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CHAPTER FOUR – THANK YOU VELES
To say that the question, “Where are all the casualties?” which Sully had posed, dominated the lad’s thoughts and conversations over the next few days would be inaccurate. But certainly it was one of those questions that simply wouldn’t go away. Pushing itself to the forefront of each of their minds during times of inactivity. And they were by no means alone in such contemplations.
Others had picked up on this fact and indeed on the weird circumstances surrounding this new unexplained phenomenon of seemingly isolated tank battles cropping up all over the globe. Soon the chat rooms and forums of the web were awash with chatter and theories and opinions concerning them. And of course, the conspiracy theorists out there were the most active in this regard.
As for Sully and Liam, to call them conspiracy theorists would be unfair, but certainly the environment and circumstances that they grew up in had increased their awareness of and heightened their sensitivities towards the all too often unreported and all too frequent under-handed practices of government agencies.
And even for conspiracy theorists – except for the really extreme ones perhaps – the demands of everyday life often got in the way of such debates, discussion and deliberations. And those same pressures and demands of everyday life also often got in the way of the lad’s ability to get online and play tanks. So for the next few days they didn’t get a chance to get online together. That’s not to say that the lad’s didn’t still get a chance to communicate, however.
The lads along with Jes, Santos and Aaron were busy chatting away about the clan and team training and other competitions and other general clan business. And additionally Aaron was actively trying to organise tryouts for the teams the clan would be forming for such competitions.
Aaron – SonOfReborn (as his Gamer Tag was) – was fairly new to the clan having come over, along with many others, from the UWS Clan. They were a much appreciated and much welcomed addition to the clan. Aaron was young and enthusiastic and had a lot of great ideas that would benefit the clan and its members.
Player stats in respect of the Celts’ clan members were, of course, also – albeit in general only – part of their conversation. But unbeknown to them they weren’t the only ones who would be considering the stats of the Celts’ clan members.
Thousands of miles away an office door slides open and as a solitary figure enters the office the motion sensors activated the office lighting. Walking to a coat stand in the corner of the office, the figure removed his cap and overcoat before going and sitting at his desk. Pulling his chair forward with ease as the roller feet slid across the shiny granite surface of the office floor he placed his left hand palm downwards on a small flat screen built into his desk.
The pressure on the screen kicked a laser scanner into life and within seconds the man’s palm and finger prints had been scanned, analysed and approved. And with that approval the wall facing the desk instantly illuminated into life as a series of screens of varying sized switched on.
“Access Xbox Files. Display Clan details,” the man instructed. “Clan Name: The Fighting Irish, Clan Tag: Celts – Charlie Echo Lima Tango Sierra.”
A number of the screens instantly displayed various details applicable to The Fighting Irish Clan. Several of the smaller screens displayed specific details relevant top the clan . One displayed the clan’s history – when it was formed, who had formed it, it’s growth chart. Another detailed is officer and company structure. A third detailed the activity of it’s clan members within Ranked Battles, whilst yet another detailed the number and dates of team training events that the clan had held. Yet another detailed the ops which the clan members’ had collectively participated in. Whilst yet another displayed the clan’s collective garage of tanks.
The large screen in the centre, which was by comparison about the width of 5 of the smaller surrounding screens and about 3 of them in height, detailed the names of the 93 clan members. At the bottom of the list was an affiliation alert. “Clan intrinsically linked to ‘The Fighting Irish – Wolf Pack Clan. Clan Tag: CELTZ’ it read.
In truth the level of details and information displayed was extremely impressive. Just as impressive perhaps as the way that each of the screens seemed somehow seamless. As if they had no edges. To all intents and purposes the wall itself was just one big screen. Like some super advanced video wall.
“Side Display, Show Affiliated Clan details and history.” the man voiced his instruction. In response the displays of three of the screens to the left of the main screen changed and displayed the information required.
Getting up from his desk the man stood there for a moment simply surveying and analysing the data displayed before him across the room. After a moment or two he walked around his desk approached the wall and then studied the list of clan members displayed on the larger central screen.
Turning his attention to a series of little icons which were showing in the bottom left hand corner of the central display he tapped one and then tapped on Starcelt’s name from the displayed Clan members listing,
Instantly the central display changed to detail Starcelt’s player profile. “Side display, Player’s Stats. Player – Starcelt.” His command was simple, clear and without noticeable obvious inflections. Another display to the side of the main screen flicked into life and displayed to details request.
He turned his focus to that display and contemplated the information given for a while.
“Commander it is time for your 09 hundred meeting.” a digital voice advised him.
“Thank you, Veles.” The man responded. His voice now less assertive and somewhat softer except for the Russian intonations. “Secure displays.”