May 27, 2007

Iapetus Saves Miami

Chapter Seven

By Douglas E. Gogerty

John sat up in his bed while the words Iapetus is gone echoed in his brain. How could Florida be saved without the aid of the giant beast? Everything disappeared from his thoughts except ways to save his home state. After a few moments lost in thought, John said, "You said Loch Ness in your farewell speech."

"Yes..." replied the Iapetian storyteller.

"Is that the place where Iapetus will spawn?"

"The priestess informed us that that is the name of the place our protector goes."

"So, the priestess is of the opinion that Iapetus is headed for Loch Ness?"

"I believe that is what I said."

"Then I must head for Inverness Scotland," John said getting out of bed.

"You are in no shape..." the storyteller began as John crumpled to the floor.

The storyteller grabbed John by the arm to help him back into bed, but John said, "I am all right. I must save Florida."

Dr. Maland sailed his boat back to Florida, and booked a flight to Inverness Scotland. He would try to communicate with the Iapetus and convince him to leave the spawning ground and help the people of Florida.

* * * * *

The governor of Florida sat behind a desk in the emergency bunker. The room was small and windowless, but it was protected from forces of nature and other potential disasters. The governor would be safe from whatever was to come.

She reread the demand. The treasure would pay $100 million or the mechanical monster would destroy Miami. In a demonstration of the power of the beast, it had easily destroyed a residential tower near the capitol. However, the rules of engagement in this type of situation were clear, "Do not negotiate with the terrorists."

After several minutes lost in thought, the governor's office assistant entered. "Madame Governor your requested officials are here."

"Please send them in."

The General from the National Guard, the state treasurer, the Lieutenant Governor, and a few other state officials entered the bunker.

"Ladies and gentlemen," started the governor. "We're in a difficult position with very few options. I invited y'all here to get opinions, but I have made my decision. As a politician, I could make a moving speech, but I'll save it for another time. Y'all know the situation, so here is what we're going to do."

"Madame Governor," interrupted General Chever of the National Guard. "If I may offer..."

"Do not interrupt me General," replied the governor sternly. "As I was about to say, we have been given a brief reprieve from the destructive power of the mechanical weapon sitting outside our fair capitol building. Clearly, some sort of remote command center controls this device. Thus, we should be able to detect these signals -- perhaps even jam them. Thus, I have ordered that a radio detection station be set up in an attempt to determine how the terrorists communicate with their weapon."

"That has been established as per your order," added the Lieutenant Governor.

"Excellent," replied the Governor. "Thus, the only thing to do now is force them to communicate with their weapon. General, we need you to bring some weapons to bear on this device. I'll leave it to your discretion to determine the best way to wake the beast but minimize collateral damage."

"Yes Ma'am!" replied General Chever.

"Any other order of business?"

"There is some sort of disturbance along the coastal highway," reported the Lieutenant Governor.

"That'll have to wait. This has full priority. All our resources must be placed on this immediate menace. If there is nothing else, y'all are dismissed."

* * * * *

Dr. Maland arrived in Scotland after a long flight. Fortunately, he slept during most of it. His head was throbbing, but his duty to his state and nation drove him on. He must contact Iapetus and convince the mighty protector to fight Cyber-Iapetus and prevent the destruction of Florida and beyond.

The Loch Ness legend had spawned several tourist traps; however, John knew where he had to go. He rented a car and headed to The Original Loch Ness Exhibition on the Beauly Road. He wanted to know if there was an increase in Nessie sightings, and this was the best place to start.

Dr. Maland talked around and spoke to several people. There were several reports of increased activity, but the experts believed the animals were just sturgeon. "There hadn't ne'er been no credible sightings," insisted local historian Dougal MacInnes in a thick Scottish accent. "We've got a detector a goin'. The Sturgeon are a runnin' in an' out, but nuttin' unusually big has gone through."

"Can you take me to the inlet?" asked Dr. Maland.

"Aye, I could be a doin' that fer ya."

Dougal and John got into his rental car and went to the Loch's inlet from the sea. With the support of local interests, some scientists set up and monitored a detector. The device was set to look for large animals entering the loch. According to the attending scientist John had spoken to, several large animals had entered. He asked if any creature in the range of 200 meters had passed recently. None had.

John had beat Iapetus to Loch Ness. He had seen the giant monster swim. With its speed capabilities, Iapetus should have entered the loch by now. Was this not the spawning ground? Where could Iapetus be? The only thing that John could do was sit and wait for the beast to show up, and hope it would happen soon.

* * * * *

A formation of six AH-64 Apache helicopters headed towards the capitol building. They were fully armed and ready. Attendants continuously monitored the radio and cell communication detectors in an attempt to find where the communication signals guiding the mechanical monster originated. Only regular signals had been detected up to this point.

The enormous Cyber-Iapetus stood silently near the capitol building. It stood waiting as the apache helicopters approached from the south. Keeping the government buildings to their left, the helicopter pilots approached their stationary target.

The order went out and the helicopters began launching their Hellfire missiles. Wave after wave a missile were fired at Cyber-Iapetus. Each helicopter had its full compliment of 16 missiles. One after another, the missiles flew at the intended target and exploded. The missiles struck the beast high and low. They looked for a weakness.

All 96 missiles struck their target and created a continuous explosive fireball for several minutes. When the smoke cleared, Cyber-Iapetus stood there. It turned toward the helicopters and roared. It turned and moved towards the hovering helicopters. It slowly closed the gap, and the apache helicopters began firing their 30mm guns at the approaching beast.

The bullets bounced off the approaching Cyber-Iapetus. Eventually, the monster opened its mouth and a stream of fire streamed out. It shook its head, and before the helicopter pilots could react, the six helicopters were on fire. The helicopters fell out of the sky with a flaming crash. Cyber-Iapetus gave another roar and returned to the spot, which was now a crater, where it had stood before the attack.

Once the encounter had ended, the governor requested the communication findings. The experts poured over the collected data, and double-checked it. Wishing not to be mistaken, they went over everything a third time. They found nothing out of the ordinary. They were unable to detect signal guiding Cyber-Iapetus's actions.

Posted by deg at May 27, 2007 11:02 PM

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