Just Another Fairy Tale?
© 1993 Michael J. Slebodnick JUST ANOTHER FAIRY
while you can," he murmured remembering the mine motto. He spit on the floor of his
"Semptil!" bellowed the radio. "What's the holdup?"
Damn those Overseers, thought Dexter. They saw him take a break. Quickly, he
made up a good excuse for his rest.
"There's something wrong with the water jets. They're not cutting down on the
dust like they should," he lied.
"Do not screw with us Semptil! We can see via the remote that the unit is
functioning. However, if you claim it is not working, then working it is not," the Overseer
proclaimed as it remotely turned off the dust inhibitor.
Angrily, Dexter powered up the drill and rammed it into the rock, spewing dust
and soot in quantities that he had never experienced. The sediment quickly overloaded
the filters, and they clogged. Cut off from air, Dexter collapsed.
Minutes later, revived, he found himself looking at a meditech. "What
happened?" he asked.
"You suffered from chondritic inhalation and near asphyxiation," the technician
answered stoically. "But there is a bonus for you. You get to go home and see your
kid, without pay, of course."
"But you know what will happen," protested Dexter.
"Yes, but you need the rest. You only have two weeks left until you retire. No
one else has ever made it this far. Don't blow it. You can always,...well, anyway, go
home and see your kid. That's an order," commanded the master medical technician.
Too exhausted to protest, Dexter rose and was led to the transport waiting to
take him home.