11 This girl is special

Spin balance cover picture

This girl is special


Someone to be near

Someone not to cross


Her Warbel affinity



It pulls you


She strikes

Credits strengths

Dresses wounds

Teases and disarms


You have beta

She loves alpha


So turbulent



Fleeting balance




Beg mercy

You've lost, admit it


Don't struggle

Her spell compels you



Your only salvation


Pardoned with grace

You are free


Like no other


This girl is special


Let it go




Breakfast in St. Paul


 So what happens now?



 We secure the boxes and go home


 Keep the hard drives separate


 One goes with you

And one of the punch cards


 I’ll have a friend look at the drive


 When I know something I’ll call

And we’ll meet



 Back to scarves and recorders?



 For now it’s prudent



 I miss Minneapolis already

And we haven’t left



 Minneapolis is over


 Next time they’ll know we’re here

If they don’t already




How do I contact you?


 You don’t


 I’ll call you, don’t answer

Let the machine pick it up


 Check your messages often

From wherever you are


 Can you do that?








 Let’s get finished

So we can get back


 Delta 868 leaves at 7:20P.M. tonight


 Wouldn’t want to explain two nights

To Susan would we?




We have a lot of work to do


 We need a hand truck

Gloves and dust masks


 Home Depot is close


 I’ll rent the unit in Saint Paul

You rent in Minneapolis


 Three months storage



 You’ll be expected to know this

So write it down


 PO Box 362 Attleboro, MA 02703

Area code 617 then 635-4505

It’s my cell number


 I purchased it in Boston

In case they want to confirm


 The P.O. box was a guess

The zip and phone are real



 You used your own phone?



 It's disposable Sparks

I bought it to call you




Stages of our lives


At times you notice a door close

As a new one opens


Certain times

Catch you looking back

Mourning loss

With reluctance forward


We cling

To that which we know

That which we've known


We fear

That which we do not


Tomorrow holds our path

Irreverent to want


I wish it was easy

To let go


We’ve survived what’s passed

The future is uncertain


One thing is certain

Some new door

We will not survive


Perhaps that’s why

We cherish past




Boston return


Returning home means

returning to Susan

explaining Lydia

and two days in Minnesota


Perhaps that can wait


Giving nothing to Joe

after a promise


Silence in conversations

that mean a lot


Waiting in a game

as the rules emerge


Everything pertinent

involves Lydia


She’s crucial


Focus on the words of Warbel

“They use your will against you”


Was that his conflict?






Oh Danny boy


 MIT/Massachusetts Institute

of Technology

Tech development department

(Computer Science lab)


 Yes, Daniel Roth please?



 Visitor Daniel



 Thank you Mark


 Lydia hey!

Sorry to hear about Jonathan


 How are you doing?




You know I was upset


 But I’m pulling through



 It's really good to see you

To what do I owe this pleasure?



 I need a favor Danny


 And I need you

To not ask questions




 Is this favor legal?



 See there Daniel

That’s a question


 But a fair one

Yes, I think it’s legal


 I need to know

What’s on this hard drive


 I don’t know what you’ll find



 Relax L, I was kidding

Anything for you legal or not


 How long do I have?



 Yesterday would be nice


 I’ll give you until tomorrow?



 Oh no, that’s too long

Would now work for you?


 I mean

If you have the time


 Thirty minutes?



 That’s why I come to you D

That would be awesome!



 We just happen to have

A server with an open bay


 We’ll mount this little guy


 About three minutes?


 I hope it’s something fun


 A huh

Now a boot sector verify



That’s it!



 What’s it?



 Raid 5



 Raid what?



 Not what





 An array drive?



 You got it L

An array


 An old one too!



 How many drives D?




But you only need two


 Two drives can write the third

One drive can’t write anything



 I have another drive



 Well let’s have it



 It’s not with me

It’s complicated



 Bad divorce L?


 Fifty-fifty split?


 No worries


 Come back

When it’s not complicated



 Love you D



 I know

I love you too




What is RAID 5?


RAID is an acronym that means

Redundant Array of Independent

or Inexpensive Drives


5 is a sequential succession number


Together RAID 5

is a computer hard drive system

designed for data security


When we have one hard drive

and all of our information is on it

if the drive is lost then all is lost


That's not very secure


RAID 5 uses three drives

and it’s ok to lose one


Here’s how it works


Decimal is the system we count with

because we have ten fingers


Decimal means ten steps numbered

zero through nine then back to zero


Binary means two steps

Zero to one then back to zero


RAID 5 uses a trick called parity

to write a one or zero to

the missing drive


Parity looks like this


0 + 0 = 0

0 + 1 = 1

1 + 0 = 1

1 + 1 = 0


If we add drives to parity

we get this


Drive1 (0) + Drive2 (0) = Drive3 (0)

Drive1 (0) + Drive2 (1) = Drive3 (1)

Drive1 (1) + Drive2 (0) = Drive3 (1)

Drive1 (1) + Drive2 (1) = Drive3 (0)


And that's a very good thing

because it means when you bring

the other drive

we can recover your information




Bring the drive


 A new message blinks

on Randall’s answering machine


 Boston Public Garden

Same bench as last time

6:00P.M. do you recall?


 No conversation, no need yet


 Bring the drive

In a paper grocery bag


 I’ll set my bag down and take yours

You take mine




If Lydia was Civil


She would make perfect sense


Could she be

Catherine de Médicis?

Who summoned

Michel de Nostredame

To Paris?


Do they age gracefully

Fallen angels?


Do they age at all?


At Warbel’s funeral

Lydia’s firm rejection


Was that real?

Or was it intended

To stimulate intrigue?


If so, it did


And the counter approach

Packages from Oxford?


She knew Allen Phepps

I didn’t


Warbel never mentioned him


Warbel didn’t mention her


The whole Minneapolis thing

Addresses and locks


Effortless allure


God it was easy

I was seduced


I bought in for a story


Clandestine meetings in the park

Secret recorders



With a direct link to psycho-central


She calls the shots

And the grand play unfolds


A fool’s theater and I have the lead


But if she is them, what then?


Even if Phepps existed

Or if she worked with Warbel


What difference would it make?


If she’s them, why me?


Unless she needs me to believe her


What do I have that she doesn’t?


A voice?




The Daily Sun is a voice


That’s why me


They need a voice


I can stop them

But they can’t know I know


What if she’s not them?


What if she’s caught up like me?


Either way, the play continues


Just have to wait




Safe at home


 Susan’s phone rings





 Baby I’m back

I want to take you to dinner



 Sorry, who’s this?



 Funny girl


 Pick you up at seven?



 Let’s see

I’ll have to check my schedule


 Back from where?



 How’s your schedule looking?



 How about seven-thirty?

I have to call the Pope and cancel



 Thirty’s fine



 I was kidding

Pick me up at seven



 You know Susan

This obliging predictability?

It’s quite unattractive



 I know

But it’s a sympathy date

I have to keep it simple



 Sympathy date?



 (she laughs)


 See you at seven paperboy




Boston Public Garden



Lydia approaches

this time standing next to Randall

on the same side of the bench


She sets her bag next to his

says ‘excuse me’

re-ties her shoe

picks up his bag and leaves


The bag she left isn’t empty

inside the bag a bubble pack

inside that a cellphone and note



“I got you a disposable phone

Forgot to give it to you



I can be human sometimes


There’s only one contact


Don’t call it

Unless it’s an emergency”



The note and phone

were a nice touch

and wrong


Human sometimes

as in not Civil?


Jagged sharp edges

between alliance and suspicion

adolescent trust coated in guilt


Now on to the greater challenge

what to tell Susan

and how

when you’re not sure of what