Summary: Peter Pan returns from his quests and Red starts building his MacGuffin.
NOTE: This is a very rough draft with no editing at all (per National Novel Wiriting Month rules) and is presented for amusement value only. Think of it as a periscope into my writing process rather than a coherent story!
There will most likely be spelling and grammatical errors afoot as well as flat out bad writing, info dumps, plot holes, contradictions/retcons, uneven characterization and pacing. These snippits are also posted out of order, so please refer to the Outline to figure out where it’s supposed to fit.
When A Plan Comes Together
Peter Pan returns three days later, his tail filaments tightly in excitement. He hopped up on the table in front of Red and Chatter.
“Did you get what you needed?” asked Red. He already knew, Peter Pan wouldn’t have come back without the things he needed. Once Peter had set his mind to things, very little would deter him.
“Of course,” said Peter Pan. “Do you have an interface?”
“If I said no, what would you do?” asked Red in annoyance, turning to pick up the laptop that had been heavily modified to interact with the city’s computer systems.
“Let’s not burn bridges we haven’t built yet.” Said Peter Pan, tail twitching impatiently as Red setup the computer.
“There we go,” said Red and tossed Peter Pan an input cable.
The squirrel caught the cord deftly in his not-quite human hands and plugged it into a slot in the belly of the mobile unit.
“I’ve got everything you should need.” Said Peter, ” This worked so much better than I had hoped, she had no idea I was there.”
“I wouldn’t go that far,” said Red, “She probably knew you were there, she just couldn’t do anything about it.” He tapped a few keys on the keyboard looking through the code that Peter Pan had collected from the different nodes. “Did you run into any problems with the other kingdoms?”
“None,” said Peter Pan. “Once I told them what we were doing, they were fine with the idea.”
“All of them?” Red asked, surprised.
“The ones that counted,” said Peter Pan. “As I rule Neverland, so do the others rule their own kingdoms. I only needed to convince the ones in charge and there are very few of the rulers who aren’t chaffing at Atlantis’s confinements.”
“I’m not sure if that’s comforting or not.” said Red. “But as long as they stay out of our way, I really don’t care.”
Chatter made an annoyed noise, but Red ignored him.
“How long will it take you?” Asked Peter Pan, his tail twitching.
“A day at least,” said Red, “maybe more depending on what sort of safeguards she has in place. But it shouldn’t take that long to put everything together. The base code is in place, once we have the workaround you’ll have control over the micromobiles.”
The micromobiles were tiny mobile units used by Atlantis to keep the city in repair. Like nanobots or replicators, they were somewhat self-contained but could be directly controlled if needed.
If everything went as planned, the code they had gotten from the other kingdoms and what Red had managed to build himself would give Peter Pan control over a swarm of micromobiles. How many mobiles would depend on Peter’s processing power, but the AI had managed to network his subjects in such a way that he could pull from the other AIs. Once he was outside the boundaries of his own kingdom his power would wane, since the others were still trapped within Atlantis’s boundaries.
Right now the squirrel mobile was the only one that could cross the lines, Red had hacked the safety protocols and managed to mask its location from Atlantis. It was a cloaked IP address squirrel.
“I’ll be back then,” said Peter, “I have a few last things to do here before we make our move.”
“I’ll call you when it’s complete.” said Red.
“You better.” said Peter Pan.
Red snorted and Peter gave him one last look before the squirrel went still.
There was a short pause while Red waited to make sure Peter was really gone.
“Skip, you can come back now.” He said.
There was a long stillness and Red frowned. “Skip, I said you could come back.” When nothing happened he turned to Chatter. “Where is he?”
“I don’t know.” said Chatter. “He hasn’t talked to me since you kicked him out.”
“That was temporary.” objected Red. “Peter had no need for that body beyond his little daytrip to the other kingdoms. That mobile was meant for Skip.”
“He may not want it anymore.” said Chatter.
“Because Peter used it?” said Red, annoyed.
“Because you kicked him out of it.” said Chatter.
“What, he’s looking for an apology?” objected Red. “Fine, I apologize, just get back here.”
Chatter looked at him.
“What? I apologized, do you think I don’t mean it?”
“Well, no,” said Chatter. “I’s just that you suck at apologies.”
“Then go get him and translate it into something computers like better.” snapped Red. “I refuse to grovel at a random collection of ones and zeroes that insists that I’ve hurt it’s feelings.”
Chatter sighed. “I’ll be back then.”
Red waved a hand dismissively, and focused his attention back on the laptop and the code that Peter had left him to work with. “Fine, fine.”
Chatter waited another moment and then that mobile unit went still as well.
Red kept typing and pretended not to notice.