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Lazlo Strangolov's Bunker Walkthrough Part III


Onwards, my disciples, from the Monitoring Deck to the chamber where I place pen to paper. This may sound somewhat out of date for a novelist in the modern age. My man on the outside, the thriller writer, Matt Whyman, might earn his living by clattering away at a computer keyboard usually with his mouth pursed like a cat’s behind, but that is not my style. Anything stored on computer is vulnerable to hackers, after all. As my book, Feather & Bone, contains clues to the date upon which a great calamity will befall the world, I am well aware that there are outside forces who would wish to silence me.


For this reason, I write everything by hand, here in this windowless room, before Mr Whyman collects the finished manuscript and delivers it to my publisher. Let me tell you, without distraction it is easy to be a disciplined writer. I do not find myself stopping after every thirty words to whack a virtual penguin across the ice. Nor is there any danger of being drawn into a blog celebrating the art of cabbage origami or badger wrestling. In fact, the only thing to lift my attention is the bare light bulb over my head. For every now and then, it begins to swing to and fro.


At first I feared that I had misjudged my calculations again. Could this be caused by the first tremor of an earthquake, the arrival of an alien mother ship or an eruption by a previously undiscovered but gargantuan volcano? Let me tell you, I was deeply alarmed. I clung to my desk, fearing the worst. Instead of the world above suffering an apocalyptic episode, however, the bulb simply came to rest.


The second time, I was better prepared. When the light began to sway, I raised my periscope and peered out full circle. I saw no sign that the End Time event was upon us – no lightning bolt or fire in the sky but it did prompt me to pick up my phone and call the local farmer.


Next time he leaves the gate open, and allows his cows to trample across my field, I shall be pressing for damages. It might just pay out enough for me to upgrade the final chamber on our tour. For it is here that I prepare for a time when I will surface into the ruins and then hunt and forage for my food. Containing equipment that has suffered a lot of wear and tear, it is a bolt-on to my bunker that I have dubbed the Survivor’s Gymnasium.


  • 15/04/2009

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