At 38, Mae cuts an imposing, although lately, a somewhat rubenesque figure. To commemorate the momentous day ahead, she wore dark slacks, a crisp white shirt and her signature white vest which her mother had made. Although crudely put together with low quality fabrics, likely a fashion disaster on a lesser female, Mae was a handsome woman who wore everything well.
She took a deep breath and walked to her command post. She switched on the console before her and put on her headset as a million little bulbs lighted up on the control panel.
"Project Madeleine flight controllers, listen up," she spoke sternly over the headpiece, "Susanna, give me a status report and the rest of you, a Go, or No-Go for launch!"
"Project Madeleine is stocked, docked and locked," reported Dr Susanna Huam, the head of Project Diagnostics, over the intercom, "we are Go for launch."
"We are Go, Flight" confirmed Guidance Director Vivienne as she flicked her thumb up.
"What's the status over at Backup ?"
"Yes Maam, we are Go."
"Yes, Maam," came the crisp reply, "Camera is all set for launch!"
"How about you, Support?"
"Yes," replied Fraternal Support Department representative, Jesse Tan. It was his first launch as Head of Support and you could hear the nervous anticipation in his voice. "We are go, Flight," he affirmed forcefully, determined to make the his mark on the team. Mae smiles at the rookie and gave him an appreciative nod.
"Transport is Go, Flight Director."
"All accounted for, Flight"
"Over to you, Management," said Flight Director Mae as she prepared to call the launch codes. She flicked some switched as she waited. This was the last confirmation she sought. However, she was met with silence.
"Management?" she repeated. "What the heck's going on down there at Management?"
"Speak up, man," snapped Flight over the intercom, "are we Go or No Go?"
"Um..." a voice at the other end trailed, "well, can we... um... we're not... um..."
"What is it this time?" Mae barks into the microphone.
Project Management was most crucial for launch, and yet it was run by the most incompetent slob in the team. If ever there was a screw up, Mae could usually track it down to this department. And there had been plenty. Finance was stretched thin, thanks to this guy. Thankfully they managed to pull through at the last minute. There was also a lot of indecision on his part where Transport was concerned. And Support got very little support from this asswipe. Then there was the issue with Camera which almost resulted in Camera's absence from the project. And now this; right at the brink of launch, Project Management was not ready, probably due to something trivial, Mae thought.
"Answer me now, Management," Mae yelled, "don't make me come there and abuse your inner child!"
"I... I... I..." the Head of Project Management replied, his face blue and his hands clutching at his crotch, his knees shaking vigorously, "I gotta pee."
4 days before the big day. Or anytime now, the doctor says. I'm nervous. Can you tell?