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The end is here

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Blackout

14 Aug 06

Violet gives her account of the blackout. She was with Kurt when it happened, and the enormity of it all wasn't immediately apparent... but it's sunk in now. Even on Earth, the darkness seems deeper.


When the power went out, I was in Kurt's office trying to persuade him that really, truly, the world would not end if he stepped out of the office for half an hour and actually, you know, ate something, lunch being long since overdue. He's been working very hard since Anna's been gone. I think he's trying to work off some sort of self-imposed penance since Anna covered for him when he hared off after Miranda. Anyway, I was citing all kinds of research showing how lowered blood sugar and lowered productivity are inextricably linked, when the overhead lights flickered out, to be replaced by a symphony of beeps and alarms as all of Kurt's gear at once panicked at him.

He silenced it all pretty quickly and starting shutting things down to conserve emergency power. Then Von came in and asked if we'd noticed the Earth data link had failed. Kurt rolled his eyes and speculated that some critical routing system in the building had failed.

We only found out the scope of the problem when we ducked out to find someplace to eat. I mean, we don't have power failures in the city very often, and I honestly don't remember ever being in the middle of one myself before, but it's part of the canon of disasters-you-should-be-prepared-for, so why would we think it was important? We were sure it just the building. But then we found a milling crowd outside, comparing information from calls to other parts of town, and found out that the problem was with the whole Academy - or the whole Old Town - or the whole city, depending on who you asked.

Before long, we had confirmation that it would be hours in fixing from somebody with a cousin that works at the Electrical Authority. The subway and car systems were down, so Kurt and I walked together to my dad's official house to try to wait it out. We mostly sat in a swing the garden with some bottles filched from the important-guests-only wine cellar, watching the sun set, and then watching the stars - so much brighter than usual - and in general not talking very much. In a technological world, you get used to the soothing hum of machinery working behind the scenes to make everything smoother, faster, more comfortable. The quiet in the city was positively eerie.

Kurt got a call at around 2 in the morning summoning him to the CRR. That was when we learned that all of this was no accident.

I think they spent all of Friday and Saturday trying to fix the old link, obviously with no success. I'm not clear on the details, but I gather you guys pulled together and managed to kick open the new link in San Francisco just before the carrier wave vanished. Thank you for that. I should be used to saying it by now - it looks like we owe you. Again.

As for what exactly happened... I'm still trying to put it all together. Everyone I know who has any hard information has been in nonstop crisis meetings or emergency sessions or strategic all-nighters or other important-sounding things that mean "too busy to fill you in, Violet, so go play with your toys and leave us alone."

I've picked up a few bits and pieces, though, and the more I think about it, the queasier I become. It sounds like there was a synchronised strike, and the Third Power cut the data link and opened some sort of wormhole to Earth at the same time. And it sounds like the Third Power succeeded in sending people to Earth.

I keep thinking about that list of names: Fran, Pietro, Monica, Cymbalisty, Anna. I really hope you all keep your doors locked at night.

The Perplex City Academy Cube Retrieval Team Episode 12: The Lighthouse Kurt McAllister Sente Kiteway The Third Power Violet Kiteway

 

Violet Kiteway

Kurt McAllister

Scarlett Kiteway

Sente Kiteway

The Receda Cube

The Sentinel

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