Study Room J7

--From ACDC Town--

Study rooms were in high demand at the library; whether it was for actually studying or messing around with friends they offered a nearly sound-proofed area with nice comfortable seating. Luckily for a certain overworked NetOp her favorite room for three was empty when she rushed into the library and over to the front desk. A speedy but quiet trek led to the room which opened with an easy swipe of the keycard from the front desk. About an hour and a half later and Joan was nearly done with her make up work.

Joan was hunched over the room's computer pressing keys at a steady but constant rate punctuated by her hand manipulated the touch pad and mouse buttons. Her actions were repetitive, but she remained focused as she repeated her task over and over. At least instead of being completely in the dark she had remembered to turn the lights on after sealing herself in the study room to work. It was obvious she was very hard at work on something at least, even if some would find it boring. There was a quiet bleeping noise that was abruptly replaced with a voice.

"Ding - ding - ding. The time is now 4:30 pm. You have twenty-nine minutes to complete your task. Ding - ding - ding." The words were spoken with a rather old-style robotic voice, the pacing and weird emphasis put on the syllables similar to that of the old text to speech readers. Despite Rayner's attempt at keeping much emotion out of his robotic falsetto his boredom was still audible.

Joan's mouth tightened as the corners turned down in a thin line. She did not let up with her pace, nor did she increase her speed much. She was close to her goal, close enough that it was more important for her to avoid messing up than for her to increase her speed. As long as she kept her focus, as long as she ignored the way her eyes were starting to feel strained she could finish on time. A stream of muttering began to drift through the bright room.

Rayner perked up from his place on the table and strained to hear clearly what his NetOp was grumbling about now. He failed and pulled up a window with various sliders and began playing around with the sensitivity of the PET's microphone. After a moment he was finally able to hit the proper strength.

"Set points, adjust colors, convert file type. Set points, adjust colors, convert file type. Set points, adjust colors, convert file type."

Rayner sighed and adjusted the level back down to normal. They had been here for about an hour and he was already bored. He pulled up another, smaller window that had a countdown running in it. He swapped to standing on leg and leaned against the wall of what was essentially his room. he folded his arms and the eyes on his mask seemed to focus on the count down timer ahead of him. He just had to be patient and wait.

Another few minutes or so and the timer program he had been running began bleeping at a steady rate. The Navigator reached out and hit the mute button. He cleared his throat and spoke. "Jeep - Jeep - Jeep. The time is now 4:45pm! You have fourteen minutes to complete your assignment! Please do your best! Jeep - Jeep - Jeep." His voice was deeper than his normal voice this time, and strangely it seemed to crackle a little.

There a slight pause in Joan's pattern, then the pattern resumed at a quicker pace. Rayner unmuted the timer program and set the timer itself a little farther ahead. It wasn't too long now and at this point it was a case of she'd either make it or she wouldn't and there wasn't much he could do now to help. Well he could cheer her on but at the moment it seemed best if he just kept quiet and let her concentrate. He leaned his head back. He regretted not telling Joan to send him to the Net before she started, even if it would be difficult it would at least be more interesting than this waiting. He readjusted his leaning position on the wall and waited again.

His patience was eventually rewarded with the lack of typing sounds. A quick glance at the timer window showed there were still five minutes left. He muted it and pushed himself off the wall, taking a couple steps and a turn to bring him square in the front of the window. The muttering had stopped as well, and he heard a few quiet clicks as (presumably) Joan sent her mail. With a loud yawn the NetOp straightened in her chair then slumped over backwards. "Aaaand sent. Oh man, my eyes are watering, I'm so tired..."

"About time, you worked hard on that." Rayner crossed his arms and gave a short nod. "Let's do something." The Elec Navi was quick to swap from serious to playfully whining. Joan only groaned at the suggestion and threw an arm over her eyes.

"I don't want tooo. I just want to sit here and rest my eyes." Rayner frowned and thought furiously. He wanted to go on the Net, he really didn't want to spend more time hanging around being lazy. He thought furiously for a moment and then hit on an idea.

"Hey, just plug me in! If you just lay out the chips on the table you won't need to open your eyes to find them. We have a good enough selection that I can make due with every one of them." Joan opened her eyes and stared at the far wall for a moment before straightening up and pulling the PET to her.

"Alright, I can agree to that, Jack In, Rayner.EXE!"
Joan arranged her chips and typed out a quick message to her Navi. She gather her Pet, cut the connection to the computer, and was up and out the door of the small study room. Then Joan was back in the room and pulling the in-use sign off the desk where she left it to hang it on the door knob. Technically you were only suppose to use this sign if searching for something in the library but if she was quick maybe no one would notice. Getting past the main library desk proved to be rather easy, a group of other students leaving at the same time meant she could sneak with them out the door. Sure they gave her odd looks for crouching as she walked along side them but Joan wasn't really too concerned with that. Especially when one of them chuckled and moved to help conceal her better from the librarians. Someone else had clearly pulled the sneaking out of the library while logged in for a study room trick.

The moment Joan was outside she straightened up and took off, throwing a wave over her shoulder. "Thank you!"
Sneaking back into the library was just as easy as sneaking back in. Wait for a crowd, and blend right back in. Once inside it was simply a matter of Joan getting her butt back to her study room, loot from the store securely in bag! Although calling it loot kind of made her feel a bit werid, like shed robbed the store or something. She hadn't! She had just, merely walked away without checking to see if someone was okay after hearing an explosion! But it was a small explosion, surely nothing to worry about! A teeny-tiny blast! Probably just a firecracker or something!

With a loud groan, Joan slumped into the chair and let her forehead rest on the desk. No one else had been worried so why should she be? She groaned again, louder, and picked her head up to look at the monitor.
The first thing Rayner saw when he returned to his PET was Joan's bright red face. It wasn't a surprise after the 'fight' he'd just been in.

"Alright now that...that is over I'm going to study for three hours and then we'll take another break." This declaration was followed by Joan slamming another textbook onto the table with more force than was strictly required. Rayner snickered.

"Oh-ho-ho, sure you just don't need to cool off after that rather steamy encounter? I can understand if things got a bit too heated for you." He teased. He was promptly rewarded with the sight of his NetOp's face going even redder. The eyes on his mask turned into two innocent, happy arches. "I'll be sure to set the timer!"

"Th-that's not it at all! And the only thing steamy about that encounter was how indecent it was! Seriously! Who puts something like that onto the University's Net?" Joan flipped wildly through her book as she spoke, her eyes firmly locked on the text.

"If you say so~ I personally thought she was quite intriguing." With a chuckle the Navi covered how off-balance he had been with the last fight and settled down to tally up their gains from the previous run and poke around for interesting things on the Net.


With a startled jerk Joan pulled herself out of the book she was currently burrowed in and blinked owlishly at her PET with a scowl. "What is that horrible noise?"

"Oops! Three hours are up!" Rayner quickly disabled the reminder notification then turned towards the screen. "Time for a break! Speaking should send me to Netfrica. Sounds like an interesting little stand has popped up there."

Joan squinted at the time on the wall clock while mumbling something about how digital clocks should be the standard. Once she confirmed the time she leaned back in her chair and stretched her arms far over her head, a groan escaping her lips. She tilted her head from side to side then picked up the PET and pointed it at the jack-in point. "Sounds good to me! Rayner, Jack-In!"

(to Netfrica Bounty Shop)