Teasers: Hour of the Crab by Patricia Robertson
“Ed, Ed Stefanovich, would be taking him up. Steady Eddie. He knew all the pilots; he’d been flying in these mountains for longer than he wanted to remember. –You got one of the Vulcan crews this time, eh? Ed said as they walked across the tarmac. –Skookum bunch of kids. Dave took em up last week.
They’d told Ty that when they called him out; all the Wildfire Service crews were on other jobs. Since his back injury the year before, when he’d been off for four long months, he’d become an itinerant crew boss, flown in on relief or wherever they needed to cobble a crew together. Vulcan had a great rep; he’d heard only good things.
–For pity’s sake, Parveen said after he’d sprained his back. –Last year your shoulder, this year your lumbar. You’ve been doing this half your life, sweetie. You’re getting too old.
But thirty-seven wasn’t old. Some of the men he worked with were in their forties, even fifties, now they were calling out the retired veterans as well. The contract crews like Vulcan’s were younger, mostly college kids, though fighting fires year-round meant there was more of a mix. Every year was worse than the year before. He’d still been in college, back in 2017, when the province had the worst season in its history: 1,064 fires scorching over a million hectares of forest. That twenty-year-old record had long receded, along with his plans to teach anthropology. Firefighting paid better and meant steady work.”
–Excerpted from Hour of the Crab by Patricia Robertson. Published by Goose Lane Editions. gooselane.com