Chronicles of Internet Earth - Chapter 2

Author: Foenix

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“Let’s see, let’s see.” Ratchet walked around his home on Kerwan in search of any last items he would need. “Weapons, check. Should I take everything? Maybe so…who knows how dangerous this planet is? Gadgets? Check. Holo-guise, holo-guise…there it is! Hey, Clank! How’s it coming with that program?”
“Steady progress. I still have plenty of research to do on the planet, though, so it may take about another hour.”
“’Kay.” The Lombax resumed his search through the house.
Clank was presently doing research on their destination, which he had already learned quite a bit about. The dominant inhabitants really had turned out to be a race thought to be extinct: humans. The humans called the planet “Earth,” which had been divided into continents, and then sub-divided into countries and territories, and then sub-sub-divided into cities, towns, and villages, with strikingly barren nothingness in between. “It seems that, Ratchet, the most specific destination I can find is a city in the country of France.”
“And that is where, exactly?”
“It is on the Eastern Hemisphere of the planet, located in the continent known as Europe.”
“Doesn’t help very much!”
“I cannot explain any better. Aphelion will be able to get us there.”
“K!” The Lombax called absently, looking under the sofa for one odd thing or another. Clank sighed and continued with his research.
Clank gave a few cursory taps to the holographic screen, opening new windows displaying third-dimensional illustrations and information about key landmarks in France. It was then that the entire screen blacked out. In reality, every electrically charged object in the main room shorted. The dark room became phantasmically illuminated by a red target-like symbol. At first, Clank’s supercomputer of a brain that could calculate data faster than the data could be given predicted that this so-called planet’s military forces were executing a plan of infiltration.
Instead of accounting for any messages sent to the screen, the red mark was replaced by the darkness of the blackout, and then the home screen. Nothing more happened.
“How very odd,” Clank muttered, trying to bring up the lost data browser.
“Hey Clank,” Ratchet called from wherever he was in their home. “Everything okay in there?”
“Just a minor blackout,” Clank reported.
“That’s weird,” Ratchet said, appearing in the doorway with an oddly shaped tool slung over his shoulder. “Why did the power go out? We checked all the circuits last week.”
“I am not certain,” Clank glanced at his friend and blinked his rather unfathomable green optics. “It seems I have lost all the data regarding Earth.”
“Well, then,” Ratchet mused. “I guess it’s up to Aphelion to take us there now.”
“It seems to be that way,” Clank agreed, giving a slightly frustrated last few taps before turning to his companion. “Are you ready to go?”
Ratchet casually tossed the tool into the bag in the middle of the room—he didn’t want to seem too suspicious on a planet with no interstellar contact and most likely the most primitive tech known to anyone. “Yep. All set.”
“Do you have your holo-guise?”
“Yeah, I remembered. Don’t worry. I got everything. The program set?”
“I am not entirely certain it will work properly, but I do not wish to delay our departure any longer. At least three more paradoxes have been created in the past four hours.”
“Oh, brilliant,” Ratchet replied acerbically. He zipped up the bag and shouldered it. “Let’s go then.” He walked through the house, making sure to turn off every light and see that none of the faucets were on. When he got to the garage, Clank was already there, waiting next to Aphelion.
“I have just finished installing the program into Aphelion,” Clank informed the Lombax.
“Excellent. Anything else that needs to be done?”
“No.”
“Finally!” Ratchet tossed his bag into the ship, placing Clank into the passenger seat and jumping into the driver’s seat himself. “Ready to go, Aphelion?”
Whenever you are, Lombax.
“All righty, then.” Ratchet activated all of the ships systems that were necessary for take-off, checking to make sure the garage door was open before gently taking Aphelion out of the enclosed space. The two took one last look at their familiar home before they left the atmosphere, making way for unfamiliar territory.
“Look out, Earth,” Ratchet muttered. “Here we come.”



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