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Rated: E · Short Story · Writing · #2313307
For The Cramp - a story about an animal that predicts the weater
“Pen,” he said. “Gwenny is my last name.”

‘Well hello Mr. Pen Gwenny. I’m Daisy. I’ll let the station manager know you’re here,” said the woman behind the large, oak desk. She waved Pen to a chair nearby and picked up the phone, talking only briefly.

“Welcome to New York, Mr. Gwenny!” a short, round man burst through the doorway from behind Daisy’s desk. “Welcome, indeed!” He grabbed Pen’s flipper, pumping it up and down in a vigorous handshake.

“Great to meet you, Mr. Bacon,” Pen put on his best smile. He put on his best airs. With Penny at home sitting on a clutch, he was about to have two new mouths to feed, and fish were not as cheap as they had been when the last clutch was born. He needed this job.

“One of the things I love about you guys,” the portly man waved a hoof over Pen. “Impeccably dressed at all times.” He turned toward the office from where he came, his curly, pink tale wagging back and forth out from under the bottom of his suitcoat. Pen followed him into a plush office with high back leather chairs facing an enormous desk. Bacon hiked up a short set of stairs to reach his chair, not being a tall man at all.

“I’m happy to be here, Sir,” Pen started.

“Call me Slab, let’s not be so formal,” he chuckled. “Tell me about yourself, Pen. May I call you Pen? Tell me what brings you to New York. And to WPIG.”

“I have heard great things about the station, to be honest,” Pen said. “I’ve been a meteorologist back home for almost twenty years.”
“I’ve seen some of your climate change coverage,” Bacon nodded. “Impressive. Quite frankly, it’s one of the reasons your resume made it to the top of the hill.”

Pen thought about the old days, sliding down the ice hills back home. But things had been getting harder there. And New York did get a lot of snow, he reminded himself. The chicks would definitely have a better education – the best money could buy.

“I am actually looking forward to predicting weather in all four season, Mr. Bacon.”

“Slab, please.”

“Sure thing, Mr. … Slab.” Pen corrected himself. He was not used to being so informal. “As I said, I am really looking forward to predicting weather in all four seasons. I love the challenge of that. I have learned a great deal about it from the scientists who set up their camp just outside of our village back home.”

“I’ve talked with two of those men myself,” Slab nodded. “You have come quite highly recommended.”

“I am flattered.” Pen was not sure what else to say.

“Never sell yourself short, Pen. No pun intended.” Slab chuckled again, pointing a hoof to the stairs he climbed to take his own seat.
“No, sir,” Pen chuckled, too. “Not to worry, Slab. I am easily amused as well.”

“Then you will get on well here. I know your background. I have not only watched you and WICE for the last ten years, but, as I said, you have come with glowing recommendations from several researchers who spent time near your village.”

“It would mean a great deal to my family to move here to the United States.”

“Ah, Family! How many chicks do you have?” Slab beamed.

“Two, and two on the way,” Pen could not help the smile that spread across his face. He glowed with pride when he talked about his chicks. They were the center of his life.

“I’ve got a couple piglets myself,” Slab said, waving his hoof toward what must have been a family portrait. “The cold storage we’ve set up for you until you can buy your own place is close to our farm. I bet our kids will be going to school together!”

“That would be great, Slab. But wait. You said you’ve secured a place for us to live?” He thought they were going to be stuck in the hotel freezer for the near future.

“Of course! In the hopes that you’ll take the job, of course. I hope I didn’t overstep.”

“No sir! Not at all!” Pen could not believe his ears. He had no idea it was all set but the formalities. He was going to be the WPIG meteorologist!

“Great! Let me show you to the meteorology area. I’ve turned the heat down in anticipation of your coming today.”

Pen walked in and could not believe his eyes. What he had down home was pretty fancy, but this place had the absolute most state-of-the-art equipment, technology he had only read about! This was his dream job!

“From the look on your face, I am guessing the answer is yes?” Slab slapped Pen on the back.

“This is my dream job, Sir – Slab. My dream job.”

“Great! I’ll have Daisy work up the paperwork. With a generous sign on bonus, of course.”

Pen hardly heard the rest. All of his long hours had finally paid off. He could show the kids the value of hard work. They would be happy here. He looked up at the radar screen.

“It’s starting to snow!” A smile spread across his face.

word count: 879
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