Prompt: After a week, the situation still hadn’t changed.


Fenster Industries wasn’t going to budge and neither were the striking workers. It wasn’t as though either side had a huge complaint, but it seemed that nobody was willing back down, holding out just for the hell of it.

Fenster had always been a fairly decent place to work, George thought, as long as you had to earn a living somewhere. They paid a reasonable rate, supplied health insurance and paid vacations, and offered a plan to help provide for retirement.

“So tell me again, why are you on strike?” Katherine asked him as he settled into the old blue rocker on the tenth day. She carried a dust rag and a sour expression. George hadn’t done a lick of work in all those ten days at home, unless you counted muting the commercials during baseball games. The lack of a paycheck was not helping Kate’s attitude, either.

George checked his watch. He still had another ten minutes to read the paper. He turned the page of the City Sentinel and frowned at the headlines. “Look at this! That damned mayor and his cronies on the Council just voted themselves another raise. Why do they get away with that when all the rest of us have to work our asses off just to make ends meet!”

George didn’t care; he never did get very upset with politics, but he figured that remark would get Katherine going on her favorite topic and keep her off his back for a while. He was actually getting to like this time off. Strikes—as long as they didn’t happen too often—were a pretty good thing, maybe.

By the time Katherine had left the living room, still mumbling abut the deficiencies in local government, the baseball game was due to start. George punched the numbers on the remote and shifted his position just a bit so he could reach the pretzels more easily.

Something was wrong here. Instead of gray and white uniforms on a field of bright green grass, the TV screen was showing a bunch of guys in suits, smiling insincerely and indicating a sign on the table in front of them, which said: