Shorts smartworld

The Retirement Plan

Where a Hunter for the City, Kex Atto, approaches her retirement. But in the City, circa 2254, retirement means death: you don't work to live, you live to work. After this, the City has no furthur use for you.

[Saturday, 4 March 2254 | 7 Days Until Retirement]

“Hunter Atto,” the transmission begins, “YutopiCorp thanks you for your years of service. Your time on the Force has brought seven thousand, two hundred and forty-seven criminals to justice.”

“Thanks,” I say.

There is no response; the transmission is automated. Why let me speak to a human being, of whom I may ask uncomfortable questions? “We understand that this week may be a trying time for you, and request that you retire gracefully for the good of the City.”

What choice do I have? Either a Retirer shoots me between the eyes, or I try to run and a Hunter—one of my colleagues—shoots me in the back of the head instead.

“Would you like to be referred to a counselling service to assist your transition?”

I decline the referral. Rikard accepted the offer, and all that accomplished was taking an hour away from his last week. It is against protocol to access the service during work hours; productivity must come first.

With the utterance of a simple “No,” the transmission disconnects. Time for work.

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