It’s A Fairly Common Last Name In The West Indies.

Posted: August 5, 2012 in Allosaurus, sci fi
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Allosaurus returns with part 8. Fran is still recovering from getting her chest caved in. It’s been a little while since Cheryl told Fran that she was going to move out. Fran has decided that she can’t continue her night time activities and has given them up in the hopes that Cheryl will stay.

“So, Ms. Braithwaite,” he began, “what would you say is the ah, best reason we should hire you on here?”

Fran ran over all the possible answers in her mind.

Because I’m a hard worker and a fast learner.

Because I’ve had lots of years of experience drinking coffee, so I should be an excellent barista.

Because I’m punctual.

Because I, um, won’t take up too much space.

Because this place is right on the bus line from my apartment, and my scooter’s busted.

Because I can’t be a “super hero” anymore; it’s complicated.

Because, dammit, it’s just pushing a button and making lattes for soccer moms, how hard can it be? Your average trained monkey could do this job.

Because I really, really need the money; my unemployment’s about to run out. 

She finally settled on this: “Well, Lee, at my previous job I had a lot of experience dealing with the public, making sure that all my interactions turned out favorably for everyone involved. I like to think of myself as a problem solver, as well as a self – starter. I’m the kind of person who identifies what needs to be done very quickly, and I will do whatever it takes to make sure that … um, things get done. I also see that your shop here is pretty busy. I like that. I like a good challenge. I like to leave at the end of the day and know that I’ve made a difference.”

Lee leaned back, folded his muscled and spray – tanned arms across his chest. He nodded in approval. “Well said, Ms. Braithwaite, well said. An attitude like that will get you pretty far in our organization. Pretty far indeed.” He glanced down at Fran’s application. “Now, I see here that you are currently under a doctor’s care for a, … an injury of some sort? You mind if I ask what happened?”

Fran shrugged. Here’s where practice pays off, she thought. “Not at all. I had a bit of an accident riding my motorbike a while ago. I flipped over the handlebars and they got all up in my chest, bruised a rib or two. Fortunately, I always wear a helmet and all the other protective gear, because I was told it could’ve been a lot worse. I’ll be fine at work, as long as you don’t need me to wrestle anybody or be a bouncer.” She gave Lee her best casual chuckle. The trick is to sell it with the eyes.

Lee chuckled himself. “I know what you mean. I had a Hayabusa a while back. Did 150 across the Bayside bridge at one o’clock in the morning. There was a big crate in the middle of the road I didn’t see until it was too late. Swerved, hit the brake a little too hard, wound up going 75 miles an hour sideways with the bike on top of me. Leathers saved my life. Good times.” He held out a fist.

Fran looked at it for an instant, then thought, Oh yeah, fist bump. She complied.

“Tell you what, Ms. Braithwaite – Francine? Can I call you Frannie?”

Fran fought the reflex to punch Lee. She won.

” ‘Fran’ would be fine,” she smiled. Her teeth ground together.

” ‘Fran’ it is,” Lee nodded. “I think you’ve got the job. I just wanna go over this with the district supervisor, you know how that is. Just a formality. Heh. ‘Fran Fine’. Like that t.v. show.”


“Oh, nothing. I used to watch a lot of t.v.” Lee answered.

Crap, Lee, Fran thought, you used to do a lot of stuff. ‘Oh, yeah, masked vigilantism. I used to do that. I was Captain Caucasian. Used to run around with The Masked Black Negro. Good times. Fist bump.’ 

Not exactly push-button espresso.


In the apartment, stuffed in the closet, quietly ticking away, was Fran’s quantum dis-entangler. Very top secret, hush-hush stuff. No one but certain high ranking officers and agents in the Bureau should even suspect the existence of the thing.

Only one person in the world knew that there were two of them.

Only one person in the world knew that you could easily find one quantum dis-entangler by using the second one.

He was beginning to wonder why Fran hadn’t been using hers lately.

This is really gonna screw up my plans, he thought.

I’ll have to get her back out into the game somehow. He absently stroked his beard with orange, cheese-curl dust coated fingers.

words  and pictures © Christopher Ward. All rights reserved.

Allosaurus continues next time in Vox Populi Redux.

  1. […] nine of Allosaurus. You can refresh your memory of the previous post here, or you can start from the beginning. Yer choice, […]

  2. […] Allosaurus continues next week in It’s A Fairly Common Last Name In The West Indies. […]

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