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The Hospital Ship - Page By Page

Chapter 3 - Released from Hospital - Page_39

The experience of being the centre of attention as though some exotic creature increasingly began to pall. As the evening moved on, time ticked by slowly for Functionary. Finally, as the crowds outside the bar began to thin, the party began to break-up. But somewhat to the frustration of Functionary, rather than head back to their own apartment, Judith and Functionary followed another couple to their apartment. While Judith chatted gayly with the hosts, Functionary was left to look around at another set of living quarters, which he now appreciated adhered to a fairly common and rather minimal standard. A few bland rooms with decoration and paintwork which seemed universally inoffensive no matter where you were in the galaxy and no matter with which life forms you were passing your time. Looking around, Functionary thought of the ship and envisaged thousands of beings boxed into similar small living spaces, like battery birds, released solely for work and brief moments of social release. Functionary shuddered as he contemplated the prospect of long-term existence upon this vessel, if he reflected to himself that life for many lifeforms within the System, from which he had come, was really no different. His revery was abruptly end by Judith nagging him that it was time for them to leave.

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