The Adventures of Hyper-Space Transport Hub 42
thrusters producing a steady ticking noise as they cooled.
“All righty then, let's get these boxes unloaded!” Assistant Quartermaster Anderson shouted as he walked up the Telaxian freighter’s gangplank and into its cargo hold. Various Unloader Bots trundled up around him at the sound of his command and began producing a myriad of hooks and manipulator arms from various compartments in order to handle the dozen-or-so boxes crammed into the small hold. “Gently now, these crates are filled with precious medical supplies!”
“Assistant Quartermaster Anderson, sir?” Unloader Bot J-19 said, rotating in the portly human's direction. “We seem to have a problem with this unit's Designation Code.”
“What is it?”
“Designation Code 14897184213, sir”
Anderson punched the code into his quantum-fueled manifest datapad and frowned at the information that began to scroll across the pad's liquid crystal surface.
“This is awful,” Anderson verbalized, sweat beginning to dot his upper lip. “The crate marked with Designation Code 14897184213 is supposed to be delivered to Hyper-Space Transport Hub 49 in the Regula Antares System. According to my data it contains fourteen type R hex bolts that they need for their rocket forklifts.”
“Dear me!” Unloader Bot J-19 bleeped, its C-clamp manipulator arms spinning in a frenzy. “Without those hex bolts Transport Hub 49 will have to make do with those old deregulated terrestrial forklifts. Productivity will be down by almost 37%!”
“I'll have to inform the captain”, Anderson stated with chagrin. He wasn't looking forward to bringing this news to his detail obsessed commander in chief. “He's not going to like this at all. The captain of Transport Hub 49 is an old war buddy of his and he's going to hate having to inform...what a minute.”
Anderson reached around the nervously quaking Unloader Bot and with his titanium-cotton weave glove wiped at some accumulated space grime that had built up on the outside of the supposedly misplaced cargo crate.
“Why look at this, Unloader Bot J-19,” Anderson communicated with mounting hope. “This space grime covered up the last digit of this crate's Designation Code. It doesn't read 14897184213! It reads 14897184218!”
“That produces a simulation of relief within my servos Assistant Quartermaster Anderson, sir!”
“Me too, Unloader Bot J-19”, Anderson stated as he gazed out wistfully on to the bustling storage area that made up Hyper-Space Transport Hub 42's second largest docking facility. “Me too.”
Captain Rigel O'Malley stalked the corridors of the Transport Hub, an ungodly itch permeating