"And did he use to be a dull roadie?"
Honest to God, he hadn't planned to make that joke. It had just slipped out.
“I’m going to tell him you said that.”
They found the quartermaster a few minutes later. Most of the time he was running a checklist in a storeroom, but apparently he was hiding in his office today. The lunch lady, Ms. Hona, had warned them that he was in a bad mood when she told them this. Rungui chuckled, saying, “He’s always in a bad mood,” before grabbing a tuna sandwich on the way out.
Rungui knocked on the door once, then a second time when no reply came. “Rodie? You in there?” he asked, knocking one last time. Rungui waited, glanced at Dalrin, and shrugged. “Maybe he’s dead.”
With no regard for privacy, the doctor reached for the door. It was unlocked, and swung open on creaky hinges to reveal demoralizing stacks of paperwork and the stale air (of depression) that came with it. Amidst the thick of it was the old quartermaster slumped over his desk, pen in hand, looking like he finally kicked the bucket and took off to somewhere that didn’t resemble corporate ####. His chest rose and fell in a slow, rhythmic fashion, accompanied by muffled breathing and a speck of drool running down his chin. Rungui and Dalrin both got the picture in a heartbeat.
“Well, he looks dead,” Rungui noted through a mouthful of his sandwich. He walked over to Dalrodie and gripped him by the shoulder, giving him a good shake. The sleeping Skakdi didn’t budge, at least not for a good ten seconds. Suddenly, a lazy groan rumbled in the old man’s throat, and he began to stir.
“Rise and shine, Rodie."
At this, the quartermaster stiffened. “Go away.”
“Can’t do that. I need you to authorize this fine gentleman a holster and some ammo.”
Dalrodie considered this for a moment. “Come back tomorrow.”
Rungui sighed. "I’ll leak your ###### history to all of Light Cavalry.”
Dalrodie considered this for a moment too. Slowly, he sat upright, knowing deep down inside that the Vortixx meant every single word. “I swear to god, I’m going to a file a report about your bedside manner.”
“You wouldn’t be the first,” Rungui said dismissively. “Anyway, you remember Dalrin, right? Dalrin Stratos? ‘Cause he certainly doesn’t remember you.” He watched the quartermaster for a reaction but got none. “He needs you to sign him a requisition order for a pistol holster and two boxes of .44 rounds.” Without so much as a second thought, Dalrodie fetched a requisition slip from his desk and got to work with his pen. After a final signature, he handed the paper to Dalrin.
“There. Now #### off.”
“Always a pleasure, Rodie. Give my regards to the ladies.” Rungui waved and left the office with Dalrin.
"You didn't hear this from me but," Rungui started. "I treated him last week for ######## he got from a ######."