Sunday December 23, 2007
Book 9: The Body Politic — Part V: Collecting


Narrator: Aboard the Touch-And-Go the reprieve bought by the Terra Firmator's ramming maneuver has been brief.
Petey: Hello, Tagon. Good work collecting Xinchub.
Captain Tagon: Petey! You've got to do something!
Petey: I've done all I can. Xinchub is no longer aboard your ship, and your accounts have been credited with the agreed-upon payment.
Captain Tagon: What about the Battleplate? Admiral Emm won't talk to us. She let loose with the gravy almost as soon as we arrived.
Captain Tagon: The Terra Firmator rammed to assist, and now we're both trapped. You've got to help us.
Petey: I'm afraid I can't.
Captain Tagon: You?

You can't?

Petey: It's complicated and I'm keeping it secret. I like you, but in the current political climate, that secret is worth far, far more than your life.
Captain Tagon: As soon as the Terra Firmator runs out of fuel we're all dead anyway. You might as well tell me so I don't die curious.
Petey: Actually, I put the odds on your surviving at around 92 percent.
Captain Tagon: Really?
Petey: Oh yes. But if you do survive, I estimate a less-than-one percent chance of you being able to re-
Captain Tagon:What? RE-WHAT?
Ennesby:Recoup losses? Recapture your childhood? Reanimate dead friends and crew?