Tuesday, January 16, 2007
New Beginning 191
Jule stared at the offending entry on her Click-Point datapad and gnawed on the end of her stylus. She didn't order baby wipes! "Miranda!"
The echo in the spaceport warehouse barely faded away before her assistant appeared around the corner of the row where Jule stood, checking off the last of the supplies bound for the Damarian dig. "Yes, Dr. leBois?"
Jule pointed at the crate next to her. "Where are the moist towelettes I ordered?" she asked, keeping her voice patient. Grad students. Must have patience.
Miranda scanned the list on her own C-P. "There," she said, "line 57. Baby wipes."
Jule gritted her teeth. "I ordered moist towelettes."
"Baby wipes, moist towelettes," Miranda said, smoothing a long strand of brown hair behind one ear, "what's the difference?"
Jule held onto her C-P with both hands to keep from bashing the grad student over the head. Nice girl, semi-talented in xenoforensics . . . and incapable of doing anything without putting her own personal touch on it. Why was this girl her assistant?
"And what about the dehydrated milk?"
"Line 29. Nestle's Quik."
"My underwear order?!"
"Line 42. Diapers."
Jule felt a headache settling between her eyebrows. She stared at the grad student like she'd grown a second head. "The oxygen tanks? There should be 500 . . . Don't tell me . . ."
"Line 53. Large window fan."
"Window-- We're in outer--" Unable to contain herself, Jule reached down, picked up a crate, and slammed it down on Miranda's useless, mostly empty head. She felt better as she turned back to her datapad. With one less person breathing, she thought, I might hold out till the next shipment. Let's see, Line 63. New grad assistant. Check.
Opening: Gerri Baxter.....Continuation: GutterBall