Lord of Water II – Global Evaporation

Chapter 13 – The Slip

The disposal door slid open and the hydraulic shaft pushed the mucus of the day out onto the deck. The sludge slid out over the dock and spattered across the ocean surface below.


Shane knew the deal. Entering the Rig is not a pleasant experience, with the waste shaft being the only way in. The internal caverns where neither built for comfort or vacation. There is room to operate and service these Rigs. There is no need for more.


Shane followed the withdrawal of the shaft as the lowered panel rose back behind him. 

“I am only here to look,” Shane said to himself as the stench of the caverns began to engulf him, “I will soon be back in the clean cool ocean. Let’s just take a look and see how these Rigs are manned. Tomorrow night we step into action.”


Shane slipped over the top of the shaft driver and carefully scanned all directions to ensure his entry had not been seen. Generally, there will be an operator and one service crew. Completely docile and simple to deal with but it’s policy to check each and every time before he takes action. Once the de-Rigging begins, there is no turning back until it is all done.


Shane followed the walking deck across to the middle of the lower service area. The service terminal would be down here somewhere either robotically doing his rounds, eating, omitting feces, or sleeping for his allowed time off the floor. Up above, the operator sat within his encapsulating suite, following the program, his ordered, his duties and basically holding the Rig in place ready to commence the conversion of all water into the aqua antimatter in a few days time.


As Shane slipped lightly along the deck, he spotted the service terminal down the end on a crude looking chair. It had just rested its ugly, disfigured body down and slowly relaxed into what appeared to be a well-awaited rest.


“Man! They sure are ugly,” Shane thought to himself as he carefully stepped onto the ladder staircase to the upper operator deck. Slowly rising to the top he carefully lifted his head above the floor and the central upper floor deck became visible. Surrounding the stairwell were walls plated with various door latches and riveted plates. There, right in front of him was the rear of a chair that was most obviously that of the operator. Shane could see the right hand, gloved up in mechanical casings, not much different than the arm of a crab. Locked in and rested onto a shaft that is nothing other than the position controller of this whole Rig.


About the operator and within reach of him were controls to the various other functions, including the lever to commence water conversion and right there in the middle of his sight were the command screens that had his attention fixed so solidly for the complete duration of each day. There is no need for him to be any place other than to sit and drive or hold in place this Rig.


As normal, the screen was lit with location indication, position in fleet, current sequence step, and most important, steps to complete absolute dehydration of this planet now only seven days away from commencement and not far beyond the completion of the mission and exit right on through the wormhole portal, with its haul tightly packed.


The operator just hovered there, his attention fixed on the screen and his hand in position, keeping the Rig in place.


“This is clearly the execution program” Shane consulted with himself as he took a final gaze at the screen to ensure he had missed nothing. He was certain that nineteen Rigs and their Monitor were all that he was dealing with.


“This is all we have. Tomorrow night we commence takedown.”


Shane turned into his descent back to the lower deck and to escape through the excretion shaft. His heart froze as he stood face to face with an expressionless, zombie looking alien just standing there gazing straight through him as though it was walking in its sleep. It’s stinking alien breath and slimy body odor emanated right onto him as it stood there with its mouth open drooling and panting in and out.


Is the takedown over before it had begun? Left with no choice. Is Shane sprung?



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