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The following works are works of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the authors’ imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

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The Soldier

by Craig Gabrysch

Sharil was yelling at the youngling axke in the back office of Lukal’s Emporium, “Look, kid, you gotta stay on the ball out there. Just because Lukal ain’t around don’t mean he ain’t watching. See those cameras in the shop? He’s got his eyes on you the whole day.” The kid’s name was Anshon, and he was a good nestling, but had a problem staying on task. “And if he ain’t watching you every second you’re clocked in, I fucking am. The Company wants a profit from this fucking place, and that means you’re out there busting your fucking ass every second for your fucking pay. The Company wants efficiency and the Company will get it. They didn’t fucking drag my furry ass off Axkume 39 to run a damned daycare.”

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