Rise of Glie Chapter 54

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Previous: Rise of Glie Chapter 53: Pretty Brave

FHD Remix: The Rise of Glie

Chapter 54: Little Rascals

"Ma'am," Fushoku almost hits himself as he corrects, "Sir, the spectrometer results on those transistors you gave me are highly erratic."

"How so?" Washi asks.

"Some were damaged far beyond failure, while some actually still work," he explains, "npn transistors that can operate at higher voltages, but with reduced alphas."

"They used emitter coupled logic, where it is the beta value that counts. Any little change in alpha, of course-" The Communicator realizes that Fushoku doesn't understand a word of this, "Sorry, my point is they're useless in the Mark Two."

"Ma'am," he whispers with a wink, "Should I give you a briefing on our latest gate insulator dielectric constants?"

"Maybe later," Washi says, trying not to burst out laughing.

Fushoku smiles, having managed to decipher the last trace of haibane hiding in the arcane uniform.

"So, your spectrometer results are useless for telling us how long our chips will last," the Communicator sighs.

"Yes," Fushoku then smiles, "but we have a plan."

"Did Wire Factory figure out a way to build a delta radiation test lab or something?" Washi says, then stretches her back, "Taka told me there was one on Mars, did he give you the plan?"

"We isn't Wire Factory," Fushoku clarifies, "My new partners certainly appreciated looking at the micrographs I took of the circuitboard hikarinium patterns and used the damage results and some calculus to figure out how much organic binding and non-binding delta vector is in the deep lake's water."

"What deep lake?" Washi asks.

Fushoku thumbs towards the sunset, "The one a couple hundred kilometres west."

"But how could you-" the Communicator pauses, "Taka isn't holding anything back from you in his dreams anymore?"

"True," Fushoku says, "but he would be if these guys hadn't showed up."

"Who?" Washi asks, "Oh, never mind. We need a more private spot to discuss this. Follow me."

Fushoku follows the Communicator down the stairs to the suit room.

"They are not telling me everything," Fushoku says, "but they seem even more interested in defeating our diamond competition at Hell Knight Forge than we are." Fushoku sets his shoulder bag down gently and unbuckles the flap.

"Little rascals," Washi gasps as the two crows crawl from Fushoku's bag and start preening, "I heard you thrashed the air conditioner after Taka left it open."

"King wanted to get my attention," Fushoku says, "The transistors you gave me last week were damaged by their attack to destroy the enemy's Mark Four layout data. They also hit a Mark Three at Chita's magnetic logic facility."

"Magnetic logic's a dead end," Bangou says, having raised her Communicator's mask, "King, you'd know that better than I do. What's the point?"

"Wouldn't you get suspicious if misfortune happened on only one of several paths?" Wally signs with his foot from his perch on Fushoku's arm.

"Not to mention the magnetic logic facility was more fun," King signs.

"With Erebus on inspection tour," Wally spits, "He did way more damage than we ever could."

"You must be really comfortable with Fushoku, saying stuff like that," Washi whispers.

"He's bunkmates with Ashfeather Hawk, the dreamer boy," Wally signs, "Quite the intelligence source. Both are now essential members of our attack planning staff."

The two crows look at each other and nod.

"Birdbrain's turning into quite the complement these days," Fushoku snickers.

"How long have you been doing these attacks," Bangou signs, nervous about how deep they're getting into these particularly details of their lives outside the wall.

"Our records are spotty. The earliest one that we know of is when we fried the south bunker at the Battle of Deployment," Wally signs, "Between that and Ashfeather Six, we thought it might have been enough to carry the day."

"Saviour wanted to show off, I think," King signs, referring to the spectacular light of the Bell Nut Festival.

"Haibi?" Fushoku whispers, "Never heard of it." [Haibi is the Japanese word for Deployment]

"Bounce the name Kikotsu no Haibi off Taka," Bangou offers, "very quietly, and be ready in case he soils himself."

"Better not," Fushoku says, "after seeing his reaction to Saboath."

"He deserved it," King spits, "spying on us like that."

"Now that's behind us," Fushoku says, "Let's get on with the business at hand. King, tell Washi about your voltage control idea."

The crow has a glint in his eye, and gives Bangou all the details.

"Excellent plan," Bangou whispers, "I think the radiation from the inorganic vector and the organic-binding vector are different, and I'm not sure we've even identified all the types. I think I should still do my planned series inside the wall, which has only the inorganic vector, to see if they're different."

"Different, how?" King asks.

"Red light's different from blue light," Fushoku points out, "You got everything from mile-band radio to hard gamma radiation, all made from the same basic wave-particle."

King nods, "So Washi proposes a little basic research on the delta spectrum, I get it."

Wally chimes in, "During the Final War, there was a doctor, Bradbury Vanessa, who did such research. Monster told me where to find a couple of printouts before he disappeared. I miss him, he was good!"

"Monster?" Fushoku asks.

"The crow that Flew with Kagami," Washi says, "Remember?"

"I never did find out why he called himself Monster," Wally signs.

"That's between him and the Saviour," Bangou whispers.

"He was so kind," Wally reflects, "I'm looking forward to learning his real name in the next life."

"I wish I had met him," King signs, "He disappeared before I hatched. His reputation is astounding."

"I hope you don't mind my asking," Fushoku signs, "but... Do crows Fly like haibane?"

"Never heard of it happening," Wally signs, "until Number just mentioned it now."

"Most of us are killed in action," King signs slowly, "even though the enemy doesn't know of our sentience."

[Author's note: I had High Hopes, Track 16 of Highest Hopes, by Nightwish (Warner Music Group 2005) playing as I wrote the end of this chapter. My head played the Rachel Loy single I Can Feel It Loving Me right over top of this as I remembered another exception to the crows being killed in action. Rakka's "love I found in the bottom of a well in hell" from the anime series' eighth episode.]

Next: Rise of Glie Chapter 55: They Aren't Crows

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