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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Action/Adventure · #2210355
An out-of-date Steampunk Factory must prove its reliability or risk being shut down.
The Old Steampot is a greatly vast place in the South-Eastern parts of the world. Wherever you go in this place, there are steam and cogs everywhere. Steampunk is the essential theme of this place, and the workers couldn't agree more.

Bells, Whistles, Clocks and Gears. These are some of the items these guys can fix. And when I say these guys, I mean the Klinkers. The hard-working crew work day and night, fixing everything through the power of steam.

Gox is the boss of the crew. With his single eye managing all the activities in the Steampot, he doesn't let anything go out of control in this place. Those 4 crab-like legs, golden mustache and steam cap mean he's a boy who takes business seriously.

Jinky is Gox's right hand man. This tall guy treats all the guests who visit the Steampot with honour and respect. When he's not working however, he would be practicing to the Mystic Knights rock music, as he wishes to be one himself. Those long metallic arms and legs may help him in doing so.

Jinky's job at the Steampot would normally be treating the guests, if there were any guests. Because of civilization evolution, people have begun to stop using steam. The power of electricity has proven more efficient, threatening the poor Klinkers.

"Sigh. Another day without a job. Soon we'll be rusting without work.", Gox said in his office one day. He hasn't had any appointments with anyone in years. The elder droid has been aching his axles, eagerly waiting for work. But alas, nobody would want steam anymore.

What Gox has been doing is maintaining the Steampot itself, making sure everything was up and running, just in case there was something to be fixed. He'd check every gear and pipe every day, making sure they were in good condition.

But with every gear he polished, another day has passed without work. He felt really lonely, since nobody has ever visited him in the factory, barring his own staff. With every tick of a clock, no body had entered the Old Steampot.

"Ah well. Another day without a job. I'll just clear these papers and close up for the day.", Gox said as he said every night. Every night when his staff goes home, Gox always goes home last to ensure the factory is secure before night.

When everything is greased and polished for the night, Gox finally locks the factory doors and heads home to his little apartment in the factory. Nobody but him knows that the factory has always been his home since it opened, and he intends to preserve it that way.

Making himself a cup of coffee, Gox sits on his favourite chair and sips it, listening to the serene songs of classical music. As he sits and listens, with his little light bulb illuminating his home, he often thinks about the future and past of the Steampot.

"Tick, Tick, Tick...", the sound his clocks make as he thinks. The bright and successful past of the Old Steampot brings joy to Gox, but the present events cause him to worry about the future. "There's still a lot of time. I just don't know if we can maintain the factory.", he thinks.

Once his coffee and songs have finished, Gox oils his old axles, polishes his mustache, and lies down on his bed. Before he closes his eye, he always prays, "To see the Steampot's gears continuing to turn, I hope that we'll have more jobs to earn.". Once he finishes, he goes to sleep.

The next day, the Steampot was just as deserted as every other day since. In fact, some of the workers decided to quit work, making even more trouble for the struggling factory. The gears turned slower and slower, as if they were being forced to move when they should stop.

Gox dissapointedly went to his desk, thinking about the dying condition of the Steampot. Thinking hard, he wondered how he could save the company, let alone if there was any hope for it. As his pistons pumped his mind, Jinky worriedly entered his private office.

"Sir! We have guests! They request to see you immediately!", Jinky hastedly told Gox. Initially, Gox was excited, as someone had finally come to visit the dying company. But Jinky's expression removed that mood, as if something terrible would happen.

Neverless, Gox had to find out about this himself. Otherwise, how else would he save this factory, let alone his own home. Agreeing to go with Jinky, Gox had to find out for himself as to whether these guests would support or destroy the Steampot.

At the golden-brown carpet of the main lobby, 3 finely dressed men were waiting for Gox. The two men on the sides had 4 big, muscular arms while the man in the middle had green skin and wore a white hat with a cash symbol on it. The very sight of these aristocratic men prove they're here for business.

As Gox saw them, he began to tremble. "What would these men say about the Steampot? What could happen if something was wrong? Would the Steampot ever get visitors again?", he thought to himself as he continued to the visitors.

Alas, seeing Jinky reminded him of why he was doing this. To save the Steampot, he needed to show guests that it's still a reliable and efficient factory. So Gox cleared his mind of the negativity, took a few steps forward, and soon arrived to the guests.

"Welcome to the Steampot, Gentlemen. My name is Gox, and I own this vast organisation.", Gox politely said as he introduced himself. The man with green skin shook Gox's hand as he introduced himself as Bucks Gazillion.

Bucks Gazillion was formerly a famed World Class Wrestler, but had since retired and instead became a very wealthy businessman and bank owner. Though he had a cheery smile, that all changed as he came with unfortunate news for Gox.

He briefly explained the situation to Gox. "The Old Steampot has not been in business lately. According to the official business laws, this factory is going out of business and soon to be acquired by the bank. I am here to state this to you.", Bucks regretfully said.

Gox and Jinky were shocked. Gox had anticipated that this could happen but he could never have predicted they would take his home." Wait! Isn't there something we can do? Like when's the deadline for the confiscation?", Gox begged Bucks.

"Well there isn't much to do, but according to the laws, unless 10000 dollars are to be paid in full by the end of the week, this factory shall be confiscated by the bank.", Bucks said. He was unsure of whether or not Gox has the money to pay the cost, as there hasn't been any business.

Gox was worried. How was he going to pay 10000 dollars in 1 week when he barely had a business. Even so, he decided to make that deal and earn the money needed to save the Steampot. Even if he rusts while doing so, he isn't going to stop and let this factory be taken away.

"I accept. If I have 1 week, I'll start from today. You'll have your 10000 dollars by next Tuesday.", Gox told Bucks. Looking into Gox's determined eye, Bucks could tell he was serious. Without hesitation, Bucks agreed to Gox's deal.

"Remember Gox. You need 10000 dollars or the bank will have the Steampot.", Bucks reminded Gox and Jinky as he and his to accomplices left the building. After their departure, Jinky looked worried. Gox had never been this determined before, but he decided to help his boss and friend out.

"Alright Jinky, we need to find a way to acquire 10000 dollars. Therefore, I need you to go to the financing room and check how much money we have. I'll go and look for ways to get us some work.", Gox told Jinky. Without wasting anymore time, Gox and Jinky got to work.

As Jinky headed to the financing room, Gox rushed around the Steampot to a special map room. He knew he had to make smart investments if he didn't want to lose the Steampot, so he used his superior business skills to help him find work.

As Gox worked on and on, he heard the sound of bolts tightening. Knowing that something could be happening in the Steampot, he rushed over to see what was making the racket. Following the echoing sound of the tightening bolts, Gox searched for the unknown source of the sound.

As the sound got louder, he had then heard steam leaking. Gox got even more worried hearing the hiss, and rushed as fast as his four crab-like legs could carry him. Once he arrived at the sound, he seemed very upset. The source of the sound was from the boiler room.

"What's going on in here?!", Gox angrily asked as he entered the boiler room. Within the boiler room, there was an enormous tank holding a large supply of water, which sends out steam throughout the Steampot via pipes. True to its name, the boiler room was the heart of the Steampot.

At the bottom of the boiler, Gox had found the source of the mysterious sounds. A large hand was opening and closing as if it were to the beat of music. On the other side of that large hand was a smaller gold arm holding a black wrench.

Well from afar, it looks like a wrench, but it was actually a smaller hand, screwing into the boiler. The cause of the noise was none other than Kamzo, the little Steampot mechanic who loves nothing more than machinery.

"I say. What's going on Kamzo?", Gox asked politely. Despite not approving Kamzo's tinkering, he decided to withdraw his disappointment. "Oh, sorry boss. There was just a small leak in the pipes, so I was just trying to fix it", Kamzo replied.

Gox took a look at Kamzo and the boiler, simultaneously and separately. He believed this was a revelation of a young worker like Kamzo trying to fix the heart of the old. Gox's anger seemed out of his pipes with a hiss, and it was gone.

"Thank you, chap. Thank you for keeping the Steampot's pride well. I won't forget this.", Gox said, expressing his gratitude. He knew that within the week's end, the Steampot will be gone, and his young worker's job will be over.

But as he was thinking, Junky suddenly burst into the boiler room, slightly startling Gox and Kamzo." Sir! Sir! Sir! We have a customer! A customer!", Jinky excitedly said. Gox could not belive what he was hearing. After years of waiting, a customer had come.

Rushing to meet the customer, Gox combed his mustache,as he wanted to make a good first impression. At the main lobby, Gox observed a young droid in a fresh coat of orange paint. Wearing smart glasses, and having sturdy alloy limbs, this was a fine customer indeed.

However, the ambience and scene soon became a disaster. Coming out of the customer's back was smoke rising like a volcano, with sounds of creaking and whirring. The smoke spread throughout the entire lobby, gagging anyone who was present.

"Hello there. My name is Gox. Welcome to the Steampot", Gox introduced himself. It wasn't easy after all, as the customer was within a large fog of black smoke, making rusty screeches.

"Pardon me. But my name is Blocked. I'm a Synchron model who needs help. My engine has been busted and its an old model. I don't have enough money to buy a new model, so I came to ask you if you could help", the customer said.

Within the smoke, Gox could observe Blocked's engine. It was a very old model, last seen during the Steampot's prime. But Gox wasn't going to give up on his first customer in years, and so he agreed to help.

"Kamzo! Jinky! Bring me my tools please. And while your at it, I also need my monoggles.", Gox requested. "Right away, sir!" his two workers happily said, and rushed off to find the equipment.

Jinky and Kamzo raced to the tool shack, which was a room filled with tools and equipment. Despite being unused for years, the Klinker's had spent their time polishing their tools, making sure that they were in a fine condition.

While Jinky and Kamzo searched, Gox had invited Blocked for a cup of tea in order to sooth his axles. As they were supping their drinks, Gox told Blocked about their predicament. "Oh dear. I'm sorry to hear that", Blocked replied regretfully, "But don't worry. I'll pay you as much as I can when we're done", he added.

As the two finished their conversation, Jinky and Kamzo had returned with the items. "Excellent! Now we can get to work!", Gox happily replied. He put on his monoggles and took out a small Twinch, which were a small pair of wrench-like tweezers.

As Gox observed the engine, he found a small string that could start the engine. When he observed this, he gripped the handle with his Twinch, preparing to pull it. Blocked so what his mechanic was doing, but he trusted Gox and permitted him to pull.

That was when it all became bad. Simply pulling the string started the engine, but the motors in the engine revved and revved on and on. Smoke was rushing out faster, and soon Blocked and Gix were both vibrating quickly. The engine was shaking them so quickly, it concluded with a mild explosion.

Jinky and Kamzo both took cover during the process, and rose their heads in awe and surprise as to what had happened. The entire lobby was covered in soot, and in the center of the room were a soot-covered Gox and Blocked, fazed by the mild explosion.

To their surprise, however, the engine seemed fine. The noise was no longer an ear-splitting sound, but rather a quiet hum. The black smoke originally coming out of the engine had vanished, as it was replaced with small puffs instead.
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