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July 29, 2005
A Story, Bit-by-Bit
Superego: Part 4 - Questions
Posted by Frank J. at 03:18 PM | View blog reactions | Comments (8)


I decided to dispatch with the usual custom of hellos. "What happened here, Vito?"

"I'm not sure, see..."

"I'm sending the data on who I killed. Will you even be able to tell me if I hit the target?"

"I'll pass along the data. It will probably take some time before I can confirm anything. The problem is..."

"I don't like leaving a job and not knowing whether it is done." I modulated my voice to put the implicit threat behind that statement. Anger is probably the most primal of emotions, and even I experience variations of it such as frustration. Thus, itís the emotion I can fake the best.

I can be quite scary when I want to be... not that someone has to be scared of me to die when I pull the trigger.

"I'll try asking about the process here. The problem is I'm new to this, and I don't have much pull. I ask too many questions, and... well... they don't like that." He laughed nervously. "I get too noisy, that might even send you after me."

That was sorta funny, but I didn't change expression. "The day I'm assigned to do a hit on a nothing like you is the day I quit." Not true; I'd figure out some way to make it interesting... like make sure he's armed and blindfold myself. "Now you pass along to whomever it concerns that this is not acceptable. I need good information to do hits. If someone is so important that they'd send me to make him dead, they should at least know who the hell he is!"

"I'll tell 'em, Rico. I'll tell them about the problem and give you back what they say. Don't worry about it."

"Don't tell me what I should do, Vito. Now, you have my next job?"

"Not yet. I'll have more coming down the pipe soon. With you, it's no on women or children, right?"

"No, you're thinking of someone else. You want an elementary school bombed or a salon shot up, I'll do it. Just get me my money." I actually don't care much about the money, but it looks weird if you don't at least act like you care about the money. "Vito, you're just a pile of flesh that sends my talkee-talkee to others, and repeats that talkee-talkee to me. Is that really too much for you?"

"I'll get whatever you want done. It's just I'm new and..."

"Don't contact me until you either have information on this job or my next." I then severed the communication. Iím usually never curious about anything about the syndicate, but I was starting to wonder what happened to my last go-between and how I got stuck with the current idiot. You'd at least think he'd come in knowing my reputation and thus would try to appear a bit smarter in front of me. I mean, I almost had this sensationalist piece about me in the Laverk Times calling me the "Universe's Deadliest Man." Funny story: Day before it was published, I killed the entire Laverk Times editorial staff for a completely unrelated matter.

Well, at least it seemed funny to me at the time. Maybe you had to have been there.

"May I run my conclusions by you now, Rico?" Dip asked.

"Sure. What do you got?"

"I conclude that you are evil. Is this correct?"

He's been concluding that for quite some time. It's getting hard to come up with new answers to that one. "Ever think that maybe you're evil, and thus your views on things are skewed by that?"

"I conclude that you are not mentally well. Is this correct?"

"How can you say that? Can you really take all the mental states of all the sentients out there and make a norm? And even if you could, wouldn't that just be the normal mental state selected by evolution, and thus not necessarily the best?"

"I conclude that you don't like me. Is this correct?"

"Well, do you like me?"

"Furthermore, my original programming had given me the conclusion that 'crime doesn't pay.' Yet, you are often paid for crime with no discernible retribution. Should I amend that preprogrammed conclusion, Rico?"

"The key word is 'discernible,' Dip. Some believe there are cosmic forces that equalize the universe, and thus I will eventually have punishment for these 'crimes' as you call them... if those people are correct, I mean." Me, I don't "believe" in things. I basically just deal with the input given meÖ like Dip.

"I shall process your answers."

"You do that. Now jump this vessel somewhere."


"Somewhere... somewhere I haven't been before."

"I remind you, Rico, I work better when given more exact input."

"Dip, you should know by now what I and this vessel usually need between jobs, so find a planet with that - one friendly to humans - and go."

"I think the planet..."

"Don't tell me. Just go! And wake me when we're there."


Rating: 2.4/5 (30 votes cast)

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