I really should come up with a better title, since it’s looking like I’m going to be here longer than just “a trip”.
Anyhow I promised you a tour so let’s get started, here in the Command Room, as I call it. It’s an office, my office, Dr P. tells me. Only I share it with some technicians from the DRG. That’s the Discordian Research Group. They’re the high fiction “lets mix magic and technology” team out from Kew Branch; the sort of people who’ll introduce the immovable object to the irresistible force just to see what happens next. They were responsible for the Slendetector, if you recall. Unfortunately Elsewhere, their clique leader, isn’t here. Instead we have “Vlad the Inhaler”, yes that is what he calls himself, who is an asthmatic Goth mad-science nerd. You should have seen the looks on the faces of the knights when he introduced himself. I swear that they considered reading him his fortune in his entrails and then thought better of it.
Anyway the command centre is laid out like a poor man’s starship bridge. I sit in the centre in an Eero Aarnio Sphere Chair, on a raised platform with a desk in front of me. ‘Vlad’ mans a desk in front and to the right and across from him, to my left, is another desk. This is manned by “Danger Dave”. I have two more desks raised even higher than mine, each with their own DRGer; Sally Unlikely and Mad Marty. No I have no idea where they get these ‘codenames’ from. In front of us we have wall to wall monitors which link into the town’s CCTV and a variety of other things. I have requested Team Remiel bring a fluffy plush cat with them for me to stroke and the DRGers keep referring to me as “Number None”. They were a bit disappointed when I didn’t object that I’m “not a number”. I don’t think they realise just how much of an inversion this facility is of the Port Manteau ‘village’ project from the 60’s. We’re not trying to keep things in, we’re trying to keep them out.
Anyway the command centre is in the former auditorium of the former town hall. The town hall is on the northern side of the crossroads in the centre of town. Heading out the front door onto the steps I have the Diner to my left, then continuing clockwise there’s the old hotel which is now officer quarters and finally the general store. The Diner is pretty much our messhall and bar. There’s an 18 meter dome behind as overflow for when the guests start arriving. On the other side of the diner is the garage/motorpool/workshop. Each road has a dozen or so refurbished houses on each side a couple of side roads and more domes on the sites of former houses in too poor a condition to be refurbished. These are all official classified as “Agent Housing” but an agent is someone who works with the department rather than for it. Which is what we’re calling our guests when they arrive. I should note that any department officer with the word agent in their codename actually answers directly to Cepha. They’re Cepha’s agents.
Anyway identifying our guests as agents means that they live here for free and will actually get paid if they help out. We also have plans for training, education and entertainment. Anyone shows real promise we might even consider recruiting them. But only if they’re interested.
Well I have to go now and watch some security squads, who are technically agents themselves, get run through some drills.
Until Laters. TTFN.