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Rhinestones In Glass [Pent]Houses


Galahinda

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It had begun small; a few late shipments, minorly damaged produce, offhanded comments mumbled under breaths, nothing new for an island built on market competition. But as incidents piled up and resentment grew, what had started small had irreparably grown larger. Verbal spats in the corporate board room became common, mutual contracts began going up in flames, and the divide became noticeable outside of the board rooms of the island's ruling class. Soon, entire orders arrived destroyed if they arrived at all, Richard Spai began outright rejecting MYNE and DAUFA contracts, and now this.

 

Spencer Klynne was awakened by the ringing of a phone that hadn't rung since he was a little boy. Spencer sat up, rubbing the last vestiges of that night's sleep from his eyes as he yanked the phone from its receiver. Although he was an older man by Galahindan nightlife standards, an ancient 50, the minuscule fuse on his rage that marked his career, both economic and political, had only worsened. Being roused from sleep by a phone that was only supposed to be used if Cascadia was literally burning was more than enough to light that fuse. "WHO THE HELL IS THIS, AND WHY THE HELL ARE YOU CALLING ME ON THIS PHONE?" demanded Spencer, screaming directly into the receiver, momentarily deafening the night operations lead in KSC headquarters. 

"Th-there was an incident in the core, sir," began the man on the other end, voice shaking as he tried to save himself from termination.

"WHO THE HELL CARES WHAT HAPPENS IN THE CORE! DIRECTIVE SAYS THAT THIS PHONE IS ONLY TO BE USED IF OUR FORCES ARE DIRECTLY UNDER ATTACK!" interrupted Spencer, anger rapidly worsening.

"That's the thing, sir," began the voice on the phone, clearing his throat, "there was an incident between KSC contractors and DAUFA forces on the intersection of 83rd street and Vyno boulevard." 

"WELL, WHAT THE f*ck HAPPENED?" demanded Spencer, face reddening.

"There was a firefight sir, contractors are saying that there was an argument, and one of ours shot a DAUFA soldier. The current report says at least one contractor critical and two others injured." 

"ANY OF THOSE DAUFA f*ckERS DEAD?"

"Report says one DAUFA soldier dead and two critical sir."

"f*ck! TELL ALL CONTRACTORS THAT IF A SINGLE BULLET LEAVES THEIR GUNS FOR THE REST OF THE NIGHT, I'LL PERSONALLY SEND IT THROUGH THEIR SKULLS!" Screamed Klynne, spit flying from his mouth.

"Right awa-" 

The voice at the other end didn't have time to finish his reply before Spencer slammed the receiver down, shattering the plastic assembly. 

 

On the other side of the island, Chairman Yiu Amistacia was hard at work, preparing for the upcoming MYNE FY35 spring/summer collection. Despite being arguably the most powerful person on the island, the nightlife icon still demanded that they look over the pieces for any flaws personally. At the forefront of their attention was the dress that they would wear for the upcoming event. Constructed out of a transparent iridescent foil gathered at the bodice before forming a long train behind the model, the dress would perfectly highlight every curve and contour of Yiu's body. Engrossed in their work and with their perception dampened by the upcoming show's soundtrack by Cascadian nightlife DJ addyr being blasted through the wireless headphones in their ears, Yiu didn't notice the presence of another person in their workshop until they felt a tap on their shoulder. Pausing to remove one of the headphones, "I'm a little busy, Quora, can it wait a few? This seam is f*cking me up." said Yiu, tucking a piece of hair behind their ear, not bothering to look up. "It can't actually." came the reply, the voice of Lynne Androni ripping Yiu from their creative headspace. "Lynne! it's late; what the hell are you doing here?" asked Yiu, whipping around to face their unexpected visitor, before hastily adding, "not that I'm not happy to see you." 

"We're leaving," began Lynne, holding up a finger to silence the incoming protest, "I don't care if you're busy."

 

Evidently, Lynne's idea of leaving was taking a helicopter directly from the MYNE workshop to DAUFA's newly constructed headquarters. The helicopter ride was particularly tense. Despite the pleading from Yiu, no time was given to apply foundation or draw on eyebrows, leaving the chairman's face utterly devoid of makeup. A fate worse than complete nudity in the chairman's mind. Upon arriving at the newly constructed compound, the pair was taken directly into the underground command room for the PMC. Awaiting their arrival was DAUFA commander Alexis Cannmore, who saluted the pair before beckoning them towards a display feed. On-screen was an aerial shot of the intersection of 83rd and Vyno, where police had cordoned off onlookers and begun the process of removing the injured and dead from the scene. "What am I looking at, Alexis?" Asked Yiu, unclear as to why their presence was needed. 

"At 23:43, DAUFA soldiers on-site called in that they were under attack by Klynne Security Group contractors. What you see on screen is the aftermath." Answered Alexis before switching from a live feed to CCTV. "From what we can see, there was an argument between our soldiers and Klynne contractors." continued Alexis, pressing a button causing the feed to fast forward a few seconds. "At 23:42:13, we see the Klynne contractor pull a gun and fire three rounds into our soldier. Immediately after both parties dive for cover and a firefight breaks out," explained Alexis, allowing the scene to play out behind her. "After two minutes of fighting, DAUFA forces retreat into the building, one is dead, and two are in critical condition." 

"And Klynne's contractors?" asked Yiu, arms folded.

"Immediately after DAUFA forces retreat, they scatter." Answered Alexis.

"They knew they f*cked up," Interrupted Lynne, speaking louder than she had intended.

"So what the hell are we going to do?" responded Yiu, a hint of panic creeping into their voice.

"Well, my professional suggestion is to postpone any MYNE events, recall all DAUFA soldiers, and wait for a response by KSC." Said Alexis.

"We're not canceling this MYNE event. Princess Margaret is going to be here, and we need to make sure our reputation with Seylos isn't damaged by some tragic misunderstanding." Interjected Lynne, taking a drag from her electronic cigarette before continuing, "We're going to call for Spencer's resignation, demand a full investigation, and cancel all remaining corporate board contracts with KSC."

"That's going to require a full vote. What are the chances of a majority?" queried Yiu, rubbing their temples in a doomed attempt to ward off a stress headache. 

Taking a moment to pull up a complicated web of icons, Alexis began speaking, "Based on current contract values, interpersonal opinions, and personal values, we can expect Bittman Financial, Spai Computing, GalFreight, Atelier, and Telegram to side with KSC." 

"And who's with us?" asked Lynne, leaning forward to view the web.

"Obviously, we've got MYNE and Androni, but we can expect Orpheum, ASC, Laxcomme, Neurve, and Anvie," responded Alexis.

"What about the rest, there in the middle?" Yiu asked, gesturing towards the cluster of icons in the middle of the web.

"They're tossups, we expect a few to abstain, especially Veridi, but as far as we can tell, we've set ourselves up for a deadlock unless we can convince the rest of them that there's merit to our arguments," answered Alexis.

"Alright, I'll call an emergency session for Saturday, let the others collect themselves before the vote." said Lynne, "In the meantime, we'll get Yiu prepped for an official response in the morning."

 

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