The Employee (A Dark Potential short story)

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Poll ended at Wed Nov 07, 2012 8:37 am

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The Employee (A Dark Potential short story)

Post by Doomonger007 » Sun Oct 07, 2012 9:37 am

Christok glanced round the side of the ruined building. He saw three of them in total, ripping apart an old hover-car. He smiled to himself. He could practically taste the extra rations. He leveled his pistol at one of them and fired.

The Salvagers hadn't been too much of a problem until recently. They had stayed a safe distance from company grounds, and had only ever been 'spotted' by drunkards. But that had changed recently. The Salvagers had grown braver in the past few months. Taking more form the corporation. The odd Dark Fusion cell, a pistol here and there. But it was a nuisance. They couldn't be dealing with this sort of thing, what with the X'Lanthos and Reclaimer excursions to worry about. So, Christok and a handful of other lowly employees, had been chosen to leave the safety of Compound 301-D, and disable any Salvagers they could.

Christok cursed and hid behind the building again, as his shot glanced off of the Salvager's metal body. The little tyke stopped pulling out some wires from the dashboard of the car for a second turned round, scanning the street for any signs of life. After a few moments, it turned away again, satisfied that it's search had yielded no results. Christok was beginning to sweat. He was lucky that the Salvager hadn't picked up on his rising heat signature. He scolded himself for not choosing to take a heavy graded weapon like the others, and went back to his camp.

After they had been cast out of the compound, Christok and the others had been told by the reigning executive not to return unless they had brought back fifteen or more Salvager husks. They would then be allowed to enter the compound once more, and would receive extra rations for a month. Christok had at first gawped at the high number, but the promise of extra rations had spurred him on. Day by day, he had disabled Salvagers nonstop. He had tied them all to a length of rope he had found, and planned to drag them back to the compound with it. He had shot and killed squirrels, using what little meat they yielded as sustenance. He wondered how the others where doing. Jalack, a headstrong, redheaded man, who had a wife and three daughters to care for. His family's rations barely stretched to feed them all. He had been the first to volunteer when the executive had announced a Salvager hunt. Or Zoi, the pretty, intelligent girl who he'd gone to basic education classes with. She had cared for her sick mother since she was fifteen. She thought that she could sell the extra rations to pay for her mother's medication. Or maybe Theod, Christok's loyal friend, who had stood up to all of the bullies for him at basic education, who had said eh would stand by him, no matter what happened. He had seen him a few weeks ago, running around the streets, screaming his sister's name. A Delusio Snake must have bitten him. One milligram of Delusio venom would make you lose your mind. A pint would put you in a coma for years. Theod was probably somewhere between the two. He missed life in the compound. Hunting for Salvagers wasn't all it was cracked up to be. He sighed one last time as he felt the greedy hands of the night take him.

Christok awoke to the gentle hiss of gas. His eyes fluttered as he opened them slowly, and he saw flames. They lashed out, throwing him back. He stumbled as his vision blurred, his eyes watering from the fumes. He lashed out blindly, hoping to bat the fire away. He regained his sight for a second, blinking away the moisture, to see a huge Salvager standing over him, spitting flames. The Salvager had no arms, and it's torso was rotating slowly, as it spewed fire from blackened barrels on each of it's three spindly legs. Christok fell backwards, fumbling for his weapon. It wouldn't save his life, but it would at least give him some comfort as he died. He closed his eyes, waiting for the flames top engulf him. He wondered if he'd see Pa in the beyond. The fire roared as he surrendered himself to the dark.

Christok opened his eyes, then closed them. Pain. He felt a blistering pain. Was this really how dying felt? It hurt, but not as much as he'd expected. He opened his eyes again, to see a gaunt figure beside him. "Who.." He tried to speak, but his voice caught. The figure hauled him to his feet, and patted him on the shoulder.
"I'm a friend" The figure said. Their voice was warm, but he could tell that behind that there was a wall of frost.
"Why?" Christok asked the 'friend'. "Why would you help?"
"Well.." The 'friend' mused. "I was wondering if you would accept my offer."
"How would you feel about a promotion?"


Christok drew his pistol and leveled it at the Scavenger. He fired, and smiled as the shell pierced the metal casing of the Scavenger's body. He watched as two more shots came from the rooftop across the street. He took out his old, beaten up radio, a rarity in the compound, and spoke in to it. "Ready to haul these back to home then?" The reply came quickly.
"Yep. And a nice hearty dinner of extra rations." The voice was warm, but there was a sliver of frost behind it. Christok tied his final Scavenger to the old length of rope that trailed behind him. And set off back to Compound 301-D. He felt like steak tonight.


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