HITCHENS: You’re Edward.
EDWARD: Um, yes. Uh… yes.
HITCHENS: Edward, do you know who I am?
EDWARD: Um… You’re, you’re Mr. Hitchens.
EDWARD: Hitchens. That’s, um… I think that’s what I said.
HITCHENS: It’s just Hitchens, Edward.
EDWARD: Oh, it, it–
HITCHENS: Why do you think you’d be right for this job, Edward?
EDWARD: Why do I, um… I think that, um… Well, I think that… Um, Mr. um…, er, Hitchens?
HITCHENS: Just Hitchens. Yes, Edward.
EDWARD: They actually didn’t tell me anything about the job. So…
HITCHENS: I find that hard to believe, Edward.
EDWARD: Oh. But… No. They didn’t tell me.
HITCHENS: I admire your honesty, Edward.
EDWARD: Uh… thanks, thank you.
HITCHENS: However I deplore unpreparedness. Though apparently it’s not your fault, is that right?
EDWARD: No, I… They said you’d explain the job.
HITCHENS: Let me ask you something, Edward. Do you have quick, dextrous hands?
EDWARD: Hands, sir? I…
EDWARD: Hit– Hitchens.
HITCHENS: Do you have quick, dextrous hands, Edward.
EDWARD: I… do?
HITCHENS: And are you tolerant of extremely high temperatures?
EDWARD: I… I don’t know, sir. I don’t… I don’t think so. Not particularly.
HITCHENS: Your letter says you are.
EDWARD: It… It does?
HITCHENS: The letter from Employment. It does.
EDWARD: Oh. Well, um… how high? The temperatures.
HITCHENS: Very high, Edward.
EDWARD: Oh. Oh, in that case–
HITCHENS: Let me ask you, Edward, whether you think you could maintain manual dexterity over extended periods in high temperatures.
EDWARD: Um… sir? I’m really not sure I could.
EDWARD: I’m sorry, sir, I’m not trying to… to… I’m not hoping to get out of the job, sir, it’s just I’m really not sure I could… could…
HITCHENS: Edward, of course no one enjoys working under adverse conditions. But you go home at the end of the day to comfort. To everything you need for sustaining a fulfilling existence. And in exchange you work. That’s how we run a society. It’s how society has always been run, Edward.
EDWARD: Yes, sir, that’s true, I just–
HITCHENS: Edward, you dealt cards in Recreation for three years. I have no reservations about your dexterity. Neither should you. This is substantially the same thing, except instead of cards you’ll be working with organics.
EDWARD: O- Organics, sir?
HITCHENS: Living tissue, Edward. Ergo the heat. Incubation.
EDWARD: Sir, I– I–
HITCHENS: I’m awarding you the post, Edward. Please be here tomorrow for standard schedule. Entry is on level 6.
EDWARD: Thank you, sir.
HITCHENS: Hitchens, Edward. You’re welcome.