Inside the airliner
Originally, Tom’s plane was comparatively ordinary for a private plane. But then I saw Marvel’s Agents of Shield, and I kind of thought: Hm, who says I can’t have a double-deck airliner?
The airliner – draft
This is the interior of the airliner. The main objective was to make it fit for the scenes of the books, and I didn’t pay much attention to what is possible or whether the proportions make sense.
extract, book 2/1, travelling, Happy Flying
Let’s do the tour of the airliner then and, please, try to be a bit impressed.’
‘That should be easy.’
And it was. The interior of the airliner was expensive on both decks: velvet and leather seats, plus sofas, carpets, wooden panels, indirect lighting, dark furniture, light-coloured walls.
But it wasn’t overdone. It sort of felt comfortable and practical rather than overly luxurious.
Tom explained that the interior had been adjusted to meet the requirements of the travelling team. Accordingly, the lower deck was assigned to Programming and Security. It had a fitness room and a large programming space with a labyrinth of tables and monitors wherever you looked. Andy, Devery and a few others were already busy here. Too busy, in fact, to say hello.
This deck also had a kitchen, and a medical room in the nose of the airliner. The latter was one of the gadgets THE had installed for this trip.
The upper deck was allotted to Business, Admin, Town Planning, and to Leo’s team. Tom’s private quarters and a lounge were also on the upper deck.
Both decks had passenger areas with rows of seats, and there were bathrooms, bars and a few tiny bedrooms.
Early arrivals were busy here and there, but Alice didn’t recognise any of them, and they seemed to be too shy for a greeting. Though admittedly, Tom was talking without pause, so maybe they just didn’t want to interrupt.
The decks were connected by two spiral staircases, one next to the cockpit, and another next to Tom’s private quarters, towards the back of the airliner.
They finished the tour in Tom’s study.
‘Not bad,’ Alice said, looking around the square room, which had dark panelled walls, and a large writing desk at its centre.
‘I hope you’ll like your room too.’
‘Yes, let’s go over the details for the teams in London— My what?’
‘Your room,’ Tom said amused by Alice’s delayed reaction. ‘Come, I’ll show you. It’s just opposite. Our children used to stay there when they were younger.’
Surprised, Alice followed Tom across the narrow corridor, and into the spare room. Below the windows stood a double bed and a small writing desk. Opposite the windows was a passenger seat with a little coffee table, and next to that a wardrobe. The narrow space between the bed and the wardrobe led to a bathroom. A bloody private bathroom on a plane! With a shower!
Alice turned to Tom. ‘All right, this is pretty cool.’
The safe room was tiny: a table with a monitor on one side, a flight seat on the other, and hardly enough legroom in between.
Alice squeezed herself into the seat and closed the door. She still wasn’t sure how a safe room worked. But apparently you could make and take untraceable calls from here, and no one would know that a connection to the internet had been established. Something about disguising signals as a flurry of dust, or something like that.
book 2/1, travelling, Happy Flying