Sunday June 2, 2002
Book 2: The Teraport Wars — The Teraport Wars
Today's installment raises interesting questions about what this mini-gate is actually programmed to do. A wallet goes through intact, but an armored soldier with a multi-cannon strapped to his back is stripped naked? What's up with that?

First, it's helpful to note that this gate is not a travel-gate. It's more like an auxiliary input for the gate-copy system. Second, as you might imagine, some things are more dangerous than others. Guns and armor on a soldier are far more dangerous than a wallet (unless the wallet has large amounts of untraceable currency in it, and falls into the wrong [read that "my"] hands).

Third, the comedy inherent in a large, angry man being stripped naked over and over again, while being forced to watch the process and be embarrassed for himself in arithmetically increasing, serially experiential units of mortification is just too rich for words. Which, of course, is why we use pictures here at Schlock Mercenary.


Narrator: Millions of miles from target echo, a prison module falls toward a star.
Narrator: The equipment here has been silent ever since the Gaolers gated themselves to relative safety... At least up until now.
SFX: Chuff
Narrator: A hapless wallet appears with only the most marginal increase in local air pressure.
Narrator: Meanwhile, back at target echo...
Gav-0: Well, what did we get?
Kevyn: I'm mapping traces all over, but the signal is weak. I think the wallet got copied, but I don't know where the copy ended up.
Kevyn: Move sensor six, and throw the wallet again.
SFX: Chuff
SFX: Chuff
SFX: chuff
Kevyn: Signal's still too weak.
Megiddo: Hey, that's my wallet. gimme that!
SFX: Chuff
Kevyn: Whoa! Great signal strength! Whatever you just did, do it again!
Gav-0: Right... Captain, would you mind stepping over here for a moment?
SFX: Chuff
Megiddo: Yup. We're stupid enough to keep stepping through that hole.
Megiddo: At least we've got plenty of cash on us.