The Graveyard

The Lair Of Gary James

NaNoWriMo: The Blimp

Posted by BigWords on November 5, 2009

“We’re nearly set,” Adam observed.
The hov moved into place, launching grapples onto the roof of the skyscraper and pulling itself in. A forward-mounted machine gun kept lock on the blimp until the men could emerge from the vehicle and set up perimeter positions.
“You stay in here. I’m not letting a badge get killed on my watch.”
“You care that much for my safety?”
“No. I just don’t want the hassle of all the paperwork I would have to fill out.”

Adway could see the connection that held the blimp in place. A thick cord with bundles of fiber-optic cables wrapped around it was tethering the communications station above the city, but it had ceased transmitting its’ constant observation of activity below.
“Why do you need so much information stored up here? The DCU has its’ own servers in the building, right? This seems very elaborate for a mere backup.”
“It’s tracking- It’s meant to track every comm, message, stream and static display in the city. It has worked up until now. Three gigaquads of storage capacity in each of the blimps mean that the set-up is never gonna get clogged up. Hell, the NOAA wanted to piggyback the blimps for some research project they made up as soon as they heard we were outfitting blimps with state of the art electronics.”
“You’re carrying weather information as well.”
The machine gunner turned from the front of the hov to face Adway “Hell no. Those motherfuckers couldn’t tell it was raining if they stuck their head out a window. This is the DCU’s very own watchtower.”
“So… Who watches the watchmen?” Adway grinned.

The squad exited quickly, keeping their weapons trained on the parts of the rooftop which contained the kinds of places that might be used to hide terrorists and saboteurs. There didn’t appear to be any movement on the roof, but it was better to be prepared for any possible problems than let things get out of control.
Left in the hov, Adway turned to the gunner again. “You been doing this long?”
“Long enough.”
The men outside the vehicle were moving towards the grounding cables, their eyes trained on the umbilical cord which the blimp relies on.

Inside the blimp the pilot raises his head. Acting under the instructions of another he begins disconnecting himself from the mesh of wires that act as his eyes, ears and gives voice to his presence. The work is delicate, but the process must be completed quickly. Soon he is free, and nothing is keeping him from moving from the control panel, but he remains. The operation continues, and his chestplate opens to reveal more circuitry and wiring – and the power source which fuels his movements.
There is little time left, and actions must be undertaken.
The DCU cannot be permitted to discover the truth…

Four members of the squad wait at the bottom of the mooring while the remainder of the team begin the climb up the rungs on the cord, their rifles slung over their shoulders. There has been no sign that anything is out of the ordinary, and their progress is swift. Inside the hatch of the blimp they wait, and the team regrouped at the entrance doorway.
“How do things look from down there?” Squawked through the hov’s comm channel.
“We’re fine an’ dandy. Your signal is loud and clear, and our guest is making himself comfortable.”
“We’ll take a quick look around then contact the General for further instructions. Hold tight.”
“Affirmative.”
Weapons are checked, the hatchway inspected for damage or interference, and – under Adam’s command – the door to the cabin is opened.
The pilot sat facing the entryway, holding its’ chest open, the power couplings bleeding coolant around the core. It’s mouth slowly opens and closes, mouthing some electronic prayer to a digital god of chaos. A flash of electricity leaps across its’ chest.

Adway tapped his comm. “There’s a problem with this damn thing. I think it may be bro-”
The explosion from the blimp pushed the hov perilously close to the edge of the rooftop, flaming wreckage raining down on top of the vehicle. Shards of white-hot metal impaling the rugged coating which was designed to withstand such attacks. The open back of the hov was a burning mess, and the windscreen had been cracked, warping the HUD to the point where intelligible information could not be gleamed from any of the readouts. A sharp siren howled.
“What the fuck hit us? Can you see-”
Adway tried to see through the smoke and debris, “The blimp is gone.”
“Gone? What the fuck do you mean its’ gone.” The gunner tapped a button on the console, “Can you hear me? Come in… Please respond… This is a priority communication, please respond…”
“They can’t respond… Everyone is dead.”
“They ain’t dead until I see their bodi-” The gunner’s words died away as the mangled remains of the team slid onto the windshield. “Holyshitohmotherofgod.”

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2 Responses to “NaNoWriMo: The Blimp”

  1. B J Keltz said

    I’m liking this. Especially that last line!

  2. bigwords88 said

    Thank you for reading. I’m glad that this isn’t degenerating into a mess, and there’s plenty of time left for me to add some subtlety into the narrative. The imagery in the blimp section was just too tempting to resist… 😀

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