Blitt’s Journey, Part 6

Tracking an object using quantum wave entanglement is really simple. Especially if you have a tracking receiver that is attuned to the signal being emitted by whatever you’re tracking. In this case, the signal was a very special package of candies being transported by a most wanted crime lord and his newly kidnapped girlfriend.

Blitt tracked the signal, a blip of white pixels conspicuously isolated from the other group of pixels left behind at the warehouse. Thanks to the tracking receiver, he knew exactly where, Priscilla, Briggan and the package were at.

Danathan’s mag-sled was much faster than Blitt’s, and he was glad to have taken it. It glided along at supersonic speed on the lonely stretch of frictionless government-only highway. Blitt looked over at Priscilla’s slipper and the mask Danathan had given him, resting on the leather passenger seat and thought about the encounter with Danathan. It was the first time Dan had ever been to Blitt’s home, the first time they had even been together outside of a mission or official business. It was definitely the first time Dan had ever showed anything even approaching compassion, something Blitt had figured the old desk agent incapable of.

He put aside thoughts about his boss and flipped the steering wheel up and out the way, tucked inside the dashboard receptacle. Behind it was a video touch-panel displaying information about the trip in progress. Blitt had already coupled the quantum wave tracker with the guidance system onboard Danathan’s sled, revealing the destination to be a coastal region just outside the city, home to many wealthy and famous people.

“How the hell could he have been hiding there?” Blitt asked himself aloud. “The one percent must be pretty tight.” He closed the navigation window and pulled up a different program, a terminal screen that dumped out lines of green text in neat waves.

He mentally interfaced the onboard computer with the mask in the seat beside him and it began to glow with a soft blue aura, indicating it had been successfully turned on and connected. Blitt looked over the lime green lines of code that sprawled down the screen, quickly discerning what each one meant, and marking those that he decided were the least bit ambiguous. By the end of the data dump, he had some 300 lines set aside for close analysis.

It wasn’t that Blitt did not trust Danathan. His line of work would be impossible without the trust shared between them. But Blitt was first of all overly cautious, and secondly, curious as to whether Danathan had intentionally hidden some functionality within the otherwise mundane device. Although highly useful, Tek-masks weren’t exactly cutting edge technology, so Blitt was uncertain whether or not he was overlooking yet another of his employer’s paranoid failsafe that he might want to know about.

There didn’t seem to be anything out of the ordinary within the mask’s code, so Blitt closed the output terminal screen. Then he called up the mask’s visual interface and browsed through a selection of possible disguises and chose one at random. The mask suddenly sprang to life, transforming the dull, dark grey material into a highly-realistic representation of human skin, awash with pinkish ruddy color and vein patterns.

“Neat,” said Blitt in response. He scrolled through the menu interface a bit more, and selected another option:  “Randomize Identity.”

This time the transformation was less dramatic. The nose, cheekbones and jaw structure melted slightly and formed into a different face, completely unrecognizable from the previous one.

“That’s really cool,” he said before turning the toy off, forcing it to form once more into the rubbery grey mask. “Too bad no one would ever buy a complete stranger showing up out of nowhere the same day you make a big score,” he realized.

Blitt also realized as he spoke to himself that Danathan had probably thought the very same thing, and that whatever reason he decided to give the mask to him was unaffected by those thoughts. Awesome tools are no substitute for an awesome mind, he had always said, and Danathan’s gift of the mask was, to Blitt, almost like a subtle restatement of the adage.

The sled reached the destination that Blitt had programmed into its autopilot, a cliff overlooking the ocean-side town, about a mile from the package’s location shown on the tracker. The view of the blue sea next to rows of opulent mansions was enthralling. Blitt reluctantly turned his attention away from it and grabbed up the mask from the passenger seat. As he folded it neatly and placed it into his jacket pocket, he took one last look at the ballerina slipper, resting in the seat next to him as a reminder of the job he had to do.

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