Matt Gemmell

TOLL is available now!

An action-thriller novel — book 2 in the KESTREL series.

★★★★★ — Amazon

Taking action!

university 3 min read

So I was talking to someone on MSN last night at some point, whom I shall 
refer to as "Bob". Bob is a fellow 3rd year Computing Science student at 
the university. The reason I'm withholding Bob's real identity is because 
(bless!) he has a major crush on a certain young lady, also in our degree 

Trouble is, this girl (henceforth "Wendy") is already involved with someone 
("Hans"). Clearly, the situation calls for drastic measures, and thus a plan 
was formed, if you can call it that.
Matt:pull yourself together
Matt:let me just tell you something right now
Matt:it's this:
Matt:I'm the sort of bloke who likes to take direct action.
Matt:decisive action, indeed.
Matt:even if it's ridiculous and not at all thought-through,
Matt:I like to ACT.
Matt:that's just how I'm made.
Matt:in accordance with this, I recommend the following course of action.
Matt:now stay with me here.
Bob:i just know you're going to say something that'll make me queasy
Matt:have faith
Matt:what you do is this
Bob:here we go...
Matt:this all really hinges on your being able to engineer a situation whereby an old lady appears to be getting mugged by Hans, just when Wendy happens by.
Matt:we'll take that as a given for the moment
Matt:we can figure out the logistics later.
Matt:so, she sees him mugging this old dear
Matt:she's outraged, naturally
Matt:by stunning coincidence, you're right there, just wandering along minding your own business
Matt:he sees that he's been discovered, and knows he'll never convince her of his innocence
Matt:so immediately does the obvious thing, and tries to escape
Matt:this is where it gets clever
Matt:so, being the butch sort of heroic dude that you seemingly are in this story, you give chase
Bob:i do have a decent sprint
Matt:but it seems you'll be foiled, for he dashes into a BT internet phonebooth, and proceeds to "Hack The System", disabling the brakes on a train which you can see speeding by on a nearby rail-bridge
Matt:Wendy is shocked and terrified by this
Bob:the cad
Matt:dashing into an adjacent net booth, you have only moments to avert disaster
Matt:because of the workings of the whole net booth and train brakes system, salvation depends solely on your ability to quickly develop a statistics gathering and charting class in the Java programming language
Matt:the poor fool doesn't know what hit him; you accomplish this with ease!
Matt:the train screeches to a halt just in time
Bob:I rule!
Matt:Wendy can scarcely contain her admiration
Matt:well, I guess in stories like this, she just plain can't contain her admiration.
Matt:etc etc.
Matt:now there are rough edges, I'll admit that readily.
Matt:but I think the framework is sound.
Bob:now it's just a question of biding my time
Matt:someone should probably also check into that whole train thing
Matt:I didn't actually investigate the feasibility of it before typing
Matt:but you know computers; you can make them do just about anything these days.
Bob:i hear there's an XML-RPC gateway
Matt:if they can remove red-eye from my photos, they can control a damn train.
It warms my heart to realise how easy it is to revert to that kind of high 
school nonsense at a moment's notice, and almost always in connection with 
some female. Or perhaps it's just a measure of the lengths we'll go to in 
order to avoid studying on a Friday night.