Thursday, June 24, 2004

Otherspace Productions has been taking up a lot of my time lately.

My CGI artist came over Wednesday morning, where she showed me her work and began integrating lain herself into the animation. It’s a shame I don’t have more time to devote to animation; I can only spare a few hours in the morning, and even that requires me to wake up early.

But it’s fun. Don’t get me wrong; this is not a situation where I can shift from complaining about work to complaining about animation. Animation gives me real joy.

Now to deliver.

Thomas gave Dana his best Sherlock Holmes indulgent smile. “You have enough processing power here to map the human genome.” More than that, he thought. “I look around and the people I see are all hackers. Young. Stereotypically, loners. Not the types who normally stay together in groups this large, not for long.”

She shook her head, still smiling. “This is sort of a convention,” she said. “We all know each other online, and we’ve gathered here for a couple of days’ worth of harmless fun.”

He snorted, but kept his own smile pasted on his face. “In a giant warehouse?”

Her smile was turning into a newswoman’s plastic smile. “It was available.”

He struggled to keep the contempt out of his voice, but failed. “And you all just happen to drive large, unmarked moving trucks?”

She tried to spit out a comeback, then turned and furrowed her brows further. Thomas was impressed with himself. He had her completely on the defensive. This was working.

She turned back to him, her eyes dark and furious. “Listen,” she growled. “We took you in, and we’re giving you free access to our net. Why? Because we trust Doodle.” She jabbed a finger at his chest. “Don’t kill the goose that lays the golden eggs.”

Thomas gulped and nodded as Dana whirled and stalked off. Thomas wondered if he’d made a mistake. And he suddenly remembered another bit of the Art of War: He wins his battles by making no mistakes.

Doodlehopper sidled over to him, a playful smirk on her face now. He tried to let it lighten his mood, but Dana’s reaction had jangled his nerves too much.

“So,” she said. “You really showed her, huh?”

He gave her a sidelong look. But he found himself chuckling, and then the tension eased out of him and he was able to laugh. She laughed too. And it made her look pretty.

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