The Carlsbad Incident

I left in the horse's head bit at the beginning because I think it sets the mood perfectly.

Ellmyruh: O:-)
Zullin: AHH
Ellmyruh: Whoa. Who's who?
Matthew: make it go away
Zullin: I thought I was the only one who realized how gruesome that thing was.
Cynthia: Zullin: Not nearly so gross as :-P.
Travholt: Matt: Actually, it's a horse head, not a decapitated horse.
Zullin: It's a semi-decapitated horse. The very top of his head has been removed, and now there's a gaping black hole full of horse brain there.
Zullin: I don't mind the tongue one so much.
Matthew: So, how are the badgers today?
Zullin: Better than ever.
Matthew: Cool.
Matthew: I was worried they'd be scared by the fireworks.
Matthew: Especially after that nasty incident in spring when one of them shuffled onto a mine.
Zullin: Well, you know what they say about badgers.
Matthew: Yes, and never a truer word spoken.
Ellmyruh: Badgers?
Zullin: I think we might start taking them down to the orchard this weekend. Just to get them used to it, you see, so when the real rough stuff starts, they won't go completely daffy.
* Ellmyruh is lost.
* Ellmyruh is also curious.
Zullin: /msg Cynthia I'm not sure I'm as trusting as you. She'd probably blab to everyone if we told her.
Zullin: whoops
Ellmyruh: /ignore Zullin
Matthew: Probably a good idea. Just remember to clear the area of apples.
Matthew: You know what badgers are like when they see an apple.
* Cynthia Zullin Probably. You know how reporters are; one minute you tell them something, next it's all over the front page.
Matthew: You'd never get the stains out.
Zullin: Oh, God, that's right. I'd nearly forgotten the Carlsbad incident.
Matthew: Who would have thought that it could put a dent in sheet metal?
Zullin: Not Secretary Powell, that's for sure.
Zullin: He was furious when we had drinks the following evening.
Matthew: It was worth it in the end, though. That road had been in need of closing off for a long time.
Matthew: On reflection, it was a bad idea to invite his ex-mistress.
Matthew: How were we to know she was allergic to nuts?
Matthew: Ah well. You know what they say, it all came out in the wash.
Cynthia: Kaz is allergic to nuts, too.
Matthew: Except for the badger.
Zullin: Well, she won't need to worry about *that* anymore.
Ellmyruh: Are badgers allergic to nuts?
Cynthia: I hope he isn't Secretary Powell's ex-mistress. If he is, he's in lots of trouble when he gets home.
Ellmyruh: Oh, Powell's ex-mistress is a badger?
Matthew: Cynthia: Not unless Kaz's real name is Frank.
Zullin: Ell: Most are. But it can be bred out of them. Like many other things.
Matthew: Zullin: Like milk.
* Cynthia remembers to assure Matthew that Kaz's real name isn't Frank.
Matthew: Oh, remember that purple one?
Zullin: Matthew: Pity it's radioactive, but I suppose that might even come in handy come October.
Matthew: You didn't know? It was taken away by the French ministry of defence.
Zullin: They invoked the Prague protocol? I guess I wasn't cleared for that.
Zullin: I'm surprised they had the nerve, after the mix-up at Arles.
Zullin: Stupid Frenchies.
Matthew: That's what the official report stated.
Matthew: But our man in Belgium informed us that the government had handed over a large sum of cash and a packet of cheeses almost immediately afterwards.
Zullin: Whatever tritium they got from it will probably end up on the black market. What a waste.
Matthew: Yeah.
Matthew: Still, there's always November.
Zullin: Cheeses? That might mean Poufiron was involved. I thought they'd "retired" him.
Matthew: No, it wasn't his style. They were small individually-waxed ones.
Matthew: It might be an undercover militaristic badger group posing as Poufiron.
Matthew: We should be on our guard. Have the forces at Stanton doubled, and build a new KFC in Penge.
Zullin: Well, I'll mention that to the gents in Neo-Flesh Integration. They're always happy to get the odd international tidbit.
Zullin: Penge? You're sure?
Matthew: Heh. Very "happy."
Zullin: LOL, right.
Matthew: Sure. Badgers are prone to use the Larrat maneuver, after all.
Matthew: And besides, they need a KFC. It couldn't hurt.
Matthew: At least, not anyone we care about.
Zullin: Ah, I hadn't thought of that. I'll put Fleener on it, then.
Zullin: It will be nice to have him out from underfoot.
Matthew: He's back?
Matthew: Dude, I've been away too long.
Zullin: Oh, yes. He's really not qualified to work on the implants, but given what happened to his uncle, we haven't had the heart to kick him out.
Matthew: Hm, fair. That was particularly nasty.
Matthew: Nearly made the papers, that did.
Matthew: Those guys in A3 are amazing. You'd think someone would notice a chunk of Norway drifting away like that.
Zullin: Yes, that was a close shave. Security was up in arms for weeks. Good thing the Bohm girl bought the "errant weather balloon" story.
Matthew: Bless her.
banana has entered.
Matthew: Well worth that new job thing.
Matthew: Uh-oh. I think we're being watched.
Zullin: I'll have it taken care of.
* banana hides
* banana puts on a mustache and comes back
Travholt: Matt: A3?
Matthew: They must have found a way around our lock. I'll look into it.
Matthew: Oh no. Maybe Sam found those modifications...
Matthew: Abort.
Matthew has left.

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