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Caer Chan Carega #15

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Caer Chan Carega

Chloddio, as one of the safety officers, and one who was on duty the shift before the collapse happened, had been labelled one of the prime scapegoats for the incident. Also held against him was that he found an area of weakness, yet not the larger one that set off the cave-ins, and thus that he was incompetent. Not all of this came from Joestin Hogof himself; much came from the Mine Safety branch of the government, a narrow-minded bureaucracy who always looked for someone to blame, never allowing that some things could simply be accidents. They had read the reports and focused on Chloddio, and so Hogof Mines had also chosen him as the scapegoat, and now here he was, being let go for an accident that was not his fault, and one where he had done the most to try and rescue the trapped workers. Mine Safety saw it as a sign of a guilty conscience, but Hogof was not quite so callous or blind.

“You've been one of our better safety officers in the years you've been here, but this mistake, and the death of seven miners, is too much for Mine Safety to look past, and they've told us you have to go before they will let us reopen the mine. You're probably never going to be able to work in a mine because of that, at least, not in anything resembling a position of importance. However, the hours you put in trying to rescue the miners and your prior service mean you've done pretty well here, and because of that, I'm going to give you another four months pay.”

Chloddio stood there for a moment, not expecting that much generosity from the man who owned the mine. However, his reputation for fairness had preceded him. The stonemage realized that Joestin was waiting for him to reply, looking at Chloddio with an expectant eye.

“Thank you, sir. I wasn't really expecting other than being let go, not after I came upon the rockfall that had killed the six at the exploratory face. Its nice knowing not everyone blamed me for that. I'll be going now, though. I have to begin looking for a job, and I don't want to squander your generosity.” Chloddio turned to the door, his hand on the latch, when the mine owner spoke again.

“There is one other thing. I spoke to the head of the City Guard. They're always understaffed because the rulers won't pay as well as the mines will, so they're willing to take anyone. You're pretty smart, you have some extra talents, and you're strong from working in the mines. You'll get promoted quickly, if you feel that its for you.”

Chloddio smiled. He wasn't quite so without options as he had thought. “Thank you again. I just might have to look into that.” He turned and walked out the door. This time, he was going to stay in the open air and the high mountains that he loved.


Caer Chan Carega #15 © Stratovarius

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