"Thanks. Company food is getting worse every month, I swear they are fucking up the meat cloning process."
"Ja. Very funny. Can you eat your lunch without violating need-to-know rules? I want to get back to my own lab after I finish, not being interrogated, shot down and cremated by Internal Security's, um, fine and upstanding specialists."
"I'm just saying. With all the crap we are doing - and of *course* I won't tell you what I'm doing, any more than you will tell me what *you* are doing - with all the crap we are doing, I say, we should be eating much better. This food isn't very inspiring."
"It inspires me to eat quickly and go back to work."
"Well, there's that. But it also makes it harder to come back after each off-compound leave. My husband might be a nagging slovenly cooking-challenged lawyer, but at least he knows where to order takeover from. By the way, couldn't ask you before about your last leave. Is the rumor mill true? Is your wife pregnant?"
"Wow, congratulations! That's great news!"
"You guess? Herbert, you aren't getting cold feet about the married life, are you?"
"No, no, it's not that. It's the... the idea of a baby, I guess. I've... never mind."
"No, tell me. You what?"
"Jane, you know the things we do? The things we can't comment with each other because we aren't part of the same project teams? I'm not sure I want to bring somebody to a world where those things can be done."
"... Hmm. But there is always a sense of hope in the creation of life, isn't it?"
"Not in the way we do it in here, there isn't."
"I... I think we might be skirting need-to-know rules here."
"Yeah, sorry. Anyway, we've been thinking about names with my wife, and if it's a girl, we might go with Jane."
"Herbert, that's nice! I don't really know what to say."
"What can I say? My wife loves Jane Austen."
"Oh, you mean bastard. I'm getting your dessert for that."
"Suit yourself. I don't know where they cloned this would-be cake from, but I'm sure at least half of it is positively evil."