Tagging the O'Briens

When Muffy Dropped Her Pencil
“Captain on deck!”
“At ease”, the woman said as she descended the ramp to the front of the control room. “As you were.”
The 50 or so technicians who had stood up returned to their seats to resume staring intently at the monitors in front of them. The captain’s primary rule was “vigilance—vigilance—vigilance.” Letting a crisis go unaddressed was grounds for immediate dismissal.
993732_70b93d6a910240af8498bb4b553f155f_mv2“Good morning, everyone”, the Captain began. “As you all know, several schools will be holding formal dances this holiday season. We must be on our toes. We must be vigilant, vigilant, vigilant.” She pounded her fist in her palm. “We cannot miss a single incident. Our recruiters will be out in force over the next few weeks, and as parents become aware of the dangers—” Her speech ended abruptly as an alarm sounded. “On screen,” she said loudly.
The image on the main viewer immediately switched to a rapidly zooming GPS image. “Report!” the captain said.
“It’s Muffy Simington, Ma’am. She’s no longer grounded and she just dropped her pencil.”
“Damn! Do we know the target?”
Muffy-design-girls-name“Negative, Ma’am. We speculate that it’s one of the O’Briens, but we can’t be sure. Basketball practice ended 15 minutes ago. They’re leaving the locker room now.”
“Damn! Damn! Do we have anybody in the area? And get us in closer….if it’s an O’Brien, that’ll help us in the long run.”
“Ma’am, La’Kaya Washington is in the area….I’ve put her on course to intercept.”
“Good…she’s not subtle, but this is no time for subtle.”
The whole room watched the moving blips on the main screen. Muffy in pink hovered around a blue question mark, while a red torpedo rapidly moved in on them.
ChipOnFinger_crop_noAnnotations“When La’Kaya’s got him, zoom in…let’s see who we’ve got.”
The image continued to zoom in as the red torpedo approached its mark. The room watched in silence as La’Kaya Jackson moved between Muffy and the target, and whisked the blue question mark away.
“Ma’am, it’s an O’Brien. La’Kaya’s tagged him. We’ll be able to track him for the next 24 hours.”
“Good work people. Keep an eye on him. I want that time-indexed report as soon as the tracking wears off.”
The captain smiled. Muffy’s release was troubling, and the O’Briens were prime targets; but La’Kaya had done her job, and the temporary tag would provide a lot of useful information.
…to be continued

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