Monday, September 11, 2006
New Beginning 109
May 3, 2102
Eight miles southwest of Lone Pine, California (abandoned)
The San Fernando Valley was alive. Alive in the precision columns of fan palms lining the bulletways, bowing at trendy youth in stainproof khamees making out to atonal electrosynth as they flew past the endless sprawl. Alive in the towering shopping centers bustling with jaded teenagers visible from the slidewalks through translucent field emission displays that hawked herbal smoothies and cosmetic surgery with flawless CG models. Alive in the fountains and fluorescent green lawns evaporating the precious water diverted from the Owens Valley to feed the cottonball clouds that blemished the sunbathing sky.
The Owens Valley, on the other hand, was dead.
Cam looked down at the dry bed of Owens Lake. Robbed of its moisture by its southern cousin, the valley was a barren wasteland of arsenic-laden salt flats and red pools of halobacteria. In the distance, Keeler Fog lifted off the playa, thousands of feet high, and drifted toward the Inyo Mountains to powder coat the manzanitas. The thought occurred to her that, were it not for the success of the San Fernando Valley, this panorama would be teeming with life. And for the fifth time on the trip, an image of Elly jumped into her head, clinging to her thoughts and refusing to leave. Hours ago, she'd given up trying to make the image go away. The Owens Valley was just too potent a symbol.
Elly had felt it too, the same connection to the flora and fauna of Owens Valley.
This is for you, Elly, Cam thought as she rappelled down the face of the dam and positioned the explosives. The San Fernando Valley, alive with carbon-copy corner restaurants and electricity-sucking vanity, would soon be no more.
Continuation: Kathleen B.
Posted by Evil Editor at 1:03 PM