The Quiet One
By Audrey W.
It was a busy morning for the men of Station 51’s A-shift, with a call coming in for both vehicles right before Hank Stanley had completed roll call. Two hours after the first run began, they were finally back, and the captain was able to assign the chores for the day.
Once their assigned duties were complete, four of the men went out to the back parking lot to shoot a few hoops. Only Mike and Hank were still busy elsewhere. By luck, no calls interrupted the basket ball game and thirty minutes later, the four players made their way into the dayroom for some refreshment.
Soon Captain Stanley peeked in, his eyes scanning the room. The one man he was looking for from his crew was missing.
Chet and Johnny shrugged, while Marco answered.
“He’s out front mowing the lawn.”
“STILL? The station’s only got two small patches of grass.”
“He’s thorough, Cap,” Johnny reminded. “What can we say? He’s ‘Mike’.”
The others grinned and nodded.
“I don’t hear the mower running. Do any of you?”
The mention of the lack of sound made the men realize they hadn’t heard anything in the way of a mower for well over twenty minutes. Roy and Johnny exchanged worried glances as they each recalled a rescue in which a young man had been seriously injured by shrapnel his lawn mower had kicked up.
Suddenly the two paramedics rushed out, the others following behind as they all ran towards the front yard. When they got to the open apparatus bay doors, the five men stopped, their mouths hanging open in surprise.
There was Mike standing beside the flagpole, a smile on his face. Three beautiful young women in crop tops and hot pants stood near him, two of them giggling while the other talked to the engineer. The grass was only partially cut and the mower sat quietly a few feet from Stoker.
“Ah man,” Johnny groaned, wishing it were he out there.
Chet looked at the others, an equally unhappy expression on his face. “How come it’s always the quiet ones?”