Gongdolism-In which the Great Quail involves Even Eb, in his ferrago of sex, lies and email.
There's been talk lately about "what happened to the Gong List," and what's worse, some implications have been made by a few List members that I might have been involved. (Damn that pesky Fane!)
Well, I assure you I had nothing to do with the collapse of the Gong Fanweb. But I do have some insider's information. . . .
Some of you may remember a Surreal Posse post from a few months ago, welcoming Danielle and J Katherine to the List. Well, perhaps it is time to revisit that unfinished business, and relate Chapter Two, Part One, which will no doubt shed some light on a mystery which I will reveal over the next week or so. . . .
In which we get a further look at the internal workings of EbCorp, and we
discover what happened to Dan-Yell. . . .
PART I: Another Morning at Eb Corp
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED TO THE GONG LIST? chuckled Eb menacingly to himself, then frowned as he -- naturally -- failed to menace himself, being the only living creature who actually *did* know the answer. *Damn,* he thought, toggling the key for his secretary.
The voice of Bunny Lindhurst burbled cheerfully over the clarkium Holocube; but her image failed to materialize. Another disappointment; most of the menacing effect was really visual, after all. "Yeah, Oh Mighty Eb?"
"Ahhh, Bunny my dear! Did you ever wonder WHAT REALLY HAPPENED TO THE. .um, could you toggle the visuals, please? This is much more effective when I can leer --"
"C'mon, boss!? I'm in the middle of polishing my toenails. I got little
holographic polish-bots -- I can put teensy weensy Liams all over my toes!"
The sound of chewing gum crackled across the holocube, and Eb winced, envisioning
Bunny wiggling her Liam-bedecked toes. Damn, that Bunny Lindhurst. If it weren't
for those indentations on her head. . . .
his eyes lingered guiltily to the bottle of Southern Comfort he kept on his shelf. Her voice continued, over the sound of smecking gum, "Thank God for Gloster GmbH, eh? And it only set me back thirteen happies! Now I can polish and polish and polish and polish --" A sudden, happy squeal interrupted her enthusiastic endorsement. "Look! This Liam just *winked* at me!"
"Yeah. Never mind, Bunny." Clicking off the cube, Eb sighed and leaned back
into his chair. A strange sense of boredom dogged the corners of his mind; an
ennui felt only by Greek Gods, the CEO of Beatrice, and himself.
His gaze fell upon the Executive Novelty Gift his manservant Ben gave him last Rufus Day. A row of tiny stainless steel quails suspended from fishing-line, if you pulled one back and let it *snock* into the others, the momentum transferred to the last quail, which whekked into the air and snocked back. . . . and so on . . . and back and forth . . . hypnotically . . . as if the quails were trying to say . . . something .
Eb abruptly shook his head and halted the quails. Well, that was the world these days. Those damned ubiquitous birds were everywhere, ever since --
!!ZZzzzt!! The holocube came to life with a picture of 3-Tom, current CEO of Happy Apple. Gee, Eb mused, with each iteration he *did* look more like Robyn. . . .
"Oh Great Leader, I bear some sad news. The Gloster GmbH Happy Whizzy-Feg
Temporal Unsharkalator is offline." Tom shuffled nervously in the cube.
He was in the Wozniak Memorial Room, Eb observed. You could just notice the glass case with the head of Bill Gates, just out of sight near the antique iMac. . . .
"What? But you know that Phase 4 was to go into effect today!" Eb tried to keep a distinct whine from his voice. He really was looking forward toPhase 4!
"Yes, oh Mighty One. But . . . well, there was another Tewist attack. They,
um, broke into Sector 7G disguised as a wandering troupe of Capuchin mimes,
and, well. . . ." Tom's eyes discovered something ostensibly interesting somewhere
offscreen, down to the left. "You know, it's been pretty tense around here lately,
and we all thought, well,
Capuchin mimes *always* cheer up the workers, what with their happy stories and general love of humanity and all its adorable little foibles.
"Enough!" Eb's fingers gripped his seat tensely. Those damn Tewists! Ever
since their leader Eddie was defenestrated right after the Fegolution, they
were worse than ever. And then those persistent rumors that Eddie lived still,
a ghost in the machinery of the State. . . . grrr. This sort of thing must not
go unpunished. Eb made a mental note to send a FEGX
detailing his concerns to Woj-Sven-Woj IV. Maybe it was time to add Ani DiFranco to the Contraband List? And then there was the matter of the terrorist left-wing hit squids. Their activity was also on the rise, and their leader -- the legendary Kris ibn Gross ali Hashashim al-Inkigoo -- was still at large. Rumor had it that old Gross was running his assassins from some underwater mountain, feeding them hallucinogenic kelp and rewarding their efforts with time in the Octopus' Garden, some foul paradise of sexual gratification and endless Sperm Whale burgers. What was this world coming to? Or was it time for another Mousestalker Incident? He eyed the trophy head of Lisa Loeb on the wall and smiled
His grip loosened and he addressed the nervous looking Tom. "Is it completely offline? Or can it still effect events at all?"
"No, we can still do a Level Three Temporal Whammy . . . that is, if I reverse the polarity of the neutron flow, and perhaps switch the #45 cord with the J-plug, and re-arrange the #5 line with the Prognostic F-thingie, and --"
Eb cut him off in a burst of irritation. "Save the details for the techno-weenies, you damn Proggie cord-counter! Can you do it?"
"Yes, oh Sublime One, but . . . surely you're not thinking of doing . . . of doing *that* again --" 3Tom gasped, then leaned intensely into the cube and whispered, "Think of the *children,* sir --"
Eb shrugged. "I already had Eddie defenestrated; there's not much more I can do to the man than that. But -- BUT -- I can hit him where it hurts, back in the 80s, oh yessss. . . " Ah, the glory days, when the List was young, and the Great Quail had not --
"But wasn't the People Mover enough?"
"No. And neither was the Skyway. You know what I want; so just do it. But do it sloooooly this time."
Tom's eyes widened, and he whimpered painfully, "No -- no!"
"Yes. Take out Mr. Toad's Wild Ride."
Tom hung his head in the sad nod of the broken, and switched the cube off.
It was going to be a long day. . . . .
To be continued in PART TWO; or "Dan-Yell meets the Surreal Posse"