it was a Tradition

"New inna loom" was a tradition at the mill. It was a stupid tradition, and everyone - from the shop floor to the offices with the mahogony wains-cotting up the road - knew it, but nonetheless it was a tradition and on some level, that was that.

It boiled down to this - at some point in the first week of their employ, a new boy or girl would be surrounded by their fellow workers, who would seize their limbs and fling them back into the long, taught lines of thread that fed the voracious mechanicals ruling their lives.

There would be cuts, of a kind that only a century later would be seen as psychologically significant. Blood would flow, cries of pain would blend into the sound of the afternoon, and no one would ever speak of it again.


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