SF Drabble #68 “O’Neill Colony Down And Out”

“Arnold Pierce?” it was a base security officer asking.


“I’m afraid you’re under arrest.”

“…Arrest? On what charge?”

“Failure to pay your monthly air tax. Would you hold out your arms please?”

“…uh, yeah. Hey, listen, I’m just unemployed right now is all, I’ll pay it, I just need to make some money.”

“I understand, sir. I’m just doing my job.” His voice was sympathetic.

“So what happens now? Pushed out an airlock?”

“Of course not, sir. There’s a fine. You work that and your taxes off on the farms.”

“Well,” said Pierce with resignation, “at least it’s work.”

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