Dan Pahnke
The Superior Arsenal Excerpt

            As Terrance walked past the rows of cubicles, out the door, and down the hallway he felt like he was back in school again headed for the principal’s office. Like the fourth grade incident with the laser pointer. He had finished his class assignments and made up a game where he awarded points to himself for how close to his intended target the spot appeared when he turned the pointer on. The principal didn’t accept his arguments that he was neither hurting anybody, disturbing anybody, nor had anything else to do. He was assigned after-school detention for the rest of the week.
            When he reached the elevator bank he pressed the ‘Up’ button.
The last time Mrs. Pfefferman called him in for a little ‘chat’, it was about his ‘window cam’. Three rows of cubicles and two aisles lay between his desk and the glass wall that overlooked the city. All he had done was attach a wireless camera to a cubicle in the outside row and point it out the window. It turned out that the powers-that-be frowned upon this solution as much as they had the low-tech double mirror periscope he had originally installed inside his cubicle.
            He was sincere when he told Maya that he would suppress his creative urges when he got bored. As he reached the Human Resources office door, he vowed to make Mrs. Pfefferman believe him also. He wouldn’t let Maya down. Not now.
            Mrs. Pfefferman, in her usual gray business suit, was standing next to her desk when he walked into her office. She strode across the room, closed the door, took his hand and led him to one of a pair of chairs placed facing the front of her desk. She said, “Please sit down Terrance. I have something to tell you.” After they were seated she said, “Terrance. This is Officer McDaniel of the Atlanta Police Department.” Terrance turned around and saw the uniformed police officer standing in the corner of the room.
            “Are you Terrance Tucker?”
            Completely bewildered, all he could do was reply, “Yes.”
            “And your wife’s name is Maya Tucker?”
            With a feeling of foreboding he replied again, “Yes. What is this all about?”


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