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Agents and eBay

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MYKA

Myka has always been a believer of accepting the consequences of her bad decisions. They're learning experiences. It's a belief that's hard to keep in mind when she receives the email letting her know she's won her auction on eBay. Myka can almost remember being in Tokyo and laying on her hotel bed after drinking too much sake and deciding to buy Pete his Christmas present. She's not sure how she came to the conclusion that spending $1531.29 on a first generation Tamagotchi was a good idea, but it's clear she did. Still, one of the good things about living in Univille was that she can afford to pay for the thing and keep her eBay buyer rating up.

She ends up giving it to Pete for his birthday instead of Christmas and winning the best present award. Up until Pete forgets to feed the thing a week later and suddenly the B & B is home to a rather large, pixilated, and hungry monster that's literally eating everything in the fridge. Up to and including the racks and light bulb. It actually doesn't take long to resolve the issue, Pete just needs to push some buttons on the controller, but they still need a new fridge and the Warehouse ends up with a new virtual pet that constantly has Artie yelling at Pete whenever it beeps. Pete still says it's the best present ever though, so Myka considers it a win overall.

At least until she submits a reimbursement form and has to look Artie in the eye as he sees how much she paid for the thing. She remains impassive to his “Really?” and the mutters of “Myka, Myka, Myka,” as he files the claim, but she knows she'll have to find something really nice for Artie's birthday if she's ever going to live this down.

 

STEVE

“Jinksy what did I tell you about eBay?” Claudia yells from where she's crouched behind the couch.

Steve waits until the latest round of gun fire stops before answering as he runs to join her, “That it's awesome and you find the coolest things.”

“Okay, yes, I said that,” Claudia agrees before shaking her finger at him disapprovingly, “But I also remember saying never to go on it when drunk.”

“I wasn't drunk!” He protests, because he hadn't been. There had been no alcohol consumed.

The look Claudia gives him clearly states that semantics won't get him out of the clean up, “Under the influence of an artifact, same difference.”

The argument is cut off as another burst of gun fire starts up and Steve winces as the remaining pictures on the wall opposite them are utterly destroyed. Luckily Pete and Myka finally show up with the goo before anymore of Leena's things can be demolished. After everything, even standing in the room dripping with purple goo, Steve can't help but smile because he has an original Agar Gun from the Civil War and that's actually worth the week it'll take him to clean up the front room of the B & B. Although looking at the ceiling he can't help but ask, “Did you really need that much goo?”

“Had to be thorough,” Myka replies with a smile as she high fives Pete.

Claudia

If Claudia could spare the energy to talk she'd defend herself, she'd say she hadn't been drinking, she just thought it would be really neat if the listing was real. Not that she actually thought somebody would be selling the original version of Ada Lovelace's Notes on eBay. Because that was ridiculous. She had been looking forward to writing a scathing review about the fake listing.

But they were real and now Claudia can't look away from the computer in front of her. She's programming. She isn't quite sure what she's programming, but she knows she has to finish the program.

“Did Ada Lovelace have some sort of dream project or something?” She can hear Pete asking behind her.

“I don't know, the person we'd normally ask is too busy typing,” Myka sounds frustrated and Claudia can really sympathize. She hasn't stopped typing in almost twelve hours and she's too tired to even pay attention to what she's typing anymore.

“We've got it!” Jinksy yells as he runs into the room and Claudia has never been happier to hear Steve's voice since she brought him back to life.

Artie does his level best to kill her happiness though as he follows Steve into the room, “We think we've got it. Maybe.”

“What? What do you maybe have?” Claudia knows she must be in bad shape if Pete has the 'I'm-really-scared-for-someone-I-love-and-trying-not-to-cry' sound in his voice.

“This!” Artie sounds excited, but she can't see what he's holding. At least not until he sets it down next to her keyboard. It takes her a second to recognize the Arithmometer and even then she's confused.

“It's an Arithmometer,” Steve tells Pete and Myka. “Pretty much the original mechanical calculator. The only real break in production between 1851 and 1915 was a 22 year period where everyone was focused on Babbage's difference engine.”

“Which Ada Lovelace worked on! The Notes are for it!” Myka shouts as she gets what Artie and Steve are hoping will happen.

“We just need to get her hands on it,” Steve says, “we think. If Lovelace and Babbage stopped the Arithmometer maybe the Arithmometer will stop Lovelace.”

Pete doesn't say anything, but suddenly his hands are gripping her wrists and pulling them off the keyboard. It works this time, unlike the previous attempts, because he's not trying to get her to go very far. Just a few inches to the left. Her hands fall on the Arithmometer and the compulsion to type is gone. All the manic energy drains out of her and she can barely mutter, “Thanks,” before falling asleep.

 

Pete

Pete has never accidentally bought an artifact off of eBay. He always gets a bad vibe before making what could be bad purchases and moves on. His mistake was telling Artie about the vibes.

“You want me to do what?” Pete asks as he looks between the computer and Artie.

“You said you get bad vibes from various things on eBay,” Artie is giving him the look like he's an idiot and Pete knows he doesn't mean it, but this is one of Artie's stranger plans. “I want you to find items that give you a bad vibe, bookmark them, research them, and possibly buy them.”

“Easiest artifact retrieval ever,” Claudia chimes in from the sidelines.

Pete moves to sit at the table, “You're helping with the research. You and Myka and Steve.”

“Sure,” Claudia says as she moves towards the inner door of the office, heading out into the Warehouse.

“Absolutely,” Artie says as he follows her.

“I hate you both,” Pete says to the empty air as he opens up Firefox and pulls Artie's plate of cookies across the table.