Neopia's Fill-in-the-blank News Source Circulation: 98,662,396 Issue: 167 | 19th day of Storing, Y6
Home | Archives Articles | Editorial | Short Stories | Comics | New Series | Continued Series
 

Breaking into Alien Aisha Vending Ltd.


by appaloosa500

--------

All for a Brother…

Detective Khargana's Mission: Successful Retrieval of Vital AA Document

"You're kidding, right?"

     "No way, bud. I ain't jokin' one bit, and I'll shut your mouth for ya if ya say I am one more time."

     "But no one, I mean, no one has ever successfully broken into Alien Aisha Vending Ltd. I mean, the whole idea is preposterous!"

     A green Wocky glanced up from her Neocola and across to her companion sitting opposite the small club table from her. Her glinting eyes were in shadow beneath a large black kauboy hat with a twisted silver band. Her muscles rippled warningly underneath her black faux kau-hide jacket. "I said ta watch yer mouth. An' I didn' ask ya if somethin' was possible. I asked ya for the blueprints and any info ya got on the site," she growled.

     The blue JubJub warily eyed the dangerous looking Wocky. The Wocky detracted her sharp claws and started tapping them against the Neocola can impatiently. "When I said ta watch yer mouth, I didn't mean ta shut it, though I may tell ya to later. I meant tell me what I asked ya to, or I ain't paying ya a crummy single NP."

     The JubJub tried a chuckle, but choked halfway. "Errm. Yes, ma'am. I, well, took the liberty of copying it all down…" He pushed a manila envelope across the short table.

     The Wocky slowly retracted her claws and reached for the large brown envelope. She flicked open the flap, took out the stack of papers, and gingerly flipped through the sheets. Obviously engrossed, she tipped back her hat to show an intelligent face, though not beautiful by any means, with two shrewd, slanted brown eyes. She turned back to page one, the first page of the miniaturized blueprints, and examined them carefully with the adroit knowledge no one short of a true bounty hunter (or an architect for that matter) was thought to possess.

      "Umm, ma'am? My pay?"

     "Oh, yes, of course." For a second she seemed to have lost the accent and forgotten herself, but she abruptly came back to the present, yanked her hat brim back down, and spoke with a low gangster drawl. "Here's ya money, an' don't ya dare come cryin' back ta me for more!" She flicked a rubber-banded pile of NP bank notes at him.

     The JubJub counted them, wary that the Wocky might be trying to cheat him but not sure what to do if it turned out she had. To his surprise, all 3,000 Neopoints were there, all nicely bundled in hundreds. Thirty crisp one hundred NP bank notes, he nearly fainted with relief.

     The Wocky smirked knowingly while watching the JubJub's face. Not because the notes were fake, far from it, and neither were they stolen. It was because he was such a silly little small timer. Any real, regular informant would've charged at least 10,000 for such a dangerous job. As things happened, the contractor himself, Forsythe Alexander Jubjub, was in a pile of debt entirely his own fault. All the better for her…

     Shoving back her chair roughly, the Wocky stood up and stretched. She tipped her hat saucily at the bartender, a rather large and roguishly handsome Red Kougra, and slipped through the club and out the door.

     The bartender shook his head as he wiped the table and watched her exit. "Now whatever is Queenie up to?" he whispered to himself.

     The club owner, a knock-'em-dead handsome Brown Wocky in an all black suit, had also observed the meeting and the Wocky's quick departure. "Oh, Khargana," he sighed. "That ol' Detective will get herself killed one of these days."

     ******

     Wocky Detective Khargana mulled over the facts as she slipped out of the tough black leathers and stored them in an old pirate chest in a corner of her office. Preoccupied, she slipped on her signature floor-length suede vest and opened the small door of the mini-fridge that Kay, her owner, had invented for her personal use (mainly because the silly human had simply wanted to take apart their new refrigerator and didn't want to bother putting the whole thing back together). Intending to grab a Neocola, she hesitated at the last second and whipped around.

     "DeSoni, I figured it'd be you."

     "Aww, how'd you hear me? Never mind, I'll get you one of these days."

     DeSoni, her new brother, had been trying to sneak up behind her. Of course, he hadn't yet succeeded in catching her off guard, but he didn't intend to give up so easily. He was an incredibly tiny yellow Aisha, or so most everyone believed. Khargana and Kay knew him to be, by birth and blood, an Alien Aisha traitor as well as a mechanical, mathematical, and scientific genius.

     As any Neopian who's ever visited the Space Station knows, Alien Aishas have six ears: two small, feline ears, and four long, stalk-like ears. In contrast are Neopian Aishas, who have four ears: two small and two stalks. For a reason no one quite knows, DeSoni had tragically been born with the four ears typically associated with Neopians, though extensive tests and whatnot had proved beyond a doubt that he really was Alien.

     And therein lies the mess Khargana was getting herself into for nothing other than sentimentality, a landmark moment. But, for now anyway, she tried to explain her intentions to herself as simple and professional curiosity.

     With a hop, DeSoni managed to climb onto Khargana's large desk and perch himself on the edge. He looked curiously over the scattered mementoes of past accomplishments and current investigations underway. He still found it extraordinary that she rarely worked on less than three cases at a time.

     "Whoa, Khargana! You've got two personality summaries, a criminal record, several NT clips, and countless miscellaneous notes and debris! Still working on the Caytie background info, huh?" Then he noticed the envelope Khargana had brought back from the club. "That's new! What is it?" He reached for it with a typical brotherly nosiness.

     With incredibly quick reflexes, Khargana jumped across the room and snatched it. "You can look through that garbage all you like," she motioned at her desk. "But this baby is incredibly hush-hush and off-limits." She rolled up the envelope and reached over for her memo-briefcase, a typical black business suitcase, except for the fact that it was really a disguised minicomputer she'd made on the Space Station. (Long story. I'll get around to telling it one of these days.)

     DeSoni was about to protest when he noticed the odd way the detective was eyeing him up and down, as if making up her mind on something important. He fidgeted a little. Khargana still intimidated him despite his having lived in the same Neohome as her for well over two months. Her direct eyes switched back to his face.

     "Uhh…" DeSoni's eyes drifted towards the ground and he hopped down from the desk. He reached into a pocket and pulled out a tiny sketching of a gizmo Khargana had been working with. "You know how you said your pocket scanner was on the blitz? Well, I was a little bored and…"

     Khargana suddenly laughed: a warm, pleasant chuckle. "And you redrew the prints from my originals and made the necessary adjustments for me?" She shook her head as if accepting the inevitable.

     "Well, a guy does all he can for his cool new sis… and I was bored…" He blushed a little, annoyed with himself for the surge of emotion that'd motivated him to update the gizmo's schematics for her. DeSoni really wanted his big sister to approve of him, though he'd yet to understand why. He'd never had a sister, and it was odd wanting to impress someone just because they were cool and family. He'd never felt this way, even with his natural family.

     Khargana chuckled some more and motioned him out of her office. "Thanks, DeSoni. You really saved me time. I'm gonna be pretty busy with a big job for a while." Her eyes drifted to the rolled envelope she still held in her paw. "Anyway, thanks and good job."

     DeSoni nodded, feeling a little proud of himself, and left the room.

     "Yes," Khargana whispered to herself as she stared at the envelope before opening it again. "I'm gonna be really busy for a while." Her eyes darted towards the now closed door to her office. "But he's worth it. He deserves it."

     She pulled out the blueprints and flipped her memo-briefcase back out of standby mode. "Now to construct a few 3D models and plan the most direct, yet strategic, path to his lordship's headquarters."

     ******

     Behind the locked door of Khargana's office, she toiled for hours constructing her plans. The Wocky never once glanced toward the door or abandoned her work for a break. Her only pauses were actually long studies of the mini-blueprints.

     The security was pretty basic, but unfortunately thorough. There was, however, one path not under any surveillance at any time. A horrid security breach, but she wasn't a building inspector. She was an investigator, and for DeSoni she would work as a retriever.

     She programmed several 3D models into her memo-briefcase. She would have to go rather low on her standard equipment level to get this job done, but that was okay. But she needed the briefcase's schematics. Breaking and entering was only a minor talent, she didn't work it often enough to be great. And what she was doing was fully illegal. Completely and one-hundred percent criminal.

     But this was for DeSoni.

     She had to go through the vents of Alien Aisha Vending Ltd., up 12 floors, into the manager's office. Nearly half the way was straight up, and the other half was nearly too small for her to squeeze through.

     ******

     Wocky Detective Khargana, in her brown suede vest with memo-briefcase in paw, slipped silently out of the air vent she'd been crouching in and into self-appointed 'Lord' Frederick Collaborator's office. Sir Collaborator was the current manager of Alien Aisha Vending Ltd. He was also, as Khargana's unusual form of 'research' had found, an underling of the Alien Aisha military and the 'respectful' front of the company itself. Or so she'd heard.

     According to a different source, incidentally a maid that cleaned the upper two floors of the 12 story building, his lordship liked to sleep-in and didn't come up to his office until about 9:00 am NST, which fits this early morning investigator just fine. It was currently about 3:00 am NST, so she shouldn't have anything to worry about-though she wasn't so rash as to let her guard down.

     Carefully she stepped over where her security 3D model had told her the laser defensive scanners were, meticulously making sure her tail didn't drag through the invisible lasers either. In actuality though, the security of the office was pretty lax. All laser sensors and traps directly inside and outside the door and only two trip sensors inside the actual office, and absolutely no security in the vents. Hah! And she'd been expecting a challenge.

     She chuckled to herself and flipped open her memo-briefcase on an empty spot on his perfectly organized desk. Everything was set in piles and stapled with little memos written on top of what to do with each stack. She chuckled a little to herself and examined the third 3D model, this one of his interior office. She scratched her neck ruffle thoughtfully and looked around. There were four huge file cabinets behind the desk, with a further three built into the executive desk itself. It could be anywhere.

     She hopped over the desk, as that was faster than walking around, and examined the titles of each file along the wall behind the desk. There were three files to each of the four file cabinets, so there were 12 separate files on that wall alone. The first cabinet was devoted to personnel, with the first file being for current employees, the second for blacklisted employees, and the third was unnamed, but Khargana gathered after flipping through it that it was for undercover employees or spies.

     To her utter surprise, DeSoni was not in the blacklisted file, for what reason she couldn't think, as he was obviously a traitor to the Alien Aishas and the Vending Company was clearly a front. Though still confused, she examined the other two cabinets. The second was devoted to boring research and contained numerous blueprints, documents of current projects, and even a couple prototypes. The third cabinet was entirely full of recipes, which she supposed shouldn't surprise her so much considering the supposed front for the company. And the fourth was devoted to past, successful projects.

     She rubbed her pawprints off the cabinets with a small cotton cloth from her vest and turned to the desk. It had to be in one of those three remaining files. Unfortunately, they were locked.

     Oh well, nothing she couldn't handle. She glanced over at the NST clock on the wall: 3:45 am. She'd taken much longer then she'd expected already. With a touch of flourish, she pulled a set of skeleton keys, also known as lock picks, out from another of her voluminous vest pockets. She had a gizmo she'd invented for a break-in of a room in the high-tech Space Station that could open any lock in less then three seconds, but where's the fun in that?

     In about ten seconds, give or take, Khargana had the first file in the desk open. And apparently she'd chosen the right file, as there was a large brown folder right on top with the wording "Special Report of Ex-Agent Derek Sonix--Confidential" written on top. She flipped open to the first page and found a rather handsome photo of her new brother along with what must be the source code: "Alien Aisha Secret Files: Section 523D, Subsection B3, Listing: Derek Sonix".

     "This is it," the detective whispered to herself in awe, despite the fact that she had been sure the whole time that it was in the office somewhere. She flipped the folder closed. Only one thing bugged her. From experience, she knew company executives, politicians, billionaires, and the like only kept active files in their desks. True, the file was secret, but it was in the very top file, the most easily accessible one. No one in their right mind left an important and top-secret document in the top file of their desk unless it was currently being worked on. "Not good," grumbled the Wocky, worrying a little for her brother's sake.

     Suddenly the door to the office banged open, and three Alien Aisha guards in blue uniforms dashed in. Khargana quickly yanked out her laser stunner/knife and used it to short-circuit the light switch so the guards wouldn't flick on the lights and see her clearly.

     Thankfully, they were more brave than wise. "Gotcha, thief! Don't move a muscle!" shouted the one in command.

     "Ya gotta be kidding me," said Khargana succinctly, flipping onto the desk. "No offense, buddies, but how can ya expect anyone ta follow that lame advice?" She bent down and in two quick motions placed the folder on top of the hidden keyboard and flicked the briefcase closed. Out of the corner of her eye she noticed none of them had any stunners or other weapons. How could they even call themselves guards? Relying on their system to monitor the building, terribly unprofessional.

     "You'll never get away with this!" shouted the brave leader. "You're stealing, trespassing, and guilty as charged."

     Khargana chuckled meanly and lithely leaped toward the vent, memo-briefcase and contents safely in paw. She couldn't resist a parting shot. "Ya gotta catch me to charge me, dimbulb! And may I suggest you up your security? Or at least start carrying weapons!" She laughed, slamming the vent closed from the inside and disappearing from view. All the guards could hear of her was a faint chuckle and the quick tapping against the metal as she dashed away.

      "Sir? Do we follow?"

     "Leave it. You'll never catch a professional Wocky thief in the vents, especially as whoever that was, was correct about the security."

     The commanding Alien Aisha guard flicked his four earstalks in annoyance and walked over to Lord Collaborator's desk. He shut the file, though not before noticing which folder was missing. "Now why would anyone want that?" he wondered aloud to himself as he locked the desk with a small key, not realizing he was wiping out the detective's paw prints for her as he examined the keyhole for signs of scratches or damage, of which there, naturally, was neither.

     "Sir? Course of action?" asked the third guard.

     The leader sighed. "Call up Lord Collaborator and tell him some anonymous rogue stole the Derek Sonix file. No matter, his lordship has copies, but be careful. You know he can have quite a temper."

     ******

     "Khargana? Is that you?" moaned a sleepy DeSoni, yawning and coming down the stairs just in time to see the Green Wocky enter the house. "It's 5 am NST. I know you said you'd help me in the morning with my shop stocktaking, but seriously…"

     Khargana smiled cheerfully, wide-awake and clear-minded. "I went out to get you a gift, bro!"

     DeSoni halted in mid-yawn from shock. Khargana had never called him bro before, even though he'd called her sis from the beginning. And, a gift? Why so early in the morning, if you can even call it morning when the sun wasn't even up?

     Khargana cheerfully sat down on the bottom step of the stairs and waited for DeSoni to make it the rest of the way down. He plopped down next to her, his two Aisha earstalks sleepily drooping in his face.

     He yawned. "Thanks and all, Khar, but can't it wait a couple hours?"

     The Detective Wocky shook her head and flipped open her briefcase. The brown folder sat inside with DeSoni's birth name on top. The little yellow guy stared in shock and reached carefully for the folder, almost as if scared of what it might contain.

     "I know it probably won't be filled of happy thoughts, but I thought you might like to have it."

     Silently DeSoni nodded. He stood back up and turned around to go back up to his room. "I-I'm gonna go read this…" His voice drifted off, but he didn't take his eyes off the folder.

     Khargana smiled a little sadly. "If you want to talk over anything in there, I'm always here for you, bro."

     DeSoni nodded, still engrossed staring at the folder. Finally he looked up. "Th-thank you. Thank you, Khargana."

     Khargana stood up and dusted off her vest where dust from the air vent still clung. "What's the point of being a detective if I can't use my skills for my family?"

     The one-time Derek Sonix ran up the staircase to delve into his past. He would remain upstairs all day.

     ******

     "So, Queenie, how'd it go?" the huge Red Kougra bartender (from the beginning) asked.

     "Not to bad, 10C. Thanks ag'in for the sources. Forsythe Alexander JubJub was a gem of a help, cowardly yet dumb enough ta fork over mini-copies of his blueprints. Couldn't a done without ya." She held up her glass, bearing only Neocola with a splash of cherry syrup, in a toast to her ol' buddy.

     The strikingly handsome brown Wocky club owner, sitting on Khargana's right at the bar, shook his head. "I can't believe my own hired help is aiding our Queen of Spades on her quest to get herself killed."

     10C and Khargana, a.k.a. the Queen of Spades, rolled their eyes, then high-fived each other.

     The Green Wocky Detective laughed happily. "I came out jus' fine. File was stolen, security was lax, and don' cha dare repeat that to those Aisha thieves. I know they're always sniffing around for freebie tips. They wan' somethin' from the Queen of Spades, they're gonna have ta fork over the dough! I'd say 3,000 NP ought to cover it..."

     The three friends laughed and chatted the rest of the day away.

The End

Hope you enjoyed it! I figured since I had DeSoni mentioned he'd gotten his file from his sister, it made sense to have a story where Khargana actually gets the file! Thanks for reading, and feel free to Neomail and questions/comments to me! Oh, don't bother asking about the Brown Wocky and the question of 10C, that information is reserved for a future story in-the-making!

 
Search the Neopian Times




Great stories!


---------

Freedom and Glory: Part Three
The crowds gathered were louder than she could have imagined, and it made her stomach turn to think that all of those eyes would be fixed on her in mere moments.

by laurelinden

---------

Being Evil Isn't Easy
More isn't always better...

by chibi_zoo

---------

The Advantages of Being a Pack Rat
There is always one person in everyone's family that just can't seem to let go of those items that everyone else find useless. I have always been one of those people...

by kevsgrl2004

---------

Some Assembly Required
What's the use?

by prettypenny



Submit your stories, articles, and comics using the new submission form.