115 Days Until Distraction And the Uncertain End
Evester looked over the request for the video call. It at least was an email, rather than a direct call. Regardless, it broke Uly’s newest protocols. Evester had only been able to narrow the moles to three. The silence was important. Kori was requesting to speak to Karla and Kony over the internet, live.
“This is daring.” Karla looked at the request. “She’s an idiot.”
“She’s your idiot.” Evester reminded Karla.
“She’s also lonely.” Rayda told them both. Evester knew that Kori had to be missing her, but he wondered if she knew what they were dealing with. They had soldiers to train, and scientists to maintain a control over. They did not have time for a catch up call, live.
“She has Trace and Robee.” Karla rolled her eyes. The email chain rang out with the notification that Kony responded. His words were: Kori, you idiot. And then it was followed up by: Layla said yes, so I guess we have to.
“Layla.” Karla rolled her eyes. The words seemed odd to Evester. He read over them twice and wondered why it was sent as two messages rather than one.
He was about to speak when Uly did instead. “It’s publicity.” Uly told them. “After the breakfast scene, its a calculated move by Estashia to say yes.”
“Breakfast?” Karla asked. Evester knew a bit of it after looking over Uly’s reports from the outside world. The whole of their facility was on complete lockdown, so that Evester could root out the problem people. He had seen that Uly was keeping track of the real world, and Evester had seen his mother’s stunt.
Images of a luxurious breakfast with fruit Evester couldn’t name, eggs, meats he hadn’t seen in more than a year, and lavish set up was displayed along with those he knew to be at his house in Ovaria. It was beautiful and disgusting all at once. There were apparently a whole video as well, not that Evester had watched it.
“She is playing with fire.” Maverin said from the door. “The scene was done to appease her followers, I assume. To push her.”
“To do what?” Rayda asked. “Be killed? People are starving.”
“That’s the point.” Evester knew like his dad. It wasn’t a message for the Xs it was a message for the Circles and Stars who had lost everything they knew as normal. Estashia’s followers could care less about the Xs, they wanted to Circles to believe in a better tomorrow. He also knew there was no way he could explain that to anyone who hadn’t been trained to go down with the ship, if it was needed. His mother had turned the anger of the world at herself, in order to drive the Circles to accept her policy changes. If they were yelling at her, they weren’t fighting the Xs.
“She’s gonna have to get her hands dirty and the Circles will see that with disdain.” Maverin approached. “So they need to see her in lavish, as well as trying to help. It’ll motivate people better in spite. And it’ll motivate those who are living in their wealth and trying to ignore the problem.”
“And the video call will make cracks in the public sentiment that she is doing nothing and only serving herself.” Evester sighed. “She is trying to save her image.” She was okay with destroying it, but control was more than taking the heat. She had to make them doubt what they saw, and see that she was trying to help. The moral ambiguity would continue to oscillate from this point on, until they got to their new home. By taking the blame of surplus as well as the praise for saving them, she was walking a thin line.
Which was to say Evester’s mother would completely control the call.
Karla typed back quickly: okay. And stepped back. Uly then added a time, place, and set up a life call video, and a timer.
“We need to prepare.” Maverin was no longer acting as the scientist that Evester knew. This was the man who married Estashia Igilistal. He was narrow eyed, trained, educated in the practices and policies of the family. This was the man who had trained Evester in them. “This is going to be a fight you need to be prepared for Karla.”
“Why?” Karla looked at him.
“Image, voice, everything you say and do will be scrutinized.” Evester spoke on. “They need to believe that you are as the world thinks you are, what you told the cameras you are. Sweet. Childish. Brutal when you need to be.”
“Kind. Soft. Blunt words. Perhaps a bit worse for wear, and dirty, from training.” Maverin went on.
“Kori is going into it with less than you do.” Evester knew that was going to be the case. “Estashia will brief the other three, but Trace, Robee, and Kori will be free to act in any way they want. Kim will tell them, but she won’t be able to train them like you and Kony will be trained.”
“If Estashia doesn’t want it to look scripted, she’s only going to brief Kony.” Uly cut in. “Layla is the older sister. Estashia’s going to want Layla to be honest and free with her emotions to compliment the other three. Andre might get briefed but he won’t be trained. Kony will be and Kony is going to know exactly what he has to say.”
“What he has to say?” Karla asked.
“Key words and phrases.” Rayda sighed. “This is what you do with sponsors.” Rayda looked to Evester. “Seamlessly wrap it in or as if it isn’t a sponsorship at all.”
“They are going to want Kony to give what has to be given to give us information as well as to tell the world things that Estashia wants them to hear.” Maverin looked to Karla. “And you will have to do the same for us.”
“How?” Karla asked. “With Ever Danger code? That’s…”
“Difficult?” Uly asked. “The code was meant to be used in normal conversation. We never got tracked with it, and you are going to have to use it. Code while speaking to them, giving what we need to give to the world and a complete report otherwise.”
“On my own.” Karla repeated. “Acting as if I haven’t been prepped and scripted.”
“You think you are up for it?” Evester asked. Karla cracked a smile and laughed weakly.