The Omicron Matter – Preparations and Arrival – Dealing with Communication Issues


A new entry in the Omicron Matter – Preparations and Arrival. Findley Brown has been dealing with stifling boredom associated with confinement.  After weeks, Smith returns to visit. But it is not for pleasantries.

For those who are new to the Omicron Matter, the book home page is a good place to start.

Author’s note

I suppose I could have described on how Findley passed the time. Did he spend it plotting people’s demise? Or did he day dream of ruling a country? He hardly seems the journalling type.  I did enjoy writing the dialog. There is an “easter egg” for my Indonesian fan base.

Thanks for you support, look for more on Monday.  And there may be some interesting things happening in Nanowrimo.

Findley Brown – Dealing with Communication Issues

Findley stared at the ceiling of the cabin. Redman had dropped off his meal without as much as a word. Meals seemed to coincide with time outside of jumps. But that was probably due to activity and the general malaise of jumps. After the initial days, Smith never returned to the cabin.

Findley supposed he should be worried about being sold off to some sadistic deviant slaver. But he and Winifred had been communicating via taps on the wall.  The electronic isolation worked both ways and Camille could not monitor them as closely.  Apparently Winifred had avoided the savage brutality of Smith, but she had been equally isolated. And he had removed her robotic hand. She was angry, furious really, at that deprivation. Smith may have viewed the removal as a calculated punishment. Winifred had made it clear to Findley that it was a bridge Smith had burned. Findley was more than happy to step into the void.

Winifred was convinced she had a way to bypass the door locks. However, such knowledge was a little use with nowhere to go. Findley pointed out that they would be the equivalent of refugees in a foreign port hoping for some useful attention.  Winifred was convinced that, once in contact with the Guild, those matters would be resolved.

It was during these musings, that Smith walked into the room with Alfred Redman behind him. Findley remained reclined on the bed. Smith looked at him and then said, “Mr. Brown, whoever gets you will require a minimum degree of functionality such as the ability to communicate.”

Findley smirked and said, “I communicate just fine – English, French, German and even a bit of Spanish.”

Smith looked down his nose saying, “How very cosmopolitan of you.  If someone said, ‘Apakah nama Anda, silahkan’, how would you respond?”

Findley was confused. Sounds had come out of Smith’s mouth, but they were unrecognizable. Findley hissed back, “It’s gibberish. How should I know?”

Smith looked up at the ceiling and shook his head saying, “How did you English manage to conquer the world?” He looked back at Findley and said, “I simply asked your name. Which, I will add, would be difficult to say for the native speakers of that language.”

Findley resisted the urge to say four languages ought to be enough. He sat up on the bed and said, “And when do my lessons start?”

Smith barked a harsh laugh, “Even myself or Morgaine could not manage the rudiments of all the necessary languages.” He leaned in and grinned thinly, “Fortunately for everyone, there is a far simpler method.”

Findley said waving a hand airly, “Fine…Fine. How does the new miracle of yours work?”

Smith rested his hand on Findley’s shoulder and gripped tightly, “Here is the part I am going to enjoy. The initial procedure is remarkably like collaring.” Findley stiffened, but Smith pulled him to his feet and moved him towards the door, “Perhaps I will get two jobs done at once.” He could hear Redman crack his knuckles and Findley felt himself propelled through the doors as he screamed, “noo….”

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