|The Story||The Authors|
The computer began cranking away, they could hear the internal screaming of the
disk drive being accessed. Then it choked, the program crashed, the system
reported the error messages, and the program restarted itself in control mode.
Like clockwork, just as it was reported in the hacker rag.
"Smoked Provolone!", yelled Vigo.
"Blue D'auvergne!", cried Kleg.
Omar, not one to miss a cue shouted "Havarti!".
"We're in business!." Vigo was begining to feel frantic. Two dogs flying around the factory, and a tank full of wierd creatures, not knowing how much time they had left before the Dr. Evelyn Phibes would return, all spelled out doom like the white Hollywood letters standing tall across his world view.
He began squeeking out orders. "Choose the Water Tanks option!"
Kleg directed Omar on where to jump.
+-------------------------------+ | | | Water Tanks | | Temperature Control | | | | | | --- | | Steam 110 + | | --- | | Boil 100 + | | --- | | 80 + | | + | | 60 + | | + | | 40 + | | + | | 20 + <--*** | | + | | 0 + | | --- | | Ice -10 + | | | +-------------------------------+
Up popped the water tank temperature control panel. The current temperature was set to room temp. "Gruyere!" said Vigo. "What shall we do? We can either freeze them into crustacean popsicles or boil them into oblivion." So polarized into demonizing the unknown creatures, the atrocity of the what he was considering doing to a bunch of fellow creatures escaped him.
"Let's cook 'em up." belowed Omar. They all agreed. Under Kleg's direction Omar jumped on the appropriate keys to escalate the water temperature. From deep underneath the tanks there was a rumble and a clanking as valves opened and pipes creaked to accomodate the commands from the control computer. Within the tanks, the temerature began to rise, if ever so slowly. "Chevre de Bellay." muttered Vigo.
As eluded to earlier the lobsters had regained a semblance of activity and had
risen towards the surface of the water tank, all in unison swimming in a
circular motion following their canine conductor round and round. They began to
impart momentum to the water such that it too began to circle with them forming
a whirlpool of current, and in so doing they began to create a vortex in which
the water at the sides of the tank began to creep up the sides, and the the
center of the round tank became shallower in keeping with conservation of
Vigo and the other mice could see none of this. However as Omar pogoed up and down on the up arrow key, pushing the water temperature setting higher and higher, Vigo stared at the water tank with excited anticipation feeling that he was about to orchestrate the exorcism of demons from his tiny existence. In fact he was about to have an epiphany.
|It was at that moment that they heard the rumbling of footsteps. The three mice frantically scrambled behind the CRT. Dr. Evelyn Phibes had re-entered the room and was walking towards the desk where she had left her bag, and upon which the mice had carried out their hack attack against the lobsters. As she approached the desk she slowed and gave a cautious look around as she noticed that her copy of 2600 was laying open by the computer screen. How could that be? No one was around so she scooped it up, stuffed it into her bag, and as she began to turn back towards the direction from which she had come, she noticed a little tail sticking out from behind the monitor of the computer. She smiled and stooped carefully and slowly down just a little to see Omar's butt, and two other pairs of mousy feet crunched into a little space behind a stack of zip disks back by some cables behind the monitor. She smiled. She was prepared for such situations, and reached into her bag to find a 50 ml screw cap tube from which she removed a peanut, placing it just next to the keyboard before turning and walking back towards the stairs that led down to the factory floor. She had a habit of carrying peanuts for the squirrels that regularly befriended her as she walked across campus.|