"Well, when you put it that way." he huffs, crossing his arms over his chest and scowling.
"When it's put any way you're the damn cause of the fire you little fucking fool." His own advocate snorts. "Grow the hell up you stupid little sack of shit. . .you started the damn fire because you couldn't get what you wanted . . .her land."
"But the guards and other prisoners are yelling at me."
"Good, you deserve to be yelled at you stupid little moron. Your little temper tantrum murdered over a hundred people that we know of. . .if their families got hold of you they'd tear you limb from limb."
"But she should. . ." His head rocks from the punch from his own advocate.
"GROW THE HELL UP YOU STUPID LITTLE SACK OF SHIT! SHE DOESN'T OWE ANYBODY A GODDAMN THING. YOU'RE THE GODDAMN ASSHOLE WHO STARTED THE FUCKING FIRE. . .NOT HER!" The prisoner judge yells as he's dragged off by the guards.
Josette returns to Haven, alerting Joyce and the others to turn on computers and replicators so the update can start downloading. "How long?"
"At least three days. It's a massive update, including a lot of books that aren't part of degrees. . .yet."
"How are dumbasses settling in the medium security dimension?" Amanda asks in the front room later that night.
"They're not. . .the guards and other prisoners are yelling at them. They shouldn't have to work to pay for all the damages. . .it was my shields that caused the fire to spread out."
"Morons." Principal Madison snorts.
"Oh yes, morons can't get over the fact they're actually going to be punished for their shit. Dumbfucks don't realize they're safe in the medium security dimension. . .if the families of the people killed or the people that lost their homes got hold of them. . ."
"Yeah but thinking of that would make them grownups." David snorts. "And with some people that will never happen." The others nod in both rooms.
After the update Josette and David finish the classes they'd planned on taking that semester before the crops start coming in. Everybody's busy canning, drying, or otherwise storing the food for later and they nod in satisfaction when everything's in and the new crops planted.
Josette slides into her seat at the meeting room. "I gotta go to Granda's after the meeting, dumbfucks are trying to sue me for damages from the fire they started. . .because they're miserable bastards. I have to be punished for not kissing their asses. . .who cares if they started the fire to try to burn me out. . .it was my shields that caused the fire to spread. . .ignoring the fact there'd be no fire to spread if they hadn't set it."
"Of course they won't think about that." President Bartlett snorts.
The man who'd tried rushing Josette screams when she puts a leg between his and hits him hard in a tender area. She knocks the stupidity out of the others rushing at her until the guards take them out with tasers.
"God damn retarded sacks of shit. . .what the hell did you think you were doing?" They're asked the following day as they're facing more charges.
"But it was her fault the fire spread. . .why won't anybody listen to us?" they wail.
"Because it's NOT her fault you retarded sacks of shit, YOU started the damn fire because you couldn't steal the land away from her."
"But it's not fair!" They wail as they're quickly found guilty and sentenced to more time in the medium security dimension. "Why won't anybody listen to us?"
"Because you're stupid little shits who should have been drowned at birth. Useless wretches. You didn't get what you wanted and you don't think you should be punished for what you did."
Josette returns to Haven a few days later Earth time.
"The dumbasses tried attacking me when the courts found in my favor, the morons are facing more time in the medium security dimension and have another judgment to pay off. Dumb fuckers are wailing why are they being punished, it was my shields that made the fire spread out."
"Of course if the asshats hadn't tried to burn your land because if they couldn't have it nobody should the fucking fire would never have happened?" President Bartlett drawls.
"Oh that's beside the point, my shield spread the fire so it was my fault. Morons are the useless sort that if they drove drunk and . . .oohhh, hit a building they'd sue the damn building for daring to be there."
"People like that should be beaten to death so their stupidity doesn't breed." Professor Eppes snorts. The others nod.
"The other prisoners are certainly trying their hardest. . .and once they're in prison I expect the others to kick their asses ten times a day for the rest of their miserable lives."
"How's Dad's school?"
"Ohhhh, idiots are trying to take over . . .again. How can Granda take something so inconsequential as grades into consideration for attending school there?" Everybody snorts. "Colleges are gearing back up as students graduate high school." The others nod.
"Idiots who think they're all that are trying to shove their opinions down everybody else's throats and pout when they don't get what they want."
"Yes, how can we lord it over everybody that our son got into this top-notch school when they won't accept him because he's a useless oik who can't be bothered to try to get good grades. Meanwhile a good student whose parents are poor might be accepted. It's not fair." Josette puts her hands on her head and mock wails. Everybody in both rooms snort. "So much for humanity learning from the zero-population periods."
"Never going to happen, humanity is still a beast." Dr. Hazlitt drawls. Everybody nods.
In Superhero Doc's dimension Maddy wails as she looks at herself in a mirror. How can she live being so thin? It's. . .it's just not right.
"Shut up Daniels and get to work, I don't care how damn miserable you are. . .you're not sitting on your ass feeding your face so you're as fat as you were before."
"But I can't live like this."
"Oh bullcrap, plenty of people live like this for decades. You're just a lazy cow who's whining because you had to lose weight and you're a miserable excuse for a human being."
"But I'm thin. . .and you still won't let me eat everything I want."
"No moron, because you're being punished."
At Hamberg Natalie snorts as she reads the letter from the prison. One of the pursers is looking at her. "My idiot sister is wailing that she was sent to the medium security dimension to make enough money to pay for her custom-made casket and two plots since the moron weighed over six hundred pounds. She's miserable because she was made to lose over five hundred pounds. . .Maddy is now a normal weight for the first time in her life and she's pouting. . .they're making her work three jobs at the prison, work on finishing school. . she should be a sophomore in high school and she's in the eighth grade because. . ."
"she don't wanna take classes?" Her suite mate snorts, checking her own mail.
"Yep, she's lost all that weight and the prison still won't let her eat all she wants. Because they want the weight to stay off and she wants to be as fat as a tick and sit on her ass having everybody wait on her hand and foot for the rest of her life. The prison told Aunt Marilyn she just wailed at having to get a damn shower daily because the doctors were disgusted at her sores and infections. . .and her stench. Mommy always helped her to bathe. She doesn't have a king-size bed in her cell. . .she had to either sleep sitting up or lay on the floor because her fat fell over the side of the concrete and pad."
"Stupid little brat."
"Yep. She's blubbering the other prisoners are being mean to her now. . .she can't use her weight against them. . .she could have suffocated somebody in her fat."
"Oh dear god, no I'm not going to be on Dr. Phil because that little shit doesn't want to take responsibility for her own damn actions." Natalie snorts on a phone call later that night. "That stupid brat is in prison because she killed our parents and tried to kill me. I don't fucking care if it's Dr. Phil. . .I'm not goddamn interested. No, he can't fucking turn her life around. . .dumbass doesn't want to turn her life around. She wants to sit on her ass all day and have everybody wait on her hand and foot. You think I'm bitter? Well screw you, you fucking whore. Since you're too goddamn stupid to believe me, talk to the prison and my aunt. Or do you think they're biased too? Fucking idiot."
"But I was sure they'd want to come. . .who doesn't want to be on Dr. Phil? So what if she's in the middle of her university classes. . .her sister is the only person that. . ." A woman blubbers as she's told off by her boss.
"Her sister is not the only person that matters." Somebody says icily.
"But they made her lose weight and pay for her own casket and burial plot." she wails.
"The stupid brat weighed over six hundred pounds, she would have needed a special casket and two graves."
"Ohhhhh, I didn't know that." she mumbles. "Then keeping her from buying pop at the commissary. . .?"
"is because the doctors wanted her to lose weight, not sit on her ass all day having everybody wait on her."
"But they stared at her while she showered."
"Because the stupid brat smelled and had infections and sores because she didn't want to bathe. They made sure she actually showered. . .the little brat just stood there blubbering about how Mommy always helped her bathe."
"Ohhhh, I didn't know that. And having to sleep on the floor?"
"Do you really think at six hundred pounds she could sleep on a cement block and pad in the cell? Moron was wailing because her fat fell over the side when she laid down, it was either sleep on the floor or sitting up. Now that she's lost all that weight she can sleep on the pad."
"But not allowing her to buy pop at the commissary?"
"Because first they wanted her to take the weight off and now they want her to keep the weight off. The fool girl drank a damn 12 pack of pop a day, and not that diet crap to quote her. she lost over a hundred pounds at a fat camp in preparation for the weight loss surgery but she gained it all back and more besides. She didn't want to make an effort to lose the weight. . .because it would have meant she couldn't eat all she wanted whenever she wanted."
"Oooohhhhhh. . ."
"Yeah. . .ooooohhhhhhh. Now leave them alone. The little brat has been using advocates to try to get what she wants ever since she went to prison, when they learn the truth they drop her case. She's miserable because she's thin and still can't everything she wants, she's working three jobs, and she's being forced to work on her education."
Josette slides into her usual seat at the dining hall. The others look at her, she hadn't been at the dorm when they got up that morning.
"Got a call from the 9th planet, they're wanting to enlarge the work building now that they've seen Maxie's." She says at their looks. Nods from everybody and they settle back to their meals.
"Can you add to it?" President Bartlett asks.
"Easily, it all depends on how many floors they want. Heaters and stoves do a good job of keeping the buildings warm." Nods from the others. "In the worse weather they wouldn't be out there anyway."
Nods from the others.
After the next few days Josette works on three different plans. . .including everything they'd need for the addition and if they wanted to add a bathroom and mini-kitchen to the workroom. Sending the file off at the end of the week she leans back in her desk chair with her hands behind her head and her feet up on the desk.
"Are you taking a break from the stuff for the show?"
"Yeah and cussing idiots out in the media and court. The whiners who tried to burn down the land are wailing to anybody who will listen. . .and it's not many that they shouldn't have to pay to off all these judgments. Why won't anybody listen that I'm the damn cause of the fire. . .if I hadn't had the shield over the land the fire wouldn't have spread."
"Bullshit." David snorts.
"Oh yes, they're trying to say I'm a crook but since a google search will see I'm a successful author and artist. . . they're absolutely sick over the bad publicity they're getting."
"Are they in prison?"
"They will be by the Harvest Festival. And absolutely miserable because the cons will either be beating them for causing the fire or beating them for getting arrested and not being out so they can try to take the land away from me again." Josette snorts. "Because I'm coming across as the innocent victim and they're coming off as greedy bastards who if they can't have my land I shouldn't have it either. My name and face are on all the charities helping the victims and they're pouting."
"Assholes." David says. Josette nods. "To add insult to injury the money they 'hid' to keep the courts from taking everything and giving it to me. . .magically disappeared."
"D'awwww." David coos. "So they're broke?"
"Yep, they were whining about having public defenders, 'real' attorneys would have got them off but since I had video proof of them setting the fire. . .and the one asswipe who was pissing on the shield is wailing because he got burned there and they cut it off."
"D'awwwww." Anna cooes from the doorway as David winces. "couldn't have happened to a nicer asshole."
"Yeah, and since it's not a medically necessary surgery, no reconstruction surgery at the taxpayer's expense."
"He'll know why the toilet seat stays down." Abby chuckles. "Is it just their money . ."
"It's aaaaalllllll their money, what they didn't throw away on the realtor dimension. Which I got as damages too."
"Because the court didn't wike the idea of them trying to kill me for my land? Richard and the others are turning it into a number of plantations, coffee, cacao, bananas, plantains. . . making it a profitable venture."
"Something the asswipes will be wailing about since there's not a casino, mall, or hotel in sight." Pat snorts behind them. "Josette, did you send off the plans?"
"Yep." She sends a copy of it to Pat's PADD and she nods in thanks as she starts looking. "Could you add a furnace to the buildings?"
"I've been thinking about it, a thermostat would keep the furnace from running all the time, but there's the problem of having to run vents."
"Unless you put them in the floor first. . ."
"Yeah but then you have the step up unless you had a basement under the building." Josette grabs her PADD again and starts drawing again. Pat chuckles and heads off along with the others.
The next day Josette puts the new plans on the server before she rolls up her sleeves and starts opening containers of yarn for the others dyeing in the building.
"Okay, you said you and Pat went three places, the first was all that. . .stuff." Agatha says, looking at her.
"Yep." Josette looks to her since Pat is busy measuring dye.
"And the food was the second. . .the fleeces?"
"Yep, they're on the ships since we don't need them yet. We've got plenty of yarn and thread. The only thing that we'd need them for is somebody wanted to spin their own yarn."
"Okay, start a list of who wants them and I'll bring them out after the Harvest Festival." Josette looks at the yarn. "How many more containers of yarn?"
Agatha looks at the numbers. "Five more containers should do for today. If we need more we'll do another batch."
The second crops are coming in as the last of the yarn is either put up for sale or put away in various rooms as payment for their work. Josette drops into her seat at dinner one night and closes her eyes, Abby chuckling and feeding her until she's forced to open her eyes and feed herself to stop her making airplane noises.
"Are all the crops in?" President Bartlett asks Professor Druid.
"Yes, the yearly crops are next. Josette's just tired because she was in the 'realtor' dimension overseeing the planting of the plantations." Professor Druid puts up the plans on the screen and everybody nods in satisfaction. "Dumbasses are no doubt wailing about the dimension being used for something beyond malls, hotels, casinos, and grandiose homes."
"Yep." Josette sighs in the back room. "I have everything planted and should be seeing a profit in a couple years." Josette yawns.
"Are dumbasses in the prison system now?" David asks a couple weeks later when the others start coming out for the Harvest Festival."
"Yes," Calvin sighs. "They don't know whether to be glad about getting out of the medium security dimension or be upset because they're going to prison . . .where the others are waiting to hurt them." The others snicker at the look Calvin is giving Josette. Michelle and an older woman is with them and they're looking around. . .stunned.
"Josette, is Jonathon coming back out with the others?"
"Yeah, Josette Grover was picking them up so they could see what the difference was traveling to Haven by my ship and her bus."
Jonathon and his 'posse' arrive a couple hours later. Jonathon is chuckling at the look on Fargo's face, he'd told them there was a shield around the bus but it still had been a hairy trip for the young man. Jo had sat in a seat and firmly refused to look out the window while Henry, Stark, and Allison has been busy asking questions.
They look at the tables during the Harvest Festival and see people from every planet there.
"We bring it out during the Harvest Festival, the fourth planet uses it for their celebration. Otherwise we make trips out to the third planet and the parks there. When the school was open we had yearly visits out for the students."
"Think Disney Parks. And no long lines. Robotic characters and food replicators in restaurants.
"Does everybody show up?"
"Pretty much, the temporary housing dorms will be used. . .people from the other planets will stay there instead of going home so they don't miss something. Each table will have new stuff brought out each day."
"These remind me of the old state fairs."
"Yes, but without the deep fried crap you see there."
"And people blubber they have good diets and shouldn't have to take insulin, statins, or other drugs." Josette snorts. "Or like that stupid girl in superhero's dimension who didn't want to lose all that weight."
"Ohhh, she lost it then?" Jonathon asks.
"Yes, she went to the medium security dimension and is miserable because she's thin. The prison is mean. . .they won't let her eat everything she she wants now. . .because they want her to keep the weight off. The other prisoners are being mean to her. . .she can't use her weight against them because she could have suffocated somebody in her fat folds." Dr. Blake looks at her but moans when she sees a picture of the girl in question. "Didn't her family do anything to stop her?"
"Her parents were enablers, she killed them for her father daring to allow his older daughter to keep the education fund her grandfather had created for her. She wanted it for stomach stapling. . .because if she had the surgery she could eat anything she wanted and the fat would magically melt off."
"Bullshit." Stark snorts. "Yeah, she'd already been to a fat farm for the first part of losing the weight and she hated it. . .they made her diet and exercise. The psychologists were mean, they wanted her to make an effort to lose the weight, she lost a hundred pounds at the farm and had already gained all of it back. The judge called him a damn fool because he bleated she needed the surgery. . .if she waited until insurance would pay for it it, it would have been two days later. He realized he had an older daughter in high school who would need the money for her education. Her aunt. . .his sister, was put on the money so he couldn't steal it anyway and he went home. She had a fit. ..if she had to wait for insurance to pay for it she'd have to talk to psychologists for their okay for the surgery. If she paid cash she wouldn't have to talk to those monsters, would she? Didn't paying cash count for anything anymore?"
Behind Josette various versions of Professor Xavier, Peter Venkman, and Dr. Samson snort. "She wouldn't have been allowed to have the surgery if she wasn't making an effort to lose weight."
"Exactly, and I've heard stories about people who kept eating the way they were before and the stomach pouch expanded so the surgery was pretty much useless."
"Biggest Loser." Jonathon snorts.
"That show is a damn menace." Calvin snorts. "If you don't exercise multiple hours a day to keep the weight off. . ."
"Yes, there was a contestant who gained the weight right back in my first dimension." I snort as I walk over. "The other show was a lot better, it took place over a whole year and after the first ninety days they were back home and had to make conscious choices and changes to their lifestyles." Nods of agreement from the others. "Is she still blubbering about having to shower every day?"
"Yes, because she smells and doesn't care. The weight loss got rid of the fat folds where she had infections and sores. Some fool from Dr. Phil's office wailed about the guards watching her shower but when they learned she wouldn't otherwise they were 'ooohh'." Superhero Alice snorts as she walks over. "she's blubbering because the prison won't let her buy pop at the commissary, when the advocates learned she drank a 12-pack a day. . .and not that diet crap either. . .and yes, that's a direct quote they realized she didn't need it."
"No wonder she was so heavy."
"That and her mommy had to make two meals every night so they could have something to eat, she ate it all. The prison is limiting her to one tray of food at a meal. . .fifteen hundred calories a day if she's working and a thousand if she's sitting on her ass in her cell as punishment. And yes it is punishment, she wanted to sit on her ass all day instead of work but being in that cell 23 hours a day. . ."
"It's not what she wanted." Jessy snorts. "Is her prison like the one my Mom was in and the commissary was full of bath salts, nail products. . .? Or like that one fool girl who's wailing she can't afford a tv, blu-ray DVD player, or even DVDS. . . Why won't Daddy put money on the books for her. He still can't be mad at her, can he?"
"I wouldn't be the least bit surprised." Superhero Alice snorts. "Because there's fools out there who don't think that women in prison should be made to feel like they. . ."
"they're being punished? Yep, that was why the commissary at my mom's prison had all that bath shit even though they didn't have tubs, only showers. Because we don't want them to feel like they're being punished. . .we want them to think of it as a vacation." Jessy drawls. Everybody in earshot snorts. "They did have to draw the line at taking down the walls outside the prison, the women might walk away otherwise."
Rolling eyes. "Yeah, that's why I had containers of stuff we brought back from my Mom's cell after her death. . .and that was with the other prisoners taking some of that crap when they apologized to me for what my mother had done. After the others at the house took what they wanted I donated the rest to homeless shelters in Miami. . .I still had three containers of bath stuff that they couldn't use."
"Oh Jessy, look this over and see if you want any?" Josette sends her the file of stuff she'd picked up.
"Oh dear god . . .where the hell?" They walk off talking. Stark looks at Jonathon. "Her mother? Since you seem to know her story?"
"Murdered her father when she was not quite sixteen. . .trying to put the blame on her since she'd only get a few years in a juvenile facility. He was killed in California at seven and she didn't arrive in Chicago until ten."
"Isn't that. . ."
"the same time? Yes." Jonathon snorts. "When the police in Chicago told her what had happened, she told them about the house's security system that caught her mother and her lover in the act of murdering Jessy's father. She tried to say Jessy had done it for the money. . .she inherited a hundred million when her father died. . .she had inherited fifty billion only a few days before that when her grandparents died. Her father might have been disowned, but she inherited the whole kit and kaboodle. Her godfather ended up taking her in, she'd have aged out of the foster care system in a few months and she had RA, a double blow against finding a good home. Jessy owns and operates a seamstress building."
Calvin nods in satisfaction. "So she can use some of that stuff Josette picked up. Her mother?"
"Died in an accident when Jessy was several weeks from turning 23, she spent all those years in prison wailing that Jessy would only have got a few years in a juvenile facility and would already be out, she got life. . .her manicure is ruined. And yes, that was a direct quote."
"Ohhh lord, one of those fool women. And like Hell she'd have only got juvenile for a few years." Alice snorts. "That's why that fool girl got life."
"Exactly. Jessy says she wailed forever about being put on a budget by the prison, like that girl she had money but the prison would only give her forty dollars every other week." Alice nods. "She was forever trying to get Jessy to send her money. . .she escaped once and Jessy drove up to the gate surrounding their land and immediately backed up when she recognized her wailing. She tried suing her daughter repeatedly to come visit her weekly and put money on the books for her. So what if Mom's in prison in California and she lives in Florida. . .she's her Mommy."
"Worthless fool." Superhero Pat snorts behind Alice.
"Yes, Jessy has brains and has doubled both inheritances and. . ."
"Is well on the way to doubling them again?" Pat smirks.
"Yep, her seamstress shop gets a lot of business from prom and graduation outfits in the area and she has multiple orders with Hollywood designers, she routinely makes over a million dollars in profits for their group every year." Pat and Paddy grin and walk off to talk to her.
"Like the schools, they have a few businesses under one umbrella."
"Okay, you are being very quiet about what they do do."
Jonathon's lips twitch. "They run a sex club. You gotta be a member or the guest of a member to get in. They're all vetted, Jessy said some fools in Congress were wailing that they wouldn't put up a club in DC. Not like the fools could have passed the tests to be members. There's a monthly membership fee to get into the public areas, if you want a fantasy session it's extra. Everybody has an account that they put money in for their membership, many of the members also have jobs at the club with that money going into the account."
"Or for other uses." Jessy says as she walks back over. "One of our members was using the money he got from his second job to pay for his new car, he had to buy a new one because the dealership's service department kept swearing up, down, and sideways his car could be fixed. . .then kept putting off the date it would be fixed. About the third time they were supposed to have fixed it they finally admitted it couldn't be fixed, he had to buy a new one with the remainder of his loan for the other car tacked onto that one. It was a big mess on the news, the head of the service department and an insurance adjuster were in on it together."
"And since the insurance had been paid to fix the car, there was nothing for him." a voice sighs.
"Yep, the people were arrested and he can sue to get back the insurance payout but. . ."
"He's not the only one who had this happen to him?"
"Exactly. Rupert paid off the car for him so he wasn't paying interest for years and he's paying him back out of the check. . .and paying it off if the government ever pulls their thumb out and pays the lab damages for trying to shut it down."
"Oh that was nothing compared. . ." the story about the nonsense at the other labs is told and people sigh or swear. "Petty politicking at it's best." Superhero Alice snorts. Everybody nods.
"Is. . .does. . ."
"No, Jessy is one of the nearly half the employees that don't actually see members for fantasies."
"You don't seem too upset."
"I take it your Eureka doesn't have a huge honking sex shop under the town?" Josette asks. "Ours does on the 8th planet. . .but the 9th planet doesn't."
"We don't, but I know Sheriff Carter has one." Jonathon says.
"Yep," I say as I come through. "I visited with Greta. Jo, can I borrow you for a bit? Sorry if I seem a little too familiar, you're mine and Greta's older sister in our dimension."
"Really?" Jonathon purrs.
"Yeah, you moved to Eureka to get the hell away from the family." Jonathon cackles. "I see that didn't go over too well?"
"Nope, when one of our brothers found her we descended on the town, brought the old McGuire farm out town and arrived just in time for a group of employees with paint ball guns to descend on the house. they were a little upset when Buck and I started shooting back at them. With live ammo." Greta smirks. Jo can't help it, she laughs at the smirk on her face. "That was my introduction to the insanity that's Eureka. . .of course our Stark was sulking because I work for Dayton, their 'biggest competition'."
I snort. "You're the boss's oldest daughter and is going to end up running the business some day along with Gar." Thomas stares at them, his Dayton had Garfield Logan. . .he didn't have a daughter. . .and from what they just said more than one.
"Not if I can run fast enough." Greta snorts. Jo's chuckling despite herself.
"Stark was sulking?" Jonathon asks, laughing at the look that must have been on his face when the pod arrived. The flying motorcycles has him moaning, the snowing outside town and three suns has him sighing but nodding. And the assertion from Jo. . .as passed along by Greta that Eureka and GD has nothing on her family making him laugh and nod. Jo looks at him, then the teen girls, and back again. . .the penny dropping. "Yeah, Jonathon would be one of our older brothers. Our oldest brother is actually Steven Dayton, Greta's adoptive father." I smirk. "So anyway, we're sorting through some of the guns and ammo that Josette picked up from various lost worlds."
"Please." Josette waves a hand. "We don't need it and I didn't do more than sort out the stuff that was really bad." The three head off to Greta's comment that Steve is just as much Josette's father as he is hers and Jo's loud yelp of Jocasta?
"Oh dear god." Jo moans at the box I open, the containers of ammo shooting out of it.
"Lady Hanover, is there a way to tell if any of this is expired on their worlds?"
"Unfortunately not," a female voice sighs.
"Okay then we'll start sorting by the dates on the boxes, shooting the oldest if the date is already passed on our worlds?"
"Replicator, it will separate everything into crystals so they can be remade as needed." Lady Hanover says. "I have a shooting range in another building if you want to see if the ammunition is still good."
"Yeah, we can do that." Jo looks at Greta. "I'm fully qualified to shoot, the family made damn sure of that." Jo looks at me. "Nope, I can't hit the broad side of a barn. . .much to the dismay of the family. I'd be better off throwing the damn gun at them as I run like Hell. Not that I can run that damn fast."
"But she swings a damn mean bat when she has to." Greta sniggers.
"And I aim low." I smirk. Jo grins.
Josette slides into her usual seat at the government building. "Okay, I passed some of that stuff along to Jessy for her shop, I talked to Richard and the others about the plantations in the realtor dimension, they're drop hints in a few ears when stuff is ready to harvest. They're already talking about the dimension on Calvin's world . .expect the next databurst to be talking about it. Because I'm promising to donate a portion of the profits to charities that are helping people rebuild and burn units. Dumbasses are wailing they should be getting the profits, the fire was my fault for protecting my own land. . .the assholes don't realize they're just digging themselves deeper and making me look good." The others snort but nod. "Oh yeah, and they're trying to get the dimension back from me. . .if anybody should be making a profit it should be them. And the judgments got to be thrown out. . .right? It's not fair they're being punished for what they did. The morons are going to be paying off another judgment and the other prisoners are kicking their asses up around their ears."
"They deserve to die in prison but it would be over too quickly."
Josette nods. "The cons want the fools to suffer for a long, long time. Just like why the dumbass who ran into the mall twice in Jessy's dimension isn't getting half the beatings he could from the other prisoners, they're waiting until the fool manages to pay back everything that was taken from his sisters before they show him just how 'mean' they can really be."
"Serves the little fool right." President Bartlett rumbles.
"Did the others on the 9th planet decide on a plan?"
"Yes, three more floors up and two more containers out to one side. I've got the order sent to Eureka. . .it will be at least a couple years, Clark and Kara put in orders for two cabin workrooms." The others chuckle. They laugh harder at Josette's hangdog assertion that Pat wants one of the uper duper schmuper workrooms she'd been working on. Josette disappears and reappears a few seconds later, sighing. "Dumbasses again. One of them was wailing he was going to kill himself if I didn't beg his forgiveness, give him everything I got from them, my land. . . the warden called him a damn fool and told him to go ahead and kill himself. He was expecting. . ."
"People to come rushing to his side? Figures." Principal Madison snorts. Josette starts snickering. "Do I want to know?"
"The courts finally started looking into reports that the morons were taking their money and hiding it to keep from having to give it to me. . .seems large withdrawals in cash and not bank checks got some attention. They're wailing that the money they hid to keep it safe was stolen. . .court's not believing them."
"D'awww." David snorts. "What do you expect from crooks."
"Yep. Ohh, we've officially got a death on the second colony. Whiner took a look at the door of her cabin and howled loud enough to give herself a stroke. Because oh my god, it had snowed. . .again. She'd thought they were kidding her about winter happening every year."
"Oh dear god, the stupid woman is better off dead then. Did she think that winter only would happen once and then it would be summer all year long?" President Bartlett snorts.
"Or didn't remember that winter happens every year on Earth too?" Principal Madison drawls. "Speaking of winter?"
"The replicator is in operation again and people are going in to buy wood for the winter. The container was empty this spring when I removed it. I expect people are going to stock up on wood again even if they won't need it, after getting in two or three batches last winter they know where they can store it."
The others nod. Then look at Josette. "Yes, I'm getting in supplies for the cabin.
"Are we going to be harvesting here before the last offworld harvests?"
"Afterwards. Next year we should start seeing them start moving earlier." The others nod. "Okay, are we running low on any supplies that I need to bring from the ships?"
"No, we're good."
Maintenance comes in with a ladder and starts working on the lights after flipping the switch, replacing the bulbs and putting the burned out bulb in a container to recycle.
"Did Hank get the cabinets finished?" Josette calls through the door.
"Yes, we replaced everything before the festival." One of them calls back. Josette nods in satisfaction.
"Maxie needed a new refrigerator, hot water heater, and oven this year. she had to replace the furnace last year but now both her home and workbuilding are hooked up to the alternate power. The new refrigerator was just too big for the old spot." All four of the men sigh but nod. "But this way Maxie was able to replace her cabinets. They weren't 'cheap' cheap but. . ."
"they weren't custom-made quality." David nods.
Josette walks into the dorm and takes off her shoes and socks, putting on clean socks and tossing the old ones over the line. Looking at the line she sighs and bundles it up in a basket.
"Gimme a sec to get these off." David pulls off his shoes and socks and Josette snatches the ball of socks out of midair, going down the basement stairs to the laundry and starting the load running. The line arrives out of subspace on David's head and Alan snickers as he sighs and puts it back up.
"Anything new in the meeting?"
"Dumbasses whining the money they'd hidden to keep safe when the authorities came after them was stolen from them. . .I have a good idea by who." He looks down at the floor. Alan snickers and nods. "Dumbass was wailing he was going to kill himself if he didn't get the money back from Josette, the dimension, her land. . .moron was stunned when the warden told him to go ahead and kill himself." Alexander snickers as Michael rolls his eyes behind them.
Josette guffaws a few days later when she reads the databurst. "Guys, somebody's trying to raise money for that stupid shit who was pissing on my shield and burned his dick off. He'll show the courts that won't pay for the 'necessary' surgery for that pooooooooorrrrrr man."
Pat snorts. "Sounds like those fool advocates trying to go to bat for that fool girl from Superhero's dimension until they realized the prison had a reason for doing what they were doing."
"Yep." Josette drawls. "Ahhh, here we go. The crowdfunding page was took down when they realized who he was, what he'd done, and just why he lost his dick."
"Interest in how the realtor dimension was turned into growing areas. They're sulking because food doesn't need electricity. Unlike their magnificent plans for malls, casinos. . ." Josette waves a hand in an 'and so on' gesture. "That would have everybody in the world come running to them."
A few days later they head off to Mom's dimension, Josette dropping face first on the couch with a theatric moan, making the man with Black Jack blink but Clarinda snicker. "Made you go clothes shopping?"
"Yyyyeeeesssss. It wouldn't be seemly to go to the show in an outfit I already owned. Moron wailed because we got everything but that." she moans, waving a hand and the bags appearing next to her. Clarinda chuckles as it becomes evident that she's fallen asleep.
"Out?" Black Jack asks.
"Like a light. She's got a show tomorrow night and hates going clothes shopping." she tells their visitor, pulling a blanket off the back of the couch and pulling it over Josette.
Several weeks later Earth time they arrive back to Haven, detouring to the fourth planet so the trees can be taken off the ship and delivered to the sawmills for the Amish men to work on. Payment is sent off and the ship lands back on Haven.
"Are you picking up orders for Ma's cabin workrooms?"
"Yeah, but I'll keep everything on the ships until next year when they can build them. Along with the supplies for the 9th planet enlarged building and Pat's new building."
Josette disappears a few seconds later. "Expect a lot of howling in the next databurst from Calvin's dimension. A lot of big gangs and other crooks are wailing in the media that their ill-gotten gains magically got stolen from them. The survivors anyway, the drugs they were selling got destroyed and there were a few shootouts."
"Awwwww, the addicts will be miserable without their damn drugs. Just like that fool in Superhero dimension. Except her drug of choice was food."
Josette disappears again. "Oh dear fucking god, people are damn stupid. Some asswipe 'girl'. . .who's in her damn sixties wailing because I order so much fabric and stuff. I have to have a mental disorder. . .when the courts found out I'm a textiles artist they gave her a disgusted look and told her to grow the hell up. 'But what does text. . . oohhh, she's buying all this for her art? I didn't know that. But what about the ya. . .she makes socks and stuff with that that the government buys? But that's not fay-yay-yay-yay-yar-yay-yurrrrr'. complete with stomping feet and trembling lips."
"Goddamn miserable old fool. What the hell concern of it is hers if you buy fabric?"
"Oh. . .she was going to find out I was either doing something illegal or needed to be put in a padded room and be the big hero of the day. She deserved our land so she could lord it over people. . .right now she's living in a studio apartment and can't lord it over anybody there."
"Oh dear god, one of those miserable old fools." Principal Madison says from the doorway. He and Doc had come to investigate why Josette went off twice.
"Oh yes, she's got to work to pay her bills." Josette's lips mock-tremble. "When the judge told her the rest of humanity does unless they're in a prison where they're either working to pay off judgments or their money is going to help defray the cost of keeping them there she ran off wailing. I expect some damn big dramatic death proclamation, none of those fools go away quietly." Doc and Principal Madison snort and head back into Headquarters. . .pausing when Josette disappears yet again.
"Okay, this time it was Granda." She says when she returns. "He wanted my input on his plans to buy a large barge and use it as a floating farm. They're close enough to DC that they can sell to the upscale areas as well as to low income communities. . . There's no room for more community farms and with more kids being born."
"The need for fruits and veggies is increasing. Commercial farms?"
"Ramping production back up again but. . ."
"the need still exists."
"Yeah." Josette snickers. "Do we wanna?" Principal Madison asks dryly.
"Ohhh, I told Granda and the others this was the third time I'd been called off today, I refused to tell anybody what happened the first time but everybody laughed at the old fool. As I was leaving I heard Maria saying she'd keep an eye on the news and see if she could figure out what I'd been up to, whatever it was would have to be big. Ohhh, the jobs are now permanent and expect to see another increase in the orders in the next couple years." Doc and Principal Madison nod as David sends off a message to President Bartlett.
"Are we going to need to put up a new building?"
"Not unless Albatross wants one in a few years. Right now they're not having any problems commuting here to work. The buildings are more than big enough, I've got room for four more rows of machines. . .on either side before need to expand again. Which will be needed, I'm going to be picking up more machines after Thanksgiving." Josette holds up a hand. "The governments are now having them constructed, it's good money for their own people." Doc and Principal Madison nod in satisfaction.
"Are we going to hit the thirty thousand sock machines after all?" Susan smirks.
"God I hope not but probably the way things are looking. If we do have that many machines. . .definitely putting up at least one more building." Doc and Principal Madison nod.
David looks over at Josette, then Doc. "Do we need to have the mechanicals looked at?"
"The others did it during the Harvest Festival." Susan says absently.
"Okay then, with Maxie having to replace most of her appliances."
"I've been looking and seeing if we need to bring out some of the appliances from the other dimensions I have stored away. Though the hand-cranked washer got a few hits on the replicator. I expect to see a few on back porches in Albatross." The others nod.
Josette chuckles evilly as she reads the howls of morons who actually went to police stations to report their illegal profits stolen and are promptly arrested.
"Josette." Jane says absently in the school's office.
"Yep." Maria snickers. "Ooohhhh, Josette." She grins. Josette walks in.
"Socks and other stuff. . ." they sit down to count everything. Josette hands Maria a bag. "New socks."
"Oooohhhhh." they look them over. "We weren't expecting you so early."
"Stupid bitch who tried getting me committed because I buy so much yarn and fabric is trying to sue me for emotional distress because people are talking bad about her."
"Awwwww, pooo' baby." Jane drawls.
"Yep, I destroyed the bitch in the courtroom, she's wailing about how everybody is being so mean to her. She was gonna kill herself. . ."
Sounds of disgust from both women.
"Yeah, the judge told her to make sure all her bills were paid up . . .including her burial costs and to alert somebody to come look for her if she does so she doesn't lay in her apartment rotting. Her own lawyer asked her how she'd do it, to make sure it was a clean death so she's not laying in a bed somewhere on life support either brain dead. . ."
"too late in her case." Maria snorts.
"Or disabled and the state has to take care of her. Moron ran off wailing. . .again. I expect to hear the woman's in a home somewhere drugged out of her damn head. Before somebody shoots her."
"That would be the only way to stop her." Maria agrees. Then moans as she turns up the local news on the tv and hears about a standoff with an older woman and the police.
"Dollars to doughnuts."
True to their thoughts it turns out to be the fool who'd tried suing committing suicide by cop. She's dragged off in the back of a patrol car and nobody's surprised to find out she's now in an institution drugged out of what passes for her mind.
Some fool tries suing Josette, trying to say her actions caused her 'breakdown' but the bitch has a list of people a mile long that she's tried running their lives. His boss quickly calls and apologizes for the fucking stupidity of his employee. Who can be heard wailing that he didn't know she was a miserable excuse for a human being in the background. Somebody else yells that a damn simple background check would have seen her repeated attempts to sue others because she didn't like how they were running their lives.
The offworld crops start coming in and everybody is busy. Josette slides into her seat at the testing center on Archimedes.
"Congratulations on finishing another degree." Dr. Stark smirks around a mug of coffee. "Here at least since I know you've finished at least three this year on Calvin's system. Now, metallurgy doctorate?"
"Give me a couple years, here's a breakdown of the dissertation. All about the harvesting I've been doing." She sends him a file and he nods in satisfaction. "Not what you'd normally get in a doctorate dissertation but it's similar to the masters and doctorate I did in electrical engineering here." Nods from the others.
"Degrees have changed over the years. The old boring theses and dissertations have vanished for the most part."
"And the stupid miserable fools have got the wind yanked from their sails so they can't cause problems for others. For the most part. . .there's still fools who want everybody to be as miserable as they are and will do anything to cause problems for everybody. But they don't succeed and it makes them even more bitter."
"Are all the offworld harvests in?"
"Yes, yours was the last one and I'm delivering it when I'm picking up the recycling and the first shipments for the buildings." Josette checks her PADD and says a day and time, the three doctors nodding as they send out reminders.
At home Josette finds Alan in the growing building, pulling plants to dry for seeds.
"Planting in the other area. Or putting up the stuff we canned today." Alan looks over his shoulder. "Did you enlarge Jonathon's hallway?"
"Yeah, he's talking about bringing out some more people to talk to Stark about setting up shop in another dimension. . .his Tony Stark, Reed Richards, his Bruce Wayne and Steve Dayton, people both in the know and with the means to pack up and move if they have to." Alan nods. "They might not have a nice handy other solar system to move to but they can hightail it to another dimension if the shit hits the fan."
"It's always nice to have a fallback, that's why Jonathon has so many identities."
"Yeah. . ." Josette's eyes grow dark for a second, "Two more years of books and shows in Granda's dimension."
"Yes, you'll only have Mom's dimension for yearly shows. Until you get so well-known in Superhero's or new dimension's."
"God I hope not, the damn fools are crawling out of the woodwork in Granda's dimension, I'd hate to see what it would be like in the others. Some of the damn fool morons had to have died during the zero-population period." Josette snorts. Alexander cackles and nods from the doorway.
The last of the crops come in and the plants tilled under for the winter. The offworld harvests are handed out and Josette delivers the recycling from the other planets. Josette yawns as she walks into the dining hall.
"Get everything taken care of?" Professor Druid asks.
"Yes, the harvests dropped off, the recycling picked up, and. . ." Josette disappears then reappears a few seconds later. "Goddamn asswipe, trying to take my land, books, and everything else. Because he's a man and I'm just an uppity woman."
"Oh dear god."
"I about beat the bastard to death when he tried grabbing me to put me in my place." Josette sneers. "Fucker tried grabbing the bailiff's gun and was shot. Hope the asshole enjoys hell."
"Sounds like he deserves it. Fucking asshole."
"Oh yes, he was blubbering about how he couldn't firebomb my home because of the shields. He might be hurt."
"Fucking stupid asshole."
"Yeah, I'm going to start shooting some of the assholes, Congress said I could." Principal Madison looks at her and she rolls her eyes. "Trank darts Dad, I don't mean literally, Unless they're trying to kill me. In that case. . .all bets are off." He nods in satisfaction. "More rules are being enacted and maybe some morons will realize they're not all that. They bleated that didn't they need the housing that could go up on my land and walked off pouting when they realized so much housing was just sitting there empty."
"What's the latest on the second dimension?"
"Three more deaths, the others . . .well the overseers don't expect them to survive another year."
"No, they're not the type of people who could live that type of life." Dr. Hazlitt rumbles.
"How's Michelle settling into her high school classes?"
"Good, she's got a short list of schools she wants to apply to next summer."
"Superhero dimension? You were mumbling earlier today."
"Ooohhhh, dumbfuck advocates trying to claim Natalie and her aunt are railroading that stupid girl, they put an innocent girl in prison. . ." Josette mock-sobs. "They're destroying the stupid assholes in the media, the morons in turn are blubbering they were given bad intelligence. . .surprise, surprise it was all lies from the brat in prison. Who's now wailing because the prison is slapping the stupidity out of her again, she's now locked in her cell for twenty-three hours a day for the foreseeable future."
"God damn stupid little shit."
"Oh yes, they're being mean to her in prison, making her work and making her lose all that weight. She still can't eat all she wants. . .she still has to sleep on a pad on a cement block." Josette mock-sobs. "She doesn't wanna do her schoolwork, she misses being able to watch tv, the other cons get to decide what's on the tv in the tv room, they hurt her if she tries to change the channel. . .why won't her family send her money for a tv of her own? Mommy and Daddy wouldn't have let them be so mean to her."
"Well if she hadn't killed her Mommy and Daddy, she wouldn't be in that horrible place. Stupid brat." President Bartlett rumbles. "But then it's always somebody else's fault with those type of people." Nods of agreement from everybody in both rooms.
"Fuck you you stupid little sack of shit, your family doesn't owe you a damn thing. If you can't afford a tv too damn bad. You're a convicted murderer. . .you don't have any damn rights anymore." A judge snorts.
"But my sister didn't need to keep her education money. . ." she wails as she's tossed back in her cell, the door slamming seems to echo throughout the room. "But Mommy and Daddy wouldn't have let them be so mean to me."
"Mommy and Daddy should have beat the stupid bitch to death years ago." One guard says. The other nods. "Shut up Daniels, nobody's interested in your damn wailing."
"But I need everything I want." She continues to wail over the next few days, sobbing brokenheartedly as she's led to the showers and forced to bathe. How can everybody be so mean to her?
"Retarded brat." her fellow prisoners snort, as well as yelling at her to shut her damn wailing up. . .her damn whining was keeping them up.
"Are you sure she's not mentally ill?" the head of the advocate group that had been trying to say her sister and aunt had railroaded the girl whimpers in front of a panel of judges and psychiatrists as he finally has to look through her records.
"Yes, we're sure she's not mentally ill. She's just a stupid spoiled little brat who hates having to take responsibility for her own actions, hated having to lose all that weight, hates working three jobs when the prison garden is in use, hates having to take classes to try to get her damn high school diploma. . .she's still trying to finish the eighth grade and it's been a few years. She *hates that she can't sit on her ass and eat everything she wants so she can put the weight right back on. . .because the other prisoners won't put up with her shit and she can't land on them anymore and nearly suffocate them." One of the psychiatrists says in disgust. "Dear gods man, if you'd done a damn bit of looking into the case instead of immediately jumping to conclusions you'd have known all this."
"But she keeps wailing everybody's being so mean to her."
"She's in prison moron, not the damn Hilton."
"But does she have to be in prison?" he whines.
"She was found guilty of two counts of second degree murder and a count of attempted second degree murder. Yes, she deserves to be in prison."
"But what about putting her in a facility?"
"Why? She's not mentally ill, she's a stupid spoiled little brat who needs a good swift kick."
"But she's just a baby. . .I'm sure she didn't mean to . . ."
"butcher her parents in their bed so the funeral had to be closed casket? Or try to kill her sister except she woke up and beat the bitch upside the head with a baseball bat when she found her over her bed with a bloody knife?"
"But couldn't the sister have done it and blamed it on the younger girl?"
"No, and I hope the hell she destroys you in court for trying to claim she and her aunt railroaded her into prison." One of the judges says in disgust. "Stupid fool." He snorts as the man runs off wailing.
"Moron's as stupid as she is and looking for a quick way to make a name for himself. . .he was expecting to waltz in and rescue a young woman from durance vile by starting a smear campaign against the remaining family members."
"ROT IN HELL YOU STUPID SON OF A BITCH!" Natalie yells as she stands over the man. "How DARE you fucking accuse me of trying to frame my idiot sister?"
"But you could have. . ." he screams as she kicks him in the ribs again, kicking him over and over and over until security pulls her away sobbing. She gets one last kick in to his balls before they take her off.
"But couldn't she have done it?" He whines from the jail cell he'd been tossed into by security.
"No moron, her sister spent the whole damn trial saying her parents had to die for not getting that money away from her." His now former boss bellows.
"Yeah. . .ohhhh. Dear god idiot, if you'd read.the.damn.casefile you'd have seen it was nothing more than lies."
"But why would she lie?"
"Because she's a miserable excuse for a human being who hates it that she's being punished for her actions."
"But don't they have to let me out of here?" He whines when his former boss walks away.
"Hell no, you were told the sister was the innocent victim yet you continued to harass her. I'd have let her beat your stupid ass to death but the poor girl doesn't need that on her conscience. You got what the hell you deserved."
"So that was a horrible mess." Alice says as the kids arrive in Superhero's dimension. "The moron finally realized that the fantastic case of a girl imprisoned wrongly is nothing more than a sack of lies and she's sulking because she's still locked in that damn cell for another six weeks. She's wailing she can't afford a tv of her own and the other convicts hurt her if she tries to turn the channel of what they're watching."
"Poor baby, she's going to realize eventually prison isn't all fun and games. How's the older girl?"
"Going to be starting her Junior year in a couple weeks. Thankfully all this drama happened while she was off during the summer so her grades didn't suffer."
"I hope they're destroying him civilly?"
"Oh yes, all the ambulance chasers are rubbing their hands together in glee. The real lawyers are telling him he's getting what he deserved. Not only did he try to claim the remaining family railroaded her into prison, he tried claiming they stole her inheritance."
"A prisoner can't profit from their crime."
"Yes, and the grandparents knew what kind of miserable person she was, that's why she wasn't left anything in the will when they died. Or her father because he'd turn it over to the brat. which his mother flatly said in the video will they left. The sister got controlling interest in the family business, the other girl got forty percent held in trust until she was twenty-five because the grandmother knew the father would try pressuring her into giving it to her sister."
"Oh yes, but that's a good chunk of humanity." Andrew snorts. Doc sighs but nods.
Back home Josette thinks a minute about moving stuff from the ship but decides it can wait for another day, it's drizzling rain and everybody just wants to nap.
"Better rain than snow." Josette says as they walk to the dining hall.
"It will start snowing soon enough." David snorts. Everybody in earshot nods.
A couple days later is Thanksgiving and everybody relaxes after they eat their fill. Josette looks at the window. "Snow by dinner and it will stick." The others nod.
"I took stuff out when we went out and picked up more stuff, the employees will set everything up after the first of the year. Okay, since everybody but Doc is here and I talked to him about this last night. ..do we see the need for a DVD store?"
"Not when we can replicate anything we want." Principal Madison says absently. "The others have been adding their stuff to the servers, right?"
"Do we have the crystals installed?"
"Yeah, they put them in last summer. Our three server rooms are now on one crystal and it's not even a thousandth of one percent full." Josette says absently.
"Yes, we have one in the administration building now."
"And for the large-scale replicator."
"Yeah, we got another one that's for our replicators. Doc's got one for his replicators and we can access the other crystal if what we're looking for isn't on ours."
"Crystals?" Professor Eppes asks.
"Large egg-shaped crystals as big as my head." Josette says absently. "They're used for storage in Granda's dimension, one crystal can hold more than a server farm's worth of information. No, I don't know how they do it. It's a specialty degree and I'm not interested in it. . yet."
The others snort at the blatant lie. . .tempered by the yet. "Dad knows, you can ask him when he comes out how they do it."
Josette looks at him. "Dad's holding a 'briefing' about the crystals since GD is getting them now. You can tag along. I'll let them know."
"Thank you Josette. Are they created?"
"Grown, we had some growing in our dorm for a while. They take years. . .even ours." Josette disappears and reappears a few seconds later. "Awww, the people who were in prison got out and found their money missing. Now they're trying to take over other gangs in the area to try to recoup their losses."
"And the other gangs aren't cooperating?" President Bartlett snorts.
"Nope, they took over their land and whatnot when they went to prison and don't want to give it back. They're all fighting for survival with the problems that's been happening. The courts are beginning to crack down on criminal activity and they're not able to get cops to turn the other way with a little extra money now. The cops . . .weeeeeelllll if they go to prison they don't last very long."
"They wouldn't, I know Jessy said her mother's lover was a cop and is wailing about being in protective custody. . . even then the other cons yell at him."'
"Pooo' baby." the others drawl.
"Oh yes, Jessy told me the little fucker actually tried suing Jessy for the money her mother promised him for murdering her husband, Jessy's father. He keeps trying to claim Jessy had her mother murdered because she was ssssooooo close to finding the proof that would get them out of prison. Not that it fucking existed. . .they were shown on the security system murdering him. Not just the footage on the house's server the cameras taped to, a server in.another.location that the video footage also went to."
"Fool, he reminds me too much of that younger girl."
"Yes, neither of them feel they should be punished for their own actions." Josette drawls. "The girl keeps blubbering Mommy and Daddy wouldn't let everybody be so mean to her, he's 'it's her fault, not mine or her mother's'. Neither of them are going to see the light of day unless it's in a prison yard for the rest of their lives."
"The older girl?"
"Her junior year at Hamberg, the university I attended in Superhero's dimension."
"Though she's not going for as many degrees as you are." David snorts. "Are you going for more degrees again?"
"Yeah, they're introducing more areas."
Snickering from the others.
Josette is busy cleaning off the shelves over her desk when the others arrive. By now they're all used to her habit of cleaning off the desk for the Lights Festival even if she'll be putting the books back up the night before classes start again.
"Josette, your metallurgy doctorate?"
"Starting it year after next. I've already passed over the outline of the dissertation, basically what I've been doing for so long since doctorates are changing" They nod in satisfaction. The old boy network is slowly being weeded out of schools and actual experience is being rewarded. Especially after some very public lawsuits against schools by people who should have got degrees except for a fool deciding they're not our type and causing problems.
The first meeting of the new year has David holding up a hand. "Josette and Doc aren't going to be here, they're on the ships looking through. . ." A minute later Josette grins as the tesseract opens behind her and the other three walk through. President Bartlett looks up and down the hall, moaning as David opens a door and he can't see the top of the boxes or the wall. While Josette and the others wouldn't actually lie about the rooms being so large they might have been exaggerating. . .but they weren't.
"What are we looking for?"
"I was looking through something and I found information on solar panels that deliver half as much power again as ours. Even in winter."
"Yes, I looked through the information Josette had when she asked if she was reading that right and we decided to come looking."
"Yes, that's something else we'll have to , . ." Josette disappears and then reappears. "God damn stupid woman who tried getting me committed because I have to be mentally ill by buying fabric and whatnot for my art. She's trying to get out of the damn institution she's in but since she tried attacking a guard because he's related to one of the people who she'd tried to run their lives before. . ."'
"Oh dear fucking god." President Bartlett moans.
"Yep, she ain't getting out and is wailing in misery since the institution won't drug her into drooling stupidity anymore, so she's aware of everything going on."
"D'awww." David coos. "couldn't happen to a more miserable bitch."
Principal Madison really wants to say something, Doc and President Bartlett can see it but since the fool deserves what she's getting he won't.
They arrive back at the school by lunch, Professor Druid and Mrs. Bartlett looking at their husbands when they walk in with Josette, David, and Doc.
"Josette found information on solar panels that deliver half again as much power and she and Doc went looking."
"That would be good during winter." Mrs. Bartlett says. "Batteries?"
"We got samples as well and will put some and our solar panels up on a building, put up two different towers, and see what the difference is." President Bartlett rumbles as he sits down with a tray. “Ohhhh, Josette disappeared while we were there, said the stupid woman who tried having her declared incompetent for buying fabric and yarn so she can lord it over the little people had a hearing and tried attacking a guard who's related to some of the people she tried. . ."
"Running their lives before? Figures." Professor Druid snorts. "Is she back to being drugged out of her mind in the institution?"
"Nope, they're not drugging her now so she's aware of everything going on around her while she's stuck in there." Josette smirks from the back room.
"Couldn't happen to a nicer asshole then." is the general consensus of everybody in earshot.
"Really?" Josette drawls as she reads the databurst. "You must think I'm as stupid as you are and don't recognize the name of people who tried to steal my land before." She sends off a scathing 'helllll, no' response that has them wailing. How could she have realized they intended to use this as a way to steal her land away from her? It's not fair. They go to the courts to try to make her let them use her land and are stunned when they're laughed at and told to go away. They try getting on the land anyway and are arrested in the hospital.
"But they shouldn't have realized we'd use it as a way to take the land." They wail in jail cells.
"Ha, serves you right you little brat." Josette snorts as she's reading the databurst from superhero dimension one day at lunch. "Dumbass brat tried something and got her ass handed to her by the other prisoners. She's wailing that she's hurt and still has to do her jobs. Idiot will not get it through her thick skull that she doesn't have any damn rights anymore. She *lowered herself to make a knife to protect herself. . .one of the other convicts broke it and then slapped the hell out of her."
"Stupid bitch is going to end up getting killed in prison."
"Yep, they're sending her back to the medium security dimension to pay off her judgments." Josette drawls. "Moron will no doubt still wail she can't get all the money from her jobs. The older girl and her aunt got a damn good sized judgment against dumbfuck who tried claiming 'well, they could have framed her' and wailed like a siren it wasn't fair he lost his cushy job being an advocate and was sent off to work in the medium security dimension to pay it off. Because the dumb fucker wouldn't have otherwise."
"I'm working on the new ones, year after next I should have the printers going again."
"Two more years, Me Granda's dimension this year."
"We have another dual show year after next, we're both putting away. . ." Alexander moans and starts drawing something on his PADD. He sends the drawing to Josette and Michael who both smirk. Principal Madison knows those looks and takes the PADD, moaning.
"Run like hell."
"Oh, like we'd put it up when he was there." Josette snorts.
"He'll still know it was you three. A statue for Dad's school." He says at the others looks.
"One of the grand statues Calvin calls a monument to stupidity?" His wife asks when he sits back down.
"Run fast." She tells the threesome. Who just laugh at her.
Josette disappears and reappears a few seconds later. "Expect to hear some arrests the next databurst from Granda's dimension, the fucking asswipe city council member who was elected on a campaign of being tough against crime? Tried framing me for a few deaths in the area. . .moronic mother fucker bleated he didn't know I was a few billion times richer than he was . . .he'd have been sucking up to me instead of his butt-buddies in organized crime. He thought I was just some kid who was land rich and money poor. And too stupid to realize his friends are doing me a favor taking it off my hands for the few dollars they'd lowered themselves to offer me."
"He's obviously new to the area." David snorts.
"Yes, everybody in the area *knows I'm a successful author and artist." Josette rolls her eyes. "He's rolling over on organized crime to hopefully get the chance to see sunlight outside a prison somebody in the rest of his life. Moron doesn't realize that organized crime will take him out no matter where he is."
The others nod. "Fucking a-hole trying to make himself better than he's not."
The weather starts getting warmer and Josette is busy spreading manure on the garden and fields, looking over and finding manure going on the garden plots at the school, in town, Albatross, and the other continent. The 'what we're growing in the extra garden' lists had gone out and they're trying not to duplicate items too much. Not that they won't be eaten. . .
Josette picks up the next batch of supplies for all the buildings when she picks up the recycling from the other planets and delivers stuff for Ma's cabins to the spots Clark and Kara told her, sending off a message as she starts delivering the containers for Pat and the newly enlarged building on the 9th planet. Ma Hunkel looks around the new areas in satisfaction, making mental notes of what they need to bring out when everything's completed.
“The stuff for the interiors should be ready by the end of Haven's year. Even if it's just the insulation and some of the wall panels."
"That's okay Josette, we knew it would be a while before we could get the new area finished, not with as much work needs to be done. Just the staircase and stoves. . ."
"Yep." Josette sighs. "I'll cut the opening for the stairs when I bring out the second batch of supplies. That will include the stoves."
"Thank you Josette, we're already figuring out how much wood we'll need. Between that and the heaters."
"You should be warm here even in the coldest weather." Josette nods. "Let me know when you need my help bringing out the bigger stuff."
Looking at the other continent Josette snickers as she sees the cabins already being put up.
Josette slides into her usual seat at the dining hall.
"Get everything delivered?"
"Yes, the containers are up on the other continent and on the 9th planet, Clark and Kara already got the cabins up."
Alexander nods. "Ma's already contacted us about tables."
"They should be able to insulate, put the wire panels, lights, windows, box to piggyback off the alternate power and stove and solar panels in by winter. The little stuff they can work on over the winter." The others nod.
"Right now it's just the containers linked together, which includes the vents. I'll have most of the mechanicals in the basement." The others nod. "How are the b & b houses doing?"
"Good, most rooms are full every night. Dumbfucks behind bars are wailing because they're not getting a dime of the money coming in and I managed to get the businesses turned around. . .they'd rather they have gone into bankruptcy then I make money off them."
"Of course they would." Principal Madison snorts. "Because they're the ultimate authority, don't you know? With you making money, they were made to look like fools. . .which they are."
"Oh dear god." Josette moans as she looks at the next databurst. "Screw you moron, hopefully somebody will shoot you. Right up the ass."
Doc looks over at her since they're in the dorm.
"Some moron proclaiming he's going to run for president, when he's elected he's going to overturn all these pesky little laws keeping people from taking whatever they want. . .because he's got his eyes on this sweet little stretch of land for his latest monument to his magnificence and the owners won't sell it. Two fucking guesses what land he's talking about."
"But I thought all the bad publicity would force them to sell to me." Dumbass wails in the news over the next few days as people call him a stupid sack of shit who should have been drowned at birth. "The bad press should be on her, not me."
"Fucking a-hole." Maria mutters as she drives to work. Parking her car she looks at the new addition in front of the school and cackles. Calvin is standing in front of it. . .complaining, and it just makes her laugh harder. Especially when he gives her an 'et tu' look.
"And the boys. They all know how I feel about these damn things." Calvin mutters.
"They do good work though."
"Not.Helping." Maria smirks and looks over at the yell. . .then laughter from Jane.
"Michelle got accepted into the school she wanted."
"Awww, we'll have to throw a party."
Josette looks over the lists of what is needed for all the buildings and makes marks for what she thinks will be ready in this next batch from the factories, whether she's right or not will be seen when she picks up the second shipment from the factories after the Harvest Festival.
"Is this it for the empty containers?" Pat asks at dinner a couple nights later.
Josette talks with her money manager a few days later on Calvin's dimension, walking through a complex that's for sale for taxes and puts in an offer. The offer is quickly accepted and Josette has a notice sent out to the renters, asking them to make appointments with the new management company to inspect the apartments and see if there's any repairs or necessary maintenance needed.
The owners of other apartment complexes whine they're taking renters from them, they were told to grow the fuck up and if they want to bring in renters they needed to do some work on the complexes.
"Dumbass morons." Maria snorts as Josette comes in from dropping off the first order of the year off in the warehouse, passing the numbers off to Calvin who's giving her a look. She smirks and kisses his cheek, calling him an old grump. His loving employees run outside so he doesn't see them cackling. He gives them looks when they walk in and they wave 'talk to the hands' at him.
"Any idea on how many more tables I'll need to put up? Or how soon we need to look into a third building?"
"Not right now but I expect you'll hit the thirty thousand machine mark by the time they're done."
Josette returns to Haven and leans between Principal Madison and Professor Druid. "Brought out more yarn and machines from Granda's dimension. I'll put them in the closets and bring them out in a bit." They nod. "Are we still on track for the orders?"
Josette sends the others a file when she walks into the back room. "I did some land buying while I was out there."
"Hmmmm, not bad." David says as he looks everything over.
"No, I basically got it all for taxes, there's so many empty apartments yet." The others nod. "Though as people start finishing school and getting out on their own they'll start to be rented."
"We don't have any problems seeing the long version, so many people are just looking for the quick profits."
"Exactly. . .if the buildings sit empty after they're built it's not their problem." Josette snorts, waving a hand. "That's why so many management companies go out of business."
"That's big business. . .too big too soon and they can't get the profits they were looking for. . .they won't for another couple decades."
Josette returns from Calvin's world a few days later swearing. "Stupid bitch brought me on a tv show. . .she didn't wike how I was protecting my own land from people trying to steal it. Bitch tried throwing a bottle of water in my face then hitting me. She bleated she was the victim but her own people called her a damn liar and she's been very quickly fired. when her now former boss asked if this meant anybody could walk into her house and do whatever she wanted she huffed 'no' then was alllllll 'ooohhhhhh'."
"Figures." David snorts.
"Yeah, She's claiming she's an impartial authority but I know she's friends with a lot of the so-called moral people who have tried stealing the land. Now the dumbass is wailing that everybody's being mean to her. Going to be wailing louder when I destroy her in court. And she's a damn judge, she should have known better than to attack somebody in front of cameras."
"Stupid fools like that think they're better than the rest of humanity and what happens in those damn 'reality' shows can happen in real life without any consequences." Susan rolls her eyes. "What else were you out about?"
"Ohhhhhh, the dumbasses wailing about having to grow their own food again." Josette rolls her eyes. "They're still expecting to wake up and magically everything will be the way they want it. I looked at the plantations while I was out there and planted oranges, apples, grapes, hops, palm kernels, and olives."
"Something Becka was talking about growing in tropics. It takes a few years before it can be harvested but it can be harvested all the time and palm oil is used in nearly everything." Dr. Stark says from the doorway. "GD was looking into growing it at one time."
"It will be a steady source of income."
Josette disappears again and sighs as she reappears. "The second colony is growing. . .the idiots who are stunned I can keep my own land, the moron who wailed about his magnificent plan. . .they're all being sent out with supplies and told if they can come up with the money for everything they want, they can have another shot at a dimension."
"They won't make it." Doc sighs from the doorway to Headquarters.
"Nope, but their own greed is taking them out of the equation. I'm sure they'll start wailing soon about having to take classes to cook and grow their own food, grow commercial crops to sell for their supplies. . .there's no heat at the turn of a dial, the little people won't be begging for a spot serving them. . ."
"They'll wail like sirens when somebody hands them a shovel and tells them to start digging when they ask where the bathroom is."
"But I thought the colonies were for show. . ." Anna mock-wails behind them. "I didn't know they were for realsies."
"Exactly." Doc sighs, Pat's leaning on the doorway cackling. Josette disappears and reappears again.
"Fuck no, I'm not bringing this stupid cunt back to our planet, we want people who actually work and aren't looking their noses down on everybody else." She runs at her with her nails out and gets backhanded across the room. "Grow the hell up you retarded sack of shit, ain't nobody going to kiss your useless ass."
"But I'm a reality show star, you gotta do what I want."
"The Hell I do." Josette turns and walks away, the stupid bitch screaming as she runs at her with a knife. She ends up on the floor, Josette sitting on her chest with the knife in her hand and telling the now blubbering bitch how her purdy little face would be with an Edinborough grin.
"In case you don't know what that is little girl. . .remember the Joker's scars?" She pretends to start cutting, the woman faints and she throws the knife away from her in disgust. "Either put this bitch in an institution or shoot the fool." She tells the authorities.
"Gladly, the stupid woman needs to be drugged out of her damn mind hugging herself in a cell." the man who'd been overseeing the arbitration snorts. "I apologize for bothering you Ms. Takahawa."
Doc gives her a chiding look when he finds out what she'd threatened to do but Pat is cackling and nodding vigorously. "Tough love doesn't work on that mindset, beating the everloving hell out of them and proving they're fools in front of others does."
"That stupid bitch who wanted my land for her damn reality show is very quiet in prison, the other cons won't put up with her spoiled Momma attitude and she tried getting back the money she had to earn for her grandchildren's education. That was leaked by a prisoner with a cameraphone and blew up the internet.
"Wellll yeah, we already knew the bitch had no intention of actually paying for their education, it was a bid to make her look better in the media." David snorts.
"Yeah, that was part of the absolute fit she had that was captured by the phone. She's now sulking because the last die-hard defenders she had dropped her like the flaming sack of shit she is."
The first crops are beginning to come in and bags of tomatoes, peppers, and herbs are being passed out around the area. Josette puts the last of the bags in the stasis unit and looks around in satisfaction. David nods behind her and swats at the light curtain whipping towards his face from the breeze. "We'll have a storm coming in tonight."
"Yep, I'll shut the windows if it starts blowing rain in. Otherwise I'm enjoying the fresh air."
"Oh yeah, that's really going to work." Josette snorts as she reads the databurst at dinner. The others look at her. "Some damn dumb assholes in Calvin's dimension want their own dimension. They're all women haters, they think all of mankind's troubles can be laid at the door of women. They want their own colony dimension so they can prove they're better off without women."
"Won't last. . ." Alan snorts.
"Nope, there's no way for the colony to grow without children and unless you have hermaphrodite men. . ." Susan looks at Josette.
"they don't want a damn thing to do with the morons even if hermaphroditic men being born means women are an abomination." Josette snorts. "the world is better off without the idiots. They're sulking because if they get caught trying to attack a woman it's prison, if they sexually assault somebody it's castration. . ." The women all snicker as their menfolk cross their legs. "They want to turn women into objects of hatred and make it legal to kill any woman they see."
"Goddamn morons should be killed themselves." Principal Madison says in disgust.
Josette disappears and reappears a few seconds later. "Well, they won't have to worry about their precious colony dimension. . .assholes tried firebombing the land because a woman. . ." she sneers. "dared to say no to a man when he demanded her land. The whole group is dead or wishing they were dead because they came after me with guns and knives and I took them out with extreme prejudice. They're looking at life in a prison hospital if they survive."
"Fools like that are better off in Hell getting the stupidity beaten out of them."
"Yeah." Josette sighs, then swats David. He yelps and rubs his arm where she'd lightly slapped him. "What was that about?"
"I took a nap earlier and dreamed about everybody in the school dancing like the rockettes."
"Yeah, that's a 'damn it David, quit eating that shit before bed' dream." Alan snorts. The others snigger.
"Don't even think it, I love everybody out there but President Bartlett does not have the legs for that short skirt."
"Amen." He rumbles. His wife laughs.
"But I didn't know they'd go after her. I was just venting." Dumbass who'd sent the judge and the men after Josette wails in a courtroom where he's been convicted of conspiring to commit murder.
"Really, you were just venting with the group that wants to kill any women they see. Moron, do you think the rest of humanity is as stupid as you are?" he's tossed into a jail cell to wait until he can be moved to prison to serve out his five to fifteen year sentence. The fucker wails that it's a death sentence and a guard snorts 'we wish'.
In superhero dimension Natalie snorts as she listens to the wailing of her idiot sister on a recording. "And why the hell do you think I would be the least bit interested in my idiot sister's whining about how hard life is because she can't sit on her ass all day watching tv?"
"You. . you won't buy her a tv?" The woman whimpers.
"Fuck NO I'm not buying the stupid bitch a tv. Because if she got a tv she'd wail about only getting over the air channels. If the bitch wants a tv and whatnot, get off her ass and buy it herself. Along with a laptop, dvd player, and everything else she wants. I'm not paying for it."
"But you and your aunt are her sole remaining family members."
"Yes, because the bitch murdered our parents."
"Weeeellllll. . .yes. But she can't take part in the program that will let prisoners shop in stores and not pay for anything."
"Why the hell should she? Gods, she's a fucking murderer. I can't fucking do that and I'm not a damn convict. Why the hell should she get whatever she wants when I can't?" The blubbering woman can't answer that. "Get the hell out. Don't come back, don't ever bother us again."
The others give the woman a disgusted look when she returns to their office, calling her a goddamn fool. "Of course the sister doesn't have to pay for whatever that little bitch wants. And like she said, why should her sister get whatever she wants in a shopping spree and she can't. She's the damn victim."
"But I thought the woman would have forgiven her by now."
"Why the hell should she? The stupid bitch killed her parents and nearly killed her for the crime of keeping her own education fund since she was in high school. The bitch should be in eleventh grade, she's still trying to finish eighth grade and it has been a few years. Did you see the goddamn list of what she wanted if she was allowed to go shopping for an entire day at the government's expense. . .the tab would be nearly three million dollars."
"No, she can't want that much . ..can she?" The list is passed over and she wails as she reads everything. "A king-size bed?"
"Yeah, because she didn't wike having to sleep sitting up or on the floor of the cell because all her fat fell over the side of the pad and cement block." her boss snorts.
"There's events where convicts can get anything they want in a store without paying?" Susan snorts.
"Yes, the government or special interest groups pay for it with the convicts taking extra shifts to pay back the money. It was meant for women behind bars to be able to take their kids shopping for school clothes and supplies or for Christmas."
"And of course convicts deserve it more than people who work, pay their taxes, keep their noses clean. . ."
"Oh yes, the government is wailing about how they didn't mean for law-abiding citizens to feel like they were second-class citizens. It's just that. . ."
"Convicts shouldn't be made to feel like they're being punished by being in prison?" David drawls.
"Exactly. Dumbass is looking at yet another visit to the medium security dimension to pay for everything she wants . . if she gets selected. And that's a mighty big if, they have to have clean records in the prison . . . the stupid bitch is still trying to finish eighth grade and whining all the time about that and having to work."
"Excuse me . . .she's what, twenty?"
"Turning nineteen, she was nearly thirteen when she was convicted of two counts second degree murder. She should be a junior, her sister just finished her junior year of university."
"I'm surprised the prison is still trying to get her to finish her education."
"The bleeding heart liberal groups is using it as 'see how she's turning her life around in prison, you were wrong in putting her behind bars' moment. Or they tried to but she's a stupid oik so they can't. The government is making the school keep her on, because it won't seem right to deprive her of her education. I suspect she'll never finish her damn education. Instead of a fifty some year old woman going back to school to get her education, she'll be the fifty year old woman who's been trying to get her damn diploma all that time."
"Oh dear god," Josette moans. "I just saw the bitch working enough to be a damn millionaire and lording it over her sister. ssssseeeee, I've got more money than you. But I won't give you any money because you put me in this miserable place."
"The prison would take that money from her for her upkeep." Susan snorts. The others nod. "If the medium security dimension even let her stay long enough to make that kind of money."
"Yep, and the prisoners hate her, they won't ever let her get involved in the illegal stuff they do at the prison. . .not to protect her but because they don't want the bitch making money at their expense." The others nod.
In the prison dumbass girl is dragged wailing away from the van another prisoner is getting in for her shopping trip, getting backhanded by the other prisoner and being tossed back in her cell.
"But the shopping spree should have gone to me, not her." she whines in front of a group of prison employees as yet another reprimand is added to her file.
"Why the hell would the spree go to you you fucking bitch? She's a model prisoner and you're not. She's earned that privilege. . .you're a stupid little brat who won't get it through your head that you're not the damn victim here."
"Bu. . .buh. . .but the shopping spree should have gone to me." she wails in her jail cell again. "I. ..I'm stuck in this horrible place and my family won't buy me a tv and other stuff. I deserved that shopping spree. . .not her."
"Effing asshole." More than one prisoner snorts. "The only thing she deserves is a good swift kick."
"Amen." and more than one prisoner gives it to her as she wails around them the next few weeks. She soon shuts up and realizes she won't get any sympathy from the other prisoners. She'll have to make other plans. . .she'll have to get out of this awful place and her family will have to pay for what they did to her.
"Goddamn retarded bitch." More than one prisoner says as they beat the everliving hell out of the stupid brat for trying to escape. "I don't care how damn miserable you are here, we're not going on lockdown for weeks on end because you're a goddamn stupid spoiled brat who can't admit she's the fucking cause of everything that went wrong in her life."
"So the other prisoners are making your sister miserable." Marilyn tells her niece.
"Little bitch is getting what she deserves then. Fucking moron always had to have everything she wanted no matter what." Natalie snorts. "Hopefully they beat her ass half to death ten times a day for the rest of her life then."
"Oh yes, the prisoners do not want to be locked in their cells for weeks at a time for her little shit fits about not being able to get everything she wants. The guards pulled her away before they could really hurt her, she's in solitary now for at least six weeks, not even getting out an hour a day to shower and the lights are off in her cell."
"Serves the little bitch right. If she ever gets tired of her own stink she can do a cold wash up in the sink over the toilet."
"Well Mommy and Daddy, was kissing that little bitch's ass all the time worth it?" Natalie asks a couple weeks before going back to Hamberg for her senior year of university. She almost swears she can her a long drawn out wailed 'nnnnnnoooooo' but shakes her head at her foolishness before getting back in her mother's car and driving away from the cemetery. Stopping to get gas she shakes her head at the amount of the multi-state lotteries but buys a ticket, putting down her and her aunt's birthdays.
"Ohhhhh, butter beans and turnip greens." she moans a couple days later when the drawing is held and one ticket won the largest jackpot in the history of the game. It had been sold at the gas station where she brought her gas.
"Ohhhhh really?" Her aunt drawls.
"Your birthday and mine, I brought a ticket when I got gas a couple days ago after going to the cemetery." She shakes her head. "Damn it, now I heard it again."
"I asked at the cemetery if kissing her useless ass all the time worth it. I thought I was hearing things when I heard a wailing 'nnnnnnoooooooo' a few seconds later."
"And you just thought you heard it again? I wouldn't be surprised if your father is wailing in the afterlife about how his baby girl is being mistreated. Even after the stupid bitch murdered him. Or that the daughter he ignored most of her life won the lottery and not his baby." Her aunt snorts. She checks the ticket and makes a call. A number of people arrive and Natalie gets her first check just before going to Hamberg. Her advisors and aunt come out a couple times during the semester and she nods at the investment plans.
Josette splutters with laughter when she reads the databurst, the others grinning evilly. "Is the bitch out of solitary yet?"
"Yes, and wailing like a siren at the loss of all her privileges. She has to eat her meals in her cell now, she can't go to the library, she can't watch tv in the tv room, she has to do all her schoolwork in her cell. . .her family still won't buy her a tv and she lost her commissary privileges for a year. She tried watching tv quietly in the tv room and the other prisoners kicked her. . .they left big bruises. . .but since this is what she did to her sister nobody's doing anything to help her."
Josette settles in the chair with the books after her show as people start lining up to get their books signed. A few people come in to try to cause trouble and they're summarily removed from the gallery. "Effing fools. . .wailing about how we won't sell our land to them because they need to build monuments to their egos. We shouldn't be able to keep our land. . .they want it." Josette drawls at the looks.
"Idiots." More than one person says. The people who wanted to talk to them wail that everybody's being mean to them over the next couple of days. How. . .how. . .how can they be allowed to keep their own land? They want it. They run off wailing because people are talking bad about them.
Josette slumps back into one of the couches back on Haven. "One more year." Alan says behind her, bringing up a mug of hot chocolate from the replicator and handing it over.
"Yes, and the morons are wailing that everybody's talking bad about them because they won't take hell no for an answer when they try getting the land."
"How's the work coming on the apartments?"
"Good, there's a lot of interest in the apartments. The owners of other complexes are sulking because they can't compete without actually having to spend money to make improvements to their holdings."
"Of course not." Mrs. Bartlett snorts. "Did I have something from Anthony?"
"Yeah. . ." Josette 'looks' in subspace and brings out a large package. "He said he's got about three more shipments for you."
"Thank you dear." Alan and David move the box to the cart she has outside and walk with her to the Bartlett home to carry it inside for her. Her husband shakes his head at their antics and she sends them off with a light swat to the bottom. They both kiss her on the cheek and laugh.
"Boys." she shakes her head as they head off.
Josette snickers as she reads the latest databurst from Granda's dimension. "Dumbasses are sulking because nobody's taking their side and gonna force us to sell the land at the few cents they want to offer. They were gonna sue but people with some damn brains refused to take their cases. They're making plans for their magnificent manors on their great spreads of land."
"In the second colony dimension? Where the hell are they going to make the money for all that?" Amanda snorts.
"Who knows." Josette keeps reading. Then moans and puts a picture up on the screen.
"Oh dear god, take that down before our eyes start bleeding." Frances complains. "There's gaudy and there's ugly, but that's a damn category of fugly all of its own."
"Amen." Josette sighs. She sends the picture off to the others, getting various comments along the lines of Frances's complaint.
"Going to be heading off to university after the first of the year. Schools are accepting students early. Earlier than they normally would but . . ."
"There's students old enough to attend school." Principal Madison says. "I don't expect there's more than a half-dozen students in a program."
Nods from the others. "No such thing as waiting lists."
"No having to share dorm rooms."
"I doubt many schools would have dorms open this early, they'd help the students to find off-campus housing." Nods from the others.
The second crops are starting to come in when the others start coming out, Josette looks over her shoulder as she is picking tomatoes, Hannah taking the full bushel basket and handing over an empty one. It's put on the cart with the others as she grabs a basket and starts clearing a plant of beans.
"We wanted to talk about your land and the plantation dimension."
"Problems or requests?"
"We can talk after the Harvest Festival."
"Ohhhh, dear god. You fucking idiots." Josette drawls a few days later. The others look at her. "The morons whining about having to learn how to cook, grow their own food. . ."
"Oh, those fucking idiots." Calvin sighs. "Oh yes, they're wailing that how can people live like this? Morons are trying frantically find a way to make money in the other dimension and coming up short."
"Of course. . .nobody realizes that life on a colony isn't just like life on Earth. . .just you know, another planet." More reading in the databurst. "Oh jeez dumbass, you won't have to worry about living in the other dimension, the others there would shoot you the second you arrived. Now he's trying to steal the land of the others, they have to have found the real money in the other dimension, he wants it. He doesn't want to have to work for his money. . .he's stunned the courts are telling him no, don't they know who he is?"
"Goddamn idiot is who he is." Calvin snorts.
True to his words the moron wails as he's shown to an area in the other dimension where his supplies are laid out and told to get to work. He can see the houses are just as small as his own will be and everybody has gardens out. He recognizes some of them after a while. . .how did they get so old and so thin? Aren't their people looking out for them for their own money? Where are his people . . .He looks around and slowly realizes he might have made a mistake. The people delivering his supplies point to where the house can go so it's protected from most of the wind, tell him how deep a pit he should dig for the outhouse and how soon he can expect to have to dig a new one, point towards the river for his water supply unless he digs a well and installs a hand pump that he insulates for the winter, and leave. He drops to his knees, covers his face with his hands, and sobs.
"Fucking idiot." One of the people watching the VR session says. "What the hell did he think was going to happen?"
"Ohhhhh, we have to be funning him about the others not living in McMansions, with armies of little people waiting on them hand and foot. Because he would."
He's released from the VR session and lays shuddering on the floor. When he's given the paperwork to join the colony to make the money for what he wants he tears the papers up. The man across from him grins and shakes his hand.
"Congratulations on being a damn grown up."
"Thank you for knocking the last of the damn greed out of me." he goes back to his three bedroom, two and a half bath home and looks around it in satisfaction. This is what he needs, not to rattle around in some damn mansion. He's got a damn good job and makes enough money to live on well.
"I think we found the way to get rid of some of the damn egos."
"If more than just him comes out right, we'll keep an eye on him and see if he backslides.
Josette returns to Calvin's dimension after the Harvest Festival with another batch of socks for the school and spa, finding Michelle's cousin teaching a class. She agrees the fabric is fugly and laughs at the take the picture down before our eyes start bleeding comment. She'd fallen in love with Town and Albatross, surrounded by people who know fabric like she does and are crafters. She's having work done on her house to bring it up to Albatross and will be splitting her time between the two dimensions.
"It's the people with the big names and bigger egos that come up with those damn designs." Jane snorts from the door of the classroom. The other two women nod vigorously. "Then wail like sirens that it has to be somebody else's fault that their precious messter. ..ohhh sorry, masterpiece." Josette says dryly, both women knowing she said what she meant the first time. "don't sell out immediately. . .like the damn sales when a big-name designer I've never heard of before has a line at Target."
The other two women nod. "Josette, socks?"
"Yes, I've already stopped off at the spa and. . . I have yours in subspace. I also made samples of more socks." She nods in satisfaction as the two women finish putting together a bag for Josette. She walks in the door a couple minutes later and tosses a bag to Calvin. "New socks."
He and Maria look them over while Josette and Jane count the socks she's bringing out. Calvin nods in satisfaction. "How are those fool kids in Doc's dimension?"
"Wailing in prison they shouldn't have been punished. . .it was just a joke. God forbid the little bastards have to take responsibility for their own actions. Everybody's talking bad about them, the girl and her friends graduated summa cum laude from their school and are making money hand over fist being hired on by top companies. They're making five dollars a week from the one job they constantly wail about having to have. The poor darlings nearly had breakdowns when the warden told them they were going to have to have a second job again if they wanted to pay off all the judgments before they get out. They're up for parole but I don't expect them to get it."
"It's. . .nearly Christmas break her senior year in Hamberg." Josette looks up at the ceiling a minute. "Yeah, she should be taking her finals next week." The others nod.
"Granda took all the socks, I brought five new drives because they came out with a shitload of new patterns. Including some that are fancy patterns. I also brought several 'new improved' machines that had the patterns in them."
"Can the other machines use the new drives?"
"Yes. . .even the ones from Grandpa Charles dimension. I made sure before I brought them. If I had to I could transfer the patterns to different drives for them." They nod in satisfaction. "Oh, the dumbasses are up in arms on Calvin's dimension. . .people shouldn't buy used clothes. . .even for babies. They gotta buy new. . . we gotta shut these evil resale shops down. People with brains told them to shut the fuck up and grow up, babies don't care what they wear. And babies grow so fast. . ."
"Most stuff in the used stores are nearly new anyway."
"Oh yes, they ran off wailing when their betters proclaimed it's cool to shop at used places."
"Oh dear god, I don't miss that nonsense from Earth."
"Nope here if somebody wants new it's make it yourself." The others nod. The new patterns are looked over the next few day and while some get 'so damn ugly' moans some are worth making. Agatha looks and moans. "They're 'high art' she says mockingly. "The damn things will fly off the shelves because people with more money than brains will want them."
"Exactly, just like the damn thousand dollar socks and two thousand dollar shoes."
Josette snorts. "I could put those up at the last show in Granda's dimension and the damn things would fly off the shelves." Josette smirks and makes plans to do just that.
"Rein the evil in girl, even if the morons deserve it." Agatha chuckles. "Is Marcus already advertising the last show?"
"Oh god yes." Josette moans. "I expect everybody will flock there to make sure they can be seen as being there. I'm bringing out all the books that I haven't already sold here. Including the old ones."
"Did you get the next shipment for the buildings from the factories?"
"Yes, Clark and Kara finished the interiors of Ma's cabin workrooms. Pat's got about half of her interior finished, including the mechanicals. I put up the staircase. Ninth planet has about the same amount of their interior done. . .including the insulation and wired panels around the window molding. The staircases are in and so are the stoves for the new areas, everybody's getting in wood for the winter so they can finish putting everything together." Nods from the others. "This last shipment should have all the interiors finished, then it will be hooks and shelves and cubbyholes." Nods from the others.
"Hank started making them as soon as he heard about the new buildings. If they don't buy them for their buildings I'll buy them for the knitting machines." Nods from the others.
Josette disappears and reappears a few seconds later. "Goddamn asshole who owns another apartment complex. I've got to give him my buildings as compensation for him not getting any new renters. He looks bad because he won't get off his ass and do needed work on any of his complexes. Because he owns them in multiple cities."
"Not that bad but he's one of the fools who just wants the money coming in, not going out." Josette snorts. "The renters do their own repairs and short their rent that amount, he tried suing but since they had records of the work they had done he's sulking. He won't pay anybody to do the work, he'd be out all that money having him on the payroll." Rolled eyes and snorts of disgust. "Yeah, the judge heard his whining and told him to grow the fuck up, I don't owe him a damn thing. He ran off wailing and I fully expect to pick the damn buildings up because the judge totally destroyed him by not giving him my rental property."
"People like that need a good swift kick." More than one person in the Albatross Nest snorts. Nods from the others. "They're looking for quick money, not honest money."
"Going to be living in on-campus housing and working part-time. Most campuses aren't opening dorms until they have a need for them."
Nods from the others. Josette sends off a message to her business manager and puts it up as they go back to making fat quarters. The shelf is full of them a few days later and they nod in satisfaction. Josette cackles suddenly.
"Dumbass wailing about how his life is over?" Agatha smirks.
"Yes, the courts are making him hire maintenance men and actually do the necessary work on his units."
"Awwwww. . .poo' baby." the others snort.
"Yep. I expect the bastard will wail it's too much money and try to declare bankruptcy. Even if he just hires some of the renters . . ."
"It would be toooooooo much money." Marilyn drawls. "Because he'd have to buy the materials."
Josette is busy over the next couple of days bringing out the new machines she brought for herself and installing them. Once they're in they head off to Mom's dimension for the boys show.
"Are you still on track to have the printers start the next books year after next?" Alan asks the morning after the show.
"Yeah, everybody says they'll do a shift at the printers and a shift at the machines. It might be a few more years to get all the books printed but there's no hurry. For once I'm not looking at a huge backlog of books. Ohhh, I got a backlog but. . ."
The offworld harvests come in impossibly early everybody agrees. Maxie looks out the screen as they lift off. She's wanting to go to Ellis's on Earth this winter and wants extra money. The others nod, nobody's running low low on anything but they'll need to make a trip in a few years. She also wants some more of the fabric Josette had brought back from the other planets.
Ma and Ma make their own trips out to harvest and nod in satisfaction as their bank accounts grow proportionately. Like Maxie they want to make a trip out with Josette to all the complexes and like Maxie they don't feel comfortable owing a large amount of money.
The last of the offworld harvests are in and Josette goes offworld to take care of the recycling and dropping off the last of the orders for the year to the workrooms. She disappears and holds a gun on the stupid fool who'd tried getting her rental properties when he tries hacking her servers to take down her shields. His car is full of 'stuff' that gets him quickly convicted of attempted first degree murder and thrown in the maximum security dimension for the rest of his damn life. Josette's lawyers take everything from him and get a large judgment he still has to pay off. . .he wails that if he could have just talked to Josette as he's tossed through into the maximum security dimension. Where the other cons soon beat the stupidity out of him.
In the superhero dimension dumbass is wailing in prison about how mean everybody is to her, the other prisoners won't put up with her shit, the advocates are ignoring her letters, her sister and aunt refuse to do a damn thing for her, and she can't get on the list for the shopping sprees since she won't stop being a spoiled little shit. Not that the shopping sprees are going to be lasting much longer, the government is getting a lot of bad press about prisoners being able to buy everything they want if law-abiding citizens can't. The excuses of 'but the prisoners work extra shifts to pay for everything' isn't making it any better. The government is whining about having to make that available to everybody or get rid of it entirely. When some fool had blubbered that did they want the prisoners to feel like they were being punished they'd run off wailing at the 'yeah, isn't that why they're in there' comment. How can they be so mean to the prisoners?
She'd tried suing to make the prison give her as much food as she wanted, trying to claim she was being starved to death. The warden had called her a damn liar and so had the doctors who'd examined her at the court's instructions. How could they not understand that she can't live like this, dear god she weighed only a hundred forty-five pounds when she got out of the medium security dimension. And they'd tried telling her she was still too fat.
Natalie looks around Hamberg one last time after putting the last of her belongings in the u-haul trailer attached to the back of her car and drives off. A day later. . .she'd stopped at a couple places to eat or stretch her legs and had slept for a few hours in a rest area until some moron had started pounding on her window and been sent off with a bug up his ass at bothering her for actually resting at a rest area. Pulling into the second parking spot in her Aunt's apartment building and grins at some of the others.
"Welcome back Ms. Natalie," One of the maintenance workers says, helping unfold the cart she pulls out of the trailer.
"Hello Hans, how are the kids." His wife had twin girls while she'd been home for Christmas.
"Getting so big." He sighs. "Is this everything?"
"Yes, I can get everything inside in a couple hours and have the trailer gone by tonight before anybody complains about it making the complex look tacky." A woman had sneered at her earlier about driving an old car, very visibly turning white when she realized Natalie and her aunt owned the complex.
"You don't have that much." Another complex employee says, looking in the trailer. "I'll grab the other cart and we can take it up in one trip."
"Bless you James. I wouldn't have needed to rent a trailer but everybody was giving stuff to the students."
"Did you get any sleep on the trip back?" He asks at her yawn.
"Yes, I slept a few hours in a rest stop. . .until some little fool came pounding on my window complaining I was resting at a rest stop. The authorities gave him a disgusted look and told him to shove off when he tried getting me arrested for it."
"Some people are fools." James snorts. They get the trailer empty and Marilyn smiles as she comes home from work a few hours later to find her niece's car in the other parking spot. Opening the door of their apartment she finds dinner in the oven and Natalie dozing on the couch. She hugs her like she hadn't seen her just a couple days ago at her graduation ceremony. She wishes her brother had lived to be there but like her niece had snorted, it would have taken time from their precious Maddy.
"Are you fucking stupid?" A jailhouse lawyer sneers. "No, you can't sue your sister for theft. . .you're a convicted criminal and can't profit from your crimes. Since you murdered your parents you can't get anything from their wills. So yes, your sister got it all."
"But she didn't need her education fund. She got a damn full scholarship." she wails as she's tossed in a room and told to get to work.
"Moron, your sister got the full scholarship because you killed your parents in a shit fit." The guard snorts. "Besides, that was her money, not yours."
"But Daddy said that he'd get her money for my surgery. It's not fair she was able to keep it. She shouldn't have been able to go to university if I couldn't." She whines.
"If you got off you ass and finished your damn high school education you might be able to take college classes."
"But I don't wanna get an education." she wails.
"And your sister does. Because she's not a useless little oik like you." She's blubbering the whole time she cranks the knitting machine.
Josette walks into a back as she comes out of her second floor bedroom, blinking as she looks at Godly Clark and Superhero Clark. "You're early, it's not even Thanksgiving yet."
"Yes we are, can you get around us? We're going to be working here for a couple days." Godly Doc looks at her.
"I'll use the stairs then." Josette says as she opens the door back up again and goes downstairs. A few minutes later she appears coming up the stairs and walks into her studio. She leans back in the door a few seconds later. "Did that fool girl get her damn shopping spree like she wanted?"
"No, the courts refused to hear her plea. There's a whole list of rules that the prisoners have to have abided by to get a chance at it. .. none of which she obeyed."
"Shopping spree? Prisoners?"
"The government and special interest groups in our dimension don't want prisoners to feel like they're being punished so they arrange for days where a prisoner can go out and shop all they want. They meant it for mothers behind bars so they could go shopping for their kids school supplies. It . . .grew. Now the prisoners have to have clean records behind bars, work extra shifts to pay for all that. . ." the list of requirements is rattled off. "This is the fool girl who didn't want to lose all that weight. . .she felt she deserved a shopping trip where she'd get everything she wanted. . .including a king-size bed for her cell."
"Oh dear lord." Godly Doc sighs. "Yes, an advocate came to her sister and tried to get her to buy her sister a tv since she. . .and her aunt. . .are the girl's only remaining family members. Her sister refused to buy her a tv and said she was her only remaining family members because she murdered their parents."
Godly Doc sighs. Back in the day she would have been a candidate for his college. "After the advocate got back to the office she got a glimpse of the girls list. . .it came to millions of dollars." Godly Doc sighs again. "The fool girl got in trouble at the prison, a woman at the prison was going on a trip and she tried to get in the van with her, she deserved to go shopping. . .not the other woman. Josette?"
"The government is tearing itself apart about how only prisoners get a trip like that, would you be interested in one if they were available to everybody?"
Josette snorts and waves a hand. "My shopping trip would make hers look like a piker cause I'd be buying for the planets. And there's nothing there I couldn't either pay for myself or I don't already have on the ships or the replicator." Superhero Doc nods in satisfaction. "They should offer the shopping trips to kids in the system. . .not prison or juvie but foster care, in hospitals, and whatnot. Especially when a kid is adopted." Both men nod.
Thanksgiving the back room is full and Pat and Paddy had insisted Jessy bring out copies of her drawings. The wedding dresses are cooed over. "These are classics, not the damn bikini top and long skirt some stores say are wedding dresses." Paddy had snorted. Pat rolls her eyes and waves a hand. "It takes all kinds of fools for the world to go around. I'm sure if they ever grow up they'll be embarrassed as Hell at being married in something like that and they'll have a real ceremony."
"No keeping her wedding dress to pass down to her daughters or granddaughters in a getup like that."
"No hopefully the girls have some damn sense and realize it's tacky as hell."
"Do you girls still have your wedding dresses?"
"Yes, they're saved and put up. We'd briefly thought about renewing our vows for our hundred fiftieth anniversary but Susan flatly refused to get pregnant again." The family laughs. "Susan was pregnant with their eldest at their wedding." Principal Madison says in the front room for those who didn't know that little tidbit of history.
"We married in May, I turned twenty in August, and Susan delivered in October." Josette says laughing. She disappears and reappears a few seconds later. "Final decision about dumbass's holdings. His buildings were looked over and need a good bit of work, he's being sent to the work dimension to pay for that because all the work needed to be done when he owned the properties."
"As they should." President Bartlett murmurs. "So the buildings are being worked on?"
"Yep, they hired crews to work on them, the common areas and empty apartments first, then the apartments people are living in, if it needs that much work they can move to the empty apartments while the work is done." Nods from the others. "This little brouhaha is making other rental property owners look closely at their properties and do necessary maintenance to keep from being painted with the same brush as that moron."
"About damn time." Calvin rumbles. "But of course only the threat of people talking bad about them will make some people work on their properties."
In superhero dimension the dumbass girl is sobbing as she looks at the printout in front of her. All that work and she has nothing on the books. How can they only give her five dollars a week from each of her jobs and forty a month from the money she has saved from working in that horrible place where she was starved nearly to death.
"Daniels, get your ass out of the cell, you're going to be late for your job. And quitcher whining about not having any money in your account, by the time you can actually get back to the commissary you'll have plenty."
"But why can't I have a shopping trip?" she wails to one of the prison's jailhouse lawyers.
"Because you're a miserable brat who won't abide by the rules. The government won't buy what you want, no special interest group is going to pony up the money, and there's no way in hell you'd work extra shifts to put the money away for it. You could go to the medium security dimension again . . ."
"I. . .I'll do that. I have to have everything I want."
"Keep your nose clean for six months after this punishment is over, make a real effort on your schoolwork. . .which includes finishing the damn eighth grade and starting high school, and ask the warden if you can go over there then." She snorts as the stupid brat runs off.
"She ain't gonna do it." A guard rolls her eyes.
"Nope, she's just trying to show up her sister. See all I got in my cell. . .ohhhh, that's right. . .I'm in here and you're out there."
"And there's no way in hell she's going to be able to get everything on the list she wants."
"No, there's no way she can get a damn king-sized bed for her cell." The guard snorts. "Now that she's lost all that fat and can sleep on the pad she can buy a couple blankets if she gets cold this winter."
"Yeah, before that all her damn whale blubber kept her warm."
"But I don't wanna have to work on my schoolwork." She blubbers that night after her tiny dinner. If she wasn't a miserable human being she'd realize her meals keep her full and she's not 'starving' all the time, her stomach had been shrinking over the years she's not been allowed to eat all she wants so a normal meal fills her now.
"Too bad." A guard laughs as he walks past. "If you want a chance at getting to go shopping, you gotta do your part. And that includes making a real effort to finish your education." He grins at the wail of pure anguish and keeps patrolling.
Natalie gets a letter from the prison, opening it up and doubling over. Her Aunt rushes over then relaxes when she realizes Natalie's laughing so hard she can't make a sound. Looking at the envelope she can't understand for a second why Natalie is silently cackling until she reads the letter and snorts.
"There's no way in Hell your sister will do all this."
"Nope." Natalie finally gasps. "And it will be her own damn fault." She starts laughing again. "How damn long has she been in the eighth grade? She'll be in her thirties when she finishes high school at this rate."
"If she finishes high school you mean. The guard who wrote you says she's whining one minute about you being able to go to university when she can't, when she was told she could take college classes once she finishes high school she says she don't wanna."
"Of course she didn't wanna. . .she screwed around for years in school, not going for weeks at a time until the courts got after Mom and Dad. Useless bitch wanted to live off somebody else all her life. Mom and Dad tried getting her on SSI but being fat as a tick and dumb as a rock isn't a disability."
"No, no it's not."
The lights go up on the buildings on Haven after Thanksgiving for the Lights Festival. Josette had brought out the last of the interior panels for both of the cabin workrooms. Ma and Ma look around in satisfaction as five Josette's bring out the tables from Hank and the boys.
"Thank you girls." Both Ma's say as the tables are moved into position.
"I'm going out to Ellis's after we plant, you should have the hooks, cubbies, and shelves up by then." Both women nod. "Pat and the 9th planet?"
"Most of the interiors done, the lights and whatnot will go in after we plant, by the Harvest festival they'll be finished." Josette shakes her head. Ma pats one on the shoulder. "You okay dear?"
"Yeah, just feeling my age for a moment. The quintuplets are going to be turning 100 next year, the babies will be turning 48."
"Ohhhhhh yeah, that's a big old reminder of how old you really are. Nobody really recognizes birthdays anymore."
"No, it's just the big dates. A hundred. . .the babies turning fifty, us having our hundred fiftieth anniversary." Nods from the two older women. They shut the buildings up and fly off after Ma is inside the house.
Josette slides into her seat the first meeting of the government in the new year with a mug of coffee. It's spitting snow outside and Josette looks over as the others start coming in. She nudges David with a foot. "The quints are turning a hundred and the babies will be 48." David winces.
"Yeah, that brings it all home just how damn long it's been." Josette sighs. "Okay, anything beyond my kvetching about being old?"
"Me Mom's dimension last, the boys and me the last show in Granda's dimension, it's a dual show and I'm bringing out all the books that haven't already been sold here as well as socks and other. . .stuff. I don't doubt it will be flying off the tables." The others sigh but nod.
"Is Pat's building finished?"
"No, she's still got a few panels and lights yet to install, the last of the shelves, cubbies, and hooks will be ready after the Harvest Festival. Same for the 9th planet." Josette yawns around her coffee mug.
"Don't start." David mumbles. "I've been yawning all damn morning, not even walking from the school here woke me up."
"Today's a good day to nap." Principal Madison says. The door opens and Jasmine sticks her head into the room. "I'm jumping on the 'I ain't having no more stinking birthdays, they make you old' bandwagon." She shuts the door behind her, counting off the seconds until she hears her parents and the others cackling. She opens the door again. "Oh, and Mom, you got a message from the 9th planet as I was coming out. Ma wants you to come out and help her bring stuff off the ships for the new areas."
Josette splits off a duplicate and uses the switching station after Jasmine heads back to Archimedes.
"I wasn't expecting you this early Josette." Ma says as she walks into the meeting room at JSA Headquarters.
"Ahhh, we weren't doing anything but yawning during the meeting and laughing because Jasmine had opened the door and said she was jumping on the 'I ain't having no more stinking birthdays, they make you old' bandwagon her sister created." The others snigger. "Oh I know, I was complaining last year that the quintuplets are turning a hundred and the babies are turning 48 in a few months."
"That brings it home. . ." Alan says.
"Just how long it's really been. Oh yeah." Josette yawns again and gives her head a shake. "Okay. . ." They head off and Alan, Josette, and Jennie-Lynn are busy bringing boxes out of various rooms after the flyer and wagon are full. Everything is delivered various places and Josette heads back to Haven, sliding into her usual seat at the dining hall for dinner.
"A lot of stuff?"
"Yeah, Alan, Jennie-Lynn, and I brought out stuff when the flyer and wagon were full. I'm going out again tomorrow to move the machines where they want them and put together the looms. Everybody was tired when we landed." The others nod. The next morning Josette's at the building on the 9th planet after breakfast, though it's the middle of their night and starts opening boxes. Ma Hunkel walks in several hours later and nods in satisfaction, moving a few items or rather Josette moving them for her as she turns to the next boxes. Everything that can be put away is put away and the machines set in place even though they won't be plugged in until the last panels are connected and put in place.
"Get everything done?" Principal Madison asks at dinner.
"Yeah, Ma was cranking the knitting machine when she shooed me off. I got the fabric out, the yarn out, the machines set up where they want them. When the panels and other stuff is up they'll work on the rest of it." The others nod.
In the superhero dimension Natalie holds up a baseball bat as she stands over her blubbering sister in her apartment. "I don't know how the hell you got out of prison but I'll be damned if you're going after me again you stupid little shit." Quickly breaking her arms and legs like the 'security' experts showed her she calls the authorities.
"911, what is your emergency?"
"Yeah, I got an intruder in my apartment, come get her before I beat the stupid bitch to death." A woman's voice says. "My name is Natalie Daniels, I live at. . . the intruder is my sister Maddy. Who should be in prison for the rest of her damn life for murdering our parents and trying to murder me seven years ago." At another station their boss starts doing a search in the system and finding the information on the women. "I don't know how the bitch got out but I'm going to be finding out." She huffs a second. "Can somebody please call my aunt Marilyn at. . ." she rattles off her aunt's phone "And make sure she's fine? I don't trust my sister not to have to tried to go after her." Another operator makes the call. "Shut up bitch!" she yells away from the phone and the operator can make out another person whining. "You went after me with a butcher knife not once but twice, you're damn lucky I only broke your arms and legs to keep you away from me."
"But you got all the money from our parents." can be faintly heard over the phone.
"Yeah asshole, you butchered our parents and was standing over my bed with the fucking knife when I woke up. Of course the courts wouldn't give you any money from the estate. Okay, I can hear the police sirens now, I'm going to open the door. And then collapse."
"Ma'am, please take a couple deep breaths." the sound of breathing. "Is the door open?"
"Yes and. . ." the phone falls to the floor it sounds like. She keeps talking and a few seconds later it's picked up again and the officer identifies himself. She ends the call and shakes in her chair. A coworker pats her on the shoulder and hands her a mug of hot coffee. "I called the number she gave us for her aunt, a male coworker answered the phone since she's in a meeting. He was going to go check on her."
"Marilyn, oh thank god." A man sighs as he slams open the door of the meeting room. Marilyn looks at him. "Maddy somehow broke out of prison and went after Natalie." She shoots to her feet, the chair flying backwards. "She's okay, just shook up and the adrenaline crash. She's okay." Her grabs her shoulders.
"Are you sure?"
"Yeah, she asked the 911 dispatcher to have somebody call your phone to make sure she didn't come after you. I picked it up since you'd left it in your office."
"How the hell did she get out?"
"Overwhelmed a guard when she went out of the prison for a doctor's appointment, the dumb bitch was still whining the prison was starving her to death. She's been gone for nearly two weeks. At least that's what a government official said when they finally tried contacting you. They were stunned the stupid bitch would try to kill her sister."
"St. Matthews. Aaron's waiting to take you there." He waves at another man. He hurries off after her.
"Maddy, Natalie?" One of the men asks.
"Marilyn's nieces, her brother's girls. Maddy was thirteen when she went to prison for two counts of second degree murder and a count of attempted second degree murder. She killed their parents and went after her sister, her sister woke up to her standing over her bed with a bloody knife and hit her with a baseball bat. Maddy's supposed to be in prison for the rest of her life without the possibility of parole."
"I think we can reschedule this meeting." A man says. The others nod.
"Natalie Daniels?" Marilyn asks an officer in the waiting room. Aaron had dropped her off at the doors then went to find a parking spot.
"Your niece is in here. . ." He shows her into the room. She can hear her niece's voice behind a curtain and rushes in, Natalie crying as she sees her and holds out her arms.
"Are you okay honey?"
"Yes, I broke her arms and legs just like the security experts at school showed me as a quick way to disable a person. My phone?" She looks around. "I wanna contact Hamberg and have them thank them for showing me how to protect myself. I wasn't one of the rich or important kids that needed the protection, but when they found out what had happened they added me to the sessions free of charge."
Marilyn kisses her niece on the forehead. "I'll have the school thank them for you sweetheart. Aaron should be back from parking the car."
"How is she?" He asks when she comes out.
"Good, she broke Maddy's arms and legs like the security experts at Hamberg showed her."
"Good for her."
The school president walks into a special building and clears her throat. "Ladies, can I please talk to your instructors for a few minutes? Gentlemen?" They look at each other then at the school's president. She normally doesn't try to interfere with their lessons.
"Okay, who worked with Natalie Daniels? she would have graduated last year."
"I did." One of them holds up a hand. The others look at him. "She's the student we added to the group without charge, she wanted to learn to protect herself since her sister murdered their parents because her father didn't get the older girl's education fund away from her. They deserved to die for that. Oh no. . ." he looks at the school's President. "Yes, the younger girl who should have been behind bars for the rest of her life without the possibility of parole somehow got free and went after her sister. She broke her arms and legs, called 911, opened the door for the police, then collapsed as the adrenaline wore off. Her aunt just called to thank you. She was able to beat off her sister once because the fool girl weighed over six hundred pounds and while she had weight and momentum on her side. . .she didn't have speed. The prison sent her to the medium security dimension and made her lose all that weight."
"So she would have been more dangerous." One of the others nods in satisfaction. "Ladies, please gather round. We have a real life example of why you need to pay attention to our teaching. Madison. . .you should remember her. ..Natalie?" the head of the group remembers them sparring together if she's the student he's thinking about.
"Yeah, we trained together a lot. She told me why. . .her sister?"
"Somehow broke out of prison and went after her, she remembered her training on how to disable an opponent, called 911, then collapsed when help was there."
Madison quickly grabs her phone and dials the number she had for her. . .her family's business did a lot of work with hers.
"Hello?" A male voice answers the phone.
"Is Natalie okay, I'm a friend of hers from the training group, Madison Dupree?" He repeats the name and a few seconds later Madison has a familiar voice on the line.
"Madison, then my aunt got hold of the school?"
"Yes, the trainers are telling us about what happened." She puts her phone on speaker and the whole story is told. The trainers nod in satisfaction as they hear what she did to protect herself and congratulate her on remembering her training before she's released from the hospital.
"Why the hell were we not told about the escape?" Marilyn asks icily as she holds Natalie in her arms. The hospital had said she was just shaken up and had released her to her Aunt, saying that would be the best medicine for her. The apartment is a crime scene, it will need a good cleaning before they can return so they're staying at a hotel. . .one they own.
"You should have been the first people contacted." The family lawyer says icily. "As I reminded the fool sniveling on the phone when he complained that Natalie had hurt her sister. He whined he didn't know Maddy had tried to kill Natalie and murdered their parents, he thought she was in prison for non-violent offenses. He just saw her age and not her record when he okayed her release to go to the doctor. He's a stupid flunky that the state appointed to 'see that prisoners rights weren't violated."
"I didn't realize prisoners had rights." Marilyn snorts. "I thought they lost their rights when they went to prison. And Maddy wouldn't be in prison if it was non-violent offenses."
Natalie laughs rustily against her aunt's side. "Well, this is definitely going to keep Maddy from the damn shopping spree." Marilyn laughs despite herself as she rubs a hand over her niece's hair.
"You're not the only ones complaining about prisoners rights. The government has two and a half dozen eggs on its face. The little bastard overruled the warden who didn't want her to see an outside doctor because. . ."
"She's a stupid little shit who thinks anything under seven hundred pounds is being starved."
"Yes, the warden cussed the little bastard out when the guard called the prison and told them she'd escaped. He's blubbering that it had to be a mistake. . .she just was confused. I'm already suing him for emotional distress."
"Fuck you, you stupid little sack of shit. There's no damn reason to throw out their lawsuit, you're the little goddamn fool who insisted she see a doctor when the fool has seen multiple doctors. . .who have all told her she's not starving to death."
"But I didn't know she'd try to attack her sister." He wails. "I thought she'd show up. . eventually. She complained she was losing weight and the prison wouldn't do anything . .." He huffs. Then moans at the picture of the girl as she'd looked when she entered the prison. "Yes moron, we wanted her to lose weight. The stupid girl eats a balanced 1500 calorie diet when she's working. . .she's just sulking because she can't eat several thousand calories a day."
"But you won't let her have pop." He pounds his fists on the table.
"Because the damn girl would sit on her ass and drink a 12-pack of pop a day. . .and not that diet crap either. And yes, that was a direct quote. So no, the fool isn't being starved." they'd found the car she'd . . .'borrowed' and had found the back of it filled with fast food wrappers and empty pop cans. Now they were backtracking shoplifting and armed robbery cases the route she should have taken from the doctor's office to her aunt's apartment to see if they can finger her for any of them."
"You don't think she would have, do you?" he wails. If they can prove other crimes, his job is history. Not that the girl trying to kill her sister isn't bad enough. He can still spin it around so she gets all the bad press for hurting her sister. If they just ignore the fact she tried to kill her again and he can tell everybody she's just a confused young girl who was looking for her sister because she didn't know where she was. . .
"Yes, we have a number of shoplifting cases, interestingly enough . ..it was pop, chips, and snack food being stolen. There's been a story on the news about a fast food place being held up and tons of food being made up and stolen. Interestingly enough it was all the same fast food restaurant that had the wrappers in the back of the car. We're waiting to see if any of the employees. . ." A man comes in, waving a fax. "Yes, the employees recognized her as the person who held them up. They're letting us handle the lawsuit since we've got a better case against her for fleeing, eluding, and crossing state lines in commission of a felony. A gun shop was held up by a young woman who'd 'inherited' a gun and needed to know what kind of bullets it took. She attacked the owner and stole guns and ammo. We're waiting on confirmation for that case too."
"Oh . . .god." he moans. How could everything have gone so wrong. It should have been just a nice simple visit to a doctor's office, why had she tried to get away? There's no way the other girl will get in trouble for hurting her sister with the sister being charged with that.
"Hello dear. . ." One of the other cons smirks as Maddy is wheeled back into the prison once she's been released from the hospital. "Awwww, too bad your sister didn't break your damn neck instead of just your damn arms and legs." She purrs. Maddy whimpers as she realizes she's going to be the 'toy' of the other prisoners until her arms and legs heal. She's not safe in the prison hospital, the other prisoners work shifts there cleaning the building. The courts had decided it was easier for her to be in the prison hospital as they make their cases against her for everything she did while she was out. It's not fair. . .she's already in this horrible place for the rest of her life and they're punishing her for getting what she deserved while she was out?
"No, a hundred thousand dollars is a damn insult." Natalie's lawyer snorts at the attempt to settle the case. "If your idiot boy had done more than look at her age and get a hardon about her being punished, he'd have seen that the sister had no damn business being allowed out of the prison."
"Weelllll yes." the lawyer whines. "But he thought she was sick and the prison wasn't doing anything."
"And again, if he'd read her damn file he'd have seen it was all bullshit. Let alone the fact that her sister and aunt should have been alerted to her escape that night, not two weeks later after she had tried killing her sister again."
"Yeeeesssssss." Oh god, what had the fool done? He'd actually read the damn file and there's no way in hell that fool woman should have been allowed to leave the prison. The fool had just seen her age and the complaints about the prison 'starving' her and thought this would make him a big, fat hero. It had made him a big, fat zero instead.
"But you can't make me finish school." Maddy wails.
"Yes we can you little fool. You're only twenty years old and have your entire life ahead of you. You won't ever get out of prison but you're not going to get away with not finishing high school at the very least."
"But I don't wanna get an education." she wails from her bed in the prison hospital where the judges are deciding her punishment beyond the extra years in prison.
"Too damn bad. You're getting a goddamn education. I think a masters in education since you don't want to complete your education is a fitting punishment."
"And psychology so she learns what a stupid little shit she is." A voice says off the camera screen.
A list of degrees that Maddy will have to take once she gets finished with her high school diploma is soon outlined.
"Who's going to be paying for all this?" a voice blusters and Maddy sighs. There! The state won't pay for her to get all those horrible degrees.
"She will, just like any other prisoner." the first person says and Maddy whines. "She'll be going to the medium security dimension again to make enough money for all the new judgments against her and to pay for all the degrees once she's out of that hospital bed. Ohhh, and needless to say your commissary privileges are revoked for another year. A hand reaches into view and hands her a paper. She reads it and grins. "And the shopping spree you wanted. . .consider it gone." She laughs as Maddy wails about that on the screen.
"But why can't I sue Natalie for breaking my arms and legs?" Maddy wails to a jailhouse lawyer.
"Because you attacked her asswipe, she just finished the fight."
"But it's not fair. . .I'm stuck in this horrible bed. She didn't have to hurt me."
"What? She was supposed to let you try to kill her?"
"Yeeesssss." she wails. "It's all her fault. If she'd just give me her damn education money. . .she got a full scholarship." Her head rocks at the slap and the jailhouse lawyer cusses the fool girl out for well over an hour.