A Blog by the Author Michael Campling
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Coming soon – the third Brent Bolster book.
I hope this gives you a laugh.
Brent slumped at his desk, staring at his handset. Ring, damn you, he thought. One call. I don’t care if it’s an old lady who’s lost her cat, or a wrong number. I don’t care if it’s telesales for an eyeball replacement service. I don’t even care if it’s No-nose Pete, freshly escaped from the penal colony on Mars and pausing to deliver a few death threats before moving in for the kill. Just ring!
Across the office, Rawlgeeb sat back in his chair, the servos in the seat’s specially reinforced mechanism scarcely squeaking as they adjusted to his position. “Esteemed colleague, you seem to be taking your time over those reports. Have you got onto the fiscal projections for the third quarter? There was something I wanted to point out to you.”
“Right.” Brent glanced at the piles of documents arrayed in neat rows across his desk. “Third quarter. Was that the color-coded one?” He selected a thick wad of paper, touching it gingerly as if it might explode. “Yeah, that was good. Great, in fact. I especially liked the, er, the part about pencil sharpeners.”
Rawlgeeb smiled. “Yes, the formulas in the pivot table were tricky to get right, but I nailed it in the end.”
“There’s only one thing I wanted to mention. There was something that didn’t seem quite right to me.”
“Oh? But the figures reconciled perfectly. I checked them four times. All of them.”
Brent shook his head sadly. “It was some little thing. Maybe you missed out a decimal point. Something like that.”
“No. Not a decimal point.” Rawlgeeb’s hand went to his chest. “Anything but that. I just couldn’t have made such a grievous error. On Gloabon, such mistakes are punishable by five years of hard labor.”
“Maybe it was something else then. Let me see.” Brent flicked over a few pages before plucking a sheet from the pile. “Here it is. Yeah, I think you should’ve skipped the dream ballet in act six – it gave away too much of the subtext and undermined the protagonist’s underlying motivation.”
Rawlgeeb glared in silence for a second, then he leaned forward, gripping the edge of his desk, his cervical vertebrae clicking as he craned his neck. “Very funny, Brent. Hilarious. You should submit that to one of those satirical websites. They could post it under famous last words.” read more…