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Complete Detachment (Star Wars Prequel SI)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by 9adam4, Feb 1, 2019.

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  1. Bellcross

    Bellcross Plot is king

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    I honestly thought this story was dead...and I'm probably not he only one.
     
  2. Sceptic

    Sceptic Critical Irrationalist

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    He'd apparently already started reposting on SB something like an hour before my post.
    Not that it's any kind of challenge or anything, but he's been banned on AH? Huh, hadn't seen that. It's not a site I'd recommend bothering with unless you're posting alternate history stories set a century or more back. And even then, the owner and the moderator tend to ban people at the drop on a hat for somewhat spurious reasons. SB I'm not sure he's still banned so much as decided to leave when he got temp banned for asking in his own thread why someone would call themselves a rebellion after they'd already won; I personally didn't even realise it was related to SW until after his temp ban for a day for "spoiling" the new movie. SV, on the other hand, he ran head first into gender politics when his story went in that direction and he made the mistake of replying to people who care about such things.
    Very much agreed. AH would be a bad fit because of the setting, if for no other reason, and SV would either be perfectly fine or a complete train wreck, as is their wont.
     
    Prince Charon, 9adam4 and Belenus like this.
  3. 9adam4

    9adam4 No emotion, only "peace"

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    My Star Trek story has been well-received on SB with only moderate arguments.

    Thank you for the warning.

    It me. I will try to be good.
     
    Thrackerzod and Prince Charon like this.
  4. Threadmarks: Ch. 19.5 - Just Business
    9adam4

    9adam4 No emotion, only "peace"

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    (The SpaceBattles version of the story is getting some revisions/updates as I go along. Here's an inserted chapter).

    For Coruscant office buildings, it was a matter of prestige to have an office on a high enough level that sunlight could make it through during the day. I stepped into the corner office of Baktoid Combat Automata’s Vice President of Research and Development to find its owner inspecting a turret-mounted blaster rifle that was completely out of place with the room’s earth-tone decor.

    “Mister Kenobi,” the slight, well-dressed young man made himself smile as he turned to face me. “To what do I owe the honor?” His eyes flicked to the firearm. “Sorry about the extraneous equipment. Delivery insisted it come here, although I assured them it was a mistake. Reika’s looking into it for me.” As he spoke, he took the frustrated anger that he felt over this unforeseen annoyance and buried it under his mental self-image. He had been hoping for this meeting; the gleeful anticipation fairly leapt out at me.

    “Mister Varani,” I returned his smile and gave a short nod, “thanks for fitting me in today. I wanted to address this issue as soon as it came to my attention.”

    “Yes?” He gestured to a chair in front of his desk as he returned to his place behind it, allowing himself only one more look at the large energy weapon before placing his full attention on me.

    “Yes, I finally had a chance to spend time today at the BCA prototyping facilities.”

    “The upgrades are going beautifully, aren’t they?” Welor Varani smiled. “The generational margin is down almost fifteen percent. That combat data you’ve provided has really increased our efficiency.”

    I nodded. “I saw that, but... “ I cleared my throat. “The disposal procedures haven’t changed.”

    Valani furrowed his brow in a show of confusion that I knew was entirely feigned. “Disposal? We’re still recycling at more than ninety-five tons per hundred. That’s way above industry standard.”

    I pulled the chit out of my pocket, placing it on his desk. “I don’t mean the waste recycling. I mean your procedure for dealing with ‘defective’ prototypes that pass sapience tests.” I watched him politely take the chit and plug it into his desk port. It displayed highlighted language from my agreement with BCA. “I was assured that rescue of the affected units could begin immediately. That was more than a year ago.”

    “Oh?” he said, and he couldn’t quite get the knowing smirk off his face. “Assured by whom?”

    “By the Board of Directors. The same Board who voted to authorize this agreement, and who control this company.”

    “Well, yes,” he nodded, his grin only widening. “They do control the company. But they don’t precisely run it.”

    “That’s why I’m here. I spoke with one of your engineers, Bema Rorn. She said the detection and salvage procedures could start immediately, but you had ordered them to continue disposing of the defective units as normal.”

    The man nodded again. “Guilty as charged.”

    I cocked my head. “If you don’t implement those procedures as agreed, then BCA is in breach of contract. I can sue.”

    “Yes.” Valani leaned forward, his eyes widening. “You can indeed sue, for actual damages. Which we estimate at well under a million credits altogether over the life of the contract.” He brought up another document - a report with these numbers written out stark columns. “Whereas the ‘rehabilitation and sustainment procedures’ you had us commit to, are at least twice that number.”

    “An incredibly small margin of the overall profits,” I pointed out, “with an uncountable upside. We’re talking about sapient beings, here. People. You understand that, right? As many as a hundred thousand thinking, conscious people over ten years.”

    Valani shook his head. “With all due respect, mister Kenobi, that’s simply not so. There are no people involved at all. These are a hundred thousand defective machines, of no value to anyone. A drain on resources, on the time and energy of our best and brightest employees.” He shrugged. “I’m sorry, but the answer is simply no.”

    “Or I could get the board to replace you,” I threatened.

    He actually laughed at that. “Mister Kenobi, trust me: at the end of the day, they’ll side with whomever is making BCA more money. As of now, that’s me. You may have a lot of leverage with them, but not enough to get me sacked.” He took a deep breath and let himself calm down. “But here is what I will do.” He pressed several more buttons on his desk console. “You stick to the rest of the agreement, and I’ll increase your profit-share by the estimated value of these defective prototypes. We can call it a settlement for our breach.” His smile widened. “Or, you can cease working with us, and we can sue you for more than your shares are worth.”

    Inside, I had already centered myself, letting my feelings of frustration and concern wash over me without finding purchase. Outside, I allowed myself to look as though I was just now bringing my anger under control. “Let me think it over,” I stood abruptly.

    “Please do. No hard feelings, mister Kenobi. It’s just business.”

    I waited until I was visibly out of the building before mentally activating one of BCA’s forays into robotic weaponry: a turret-mounted blaster rifle with an auto-aim feature. Strange how the weapon, which was still quite temperamental and wasn’t supposed to be deployed outside the live fire labs, had found its way into the VP’s office. It wasn’t on the internal records to be delivered there, and none of the personnel could remember doing so.

    But considering my involvement with R&D and the Board, no one found it particularly strange when Mr. Valani’s replacement, one Bema Rorn, had a sympathetic ear for droid rights. The R&D prototyping labs implemented the procedures right away.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2020
  5. Belenus

    Belenus Not too sore, are you?

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    And nothing of value was lost. Even if you don't consider newly manufactured droids as people since they aren't sapient, just follow the fucking contract ffs.
    This is one of the major things about the prequel era that people seem to miss, the megacorporations were effectively a law unto themselves. I mean, giving the Trade Fed not only senatorial seats, but also seating their client states? And the kind of casual breaches of contract shown here were all over the place, wherever and whenever they could get away with it.

    One of these is incorrect.
     
  6. 9adam4

    9adam4 No emotion, only "peace"

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    Or he's bad at remembering names.
     
  7. jisawiskiller

    jisawiskiller Your first time is always over so quickly, isn't it?

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    Ok just found your story and binged read it in 2 days, really really enjoying it mate and yeah definitely cross-post on other websites so you can get a larger audience.
    Keep up the good work mate its really an awesome read!
     
    Oh I am slain! likes this.
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