Discrimination, poor demand and great sunsets on Hurston.
The glow of the terminal was reflected in my face. A deep sigh broke out of me. I lifted my head and looked around. Many people were walking around busily. Dressed in important looking business dress. There were monitors everywhere displaying numbers and graphs. I looked over at the large glass window behind which was Constantin Hurston’s office and shook my head. It was unbelievable, I had a large amount, freshly refined Quantanium, and only a small amount I could sell here.
While I was in hiding, I had mined a lot of Quantanium. Now I wanted to turn it into money in Lorville and then download the recordings from my listening device in the comm array of Hurston. However, I was sitting on the largest amount of Quantanium for now. I had to store it temporarily until the demand was higher again. In the hangar, I wanted to talk to the harbormaster, about temporary storage.
“We don’t have any storage capacity available. You’ll have to leave the stuff in your ship.” the harbormaster replied unfriendly to my question.
“But there’s room everywhere. What’s the problem?” I asked, irritated.
“That’s reserved for citizens with Citizen status and for merchants who have a long-standing trading relationship with the Hurston family. I don’t think either applies to you.”
“Uh, yes but….”
“And on the orbital station Everus Harbor, you don’t even need to try. The situation is no different there.”
I waved it off and trotted away with my head down. There it was again, the unequal treatment and oppression of the free peoples. Hopefully Emperor Addison will replace such harbor masters by an AI without reservations. Although, if the AI is trained by the UEE or Hurston Dynamics, it would have the same reservations.
I didn’t want to stay in the shithole of Lorville, and I didn’t want to fly the Quantanium for a walk. So I took a Cutlass and a ROC to mine minerals. Somehow I had to get the time around. I had no desire for the heat of Arial and Aberdeen. So I stayed on the planet Hurston. Here I could work without a spacesuit and breathe fresh air, theoretically.
The storms on Hurston were sometimes violent. Sand and dirt crunched between my teeth. My throat was scratchy and dry. Since the ROC had no pressurized cabin, it could get quite uncomfortable. Too uncomfortable. Sometimes I preferred to put on a protective armor. Fortunately, I had brought enough water and could stay several days, self-sufficient in the wilderness of Hurston.
I was not choosy with the minerals. I took with me what I could find. Within a short time, I had unloaded the ROC several times and stacked several boxes in the Cutlass. I wondered what the larger cargo hold of the newly announced ROC DS would bring. As long as the starship was around, cargo space was not a bottleneck.
Hurston had the dirtiest air, but it had the most beautiful sunsets in the Stanton system. I often paused to enjoy the sight of the setting central star. When the weather cooperated the work was very pleasant. I wore comfortable clothes, the temperatures were pleasant, and the solitude was soothing. The quiet did me good. No attacks, no plots, no investigations and dangers. But eventually I had to get back to Lorville. I still had a load of Quantanium to sell.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)