The governing body of Perplex City. This nine-strong group is elected by the public and often make the headlines. Political infighting between members can distract them from their daily tasks of calculating budgets, planning developments, and improving the citizens' quality of life.
The Council delivers a report on the Third Power ('soundly dismantled'), Helena Frye ('immense contributions') and Violet & Kurt ('took the Cube'). Looks like our blogging friends are going to be cleared of any charges, though.
GOT IT! Intrepid amateur archeologist Andy Darley (aka 'Astro Random') comes over all Indiana Jones and finds the long-lost Cube. Perplex City is overjoyed and Mind Candy is delighted, while Darley keeps his cool and offers some sage advice: "Take more care of it next time."
Violet calls back, and plays Kurt a message left by Scarlett. Violet, for one, doesn't buy it. Kurt is suspicious too and suggests enlisting Helena Frye's help in tracking Scarlett down. He's back in the game.
Caine drags everyone along to the Ball - only for them to witness Sente's arrest. Kurt goes on a bender, Violet screams at the police, and Caine takes Scarlett back home and looks after her... and has a romantic near-miss.
Violet gives us an update on what's been going on during the lockdown: Scarlett's been a mess; Caine has been a rock (and about as active); Sente still has his job (just); the CRT are decimated; and Violet herself is exhausted by it all.
Henrik Tanner and the CRT's very own Garnet Reed reveal that secret communications have continued between Earth and Perplex City, despite the recent lockdown. The sources of these messages are not known, and the content has not been made public - except for one enigmatic message reading, "Phase 3 complete. Happy birthday."
Could this development offer a glimmer of hope to those Cube Hunters on Earth hoping for the comms link to be fully re-opened again? The Council will decide.
New Council Leader Nathan Earlywine limits the data link between Earth and Perplex City, insisting on a screening system to block 'potentially dangerous or subversive' material. Even the Sentinel may be censored. The order is put into effect today.
Violet and Scarlett spill the beans to the Sentinel, handing over all the material they found at Lancewood and Viendenbourg, implicating Sente and Council Leader Camryn Scott. Nathan Earlywine capitalises on the political situation and makes a decisive move for power.
Violet and Scarlett approach the fearsome Viendenbourg facility ready and armed - only to find that the place has been turned into a heritage centre. Slightly confused, they take the official tour, which offers a sanitised version of recent history.
The girls were prepared for anything but this. What now?
Leadership candidate Nathan Earlywine criticises Camryn Scott's style of leadership. He proposes a more hands-on approach - citing the waywardness of the Academy as a serious case of political mismanagement.
The Sentinel speaks out - and fiercely attacks the Academy, accusing them of causing the blackout and demanding an explanation. They start a protest campaign, encouraging all and sundry to email firstname.lastname@example.org to voice their displeasure.
Kurt can't think of a decent way to track any potentially stealable equipment - so it's lucky that he has Karen on hand. She suggests hacking into the city-wide Air Quality System (AQSYS), and using its sensors to follow radioactive tags they could place on any suspect kit. It's not a great plan, but it's all they've got...
Council members find a new bone of contention, arguing over the merits of the city's high-tech Air Quality System (AQSYS). It's apparently far too sophisticated and expensive for what should be a simple job.
Council candidate Douglass Finlay suffers a setback in his election campaign. Allegations surface that he has been planning policies to benefit his own business interests - and has considered ways to spy on current council members.
Finlay, however, remains silent, while the police describe the whole thing as "hullabaloo". Well done them.
News of a fabulous piece of urban art from the mind of Randal Tokei. Words written on pavements will tell a story that pedestrians can follow around the city, narrating a dreamlike tale that changes depending on your route. Cool.
Travel regulations are being relaxed, which will let citizens of Perplex City travel more freely to and from their neighbours in Allerdun, Harbin, Xia-Hifa and Brauenbourg. An influx of tourists is expected.
Kurt gives us the skinny on his meeting with Helena Frye. A couple of details stand out. One is that V's blood was found at the scene of Monica's murder - but it didn't match anyone in the police's 'infallible' DNA records.
The second detail is about the very clean disused station at Gillit Road. Frye thinks the Third Power were building something - something that needed a clean room. And someone at the Academy is behind it.