Anny rapped her knuckles lightly on the sliding window at the Science department. Scientists made her nervous on a normal day. When she talked to them, it always felt like they were either staring through her like they’d rather be anywhere else, or they glared at her, analyzing twelve different things about her at once and they weren’t impressed.

On top of that, they likely had all kinds of embarrassing data from her upbringing as well. It was a recipe for disaster.

“Hello…?” she called aloud.

A lab assistant with a stainless steel clipboard and a serious expression who was clearly hoping to walk by unnoticed sighed and turned back for the window.


“We’re from SYMM,” Anny announced holding up her badge, “We’d like to ask the Scientists a few questions.”

The assistant frowned.


He reached for a button and the door slid open.

“But you must be very careful. There are some extremely delicate experiments being worked upon, the RD will visit nightmares hitherto undreamt of to one who dreams of disturbing them.”

WISR turned to Anny. Anny turned to WISR. An apostrophe of an arched eyebrow appeared on his screen as she rolled her lip trying not to laugh.

“Actually, can I ask you?” she wondered, turning back to the assistant, “What do you think of Haskell?”

Anny pointed her phone to him.

“That drama queen? I hope he gets taken care of soon or SD changes to a new one.”

“I like him!” another Scientist admitted, “He always says what’s on his mind. There’s such a thing as too polite and we’ve had enough of that, that’s for sure!”

The Chemist laughed until she snorted, “Love the guy! Really do! When he gets bored, he visits sometimes, always snarking about my work. Points out my mistakes before I see ‘em! Hell of a fella.”

Anny’s PDA beeped.

Dad: Can’t tell you anything about that, kiddo. Classified.

She shoved the device deep in a pocket.

“Feel free to let me know what the point of all this is at any time,” WISR remarked sardonically.

“We’re gathering evidence that the station staff really does like Haskell!”

“Is that… enough?”

“It’s a start. And for a prima donna like him, it’s a lot. C’mon. Let’s see what the Service staff has to say.”

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