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Author Topic: Surly Bonds  (Read 1647 times)


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Surly Bonds
« on: July 19, 2005, 07:45:37 pm »

   Morning, again.
   A persistent ache had developed in my shoulders over the last few days, as we'd been removing engines from a line of small airplanes near the east fence. Being a Sunday, however, I could look forward to a bit of rest and some time to mount the wings on the Cub.
   Sam had taught me what he could, in his roundabout manner, and Lucy had an old flight simulator running on Sam's desk terminal. This was something else they had to pretend to do on the sly, for Sam's sake.
   Since we'd moved here, Steve made regular stops, as his was the only real transport plane available to service this area. They were running short on parts and more men were recruited to help us in the yard. Some had been pilots, torn from their dreams by other peoples' fears, manifested in a desire to oppress that which they could not understand.
   I was beginning to understand, and I think Lucy knew all along. No group of people should hold more power than an individual, should never have the right to deny property and freedom from that individual merely to suit their agendas. The guilt I had been hiding from the time I found the Cub until just recently had slowly faded and disappeared with that realization.
   The Cub was mine, regardless of the signs posted everywhere. The Directorate had held us against our will for nearly as long as I could remember, stealing the product of our labor. In my estimation, this tiny airplane was a poor exchange for our stolen lives.

   Most of the work I could do alone, but today I needed help, which came in the form of my sister. I had rigged up some pulleys in the rafter, and lifted the wings while Lucy carefully guided them into place.
   I'm not sure whether I should say we finally got the plane together, or that we'd finished before we knew it. Time is funny stuff, or so I'd heard in a movie once, and now I was poking around the engine trying to come up with reasons to delay.
   There were still a couple things: fuel and the Fence. I had some assurance that the enforcers were generally pretty lax about perimeter anti-air, but even a foot patrol could shoot us out of the sky. As to the former, that was also a bit of a challenge.
   When an airplane is delivered to the yard, whatever fuel is left in the tank is drained and delivered to Energy and Resources, leaving not a drop onsite, excepting the turbine fuel stored in an aboveground tank next to the ramp which was secured and closely monitored.
   The sky had reddened in the west, setting somewhere on the other side of the old Army base, and I closed my eyes.
Lucy approached quietly and placed a sandwich in my open hand. I smiled and took a bite, listening to the Suburban idle across the airfield entrance. Ferdinand Glausman, General Inspector for the Mayor, made his rounds every day. I'm not sure whether or how often he found whatever violations he was paid to sniff out, but he was persistent.
   Sometimes, especially on Monday evenings (Sam was alloted his chit allowance on Monday morning, and usually had some doughnuts...) I grinned at the interrupted thought. One problem maybe solved. I'd have to ask Lucy about the other.
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