Negative One Contact
by Gage Herrmann
Copyright 2013 Gage Herrmann
The first thing I think is: More damn tweaked out shippers.
It’s a klang, a crunch, and a lengthy scrape along the side of my station’s hull that jerks me from my sleep. An LED clock on the wall reads 2:34. I’ve only slept for about 2 hours. I ball up my fists and feel a dull throb rise from my shoulders, up my neck, to the top of my head. A headache brought on by anger is a terrible thing to wake up to. It will almost certainly be there all day.
"No. No no no no no."
I tear my covers off to reveal my fully clothed body. I have to be ready for a late night customer or even a robbery. I suppose it works for dealing with druggie pilots too.
He's probably a smuggler who tried a little of his own stuff. I better not get raped tonight.
I swing my legs off the bed and put my feet into my shoes which tie themselves automatically. Ah, the luxurious life of a gas station attendant, confined to an 800 square foot living space on the edge of the Milky Way.
I grab my pistol and stuff it into the back of my jeans and un-tuck my cotton sweater to cover it up. I unlock my bedroom door and push it open, still not awake enough to be ready for whatever waits outside.