0.01: A Day in the Life.

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"Prepare to be sanitized."

A docile robotic voice filled the sterile silence. Looking around the chamber, he found himself alone. This was good. Very good.

"Please remove all articles of clothing for the sanitation procedure to begin."

Alone, nerves still shaking, he did as he was told. All the while his eyes remained transfixed on the tiny airtight and bulletproof porthole in the hatch. Every motion was done on full alert in anticipation of someone passing by. In the event a single face appeared in that window he was ready to cover himself and risk vaporization.

"Please stand with your arms away from your sides and legs separated," the diagram of a generic figure appeared on the console before him. It assumed the prescribed position on repeat, "Remain still throughout the sanitization process. Thank you."

After once more confirming he was alone, he assumed the position commanded by the automated system.

A rush of cold air and a fine mist of some kind covered his body. It hurt the most when it came in contact with open or healing wounds, but otherwise, it wasn't a terribly uncomfortable experience. It lasted only a matter of seconds, but it was a matter of seconds in which he was completely naked. His eyes remained trained on the tiny window in the exit hatch in case anyone decided to pass by.

Luckily the agonizing moments passed almost as quickly as they should have. Once the gust of freezing air was done spreading whatever the substance was it used to sanitize his flesh, he immediately darted for his clothes.

"You may now dress," the gentle, automated voice suggested as he already had his underwear back on.

"When you are ready, please present your Riftworks ID to the forward console to be allowed entry. If you are not a Riftworks employee, please provide your D Grade ID to the forward console for evaluation by security personnel. This may take several minutes. If you are asked to leave, please do so as this chamber is equipped with an incinerator. You will not feel anything, but you will cease to exist. Your ashes will be collected and mailed to your next of kin. Thank you."

He was already fumbling through his pockets trying to find his keycard. He couldn't afford to have lost it again...

"If you are a Riftworks employee and have misplaced your ID, please use the green button on the forward console to contact personnel. Your pay will be docked accordingly."

"I didn't lose it, you bloody robot," he muttered until he finally thought to check his inner coat pocket. With a sigh of relief, he withdrew the plastic card.

He managed to insert his ID into the console just as the automated system began repeating.

"One moment," it interrupted itself, "Please enter your name and ID number. Do not remove your card during this process."

"Shit," he muttered as he typed what little he could remember of his ID number.

"Name and ID number do not match. You have three more attempts before this chamber is locked down and Security is alerted."

Which one was wrong? His mind raced. He couldn't take his card out to check, so he entered both sets of information again.

"Name not found in database. You have two more attempts before this chamber is locked down and Security is alerted."

"Fuck fuck fuck..."

"When you are ready..." the message began looping again.

"SHUT UP!" he bellowed.

His mind went through every number he'd put in. He was certain that was the right... He sighed heavily as realization set in. Name. Right... It took every fiber of his being to resist the urge to slam his fists against the door. Instead, biting his lip, he began entering the name the system wanted.

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