The Says Me Tiger Team

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“I don’t see why this is necessary,” Larry snapped.

His business partner, Luke, sighed. “It’s in the contract. We’re going to be dealing with a lot more sensitive data than we’re used to. We’ve put in the best systems we can afford, but we need a tiger team to test it.”

“And these guys are the best?”

“From what I’ve heard, they’ve never failed to find a hole in any system they’ve looked at. Here they are.” He pointed to where a security guard was escorting three short colorful people into the conference room. Colorful being something of an understatement.

“You didn’t tell me they were puppets!” Larry hissed.

“I didn’t know,” Luke whispered back. “Does it matter?”

The first was bright orange, with a big round red nose and a shock of brown hair sticking up off the top of his head. He was followed by a green furry monster, and a large dog.

“Hello! We’re the Says Me tiger team! I’m Sam Samly, and these are my friends, Cracker Monster and Woofsley. Pleased to meet you.”

“I’m Luke,” he said to the puppet, shaking hands, “and this is Larry.”

“Hey, did you know both those names start with the letter ‘L’?”

Larry frowned. “It’s come up.”

“Oh, okay. Both my names start with the letter ‘S’, and I’m on a tiger team, which starts with ‘T’, so I like to notice things like that. When two or more words in a row start with the same letter, that’s called ‘alliteration.’ Back home, I was known as the Alliteration Authority.” Sam laughed a wheezy laugh.

“I’m surprised you don’t have a tiger with you,” Larry said, snidely.

“A tiger?” Sam glanced backed as his companions. “Oh! Because we’re a tiger team! That’s funny! No, we don’t have any tigers. We do have Woofsley, though.”

“Woof,” Woofsley said.

“You going to eat that?” Cracker Monster said, pointing at a tray of cookies on the table.

“No,” Luke said, “help yourself. Say, you’re not related to-”

“He my cousin,” the monster said, picking up the tray. “We all very proud of him.” He studied the cookies for a moment, then negligently flipped them over his shoulder and started chewing on the tray. He paused for a moment, said “Gluten-free diet,” and went back to eating the tray.

“Diet aside, he is every bit as good at cracking systems as his name implies,” Sam assured them.

“What’s the dog for?” Larry asked.

Sam exchanged a look with Woofsley. “Packet sniffing.” Then he burst into laughter.

Cracker Monster tapped Sam eagerly on the shoulder. “Systems! Systems!”

“Oh, yes. Good point, Cracker. Could you show us the hardware we’ll be testing?” Sam asked. “I’d like to check for anything obvious before we start the actual infiltration. Infiltrating a network is like doing a puzzle – you want to start with the edge pieces first.”

“Sure. I also printed out a list of our specs, if you’d like,” Luke said, offering him a sheaf of papers.

“Oooh,” Sam said, taking the papers. “Thanks. TCP/IP, RAID, DDR. This is why I like computer systems. So many letters.”

“Is today brought to us by the letter ‘P’?” Larry asked.

Sam stopped instantly, his mouth agape. Cracker Monster put one hand over his big, rolly eyes, and Woofsley just whined.

“You know,” Sam said, his voice terse. “I think we have enough to go on. We’ll show ourselves out, and I’ll email you our findings one we’re done.” The three of them quickly left the conference room.

The moment the door closed, Luke whirled on Larry.

“What was that? I know they’re puppets, but they’re professionals!”

“I was only teasing,” Larry protested. “What did I say?”

Luke just shook his head. “I can’t believe you. Today, brought to you by the letter ‘P’? I’m going to have to bend backwards apologizing to them.” He left the room, still muttering, “The letter ‘P’.”

Prompt: Puppets

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In honor of The Muppets coming out on DVD/Blu-Ray tomorrow, this week’s prompt is puppets. It can be a muppet-style scene, kids watching a puppet show. Whatever you want.

Good luck and good writing!