My scary story

“It’s just a vial” he told himself, as he stared at the tray full of small cylindrical glass containers. “You’ve been doing this same thing every day for years!” he exclaimed. “Today is no different” he said his final act of self-cajolement before reaching into the container and lifting the vial filled three quarters full with an unassuming clear liquid. It could have easily been mistaken for water, had he not known in intricate detail that was not, in fact, water.
Percy had been working at the same job for four years. Every day he came in and followed the same routine. Every day except today. “Who cares about some sealant tape over a zipper? It’s just a redundancy anyway, this suit is so well made I could probably poor this stuff all over me and be fine.” Percy slowly and carefully started towards the other side of the room, vial in hand.
He couldn’t figure out how he could have forgotten to tape up his zipper this morning. Every morning for four years, he had come in, put on his yellow suit, applied the blue sealant strip to the zipper that ran down the front of the suit, and walked through the decontamination area into the disposal room. But there was no time for self-pity now, he was in here, and he’d be damned if he was going to waste a whole half an hour going back through decon just to put a piece of tape on.
He was so close, just a few more feet and he was home free. He would set the vial down into the sterilizer, shut the door, and press the start button. That was it. No huge fuss, no need to put all those extra steps into his process, besides, he had never dropped a vial before.
He hadn’t noticed how badly his hands had begun to shake until he was about halfway between the container and the sterilizer. His hands were so sweaty, was he getting nervous? “Maybe you let this get a little too far into your head, Percy. You’ve done this a million times. You. Are. Fine.” By the time he had finished talking he realized that he had been standing in front the machine for more than a few seconds, just staring at the vial.
The work was almost done, he was almost safe. He opened the top of the machine wide, not much left to do at all now. His hand rose up to place the vial into the slot, its final resting place. He was so focused on the slot that he barely realized when the vial hit the side of the machine and cracked.

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