At least the trains were regular and fast. But their users paid the price of the trains’ efficiency, which is that everyone used them, so they were usually crowded. As the next train whizzed to the stop, a small throng of people surged into its few small doorways and crammed into the already full cars. Jack found herself wedged between a young looking woman dressed in fashionable but inexpensive business wear and an older looking young man who was obviously a courier. He had skate shoes on and they looked well used but of excellent quality. Jack could hardly see the propulsion jets at the heels and couldn’t see wheels at all. She recognized the man as one of the couriers that Bellis Corporate used.
His face and body fit her profile for attractiveness and if Jack had an entirely different temperament, she might have smiled at him. But while she was perfectly happy propositioning someone on the nets, she wasn’t about to make an ass of herself on the train. Besides, he was clearly online, his gaze unfocussed but his face cloudy with a look of concentration.
The train ride downtown was mercifully short and Jack was expelled from the car along with a group of several other Bellis employees. She walked up to the main entrance to the office and heard the ubiquitous ping of her identity chip being recognized. This sound was immediately followed by another sound, this time of recognition that she was wearing a company approved uniform. Why they needed to have a chip on her ass when there was a perfectly good chip in her hand, she never would figure out.
She picked up a lift and got off on her floor. She walked down the corridor and opened the door to the Security Room. It sounded more interesting than most of the names on the firm’s lobby directory, but it was really just another cube farm. She walked past a pair of identical cubicles until she reached the cube she shared with the night guy, Gilles. Bellis Security was a round the clock operation and each cubicle was shared by two staffers. They liked to keep a third of the cubes empty at any given time for cleaning staff and corporate monitors to visit them.
Jack suspected that the person who made up the cube assignments had a special sense of humour, putting her with Gilles. The falling down and breaking her crown jokes had just about finished and they had been sharing the desk for almost three years. She walked up to the desk and said, “Morning, G.”
Gilles looked toward her, then adjusted his focus to look at her. “Morning, Jack,” he replied, packing up his bag and gesturing for his coat. “It’s been another dull one.”
“Same old, same old,” Jack replied, exchanging his jacket for hers on the coat hook. “It almost makes you long for the good old days, doesn’t it?”