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11 a.m.

Unathi Battles the Killer Hairballs
Lauren Beukes

Unathi was singing karaoke when the creature attacked Tokyo. Or rather, she was about to sing karaoke. Was, in fact, about to be the very first person in Shibuya’s Big Echo to break in the newly uploaded Britney hip-hop remix of the Spice Girls classic: ‘Tell me what you want (what you really really want)’. It was, admittedly, early in the day to be breaking out the microphone, but Unathi was on shore leave, and the truth was that she and the rest of Saiko Squadron weren’t up early so much as they were still going from last night, lubricated on a slick of sake that ran from here to Yokohama. Unathi stepped up onto the table in their private booth, briefly giving her madoda a flash of white briefs under her pleated miniskirt. When she was on duty as Flight Sergeant of the squadron, she kept strictly to her maroon-and-grey flightsuit or the casual comfort of her militaryissue tracksuit. In her private life, however, Unathi tended to be outrageous. Back in Jozi, before she’d been recruited to the most elite mecha squadron on the planet, she hung out at 44 Stanley and Carfax, where she’d been amakipkip to the max. Named for the cheap multicoloured popcorn, the neo-pantsula punk aesthetic had her pairing purple skin-tight jeans

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