Sunday October 1, 2017
Book 18: Mandatory Failure — Part I


NARRATOR: Meanwhile, on the sundeck atop the home of mercenary Commodore Karl Tagon...

CDRE TAGON: That whisper turbine is about as stealthy as actual whispering.

What do you need, Sophi?

SOPHI: There is a developing situation whose optimal outcome will be an immediate and urgent contract.

CDRE TAGON: Do I need trousers to sign the contract?

SOPHI: That question might be better asked of the company's legal counsel.

ENNESBY: You called, sir?


CDRE TAGON: But now that you're here...

ENNESBY: There is a crisis in outer Uuple which is likely to be fatally mismanaged without the help of a responsible outside party.

Uuplechan law prohibits outside parties from volunteering or contracting any services.

Entering the system uninvited would make matters worse.

CDRE TAGON: Stupid laws haven't surprised me for decades.

ENNESBY: There is, however, a crisis clause permitting citizens to authorize unremunerated outside assistance from immediate family members.

CDRE TAGON: Just so we're seeing eye-to-eye, I'm going to read all of that back to you.

ENNESBY: Yes sir.

CDRE TAGON: One of the grunts is about to drag my company into a disaster area so we can meddle under the pretense of helping their family.

ENNESBY: Add "for no money," and that's an apt summary.

CDRE TAGON: Will trousers, specifically, my trousers, on me, save lives?

ENNESBY: Not right this minute, but it never hurts to have them handy.