“Bring the damn hose five steps closer.” Felix barks over the lowing hum of a thousand head of cattle and the ever-resonant thrum of the engines. “Are you fucking dim?”

Hari and I are handling it, the carbon steel nozzle gripped firmly in my left hand and a good slug of pressurized water hose tucked into my armpit on the other side, while he wrestles the coiled bit with two hands attempting to maneuver it closer to the soiled pen. Normally protocol does not abide by spraying gushes of free water into the open air of a space freighter, even under the point nine G of acceleration so we’re not used to working the hose, but the remains of the dead cow in pen four-six-three warrant a full decontamination cycle.

“Yeah, yeah.” Hari answers between grunts. “You get over here and help then, huh.” He chides, knowing full well that he’s bordering on insubordination with such comments if Felix were asshole enough to throw the weight of his supervisor pip in Hari’s face.

I give it another grunt and pull the hose five and then some steps closer to where Felix has the pen gate swung wide and hunch my shoulder enough to catch the corner of my uniform sleeve across my sweaty brow.