Author : Pyai (aka Megan Hoffman)
Max sat behind the deck, and yawned. He saw out the glass through the dusty blinds of his office two men in dark suits walking briskly down his dark hallway. He looked around, quickly. He shoved the Twinkies into his desk drawer, flicked the entire ash tray into his trash can, and took his feet off the desk.
The two men opened the door to the office without knocking. â€œClyde Agbai?â€
â€œUh, Clyde went home sick yesterday. Iâ€™m Maxwell Fitzkee. Can I help you gentlemen?â€
The two men looked at each other, their glances inscrutable.
â€œAre you handling the transmissions which emanate from that dish?â€
The first man nodded out the one small window in the office towards the giant white dish that sat out maybe half a mile from the base. The GBD, Great Big Dish, also referred to as the BFD, was entirely operated from this little bunker which was all that remained from the decades of scientific studies. Recently its total monetary support had been coming in from commercial messages sent into outer space and the sale of little magnets bearing the GBD logo.
â€œUh, yes.â€ Max straightened his tie. He wasnâ€™t the number one sales lead for nothing. â€œIn fact I have over one thousand transmissions on my record. So anything you gentleman need, I can arrange for you. We also offer package deals if you have a longer message, want to encode video, or are buying it as a gift for a relative.â€
Max reached into his desk and pulled out a bright pamphlet.
The second dark-suited man who hadnâ€™t said anything yet handed him a single sheet of paper on heavy cardstock. There was a gold seal at the top that looked vaguely familiar. Max quickly scanned it so as to make a semi-personal but not intrusive comment in order to win their trust.
â€œThis is a UN matter of urgency, regarding the cause of all the recent natural disasters. Please just send the transmission.â€ the first man said slowly.
â€œYou mean like Hurricane Uli and Hurricane Zetta? What exactly is their cause? Global warming?â€ Max smiled, trying to be charming.
The first man looked at him. â€œSolar flares.â€
As no more conversation looked forthcoming, Max pursed his lips and began scanning and typing in the data. As he did, he was surprised to find it was an official UN resolution of condemnation for the actions of a terrorist body.
â€œOkay gentleman, your message has been encoded and it ready to be sent out by the second largest satellite dish in the entire world. Now, where would you like this aimed?â€ Max slid out a sky chart including celestial bodies, famous constellations and religious stations. â€œHereâ€™s a list of our more popular destinations if you need some help deciding.â€
â€œNo thank you, we already know. Please send it to the sun.â€
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