Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Inverted (John, Part 3)

John looked around the airlock, its design more spacious than he was used to. You could start a conference in the halls outside the dorm and not complete it until you reached the job outside, all without leaving eyesight of your team. It was incredible, and incredibly expensive. He dearly hoped HR was right when he said he was worth it.

He dressed in a custom-fit suit, made for him just days out of the tailor. With his training and experience, he understood the cost of all this work, but not the reason for it.

HR had one more surprise waiting for him, and he found it when he stepped out of the lock. A crisp British voice met his ears through the suit radio.

"You certainly took your time."


The facilities on Puff were far nicer than those on Piff. And yet, here he was, working on exactly the same circuitry, except, well, upside-down. Technically, it was even the same panel. Here in zero-gee, there was no need to turn around.

His waldo lifted the suitcase and opened it up. Inside were an assortment of panels, assembled like posters on display at a store. He selected an upgraded, improved model, and spent the next hour replacing more than just the partially stripped screws.


After a long day's shift, John retired to Puff's dorms.

Though he was a permanent employee, he stayed in the temp housing block. There, instead of closet-sized rooms for each employee, he slept in coffin-shaped bunks that held only a mattress, a personal comm, and a small space for personal items. It was the way he preferred it, and though the temporary workers made snide remarks behind his back for it, they never lasted long.

Character: John Beach | Shannaire
Location: Pentacles system | Puff planet

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