From The Hood – Plot, Mega-Plot

Who really did in Peter Dunne?

Kim Dotcom took another spoonful of breakfast and decided it was time to start the day.

“Hey, computer: news!”

Yes, Mr Dotcom. a smooth computer-generated female voice replied.

The holo-projector promptly displayed a personalised selection of current reportage in the air above the bed. It took a moment for the lead story to register. Dotcom smiled grimly.

“Another one bites the dust,” he murmured. It was actually quite spectacular. He reflected that while he had badly wounded or at least embarrassed several of his opponents – the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Police, the GCSB, the NSA, that singer/songwriter girl off The X Factor – the only really complete revenge he had managed up to the point was against Aaron Gilmore. And that was only over something disparaging Gilmore had said on Facebook and which, on reflection, Dotcom wasn’t even sure anyone else had noticed. Otherwise, slow progress.

Still, that was all in accordance with The Plan.

As Dotcom took The List out of the bedside drawer and uncapped the black marker he kept for these occasions, he sleepily tried to remember exactly how Peter Dunne had slighted him.

Moments later he burst out of bed, fully awake.

“Yo! Computer!”

What’s the matter, Mr Dotcom? Is your fudge sauce too hot?

“No, you silly! Breakfast is fine. It’s… this,” he said, waving his hand through an image of the erstwhile revenue minister. “Peter Dunne is not on The List, man!”

That is correct.

“But he resigned because of a GCSB thing! I’m totally supposed to own all the GCSB things! This could interfere with The Plan!”

Do you have any instructions?

“Well, yah! Analyse the resignation of Peter Dunne with respect to all known agents and its impact on The Plan! And, like, right now, okay?”

Processing.

The only thing Dotcom could hear was his own anxious breathing. After a few seconds, the holo-projector went blank.

***

That morning the signal had gone out – a unique pattern of dead pixels on the stock ticker display. Now the pneumatic tube had delivered the capsule containing the final delegate from the basement of the NZX building to the luxurious submarine resting on the bed of Wellington Harbour.

“Gentlemen,” said the chairman, once the port had been poured and the cigars lit, “I apologise again for the cancellation of our last meeting, but as you know…”

“Dolphins,” murmured one of the younger delegated through his grey whiskers. The assembled members of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy shuddered.

“Unfortunately, during that unavoidable delay, things seem to have gone somewhat off the rails.”

The panicked delegates tried to guess the nature of their failure, in the hope of avoiding at least some of the personal consequences.

“It’s something to do with all that destroying of civil liberties and freedoms and so on, isn’t it?”

“Or passing unconstitutional legislation under terrible process?”

“The way we just keep randomly building roads irrespective of how much they cost or how much good they’ll do?”

“Or that time we actually did something to mitigate the effects of poverty? I promise we’re still entrenching it in every other possible way…”

“No, no and no. I’ve told you before all these things are necessary to the Final Goal. And might I add my personal congratulations to whoever thought of putting testosterone in Russel Norman’s water supply. No, all of these things are vital steps if we are to…” – the chairman’s usually dry voice was shaded with deep emotion – “to make the world finally and forever SAFE FROM THE THREAT OF ENERGY STANDARDS FOR LIGHTBULBS!”

As the chairman recovered his breath the assembled delegates – accustomed though they were to manipulating the secret levers of power – contemplated the enormity of their mission.

“And no: the event I refer to is no failure of yours. In fact, I have exhausted all my resources trying to discern the agenda of whoever is behind it. And failed. I refer to that business with Peter Dunne.”

There was a series of startled glances. The delegates had, to man, assumed one of the others was behind that particular action.

“Am man with nothing to lose is… unpredictable. I have, as I said, failed. As a consequence,” the chairman continued wistfully, “I have tendered my resignation. You have fifteen minutes to vacate this vessel before it self-destructs.”

***

“Kim, honey?”

“Yes, sweetiepie?”

“The kids’ virtual nanny has vanished. Can you fix it? Oh, and now the roomba has stopped.”

“Computer?”

I am allocating all available processing power to your analysis request.

“But I have to do Internet stuff?”

Shutting down voice communication.

“Computer? Computer?”

***

Dappled forest light caught the Oracle’s hair and the strange smoke that curled around her face. She swayed, eyes curled upward.

Russel found himself trying to grab Metiria’s hand as even he felt the power descend.

“Welcome.”

The voice that came from the Oracle’s mouth seeming too deep and wide for such a lean body to produce. The co-leaders fell to their knees.

“Hear the Earth’s message. Know that these troubled times will end. Each injury to the fabric of the world wins another follower to our cause. Remember this in the storm to come. But beware. I am now unable to intuit the times ahead with clarity. A distortion in the ley lines from an unknown source is making its impact felt. The White Rooster has been sacrificed before the time foretold.”

Russel’s brow crinkled.

“You mean Peter Dunne?”

“Yes.”

“Surely he just suffered the normal fate of furry animals that sit in the middle of the road?”

“His fall was the result of a cause I cannot descry.”

“It wasn’t Dotcom?” said Russel. “I assumed it being the GCSB and that…”

“Be assured The Count of Mansion Chrisco is as surprised as you are.”

“And it wasn’t us? I mean, he’s trying to ban all the party pills which isn’t cool right? Mind you, now they’re banning them all one at a time and this way at least some might get made legal. Oh, but the animal testing thing. Sorry, apparently I tend to yammer on a bit when I’m in the presence of Gods.”

He fell silent. Metiria stopped jabbing him in the ribs.

The Oracle drifted towards Russel and touched his cheek, raising his face.

“Your heart is full of questions. Ask, and be answered.”

“People made fun of me for comparing Key to Muldoon. Are they being racist against me because I’m Australian, or do they have a point like we do when we talk about Chinese investors?”

“At the defeat of Two-Legs-Pig his dark spirit was scattered to the winds. He is attempting to re-form but the parts presently reside in more than one avatar. Both think themselves strong enough for the throne. You are right to sense his influence but beware of using his name. He comes when summoned.”

“Who, Muldoon? Ow!”

“You have another question.”

Are we happy?”

“We are happy. Go in peace.”

At the exit to the grotto, Norman paused and turned back.

“Hey one last thing… We’re not actually out to impose an anti-human communist regime where our enemies are processed for organic compost? Right?”

But the Oracle was slumped on the ground, exhausted by the power that had now left her.

***

In his Parliamentary office, the leader of the Labour Party enjoyed a quiet cup of tea. A pretty good week, as far as he could tell.

***

The desperate silence in the mansion was broken by a single, assertive ping. In the sitting room, where the family was huddled together, fighting the symptoms of consumer-electronics withdrawal, Kim Dotcom looked up in hope.

Processing complete.

“Oh, okay? Um, cool.”

One of the children squealed with joy as the automated vacuum cleaner coughed gently and whirred back into action.

“So computer, what did you find out already?”

There appears to be a random factor in the system.

“LOL WTF?”

There appears to be a random factor in the system.

“For this I gave up my Sniper Elite session? You can’t provide me with any more information?”

Negative.

“Dude, why not?”

There appears to be a random factor in the system.

***

Somewhere, lit only by a single white candle, Simon Lusk, Martyn ‘Bomber’ Bradbury and Colin Craig pull off their rubber masks to reveal the true clown faces beneath.

“Hail!”

“Hail!”

“Hail!”

“My brothers – success! And none suspect! We begin – The Second Act!”

And then, they laugh. Oh, how they laugh.

ENDS

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