The Water

To sauergeek‘s prompt. Modern era, unknown setting.

The people of Greenville had been pleased to finally get a proper water processing plant. The wells had been producing sporadically for decades now, and the Crooked Lake, while beautiful, was too often green and not the tastiest water by far.

The company that installed it came in shiny trucks and cars with cleansuits and many instruments. “Looks like an alien invasion:” Bernie McDonald wasn’t the first to say it, but he was the loudest.

“Or some sort of government takeover. Men in black.” Gennie Simmons was far quieter than her cousin, but when she spoke, people listened.

“Nonsense, Gennie, they’re in white,” scoffed Bernie. But he, loud as he was, and she, in her retiring way, kept an eye on the workers and the cars, the machinery and and intake tubes, the chemicals and the filters. They were retired, decades past retirement, actually, like half the town. They had time to spy, and they spied thoroughly.

The problem in all that spying was, it wasn’t something the water plant people were putting in that was the problem. It was what they were taking out.

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