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One of my favourite stories from my DeviantArt (https://vexedstories.deviantart.com)

With the new justice system steadily in place, Brian had found that the factory was a well oiled machine. Criminals would come in one end, they'd go along the conveyor belt, get shrunk and then come out the other end. He was in charge of criminal intake, he'd watch them come in and disappear into the shrinking machine. From time to time, he'd stop and start the process to tweak things too.

Catelyn, his boss, often came to chat with Brian. They were extremely good friends. “Hey Brian, how's it going?” she shouted over to him as he peered over his observation balcony. “Not too bad, how about yourself?” he replied, turning to face her. “I'm good, just caught a Red jumping off the conveyor belt” she stated smiling.

Brian looked slightly shocked and laughed “where's he now?”. Pulling a small man out her back pocket, she held him out in front of her. “You know I like to keep the stragglers” she said cheekily. Brian smiled, feeling the tiniest bit of empathy for the little guy. He had heard rumours of what Catelyn would do with the Reds, from his count alone she had taken at least eight of the stragglers this week.

“Well I'll see you at lunch time” Catelyn said as she pocketed the small man and walked off back to her office. Brian pondered their tiny lives, part of him worried about their wellbeing. God only knows what happens behind closed doors, he didn't plan on ever finding out. This job paid the bills and that's all he needed to know.

Lunch began and ended as usual, Brian was full of excitement. Today was his last day before a 2 week holiday, he planned to just stay home and relax the entire time. Just him and his gaming consoles, it was going to be sweet bliss!

As the final hour approached, the conveyor belt came to a halt and, seeing this, Brian jumped to action. He had to climb in and reattach a pipe as quick as possible to avoid too many of the still human sized Reds coming through and not being shrunk. Lucky for Brian he had to manually go back up to his observation balcony and turn the machine back on once he was done, so there was no concern for getting stuck.

As Brian climbed inside the machine to reattach the pipe, Catelyn exited her office to check why the machine had stopped. She walked over to the observation balcony, noticing Brian's absence. “Must've left early, he deserves it though. I'll handle this one” she thought to herself. And with that, just as Brian successfully clicked in the pipe, Catelyn slammed her hand down on the manual restart button and away it went.

Brian heard the machine start up again as he attached the pipe, panicking he ran for the exit. However, the doors slammed down in front of him and trapped him inside. He knew what was coming now as he looked up at the beam zapping down from above.

Within seconds Brian was barely an inch tall and he passed out the other side of the machine. He peered up towards the observation balcony and saw Catelyn overseeing things. He needed to get her attention.

As he drew closer to the final stage of the reduction process, boxing, Brian scaled the conveyor belt wall and jumped over. He fell to the hard concrete below and began making his way towards the observation balcony.

Catelyn, having noticed a Red climb over board, began approaching it. She peered down at him inquisitively. Brian jumped up and down, waving his hands, optimistic she had seen him. He could just get turned back and everything would be fine, he told himself.

Catelyn reached down to pick him up slowly. Glad to have been found before he was boxed, Brian allowed it. Her hand slowly came around him, before suddenly she gripped down hard and fast. “Gotcha!” She shouted, as she picked him up.

Scared and confused, Brian looked up towards her. “Two in the past few hours, it's my lucky day!” She exclaimed, completely ignoring the tiny Red in her hand and even then unable to hear the usual pleas due to the noise of the machine. Brian hit at her hand and tried to shout for her attention but had no such luck. Catelyn just continued to walk, oblivious of her friends plight in her hand.

Entering her office, the sounds of the factory lessened as the door closed to create a perfect seal. Walking around to her desk, she sat down and with her spare hand opened a drawer. Catelyn pulled out a small box and clicked it open. Brian looked inside from his vantage point and saw at least 10 Reds all jumping and screaming for help.

Screaming and crying for her help, he waved over to her. Catelyn ignored him, dismissing his screams for the usual stuff, she barely gave him half a glimpse before she threw him inside. Beaten, he peered up from inside the box, seeing only Catelyn’s uncaring face not even looking inside as the box was slammed shut and stuffed back into her desk.

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