“Diggs! C’mon man, we gotta keep this moving or we won’t find squat for real dirt by the end of the day!”

‘That had to be Brennan yelling over the drill tube. He’d been at work
on that machine, trying to suck up the dry mud and debris, hoping for a
better chance at the pure stuff.

Diggs wiped his brow, tugging the tube up out of the dirt to stop production. “Eh! Boss says we got to crank this up a notch, people, let’s strip this land and move on.”

Brennan shifted his ball cap over his head as the the light of the sun beat down on the dying meadow. “Say, Diggs, I know you gots your kids birthday today. How’s abouts you go home early?”

“What? And miss a shot at gettin’ some real prime planet core? Bren, you gotta be outta that thick skull of yours. The fuzz ain’t makin’ you nervous are they? You know we’re miles from the cops. Besides, we’re busy. We got two more areas to suck up after this one and-“

“Look” Brennan started up, swinging his clipboard back around in a wide dramatic gesture, “I ain’t tryin’ to steal goods from ya, just thought I’d suggest. She’s a real primer, this one. Just, be careful.”

“Aw, Bren, I’m gonna get all misty. You ain’t still worried about what happened to the McClennan boys are you?” Diggs had taken the time to make mocking smirks at his boss and life-long friend.

“It just… it ain’t right. Like, the ground or somethin’ just ate’em up. They left the tools and ate the people, Diggs. I ain’t wanna see the same happen to you.”

Brennan’s friend just shook his head and turned back on the A34 Soil Remover. The buzz turned to a low hum and soil started to pour through out onto the ground next to him. After Brennan left, Diggs remembered the reports. First, things had gotten real quiet, they read. A few of the soil-miners freaked and the rest were never heard from again. The activists got all up in arms, saying that it was punishment from God or maybe nature fighting back. Hell, it was already illegal to poach earth, but they did it anyways. That was all crud according to Remy Diggs.

“Damn, just got three good ones! Haha!” The soil-miner kept it up, feeding the suction into the ground to have the particles sopped up through the tube and analyzed.

This little machine was amazing, Diggs thought. It could sort out the moisture content in every grain of soil and then, when all was said and done, the same scientists who opposed the “raping of the land” had to bow down to the pure energy brought by a single unidentified element formed in one of three billion grains of soil. Sucker could power Vegas for ten years on just a handful of juiced grains. Ah, and the money sure did roll in.

Diggs was paying so much attention to his device, he didn’t even notice that things had gone real quiet, real fast.