keyboard, working on her afternoon story, as she waits on hold with the California Highway Patrol. Ten minutes later, a human voice finally answers.
Morrigan: (Exasperated) Look, I have pushed over a dozen numbers and have listened to three complete rock ballads, I just want to find out where my gun is - no, I've already tried that... yes, it was over four months ago when I first came to town, the officer seized it because of an incident I had with my car - Officer Baten... what do you mean there's no Officer Baten? - YES, I'M SURE THAT'S HIS NAME - but... wait, NO - listen, I'll come down there in person to straighten this out - I NEED AN APPOINTMENT? - well, please make one for me... call back at 1:00 pm? - DO YOU KNOW WHO MY FATHER IS? - hello?
Morrigan slams down her phone and groans.
Morrigan: NO ONE DOES THEIR DAMN JOB ANYMORE - UGH... I can't believe I used that line about my dad
As she sighs and collects herself, an instant message pops up on the screen from Zachary Isaacson.
As Morrigan returns to her story, another instant message pops up.
Saving the message and jumping up from her desk, Morrigan rushes over to Gracie Takanachi's cube. Fingers is hard at work on new images for her Sigma 7 website.
Gracie: Hold on, one sec...
Morrigan: IT CAN'T WAIT
Gracie: It can and will for 30 seconds
Morrigan: (Looking at her screen) DAMMIT, I NEED YOUR HELP - STOP FUCKING AROUND WITH THAT ASININE WEBSITE
Gracie: (Standing up and looking Morrigan in the eye) WHAT IN THE HELL IS YOUR PROBLEM?
Morrigan: Can you do a trace on an IM?
Gracie: It's not simple but it can be done
Morrigan: Quick, go to my computer and get it!
Gracie scowls at her.
Gracie: Did you save it?
Gracie: (Returning to her site) Good, then it will be there when I'm ready to do something with it
Morrigan: (Clenching her teeth and fists) COULD YOU... could you possibly explain to me what is so important about this site? - you go through all of this hard work, you never get any feedback, you certainly aren't making any money off it, these people are nothing but losers with no lives, the actual Sig7 show could care less if you live or die - don't you think your time and efforts could be better spent ELSEWHERE?
Gracie: ELSEWHERE DOING YOUR SLAVE WORK, WHITE PERKY BITCH?
Morrigan: HELLO, THIS IS A PLACE OF BUSINESS, NOT R'XAL'S SPACE STATION
The two tone it down as several of their co-workers pop their heads over the cube.
Morrigan: (Waving to them) Hi there, everything's cool!
Gracie: You know, Morri, I bet you were popular in school and had plenty of friends
Morrigan: Not as many as you assume I did
Gracie: Well, the only time kids wanted to play with me was to make fun of me or when my parents forced my brother to take me with him to play Star Wars or baseball with the neighborhood boys
Morrigan: What does this have to do with anything?
Gracie: Hold on, I'm getting there... I was the only one in my school with an outward disability and one of three Asians - an older Jap girl and a younger Chinaman - I spent my recesses with Jackie the one eyebrow girl and Kevin who constantly smelled like poo - and, at home, I was on the sofa with mom watching Ryan's Hope and Days of Our Lives
Morrigan: I watched Dallas and Dynasty, so?
Gracie: SO... IF YOU MAKE ONE MORE CRACK ABOUT MY QUIRKY WEBSITE FANDOM OBSESSION, I WILL BE FORCED TO MAKE JOKES ABOUT YOUR DEAD MOTHER AND NO ONE WANTS THAT
Both women look like they are ready to tear each other's eyes out as Jason Clark, the sportscaster, comes over to them.
Jason: LADIES... what's up?
Gracie: What do you want, Clark?
Jason: A ring full of mud and a midget referee
Both women shoot puzzled looks to each other and then to him.
Jason: (Leaning on the wall of the cube) I'm just trying to lighten the mood a bit - they can hear you all the way down at our sister station in LA
Morrigan: (Sheepish) Sorry about that
Gracie: Screw LA
Jason: So, what's the battle between you two about?
Morrigan: Nothing important
Gracie: Funny, it seemed real important a few moments ago - important enough to slam my Sig7 site!
Jason: Ooh, not a smart move, McBride - Gracie's compulsion is no different than the millions of sports fans who spend every waking moment following their favorite players and keeping stats, spending tons of money on memorabilia and team jerseys... it's just not as mainstream
Gracie: THANK THE GODS FOR THAT
Morrigan shakes her head and rolls her eyes. She suddenly notices several bruised knuckles on Jason's right hand.
Morrigan: What happened to your hand, Jason?
Jason: (Holding it up) Oh, this? - just a little sports injury - I get carried away with a game of horse now and then
Gracie: (Winking) He's a joke... I mean, a JOCK, always getting injured
Jason: Hey, KCON has box seats to the Cactus game tonight, you two want to come along?
Morrigan: I have plans tonight but definitely next time
Jason: What about you, Grace?
Gracie: I have a set to do later
Jason: That's later, come on, it will be fun - I promise
Gracie: (Sighing) I suppose
Jason: (Big smile) COOL - we'll leave after my segment at six - oh, I almost forgot... I brought back a tiki glass for your collection from Vegas
Gracie: Thanks, Clark - get back to work!
Jason: (Striding away) No more catfights!
Gracie: He's right, sorry about that
Morrigan: Me too... I wonder what really happened to his hand?
Gracie: Gimme a break, Morri
Morrigan: That doesn't look like your typical sports injury
Gracie: You're right, he secretly beat his wife with it... wait, he doesn't have a wife!
Morrigan: Did you notice how quickly he changed the subject?
Gracie: Would you stop being so suspicious for once?
Morrigan: Easier said than done
Gracie: (Getting up) No kidding, now show me this IM
The two return to Morrigan's cube and Gracie starts in on tracking the instant message.
Morrigan: He likes you, you know
Morrigan: The man we were just speaking with... Jason
Morrigan: C'mon - he defended you AND brought you back a tiki glass - did you see his face light up when you said you'd go tonight?
Gracie: You're crazy
Morrigan: Maybe, but I'm also right
Gracie: Look, unlike Kylee, I don't go out with KCON employees or black men
Morrigan: How racist is that?
Gracie: Look, I nearly killed my folks marrying a white man, I'm not about to finish the job with Home Boy
Morrigan: That's stinkin' thinkin' Takanachi
Gracie: Did your great grandma teach you that expression? - it needs to stay buried with her
Morrigan: I'm just saying...
Gracie: I know EXACTLY what you're saying - because I'm a "minority" I should have no problem dating other minorities
Gracie: I suppose you'll next try to fix me up with a guy in a wheelchair because that's all I'm worthy of
Morrigan: STOP IT
Gracie: Ah, here we go, your IM originated from Santa Conchita University but that is as far as I can go
Morrigan: Interesting... thanks so much for your help
Gracie: Are you going to tell me what this is about?
Gracie: Are you holding out Aleta Oscura info on me?
Morrigan: (Steeling herself) Of course not
Gracie: (Suspicious) Right - I need to get back to my Sig7 site and I'll leave you to your obsession with the Creature from the Black Lagoon
Gracie: (Walking away) No
Slumping in her seat, Morrigan calls Isaacson on her phone.
Morrigan: Zach, I think I pissed off Gracie
Zach: You made fun of Sigma 7, didn't you?
Morrigan: How do I say I'm sorry?
Zach: Pork rinds, yellow daisies and vinyl disco records
Morrigan: (Rubbing her head) OK... ready for lunch?
Zach: Can't, a better offer came up - see you tomorrow
Morrigan: (Sighing as she clicks off) Heh, hanging with the hooded people is almost attractive right now
Surfaced on July 1, 2000
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