Disadvantages Disposal Unit
It was a bright, sunny Tuesday morning and Cathy Jenkins had decided that it was too hot to go to school. Besides, there was nothing to stop her. The D.D.U. (Disadvantages Disposal Unit) had taken her parents when she had been just nine years old. Her younger brother, Peter Jenkins, had caught the early Bot. His intelligence level was too low for him to miss a day's work. He already had to go for the maximum number of hours a day every day so she didn't want him to get any further behind. Cathy on the other hand was fairly intelligent, so missing one day of school wouldn't do any harm. She went to school for four hours a day, two days a week because she was so intelligent.
She flung herself onto the sofa and was just about to turn on the XZ3000 Compubot she had bought when there was a knock at the door. She pulled herself out of the sofa and jogged to the button that lifted the lid of the Dome. She pushed it open and in front of her stood her 17 year old best friend, Rosie Cane.
"I'm glad you're here. I thought I would have the day off. Its way too hot to go to school, isn't it?" Rosie said happily.
"Yeah, but ..."
"I thought we could hang out somewhere today. Come on. Let's go to the nature reserve," and with that, Rosie grabbed Cathy and pulled her down the drive.
"But Rosie," Cathy complained, "You can't just have a day off for no reason. The D.D.U. wouldn't like that."
Rosie turned sharply and cried "But you are having the day off so why can't I?"
"Because I'm not the one who's three years behind everyone else, am I?" Cathy snapped back.
"But that's not fair!" Rosie whined, "You get to have all the fun." Rosie let go of Cathy and ran back to her Dome crying.
Cathy shook her head and went back into her own Dome. She lay back down on the sofa and turned on the XZ3000 Compubot. She was really proud that she could afford the best Compubot out. It was voice controlled and everything.
"XZ3000," she called to her Compubot, "Clean the house please. I really can't be bothered today. It's too hot."
"Yes Cathy," replied the Compubot, "Would you like me to get you a drink while you watch the window?"
"Yes please Compubot. And I am watching Rosie's Dome to see if she goes to school, not the window."
"Sorry Cathy," XZ3000 apologised, "Here is your drink."
Rosie's Dome lifted up and she stepped out wearing her uniform. Cathy ducked under the window so that Rosie couldn't see her. About five minutes later, there was a knock at the door and Cathy whispered to XZ3000 "I hope that's not Rosie. She needs to catch up on her education, not get further behind." Then, she ran to the Dome button and pressed it quickly to lift the lid of the Dome away from the base. She pushed it open and saw Rosie standing in front of her again.
"Are you sure you don't want to come with me to school? You might get behind too," Rosie asked, wiping sweat from her forehead.
"No. I'm ahead anyway. It doesn't matter if I miss 50 days I'll still be ahead," replied Cathy.
"OK," Rosie replied. Then, she turned and ran down the drive to the BotStop. Cathy had just closed the Dome lid and was about to sit back down when she heard the sound of a Dome landing outside. She went over to the window and saw that it was a D.D.U. Dome. Her heartbeat sped up and she started to breath very quickly. She panicked and started glancing anxiously around the room for a way out, but it was too late; iron bars were smothering the Dome.
"OPEN YOUR LID!" a voice boomed from outside. Cathy froze. She wasn't even breathing. Then, her entire body started to shake.
"OPEN YOUR LID!" the voice boomed again, but louder this time. Cathy still just stood their, not daring to breathe.
"I WILL GIVE YOU TEN SECONDS BEFORE I BLOW YOUR DOME APART," it boomed, much louder than before, and Cathy could hear the annoyance in the voice. "TEN," She ran to the button, "NINE," and pressed it. "EIGHT," Then she forced the lid up as quickly as she could. "SEVEN. AH. GOOD. YOU ARE CATHY JENKINS, RIGHT?"
"Yes sir," Cathy replied, shaking violently.
"GET IN MY DOME. NOW!" he screamed. Cathy ran to his Dome and climbed in. She felt something wrapping itself around her; it was a long, thick piece of rope. Cathy gulped, and then she looked up at the sky and saw that it was filling with dark storm clouds. The lid of the Dome slammed shut and the view of the sky was taken from her. There was a massive man sitting in the Dome beside her. She was shaking harder than ever before.
He turned, saw she was shaking and burst out laughing. His laugh was a deep, booming laugh and she realised that he was the man that had taken her parents when she had been nine years old. She started to fill with anger and hatred. She started to fight against the rope that was binding her to the chair and the man's laughter stopped abruptly. He watched her fighting against the rope and only being pulled tighter to the chair.
"STAY STILL," his voice shouted in her ear.
"Why should I?" she gasped as the rope bound her tighter and tighter.
His voice softened, "Stop fighting with the rope Cathy. I'm not going to hurt you."
"Why should I believe you? You took my parents," she gasped. She had barely any breathe left in her body.
"Stop struggling and it will loosen its grip." She could see that she had no choice but to listen to him, so she did. The ropes got looser as he had said.
"What do you want me for? I haven't done anything wrong?" The Dome was slowing down and she knew that they would be landing soon.
"I know you haven't done anything wrong. Hold on; we're landing." The Dome landed with a thud. Cathy felt herself being thrown against the wall behind her. The rope let go of her and the lid was released. She looked outside the Dome and saw that there was lots of Domes surrounding them.
"What do you want me for?" she asked as another Dome landed beside them.
"I would like to offer you a job."
"You want to offer me a job?" Cathy let out a sigh of relief, "I thought you were going to..."
"Going to what?" he asked.
"I thought you were going to kill me!" she replied laughing nervously.
"That's only if you're below the average intelligence level by the age of 21," he replied, "And you've never been below the average intelligence level for your age. Do you want the job then?"
"What if I say no?"
"I kill you," he replied, his voice becoming harsh again.
"I'll take it," Cathy said quickly. She looked up and noticed that the sky was blue again and it was full of fluffy white clouds.
"Good. I would like you to do your first job now."
"OK. What would you like me to do?"
"You know Rosie Cane, right?"
"She is my best friend."
"I would like you to dispose of her."
"What do you mean by that?"
"Do I have to spell it out? You go to her Dome and wait for her to get back from school. Then, you get her into your Dome and bring her straight to me. I will do the rest."
"What are you going to do to her?"
"Dispose of her. She has the intelligence level of a three year old. There is no point in keeping her here if she is not learning."
"What if I don't get her here?"
"Then you die in her place. Got it?"
"Yes sir. I'll get her for you as soon as she is out of school."
"That's right. As long as you do what I want, not what you think I want, you will do well. Off you go."
Cathy climbed back into the Dome and fell into one of the seats. The driver closed the lid and took her back to the Domesite where she lived. She dragged herself into her Dome and sat by the window waiting for Rosie to return home. She felt awful. However, if she didn't do as she was told, she would die. That thought scared her. She had to live for her brother.
Her thoughts were suddenly interrupted by Rosie walking up the drive to her house. Cathy was pressing the button to open the lid a few seconds later.
"Rosie," she called, "Come over here. I need to talk to you."
"OK," Rosie replied, walking over to Cathy's Dome and stepping inside it. Cathy had her trapped. All she had to do was close the lid and drive. She froze for a few seconds. Then, she knew what she had to do. She pressed the button and Rosie had no way out.
"Sit down Rosie," Cathy commanded.
"What did you want to talk to me about?" asked Rosie curiously.
"Did they notice I wasn't at school today?" Cathy asked. She sat down in the driver's seat and eased the Dome off of the floor. She did it so smoothly that Rosie didn't even know they were moving.
"I don't think they noticed really. What have you been doing all day?" Rosie enquired. They were speeding over the village and into the countryside beyond it. Rosie had no way out.
"Not a lot really. I have just been finding jobs for XZ3000 to do."
"Hello Cathy," said XZ3000 in his monotonous, droning voice, "I cleaned the Dome. Now what would you like me to do?"
"Could you get Rosie and I a drink please," Cathy answered. They were nearly at the D.D.U. base. Cathy was getting nervous. Rosie still hadn't noticed a thing.
"Yes Cathy," droned XZ3000. The compubot went into another room as Cathy carefully lowered the Dome onto a landing pad. They had stopped and so had Rosie's life. The lid was flung off and two huge men grabbed Rosie from behind and dragged her from the Dome.
"Where are we going? I hope it's somewhere pink and fluffy! Who are you? You seem nice..." Rosie was talking the whole time they lead her to her death. She never felt a thing. Cathy new Rosie was dead because she had stopped speaking.
"I've got your drink Cathy. Where is Rosie?" asked XZ3000 in his flat, one tone voice.
"She's gone XZ3000. Forget her. You'll have to forget a lot of people from now on."
"Do I have to forget you, Cathy?"
"I hope not. Not yet anyway." Cathy closed the lid of the Dome and drove back to the Domesite to meet her little brother when he came home from school.