Progress Report by Mac Egan

Brothers and Sisters of the Quill, (I’ve been waiting a long time to say that. Funny thing though, it doesn’t look as fun in print as it did when I first thought it up). Anyway, AWordwithYouPress has set a record for the longest running contest in the site’s history. I’m not even sure when this contest started, but it was back sometime when me and Thorn were the same age. We’ve had a couple of good stories and now here’s another one for you to ‘dig into’. Get it? DIG INTO? You know, it’s the theme of the contest. Oh, forget it!

But don’t forget to read this entry into the contest. This is Mac Egan at his best. Somewhere deep inside that brain of his, there’s an inexaustable source of creative and this story is just another testamony to that. This story reminds me of  2001 A SpaceOdyssey when the daily reports were coming in to the austronauts. So, read and enjoy and leave Mac some love waaaaaaay down at the bottom of this page. He’s a real contender with this one.


Progress Report

by Mac Egan


Conditions at site worse than expected.  Power unreliable.  This is the first day since my arrival that I have been able to connect to Central’s servers. Connection may not last, so I will be brief.

I relieved Dowling immediately on arrival and sent him back to Central, but the teams are uneasy with my presence.  They no longer trust anyone from Central.

Met all six Team Leaders on my first da



Situation improving. We’re about two weeks behind schedule due to Dowling’s improper handling of an unreported accident six months ago. Dowling raised daily quotas to make up the loss immediately, but this was unattainable with his reduced workforce. Goal was not reached and he demanded longer hours the next day.  As he pushed harder the crews resisted more, leaving me to deal with the resulting animosity.  I immediately brought the work demands down to reasonable levels. Team Leaders were mostly supportive of my decision, and the crewmembers seem a little more relaxed now than when I first arrived.


Rogers, from Team Three, has an electrical background and offered to troubleshoot the power system.  He was able to repair several shorts in the system and we have worked full schedules the last four days.  Access to Central’s servers is also more reliable, so I will include more detail on my reports to you.

I told the Team Leaders yesterday if we finished excavating the main hub today, everyone would get two days paid leave even though we are severely behind schedule.  They expressed appreciation for me respecting the crews and promised to finish the hub today. Davis just reported the hub is complete, with a little over an hour left in the workday.


Each Team is now working on one of the passageways.  I suggested a contest with the losing Team serving breakfast in quarters to the winning Team, who would be allowed to start a half-hour later.  All Teams made quota that day and Team Five brought breakfast to Team Three.  There is now a spirit of competitive camaraderie.


The power has not faltered in the last four days and the Teams are exceeding quota regularly.  We have made back three lost days.  The Team Leaders are all supportive of me, except for Braden of Team Two.  He is very cynical and I am concerned his attitude will foul the cooperative spirit that has been established.


Teams One and Four issued each other a private challenge and both teams made up another lost day.  I joked that perhaps I have been too easy on everyone. Braden frowned and said he had been waiting on the day I would start raising the quotas again.


Evidently Braden has been sharing his doubts.  All Teams are making quota, but no one is exceeding.  The mood is returning to suspicion and distrust.  I met with all Leaders but Braden and expressed my concerns.  They said they would try to motivate their teams.


We hit a major obstacle today. Tunnel Four changed from bedrock to concrete. Finished steel appeared to be embedded in the concrete.  Central servers have no information; I can only assume this item is from before The Pulse.  I have uploaded images and need a decision on how you want me to proceed.


The object is distracting the crews.  I have tasked Team Four with exposing more of it.  Central, I have not received your decision.


The Teams are refusing to work until they know what the object is.  Some say it is an abandoned machine but others have speculated it is an inert pre-Pulse bomb.  Some said it is an alien spacecraft, used to infiltrate humankind.  Braden mockingly said the aliens were successful and caused The Pulse, but many took him seriously.  When he realized they believed his tales he embellished them even more.


Received your transmission and have assigned Team Four to seal off the tunnel with a solid steel door.  I do not agree – Braden is accusing Central of a cover-up.  I recommend sending new crews to extract the machine and show what it really is.


I have followed instructions, but Braden is targeting me as part of the “conspiracy” and I fear for my safety. I have moved my quarters behind the door.  Are you sending anyone?


Braden cut the power into my area and I am limited to batteries.  I have not received a response from you.


Are you going to help me?  They are cutting through the door right now.  Is anyone reading this?  Send a support team NOW!

The door will fall any moment – I cannot hold off this mob.


Agah asg;lk ‘ga’





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18 thoughts on “Progress Report by Mac Egan

  1. Diane Cresswell says:

    Ah yes now I remember – the thingy in the tunnel a hundred years later…I think!!!! Good one Mac – was glued to the story…literally. Was remembering another scifi movie with Sean Connery in it about Mars. Got discomboobalated with this then I came back…or have I??? Another Mac attack and a good’un too!!!

  2. tlrelf says:

    So, I’m wondering if we should complete the official contest with Thorn in absentia. I sent in an entry that hasn’t been posted and no doubt several other people did as well. What do you think, gang? I forget that other legal term for someone who stands in for someone else. . .

    • Mac Eagan says:

      I don’t think we need a proxy (is that the word you were looking for? It was over there under the coffee table) since Julie was supposed to judge anyway. We do, of course, need The Cowboy to saddle up your tale and ride it into the arena first. And while your story is prancing around that should give a little time to let any other contestants bring their entries back over to the new gate.

  3. tlrelf says:

    Yes, that’s the word! Proxy! I was wondering where I left it. . .How did it get underneath your coffee table? Hmmmm. . .Must be sleepwalking again or that time machine is malfunctioning!

    • Mac Eagan says:

      MY coffee table? I only said THE coffee table – I leave it to your collective imaginations to figure out where I was.
      No, I was not with Thorn.

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