Challenge #02034-E210: Incident During the Building of Antagulus IVsteemCreated with Sketch.

in fiction •  last year 


[Words you learn to dread hearing. #3.] "It seemed like a good idea at the time." -- Knitnan

Something, somewhere, was on fire. Aarblax could see the smoke curling through the air. This was, thankfully, a facility with a generous amount of atmosphere to share, so it wasn't that worrying. Yet. The Public Address system was making bizarre, intermittent noises. This meant that someone had manually disabled the alerts and the system was attempting connections through the network. Which had also been disabled.

Aarblax glared at the two Humans in his crew, who immediately pointed at each other and chorused, "It's their fault."

"Fault can be assigned after the problem at hand," he gestured at the curling smoke, the malfunctioning alerts, and the flickering screens that indicated that the system was down and out for the count, "has been thoroughly remedied. All I need to know is: how bad is it?"

But they were Humans, so they launched into explanations anyway. It seemed like a good idea at the time, honest. If he hadn't shoved me, if she hadn't pitched a fit, if he hadn't decided to overclock the furnace, if she hadn't tried to meddle, if he knew what he was doing in the first place...

Aarblax had heard the term Disaster Cascade before, when other peoples were talking about Humans. He had never believed that it was possible. "I thought you were siblings. Pack-bonded. If you can't co-operate, I'll have to switch out one of you for a more... companionable Human."

The effect was electric. The Humans instinctively clung to each other and stopped all attempts to argue. "We know where we went wrong," they insisted in another chorus. "We can fix it. For real."

"Do hurry," suggested Aarblax. "The fire, at least, is going to begin inconveniencing a lot of people before long."

When they rushed for the door, he noted that these... twins were significantly taller than when he'd hired them. Aarblax made note to check the infonets the instant the system was back up. He needed to double-check these Humans' affirmations that they were of legal age to work.

[Image (c) Can Stock Photo / sdecoret]

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He needed to double-check these Humans' affirmations that they were of legal age to work.

Maybe he should have done that to begin with BEFORE hiring them? XD

Some species need to adjust to the idea of "lying". In this case, the twins wove a tale of woe that resulted in them not having documents and winding up as refugees. It's one of those "too poor for paint, too proud to whitewash" cases where they don't trust the system(tm) because other systems betrayed them etc.

Ahh ye olde sob story rarely fails XD

And fair enough!