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Rated: E · Short Story · Steampunk · #2092527
I smell a series.
(Word Count 300)

Lady Rachel Wyndingham looked down upon scene trying to decide if it was synergistic beauty or pure chaos. A maze of iron pipes,copper vats, and intricate brass gears lay before her. In the middle of it all was Professor Clive Peterquald looking more than a little disheveled as he moved to tinker upon his magnum opus.

She descended the spiral, wrought iron stair, her boots ringing hollow with each step. The need for stealth had passed. Professor Peterquald and his helper, his clockwork minion, turned and stared raptly at her entrance. And Lady Wyndingham made a grand entrance. Her ruffled white blouse and black waistcoat fit perfectly from the rise of her bosom to the swell of her hips. A lock of ginger hair rested upon her shoulder. The Lady was quite accustomed to having eyes upon her.

"Ah, Rachel," the Professor said somewhat relieved. "I'd hoped to unveil my machine tonight at the gathering, but you'll get the pre-viewing." He paused and said, "I present: The Qualdratron."

"What is it, Professor?"

"It is a perpetual motion steam engine!"

The Lady frowned and Peterquald moved quickly to explain. "You see, once the initial energy is invested, the internal friction of the apparatus generates the heat necessary for loco motio. It turns turbines for electricity while purifying water and creating radiant heat." He shuffled through reams of drawings. "I have an airship version that will stay aloft forever--imagine, a cloud city. No more children in coal mines or stealing Bedouin oil. It's humanity's return to Paradise."

Lady Wydingham drew her pistol. "The gentry can't allow that. The discomfort of the masses produces needs. Those needs move the money. We own the money. I'm sorry Professor, but Paradise is lost."

The next morning's headline in the London Gazette read: Mad Scientist Dies in Laboratory Explosion...Citizenry Safe
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