She watched him, smiling

This week we’re delving into a bit of fantasy with the flash fiction as the character searches. What have you wanted to find and dreaded?

The rain thudded on the ceiling as the gun thumped onto the supply counter. “You’ll need that.” The supply clerk, Albret according to the tag, said.

Nolan stared blankly at the gun. The thing was thicker his arm, maybe his legs. Neither were small where he’d mined his way across all the Affiliate system for a decade. “There’s been a mistake. I’m here to work a Magni Mine.”

“Ayup.” Albret settled onto his stool, which groaned as it disappeared beneath his girth. “There’s your new fav tool.”

“Magni Mine,” Nolan said slowly. “You know, to mine.”

Albret snorted. The rattled something straight up his throat to his nose. “You wish. I don’t even have seniority enough for that cushy job. Miles of rock between me and sky.”

Nolan scrunched his brow. “I don’t understand.”

Albret laughed which was less mirthful sounding than his snort. “The mine’s on the Drisheosin boarder.”

“The boarder?” His stomach sunk. Drisheosin was home to the Affiliate’s most violent skirmishes.

“You didn’t check that?” Albret waived his hand in dismissal. “Good luck.” Nolan hefted the gun and turned away.

She was waiting outside. Same woman he’d spotted while filing off the transport. She’d made his skin crawl then, and her watching smile wasn’t reassuring now.

She swayed toward him, stopping less than a pace away. “If you don’t want that? You could work for me. It’s got benefits.”

“Yeah, no.” He pushed past her.

“Let me know when you change your mind.” Her laugh chased him.

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