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back at Tau Station

Well... I said I was going to hang out at Tau Station and the University for a bit to catch up on coursework, right? It was early morning. I wanted to register for my next class as soon as the University opened. Not two seconds after I plunked down my credits I get a CORETECHS notice that I was to report to Headmaster Harrison’s office at the University. All I could do is scratch my head and say, “what now?”. I scooted across campus. I entered the Headmaster’s building and walked into the Reception area. The Receptionist told me to help myself to a seat and that Headmaster Harrison would be with me in a few minutes. I scanned the CORETECHS news channel while I waited. The events of the past few days and the shuttle ride back from København were beginning to catch up with me and I was beginning to doze off when the Headmaster’s office door opened. The Receptionist says, “Headmaster Harrison will see you now JoeQuicksilver.” I stood up, stretched a bit and walked towards the office. Before passing through the door a man in a suit walked out leaving a Consortium Special Ops officer in the room. I let out an “Oh Boy…”. The man in the suit looks back at me and says, “you can say that again...” and left.

Headmaster Harrison says, “close the door behind you, please Joe. I can call you Joe, yes?” I nodded yes. Harrison motioned me to a chair and says, “this is Consortium Special Ops Officer Jones.” I nodded to Jones. He was standing and didn’t flinch. Harrison says, “Joe? The Consortium thinks you are in grave danger.” I raise my eyebrows saying, “I helped a few people on København.” Jones says sternly, “You have single handedly strained relations between the Peerage and the Moemedi. We have learned that the Peerage is monitoring your actions.” I say, “Isn’t everyone? There are security cameras everywhere on Tau...”. Harrison waves his hand at me and says, ”Joe, your in danger and your presence here is a threat to the University. You will be allowed to continue your education at the University through your CORETECHS interface. You will not be allowed to reside on campus. You may return briefly to register for courses, but that is all.” I say, “So, now what happens, where will I go now?” Jones says, “Headmaster Harrison says you are majoring in the trades. A very useful skill. We would like you to go work for us as a spy for the Consortium.” I do a double take looking at both men looking to each in disbelief. Jones continues, “While working on your studies, we will be in contact via your CORETECHS to give you short assignments and feed you any intelligence to keep you safe.” I nod. Jones hands me a sealed folder and says, “hop on a shuttle to Daedalus.” I say, “Daedalus? You want me to go straight into the hands of the people trying to kill me?” Jones puts up his hands and say, “Yes, yes. The Inn is safe. The innkeeper is a double agent for the Consortium. So, head to Daedalus and please, don’t blow anything else up, will you?” I lower my head, “Oh… you heard about that?” Jones says, “That is why the Peerage are to say a little upset with you at the moment.” I say, “Alright, I will pack up my things and head to Daedalus.” I start to head out of the office. I reach the door and Headmaster Harrison says, “The University and students thank you. Please be safe JoeQuicksilver. I hope we have the chance to meet again.” I look back and say, “Oh, you can count on it.” I open the door and start to head out of the office. I hear Jones in the background say to Harrison, “That boy is one piece of work.”

It doesn’t take me long to pack up my things from the dormitory and hop on the next shuttle to Daedalus. As I make my way to the Inn, there is the usual security cameras, but people on Daedalus are generally keeping to themselves. The looks they give to most of the travellers have strains of contempt so it is hard to get a sense that my being there is significantly more dangerous. At the room, I open the sealed folder. I chuckle a bit that it isn’t the usual plastic notes. There is a single page and it reads: The Consortium Security has received reports of strange disappearances of travellers. We have not been able to determine pattern to these disappearances other than the focus seems be on Daedalus and their production facility. Learn what you can and report anything suspicious to us immediately. The sealed folder then crumples in my hands and vanishes. I say to myself, “Neat trick.” I unpack a few things and settle in for the night.