MAX HEADROOM: 20 Minutes Into the Future

Something About Her

Chapter 04: A Night Out

Theora knew that Bryce would never let them rearrange his studio/lab if he were present. Or that if he did, it would not be without continual complaint. She hurried off to the control room and returned several minutes later with a smile on her face and three tickets in her hand.

"For tonight's Scumball game," she explained. "Edison, you and Bryce and Trace can go. That'll give you two gentlemen the chance to learn more about your daughter."

"Scumball?" Trace asked.

"A sport. Played with armored cars and very large balls," Theora explained.

"Sounds like fun," Trace decided.

"It is," Edison told her. "You and Bryce are both in for a treat."

"What he means is this is the first time either of us have seen a live game," Bryce explained. "I've seen it on Network 23. But they say that seeing a live game and a televised one just isn't the same."

"How very true that is," came a voice like Edison's from a nearby monitor.

Trace turned and found a curious looking man on the screen. He not only sounded like Edison, but looked like him also, in an odd way.

"Hi, Max," Bryce said.

"Girlfriend?" Max asked, eyeing Trace. It was an understandable mistake.

"Daughter," Bryce replied. "Apparently mine and Edison's."

"MY SISTER!" Max shouted, delightedly.

"Sister," Trace looked to Theora for clarification.

"Bryce used a brain scan he made of Edison to create Max," Theora explained. "Now hurry, you three. You don't want to be late."

"Don't forget to marry Bryce while you're out out out!" Max glitched, teasing cheekily.

Almost everyone laughed at this, except for Bryce, who had turned a pretty shade of pink around the cheeks. He also seemed to find the floor interesting at that moment.

"Is there something you want to tell me?" Edison asked.

"It wouldn't be appropriate," Bryce replied. "Come on. Let's get to game!"

As she left the terrace with her fathers, Trace could hear Theora still chuckling.

They soon reached the level where the company cars were kept. Selecting one, Edison unlocked the doors and they climbed inside.

It took them fifteen minutes to get to the game.

Edison presented the tickets and they went inside. It didn't take them long to find their seats and get comfortable.

"The arena looks a lot smaller in person," Bryce commented. "It's amazing when you think they fit so many vehicles on it, and make such incredible moves in such closed quarters."

"You got that right," Edison grinned. "So, any idea's for tonight's win?"

Bryce had once predicted a game's outcome to him, with accurate results. And Edison was curious if he could do it again.

"Well," Bryce pondered, "the Phoenixes have been playing well. But Mason's style of play is an excellent counter against their usual strategy. It'll be close, but I think the Druids will win by a difference of two goals."

The teams took to the arena, their cars like the children of mini-vans and tanks. The large ball was brought into play and the crowd went wild. Skilled drivers knocked the ball from car to car, bringing it ever closer to one of the two goals. Sometimes it would be snatched from them by another team. More than one player got warned for pinging, an infraction involving deliberate contact between vehicles. In the end, Bryce was right again. With a final goal scored by Mark Mason, the score ended at Druids - 3 Phoenixes - 1.

"How do you do that?" Edison asked Bryce.

"It's really a matter of knowing each team member's driving skills, the capabilities of each vehicle, and then..."

"Never mind," Edison shook his head. "Trace, is there anything else you'd like to do?"

"Well, I am a bit peckish," Trace decided.

"I'm hungry, too," Bryce admitted.

"So, why don't we grab some burgers over at Zik Zak. Unless you'd rather head over to where Theora's brother works."

"That sounds good," Bryce said. "But if we're going to eat where her brother is working, shouldn't we invite Theora, too?"

Edison nodded. "We'll swing by the Network and pick up her and Murray."

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