Token Economy


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Alek placed his forms titled 'dole application' in front of the woman with the 'fuck you' face while she continued to type with her eyes glued to the screen, keeping her 'fuck you' discreet, professional. He drummed his fingers on the counter and felt her shiver of irritation. When she finally turned her face his way, she'd pulled her lips into a stiff smile. She flicked through the pages, then checked her screen.

‘Your resume writing course is 9am Mondays.’

 ‘That’s when I see my parole officer.’

‘You have to do it to qualify for the dole.’

‘I can write a resume.’

 He saw she didn’t believe him, criminals were illiterate in her world. ‘I wrote the plans for the robbery. I can write a resume, in fact, I’ll put that job right at the top.’ He felt the flicker satisfaction he gave them both.

‘Wise guy huh?’

Just get a fucking job is what she wanted to say. Alek saw it twitching away behind that frozen smile. She got off on it. He had an urge to call her a cunt only he knew it would have no impact in a place like this where all the cunts used words like cunt all the time. It would just thrill her more. Alek took his forms and left Centrelink. He revved the engine as he drove out, then gunned it down the road. He liked the way the cars in front rushed towards him, but he had to brake hard because the fuckwits were taking up both lanes. One of them had wanker plates, Topdog. He felt the buzz of a text and pulled his phone out. Well, hello! Kelly was back in town. He imagined running his tongue along the bumps of her exquisite spine, then he’d turn her over and…she had a great moan, Kelly, but he hadn't grabbed a fistful of pubic hair in a while. You used to be able to just slip you hand in and grab, he wondered if they missed that too, now only empty air between them. He started typing back, when he caught the flash of blue and heard the short wail of the siren. He watched the cop pull over behind him and approach his car.

 ‘Do you know why I pulled you over?’

 ‘No, sir.’

‘You were texting weren’t you?’

‘Checking the time sir, I’m late for work.’

‘So that’d be why you were going ninety in a sixty zone?’

' I thought that was just a suggestion.’

‘Wise guy huh?’ The cop started to write in his ticket book. Alek was already sick of his face. He could feel the motor running under him, so he took off, laughing at the image in his rear view mirror of the cop running clumsily back to his car.  He heard the wail of the siren a moment later. He pressed his foot down and the wailing rose and fell behind him. The road ahead was clear as it rushed towards him. This way he would satisfy them all.


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