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Another day at the office

It’s a dirty, ectoplasmic job, but someone’s got to do it.

David Gane
David Gane
2 min read
Another day at the office
Photo by Tandem X Visuals / Unsplash

Ectoplasmic goo oozed out of the pulsing rift in the ceiling and dropped onto Carter’s hard hat.

A few inches over, and it would’ve fallen on his face. Then he’d get hauled into the boss’s office and have to explain why he wasn’t wearing his safety equipment on the job.

But none of that mattered. If he didn’t close this portal to hell soon, this customer’s living room would be ground zero for the End of Days, and no one would be happy about that.

He looked through his toolkit. All his holy water and sacred texts were gone, and none of it had made a dent anyway. He needed to think outside the box.

He climbed his stepladder to study the problem. The fissure was goopy and pulsing like a heart. Standing this close, he could hear the wails of the unholy dead on the other side.

He jammed both hands into it and felt around. Inside, it was slimy and wriggling like a ball of snakes, and he fought the urge to pull away.

He moved up a step, knowing this was way past company standards, but he needed to get the attention of whatever was trying to punch its way through the rift.

He searched around and felt something nip at his fingers, but every time he grabbed at it, it squished like wet clay and disappeared.

To hell with it. He climbed to the top step and forced himself all the way inside the slimy vortex—definitely a no-no with OSHA.

Immediately, a voice boomed in his head. “Are you the one they call Bobby?”


“But you know who I speak of?”


“Tell him to leave us alone, and we’ll seal the rift.”

Carter didn’t hesitate. “Deal.”

He barely finished answering before the voice ejected him from the fissure. He tumbled off his ladder and onto the floor.

The rift began to heal.

That wouldn’t have happened if he’d followed the company rules.

He wrote up his invoice and handed it to the owner. On the way out, he glared at three-year-old Bobby, even though he didn’t care. If it weren’t for stupid kids speaking to spectral voices in walls, he’d be out of a job.

The company was shit, but the pay was decent, and the work was interesting. Besides, if he didn’t save the world, who else would?

His cell phone buzzed. Another rift on the other side of town. He texted back and took the job.

Fast Fiction

David Gane Twitter

Co-writer of the Shepherd and Wolfe young adult mysteries, the internationally award-winning series, and teacher of storytelling and screenwriting.


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