Feb 16, 2019 6:19 PM
Miranda gets lost in an IKEA
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"We're aware. We don't intend for you to be in combat situations. But if you do end up in one, it will help if you can communicate effectively."

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"Yup. Do you have any guesses as to how it knew to target me?"

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"Potentially the proximity to information about it, though others with access to the same information haven't been targeted."

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"Access to or in-practice access of?"

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"Access of, but the information it's targeted before have been specific advances in mathematics, which we didn't send you. So, this is a deviation in behavior and our best guess isn't very good."

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"Gotcha. Well. I'm driving as fast as I can and probably shouldn't chat unnecessarily."

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The ride is uneventful until the road passes through an uninhabited bit of countryside when the road happens to be clear of other drivers.

Something is coalescing on the road in front of her, exactly in the center, where it will be difficult to avoid even if she swerves into the non-existent oncoming traffic.

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She is prepared to swerve into the nonexistent oncoming traffic. She does, preparing to floor it once she gets past.

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It moves in the direction she's swerving, but not quickly enough, and she makes it past. 

In her rearview mirror, it vanishes.

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"Just saw it start to appear in the middle of the road," she reports. "I got around it. It's gone now."

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"I want to test something. It's possible your own anomalous properties make you not count as an observer in the relevant sense. Can you start a video call and prop it against the window without compromising your driving?"

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"Maybe. Uh, can you initiate the call, and then I can find the accept button?"

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"Yes, one moment."

He hangs up, a moment later, the phone rings.

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She manages to accept the call and aim the phone holder out a window.

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The other end of the screen is black.

"Tell us if you start to see anything," Kyoya says.

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"Will do."

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The rest of the drive passes without incident.

In the parking lot of the gas station, there's a nondescript delivery van advertising a moving service. 

 

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"We see you. Is the area clear?"

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She swivels around. "I don't see it coalescing."

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The back of the van opens. There are four figures inside, armored and armed. 

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"Inside clear?"

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"It's not in your van."

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"I'm passing you over to Task Force Kappa-7."

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One of the figures, a woman with close-cut black hair and a steely expression, is approaching her car. 

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