Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Story Seed - Another Deal

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She swung the cylinder, smiling at the muted click as each chamber passed by the breech.  "He's dead?"

"Y-yes ma'am, he must be, the blasted lands are too dry for a man to walk across. There's no way he's alive." Chuckles didn't sound convinced; he sounded worried.  The boss was playing with her gun again, and that made Chuckles nervous. "He's gotta be," he added lamely.

"He must be? He's gotta be? You don't sound very convinced, and if you aren't convinced how is it that I am supposed to feel Charles? How am I supposed to feel confident that that son of a filthy dog Graham is dead?" Boss McKenna swung her feet to the floor and snapped her wrist to the side; the sixgun's cylinder snapped shut with an ominous click. "Answer. Me. That. Charles."

The big man whimpered, stepping back from the rickety desk. His pudgy face was always damp with sweat, but now it was all but flowing down his jowls.  "B-boss, there's no way, nobody ever done it. Chasin' that 'bot down'll be the death of him." Chuckles nodded, as though to convince himself, and wiped at his face with a sodden handkerchief.

Jamie McKenna stood; all five foot three inches of her.  She was easily a foot shorter well over a hundred pounds outweighed, and yet both of the people in the hot tent knew whom was looking down on whom. Boss McKenna ruled Angel's Dig like a dictator, the town was nominally independent of the excavation, but in truth it may as well have been entirely a single commercial venture.  If McKenna had had it her way it would have been. "I'm not feeling very convinced Charles," she said. "What about that damned 'bot? What if it get's it in its damned head to obey the first law, hmmm?"

Chuckles goggled, he certainly hadn't thought of that.  His jowls wobbled as he swallowed hard, "Uh, uh, uh, th-that ... ya, think Graham an' the robot mighta made it all the ways to the Fall?"

"Holy shit Chuckles, did you just have yourself a thought?" Boss McKenna asked.  The fat man nodded nervously. "Well, damn, I guess maybe I'll have to reward you for that. Now get your fat ass to the Fall. Find Graham, kill ... no ... no, bring him back. I want my scrip back, even if I have to drop him into the Dig until he rots. One way or the other I'll get my scrip out of him." She picked up the gun and slid it into her shoulder holster.

"That was the deal, and nobody breaks a deal with me."

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