Time of Isolation, Chapter 11, Part 11

Coming in July two new novels: Of Gods Strangers and Messengers, Science Fiction Adventure, and Unexpected Unplanned and into the Unknown, a Post-Apocalyptic episodic novel. Both will be available as paperback and in the EBook format.

The Harsh Lands is available as a paperback (ISBN: 978-1-946179-00-5), for Kindle (ASIN: B01N69YCCW), or in the EPub format (ISBN: 978-1-946179-02-9). This novel is the complete Survival trilogy in a single book with a length of over 1150 pages.

Time of Isolation: Paperback (ISBN: 978-1-946179-06-1) Kindle (ISBN: 978-1-946179-07-4) and Epub (ISBN: 978-1-946179-08-1) and Desperate to Survive: Paperback (ISBN: 978-1-946179-09-8) Kindle (ISBN: 978-1-946179-10-4) and Epub (ISBN: 978-1-946179-11-1) are available for purchase as of April 21, 2017. These releases are second editions with the novels revised and updated. At this time A Taste of History Past will remain as a first edition and EBook only with this being the final book in the Survival trilogy.

The Woman in the Snow 2nd edition. Contemporary Christian Fiction available now: Paperback (ISBN 978-1-946179-03-6) Kindle (ISBN 978-1-946179-04-3) and Epub (978-1-946179-05-0).

* * *

We left the team last week in the process of doing a complete search of this lost facility hidden deep inside the Sacred Mountains. As a review for those who have come into this story late, what they have found is impossible. The Sacred Mountains are only available to the priests, and the primitives have no capability or understanding to be able to construct such a place as the Alpha. And what they’ve learned here has turned their world upside down.

If the situation wasn’t so desperate they might be able to leisurely rediscover all that is here. But their cities, which are hidden deep inside the desolation, are being located one-by-one and destroyed by a united primitive army. The ten members that are here at the alpha are isolated having no contact with any of the remaining cities – if there are any remaining cities. And presently the teams are researching, and learning all they can about this forgotten facility. And last week we finished the post with Stone and Sorrel about to open a discovered door, and it is here where we begin:

At first nothing happened, and then he realized that he had been pushing on the door, so he then pulled and it opened. Looking through the now open door they could see what looked to be a small lighted room. They entered looking around. On the right wall they found another door and this one had a small glass insert which allowed one to look inside. Peering through, they could see steps heading up and out of sight.

The wall opposite of the door they had entered through was solid. But the left wall had two double doors, which had no handles. Between them was a small panel, which had two buttons on it, the top with an arrow pointing up and the bottom, which just said basement. But that bottom button also required some type of key for access. “I wonder what’s down there, if anything.” Sorrel said, then continued, “Probably not important anyway, but what does this other one do?” As she asked she reached out and pressed it with her finger. Both of them jumped as both sets of the closed doors opened revealing another small room in each. Again both were frozen in position with indecision as to what they should do. In that time of delay both doors closed again. They both looked at each other and Stone asked. “Now what was that all about?” In the cities that they had grown up in, all the buildings were single story, and the ones that had basements used stairs to access those areas. This was something they had yet to encounter. “Tell you what, before we go any further let’s get some food in our bellies, and think about this.”

“Works for me,” Sorrel said. She was no more eager to go into a small room that had no apparent exit than Stone was. And once the doors closed and they were inside could they then get out, or was it a trap of some kind? They turned back to the door they had entered this room through, opened it, and saw that once again it was dark. “I guess that confirms that these lights are at least on a timer. Do you remember where that switch that you hit was located Sorrel?”

She nodded her head and then stepped out into the passage. As soon as she did the lights came back on. “Looks to be motion sensitive. So I guess the switch I accidentally found was a master switch. Still like you, I think there has to be one on the other side somewhere. But maybe it isn’t important now. Shall we go eat something then?”

As they entered the cafeteria they ran into the four who were searching the facility directly. They were well on the way to devouring their meal when Seve looked up as they entered and asked. “How’s your search going so far? We’ve been unsuccessful overall.”

“Let us grab something then we’ll fill you in to what we’ve found so far, and maybe it’s something that will help – don’t know really at this time, but ran into something strange, or at least different.” He paused there and then went and grabbed a plate of food for both himself and Sorrel. She had gone to get them drinks, and then joined the others at one of the larger tables. Once they sat down Stone then continued, “First off let me say that that cavern is really huge. From what I can determine it’s mostly natural. I really wouldn’t have wanted to be here when this volcano let loose. It’s no surprise the primitives fear these mountains. Anything close would have been wiped out, and the amount of smoke and ash this thing had to put into the air would have put the fear of the gods’ anger in such a people. And with no lights, other than a few to keep it from being totally dark, it was difficult just to walk across the floor, let alone see anything. But when we got to the other side” . . . he then went on to explain what they had found and that before continuing they needed to eat.

“Wow, that’s more than any of us has been able to find so far.” Staven said. “Are you planning on going into one of those small rooms, or what?”

“No don’t think so right now. I think instead we’ll just climb those stairs. I suspect like the ladders we used to first enter here, that it is another way in and out of this place. Once we check it out, then tonight like the rest of you we will fill everyone in. Then with more of us we can figure out what those two small rooms are all about.”

* * *

“So what do you think Sorrel? Should we see what those small rooms are all about – you know if one of us stays on the outside and one of going inside, or should we just take the stairs?”

“Well, I don’t know about you, but the stairs are something I know about. This other thing I don’t. So until I know more I think I’ll stick with the stairs, thank you.”

Laughing lightly Stone said. “You know what; I have to agree with you. Maybe later.” He then bowed and swept his arms in the direction of the door that led to the stairs and asked. “Shall we?” Smiling she curtsied and together they entered the stairway. “I think we’ll take it to the top to see where these things end, and then explore the different exits as we come back down. How does that sound to you?”

“Works for me,” Sorrel responded. They looked up and could see that it appeared that the stairs went quite a ways up. So they began the ascent. It appeared that at each level the stairs would switch back and make the rise and that it took one switch back to make what they guessed was a floor. After ten such switchbacks they came to a platform and another closed door. On the way up they had really only passed two others and they guessed that some of the area was no more than the walls of the natural cave. Catching their breath before opening the one at the top they reached and opened the door, stepped out, and then caught their breath once again. Before them was a panorama of both the mountains and views that appeared to just go on forever. Here, the area had been worked and some type of material laid that was impervious to destruction by nature. They saw tables, chairs, and some additional sealed cabinets similar to the ones they had found in the facility. Plus there appeared to be facilities for cooking meals, a small stage, and other items that they did not immediately recognize at the moment. The next thing they noticed was that there was a wall around this area that probably kept anyone, such as the primitives, seeing into this place. “Wow, this is beautiful!” Sorrel exclaimed. “And chilly after the cavern!”

Shaking his head and smiling Stone said. “If you want me to disagree with you it’s not going to happen. And this place is huge. It looks like most of everyone who worked and lived here could be up here at the same time and it’s invisible to the rest of the world. And it would give the support staff some place to go to get outside for a while. I bet now that we’ve found this place that there are others. Some place where the children could run around and play that let them burn off all that excess energy they all seem to have.” They walked around quietly and inspected things as they went. Close to where they had emerged they found a double set of double doors built into the side of the rock face that was similar to the ones with the two rooms at the bottom. And here between them was a single button with an arrow pointing down. With a look of curiosity on his face Stone speaking low said. “I wonder . . .”

Looking up at him she asked. “Wonder what?”

* * *

It’s apparent that Stone and Sorrel are discovering the more interesting things within the facility. Still those two small rooms that they’ve avoided could hold some importance. Yet they decide to stick to what they know and take the stairs instead. And once they finally reach the top, open the door, and enter into this area, they discover a worked area that would allow the residents access to the outdoors, a place to relax, and take a break from the work they would have performed here. With this discovery Stone feels that there must be other such areas with some that would allow the children a place to play and burn off all the excess energy they all seem to have. He then spies another set of double doors and become curious. With this we close out part 11.

There will be a break on the weekly posts with the posts returning to the weekly format on July 8th where we will close out chapter eleven. I will be away from any sources that will allow me access to the net making it impossible to post. And since I’m the only one working this blog there is no one else to cover. This would be a great time to check out the archives as there’s lots of great stuff there! Have a great few weeks and God Bless! (http://www.fdbrant.com/)

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Time of Isolation, Chapter 11, Part 10

Coming in July two new novels: Of Gods Strangers and Messengers, Science Fiction Adventure, and Unexpected Unplanned and into the Unknown, a Post-Apocalyptic episodic novel. Both will be available as paperback and in the EBook format.

The Harsh Lands is available as a paperback (ISBN: 978-1-946179-00-5), for Kindle (ASIN: B01N69YCCW), or in the EPub format (ISBN: 978-1-946179-02-9). This novel is the complete Survival trilogy in a single book with a length of over 1150 pages.

Time of Isolation: Paperback (ISBN: 978-1-946179-06-1) Kindle (ISBN: 978-1-946179-07-4) and Epub (ISBN: 978-1-946179-08-1) and Desperate to Survive: Paperback (ISBN: 978-1-946179-09-8) Kindle (ISBN: 978-1-946179-10-4) and Epub (ISBN: 978-1-946179-11-1) are available for purchase as of April 21, 2017. These releases are second editions with the novels revised and updated. At this time A Taste of History Past will remain as a first edition and EBook only with this being the final book in the Survival trilogy.

The Woman in the Snow 2nd edition. Contemporary Christian Fiction available now: Paperback (ISBN 978-1-946179-03-6) Kindle (ISBN 978-1-946179-04-3) and Epub (978-1-946179-05-0).

* * *

Saar and Seirra are doing duty in the security office while Starr with Sabryn are searching through the educational archives and at the same time the two women are taking care of their children. Back in the security office Seirra notices, as they monitor the planet from wherever those sky-cams are that there are letters and numbers that change according to where she’s viewing and wonders what’s the significance of them. Saar states he doesn’t know but he does know how to remove them if they are distracting.

Meanwhile everybody is involved in learning as much as they can from this forgotten and abandoned facility. With all of them hoping to find the answers to the too many questions this life changing facility has presented. In a sense it has completely undone their known past and thrown it out the window turning their world upside down. Of course at this moment they are the only ones who know this as they are still in their Time of Isolation, and haven’t determined whether there is a way to contact what cities may be remaining because of this unknown threat, which is known only to them at this moment. And with this we move on to part 10, opening with Staven as he finishes his present assignment:

Staven was covered in the grime from the pump house. Shaking his head he found that after complete search, he determined there was just the one door and that was it. After crawling through the numerous pipes, pumps, unknown equipment and searching all of the hidden areas, he had come up empty – other than the fact that he had skinned a knuckle or two from slipping and falling. He hoped that Seve had better luck, and he thought that he had better join him since the area he was searching was both the electric and steam room, separate of course since electricity and water did not mix. One thing for sure it was easy to tell that the whole thing was modular in design. It would have made it very easy to set up, and to repair if it needed to be. And he was sure that this probably had been repaired a number of times over the thousands of annuals that it sat here empty. He knew that after the two of them finished here, they would move on to the maintenance section, but between the two areas they would head back in for a bite to eat, before continuing. So far nothing had been found to indicate a way to the pack animals, if there were any at all.

Seve, once he had entered the electric room, just shook his head. This place was huge, and while the task was daunting, it wouldn’t get done if he just stood there looking at it. He knew that as soon as Staven finished in the smaller pump house that he would join him. With that in mind, he thought that probably the best thing for him to do was to either work the steam room, which provided heat and air conditioning to the whole facility, and provided the push for the turbines, or to concentrate on the electrical. Obviously for safety’s sake the two were separated, but since the steam room required a substantial power source it was only smart to locate it close to the generators. He knew that the generators used a number of sources including solar, water, and yes even the steam that was generated in the next room. It also used materials that could not be recycled, and vented any of the smoke, which was almost invisible, out through one of the many chimneys that the extinct volcanoes had created in the distant past, effectively hiding its location. In his hand he had a schematic of the room, and there were numerous doors marked, but not all of them were identified as to what they were or where they led. Which probably meant that whoever worked here was familiar with this standard layout and did not require a full labeling.

Thinking about it he decided that he would work the steam room because it was smaller. He headed off that way, with his reasoning being that it was much smaller of an area, not really much larger than the pump house – he should be finished in about the same time as Staven. Then when Staven showed up from his search of the pump house they could both work the electrical room and all of the doors. He opened the door into the steam room and immediately felt a blast of hot damp air. Shaking his head he thought. It surely is named right. I really would not want to be assigned this section if I had been here back then. He thought that most likely the bots handled most of the work anyway, yet moisture was the enemy of the bots, so he couldn’t be sure. But at the same time, felt that it had to be inspected and confirmed that there were no problems. So even if the previous owners had to come here only once a day to confirm things were okay, it would still have been a miserable visit. Looking through a small steam cloud that appeared to be venting, he saw the entrance to the small operations center. It sat higher up and had what appeared to be windows that overlooked the entire facility. He worked his way there, climbed the metal ladder to a small platform that led to the door. Opening the door and entering into the control room he saw a panel that allowed the operators to manually override any portion, and to completely shut it down if some emergency required it. There he found on the back wall a drawing that showed the emergency evacuation routes out of the facility with this area highlighted. It was really hot and humid here and he wondered how and why this equipment didn’t rust. After all, with the constant attack of heat and high moisture, it should show signs of rust and damage. Yet from the condition of everything there, it could have been placed there yesterday, and not the thousands of years in the past that he knew was fact. What did they construct this stuff out of? While I know that something like this isn’t my specialty back in the city, I don’t think our stuff held up nearly as well as this. Shaking his head at these thoughts he continued to look around the small room. I guess even though we thought we were advanced, what this place has shown me so far, is that we have lost some of that knowledge that this place has demonstrated so competently, and it has been shown by the way we have found things. So much of what we don’t understand our ancestors took for granted . . . and how do I know that? Because they did not label something, because it was common knowledge, so it did not require labeling, that’s how. “This isn’t getting this place searched. I guess I should just use this evacuation sheet and check it against the doors it has people leaving by.” He said quietly to himself.

He took out a small notebook and drew a rough copy of the emergency evacuation plan and then headed back off the ledge to the floor and in among the pipes, heat, humidity, and steam and then looked at the floor. He, to his surprise, found that the floor had large markings on them. He followed one around the corner and found a large arrow painted on the floor with the words emergency evacuation written within the arrow. Shrugging he thought, why not, and headed in the direction the arrow pointed.

* * *

Later with an unsuccessful search of the steam room, he met up with Seve and they first went to the showers to clean up, and then headed to the cafeteria to grab a bite to eat before both of them searched the electric room. When they entered the cafeteria by chance they found Starr and Sabryn had arrived just ahead of them. “What a surprise.” Seve said, and Staven couldn’t agree more. So far the day for them had been unsuccessful, but not completely, since they now knew more about the facility, its layout, and construction. It once again, gave them insight into their distant ancestors and how they thought, lived and worked.

* * *

“So Stone, what do you think? Do we continue, or do we take a break and get some food?” Both of them were standing in front of the closed door. Neither had ventured, as of yet, to open it and see what lay on the other side.

Taking a deep breath, Stone had to admit that he was getting hungry, but at the same time curiosity was driving him forward. “I guess what we can do is open it and see what’s there, then before we go past this point, go back and get something to eat. That will leave most of the afternoon for us to continue our exploring. And I think that we need to locate the switch on the other side so that we aren’t stumbling around in this semi-darkness. There has to be one. Now I wonder if they are timed or motion sensitive – which could be the case also, since that way, once a master switch was thrown, anybody walking in this direction would turn the lighting on. And since this cavern is part of the natural landscape here, it would have been something that would have been added at a later time – I’m speaking of the work on this steam vent or lava tube, and possibly what’s on the other side of these doors.” He paused knowing that he was delaying, as he shook his head. “Let’s just do it.” He reached for the handle and gave it a twist.

* * *

The exploration continues as each section of this facility is being searched and inspected. Finally the two Seve and Staven head to the lunch room after showering with plans to continue the search and inspection together after lunch. When they reach the lunch room they run into their mates who are also eating. Meanwhile Stone and Sorrel are also feeling hunger pangs and are deciding whether to break or go through that door to see what is on the other side. They decide to at least open the door before heading back in for some food leaving the afternoon free to continue their discoveries. Have a great week and God Bless! (http://www.fdbrant.com/)

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