So I wrote this today.

“These are sensitive issues,” said the Director, “and they require a delicate hand, not some…trigger-happy hot-shot who thinks the rules don’t apply to him.”

“You know, I think he’s talking about me,” said Crosswell. “In case any of you had ‘trigger-happy hot-shot’ in the betting pool.”

“This is no laughing matter,” said the Director.

“You’re telling me,” said Crosswell. “I had twenty to one you were going to cite ‘flagrant disregard for agency protocol.’ That’s good money you just lost me.”

“This is serious!”

“I know,” said Crosswell. “I can tell from your grouchy face. Look,” he said after a moment, finally sitting forward in his chair, “no one’s denying I maybe got a little…over-eager with the gunfire on that last assignment.” He stared at the Director and at the other suits sitting around the conference table. “But are you going to tell me those xenophobic jerkwads didn’t deserve it? Just a little?”

“The Russian delegation?” asked one of the suits. Crosswell couldn’t remember her name. Then again, he’d only been half-listening during the earlier introductions.

“Jerkwads,” he said. “The lot of them. I mean, ‘the Cold War’s over, Ivan, lighten up a little,’ am I right?”

“Not even remotely,” said the Director.

“Potato, po-tot-o,” said Crosswell. “I guess we’ll just have to act like grown-ups and agree to disagree.”

“Unfortunately, your wholesale slaughter of the Russian delegation makes that rather difficult,” said the Director. “And to make matters worse, this is just the tip of the iceberg.”

“Bingo!” Crosswell shouted. Then, when he noticed no one else was smiling, he said, “What? Didn’t anybody else have ‘tip of the iceberg’ in the betting pool?”

“The purpose of this meeting is decide on the proper disciplinary action,” said the Director. “Obviously the agency’s preferred course of action is disavowal, to strip you of your weapon and your clearance, and maybe, just maybe, if you’re really lucky, to not tell the Russians where to find you afterwards.”

“That’s a little harsh,” said Crosswell. “When did shooting three ex-KGB goons become slaughter? I was standing up for the Agency, you know, and for you. It’s not like I was unfaithful. They were bad-mouthing the whole outfit. I said they were wrong and you look fine in those pants. Have you lost weight?”

“Wow,” he added after a minute. “Tough room. And I’ve been tortured for state secrets.”

Yeah. So there’s that. Like always, it was based on a forty-minute free-writing prompt, in this case three random words. I don’t think it’s unamusing, but I also don’t think there’s anywhere to really go with it. It’s kind of a weak version of Archer, actually.

Meanwhile, in my never-ending quest to be non-productive, I have discovered and downloaded Bioshock. It’s a little like Portal, but with more shoot-’em-ups than puzzles, and I don’t think it’s going to replace those games as my favorites, but it’s nonetheless a bizarre and interesting (and violent) world.