to Elizabeth Bales' Disclaimer story challenge of June 2004.
And thanks to said Elizabeth Bales-Stutes for
editing this fanfic!
(1): This is a piece of fiction. All original characters,
institutions, locations, and situations are copyright Ann-Kathrin
Kniggendorf and may not be used without permission. Any
resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is purely
coincidental and not in the intention of the author.
(2): AKK is willing to license this Adventures of the Galaxy
Rangers fanfic story (the story) upon the condition that you
accept all of the terms given in the disclaimers given in the
story. By reading this story you are consenting to be bound by
and becoming a party to this agreement. If you do not agree to
all of the terms of this agreement, AKK is not willing to license
the story for your further entertainment. By reading the story
anyway you are accepting the responsibility to offer the next
naturally deceased puppy you find to the Grand Bragg-Hack-A
(don't ask) in a tasteful pink Gothic shrine.
a last look around the cockpit, with a grim side-glance at the
burned-out weapon console, Zach told GV to load itself into the
BETA circuits and shut the ship down. Ranger-1 was heading for
some serious maintenance work after this mission.
worn, Zach stomped down the landing ramp following the rest of
his team. The condition of Goose's uniform, especially the pants,
bordered on indecency, but if anyone else had been working the
weaponry, they'd be bringing a body bag back home instead of an
improperly clothed Ranger.
waited for him to catch up, Doc blocking the transport car's door
with his foot. Then they were on their way to the command level
and their office. Spare uniform for Goose, hot coffee, five
minutes to catch up on private notes – should there be any
– and then the buzz about first mission report, organizing
Ranger-1's emergency repair, and explaining to Walsh where the
latest of Goose's uniforms had gone and why...
normal stuff altogether. The lift door opened and they filed out,
Zach in the lead this time. He was run over by an infantry cadet
waving a blue envelope. "Sorry, si–" The boy had
crossed the next corridor edge and was out of sight before he
finished. Zach blinked and took Goose's outstretched hand.
"Better watch out. Lotsa
traffic here." With shameless lack of effort the ST pulled
him back onto his feet.
true. The corridors were filled with cadets of all kinds: all of
them running, all of them panting, all of them waving envelopes
of various colors. Zach wasn't sure but he thought he even
spotted some ensigns from the Salvation Army...
was going on here?!
cadet, whose uniform was tidy and who wasn't panting at all, was
waiting for him in their office. The boy actually managed to
abstain from more than merely blinking at the soot-covered,
half-naked ST entering the office next to Zach. "Captain
sends this message for you." He handed Zach a white-and-blue
envelope, saluted, and darted out of the office without waiting
for a reply.
Zach skimmed the
message in the envelope briefly. "Okay, this is from Walsh.
He writes that the BWL's committee for correct correspondence has
equipped BETA's e-mail systems with an automatic
didn't he send it by e-mail?" Doc asked.
idea. Goose, go and get yourself a fresh uniform." Zach
dropped into his chair and activated his screen to see if GV had
uploaded itself to the local systems yet. It had. "Any
private messages?" he asked the AI.
Zach yawned. "Read it
to me, please."
=If you (the reader of this disclaimer, its disclaimer, or the
message) choose to bypass the following disclaimer to the
message, you acknowledge that you do so at your own risk. To the
maximum extent permitted by applicable law, in no event shall the
Bureau of Extra-Terrestrial Affairs (BETA), its personnel, its
employees, or its affiliates be liable for any damages
skip the legal blah-blah and get to the message."
oh... If you (the reader of this disclaimer, its disclaimer, or
the message) choose to bypass the following–=
What did I say?" Zachary interrupted his AI,
=To skip the
disclaimer, sir. I did.=
you reread the disclaimer!"
a message function, sir. The disclaimer restarts when you try to
Zachary groaned. "Do
=If you (the
reader of this disclaimer, its disclaimer, or the message) choose
to bypass the following disclaimer to the message, you
acknowledge that you do so at your own risk. To the maximum
extent permitted by applicable law, in no event shall the Bureau
of Extra-Terrestrial Affairs (BETA), its personnel, its
employees, or its affiliates be liable for any damages whatsoever
(including without limitation, special, incidental,
consequential, or indirect damages for personal injury, loss of
business profits, business interruption, loss of business
information, loss of state power, loss of military power, loss of
galactic domination, or any other pecuniary loss) arising out of
the receiving of or inability to receive this message, even if
BETA has been advised of the possibility of such damages. In any
case, BETA's and its personnel's, its employees', and its
affiliates' entire liability under any provision of this
agreement shall be limited to the amount actually paid by you for
the message being delivered to you. Because some
planets/jurisdictions do not allow the exclusion or limitation of
liability for consequential–=
think I have an idea why the corridors are buzzing," Niko
said behind him.
not the only one," Zach said dryly, looking over to
=Sir, if you don't pay
attention I'll have to restart the disclaimer.= GV pointed out.
=Subfunction 136512.4 is very insistent about that.=
Niko. We'll talk about it later." Zach hastily fixed his
gaze onto the screen where GV slowly bobbed up and down. "Please
continue," he said with irony oozing from his voice. "I'm
incidental damages, the above limitation may not apply to you.
The message and information contained in it are provided with
RESTRICTED RIGHTS. Use, duplication, or disclosure to the Tortuna
Military Forces, the Slaverlords of Tortuna, and / or but not
limited to the Queen of Tortuna, former Wolf Den inmates
(excluding Galaxy Ranger Lieutenant Shane Gooseman BDC-1643453),
crew members of Captain Kidd, Captain Kidd in person, Lazarus
Slade, the General, and the Kiwi Agricultural Department B is
subject to restrictions as set forth in subparagraph (c)(1)(ii)
of the Rights in Technical Data and Computer Information clause
at NEFARIOUS 252.227-7013 or subparagraphs (c)(1) and (2) of the
Computer Message-Restricted Rights at 48 OOMPH 52.227-19, as
applicable. BETA maintains the exclusive right to apply
appropriate measures to keep this disclaimer and its successor
from being bypassed. BETA–=
anyone find out what's up here?" Goose slammed the office
door behind him. The protesting screech of his office chair
followed. "I prefer the crown army to anything out
"You prefer the crown army to anything, Goose."
right. Zach, do y–?"
"Please don't talk to Zach," Niko told him hastily. "He
might have to sit through the disclaimer again if we distract him
and the system notices."
A sharp clicking followed. "ALMA? You there?"
Gooseman. You needn't tap your nails against the hardware,
"Do you have to
read disclaimers, too?" the ST asked his AI.
if they are given in Cyrillic by my original
ask.= ALMA blipped. A faint sizzle indicated the deactivation of
"Phew. It's not
her nice day! Does this legal rubbish have any consequences for
"It's a waste of
time!" Zachary snorted. "I've been listening to this
rubbish for 30 minutes now, and–"
oh! Disclaimer restart. Recipient is not paying
yelled at his screen, slapping it repeatedly before realizing the
uselessness of it.
=I told you,
sir,= GV beeped unhappily. =But I'm not allowed to give a second
Zachary buried his
face in his hand and groaned. "Wait a sec, I'm getting
myself a coffee first."
them a high-pitched electronic bleeping sounded and bright amber
text scrolled over the white panes of their desks. All eyes
turned disbelievingly at Doc, who stared horrified at his CDU. "I
don't believe it! They put a disclaimer in my CDU!!" Doc
shuddered. "Powering up will take slightly longer than
Goose snorted. "You better power up before we leave Earth
orbit. Otherwise we will win against the Crown army by boring
them to death with legalities."
Doc tilted his head. "I wonder if we can sue the Queen for
using Crown soldiers without disclaimers."
not?" Niko shrugged. "It will even up the score if she
loses the case."
Goose laid his booted feet onto his desk. "But guess who
they'll send to reinforce their edict?"
Wheiner?" Doc suggested.
them, Zach flopped back at his desk to get to his message...
hour forty-six minutes later (without repetitions):
=...BETA routinely monitors the
content of e-mail sent and received via its network for the
purposes of ensuring compliance with its policies and procedures.
Personnel and employees must never send or store e-mails or
attachments that are obscene, indecent, sexist, racist,
defamatory, abusive, in breach of copyright, encrypted or
otherwise inappropriate. (The only exception from this rule are
field reports of Ranger Gooseman (defined above).) Mails of this
nature sent in or out of the BETA network may be intercepted and
stopped by the system. BETA is not responsible for any changes
made to the message after it has been sent. Where opinions are
expressed, they are not necessarily those of BETA or its
personnel. This e-mail and any files transmitted with it are
confidential and intended solely for the use of the individual or
entity to whom they are addressed. If you are not the intended
addressee, or the person responsible for delivering it to them,
you may not copy, forward, disclose, or otherwise use it or any
part of it in any way. To do so may be unlawful. If you receive
this e-mail by mistake, please advise the sender immediately.
HI, DAD. I'LL BE HOME AT 1545. CU. Z-2.=
gaped at the one line message displayed on the tiny screen behind
GV's bouncing eyeball. "Do you want to tell me that's all
after more than an hour of disclaimers?!"
sir. It is. Your son told you that–=
know what Zachy told me!" Zach gave a good imitation of
Goose on a no-coffee day. "I–" A new message was
indicated. Zachary groaned. He didn't need another disclaimer
session, but he had no choice. The message was flagged
'important'. What appeared on his screen as plain text, though,
was a surprise. It was a simple text message without any
disclaimer. It read:
FOX: ALL DISCLAIMERS ON PROGRAMS AND MESSAGES ARE TO BE STOPPED
IMMEDIATELY. THE KIWI AGRICULTURAL DEPARTMENT HAS SUED BETA FOR
COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT OF THEIR DISCLAIMERS. SIGNED: WALSH.