This is my second installment of freestyle brainstorming for NaNo 2016
|So, we have Phin, who has a brilliant son who just happens to be handi-capped. I’m thinking a disease like polio, but not necessarily that disease. Moseley is his reason for wanting to make money with his inventions. Zenith, his brother, is the reason he gets involved in The Alliance.
The thing to work out now is the weather controller. How is that going be the means to the end for which Phin is looking? That is the thing to work out in this brainstorm.
Phin will be in a hurry, and he doesn’t even know that his invention will work, necessarily. But the Alliance needs a diversion in order to pull off their take-over. That is another subject that will need to be addressed at some point. How will this take over go down? Who will be involved? What will be the impetus behind this particular time. Perhaps Phin is broken out of prison the second time he is put in, and several other Alliance members are as well. There may have been some scuttle butt going around the prison that the time was coming for them all to rise up and to take Capercairn back for the people. Something like that may have been happening. Phin may or may not know about it all until they break him out. Others have plans for his invention, but he is not even sure it will work as he hopes.
Luckily, when he was imprisoned, Mose was working on the weather controller. He has three friends who were helping him, trusted kids from the neighborhood. They, really, would be mostly his “muscle” in keeping other kids from picking on him for his disability. But, they have learned things from Mose that allow them to be helpful in working on the weather controller while Phin is in prison.
The weather controller - is it a thing? A machine that can create air currents and storms and things? Or is there some form of clockwork minions (there would have to be thousands of them) that are released from the controller to do the work? I’m thinking almost a nanotechnology sort of slant with this.
Whether I explain the weather controller early on or simply reveal, from time to time, the things Phin learns it can do, I need to decide how it works and of what it is capable. I think it is going to be a fairly sizable cabinet, with a programming server of sorts - a difference engine? Is that the proper term? Why am I writing steampunk? Yikes! Okay, back to work here - A difference engine creates programs the minions follow in order to change the weather or, really, do whatever they may be programmed to do.
The minions themselves will look like little clockwork flies, or bees, maybe. I will have to find a photo that I want to use of the minions the weather controller will control. I still have not worked out how they will make these changes in the atmosphere. But, the atmosphere, at least at ground level at Capercairn, is greatly compromised to begin with. There is no weather within the city. There is no wind that can penetrate the deep, heavy smog that envelopes the city from the industrial pollution.
The minions would first have to work by creating a wind, or by working on the outside of the smog layer in and around the city. Even rain cannot find its way to the floor of the area around the city. The minions could drill small holes in the smog, letting in just small areas of rain or wind at first. From there, the State would lose all control of the weather.
Next, a storm like none ever seen would have to be unleashed on the State headquarters. It may even start something benignly. It may start as sunlight getting through. No one but the eldest of residents even has a memory of actual sunlight. This could be disruptive enough at the outset. It would burn their eyes after years of only artificial light. It would also, no doubt, scare them a great deal. No elderly would be working for the State. In fact, the odds are good that they would have been shuffled off somewhere, if not killed, being that they are no longer of any use to the State. There would be no frame of reference for sunlight. No one would understand what was happening.
As the actual clouds come, and the storm builds, it may even build a false sense of security among the State leaders. Would they have a bunker of some sort? The Alliance is headquartered far away and somewhat near the edge of the city. Some members have even risked leaving via tunnels to get to the meadow between the mountains.
Could an earthquake happen and not devastate Alliance members, too? I will have to think on that one. There could be a localized fault, I suppose, that could be stressed by the minions. But it would have to split the city in two, leaving the State on one side and much of the Alliance on the other.
This would be something Phin would not expect. Adriana, Phin’s wife, may still be on the other side of the city. He will have to hurry to save her once all is set into motion. She will be killed if he cannot get to her in time. This means leaving the safe area, the area not affected by the weather controller. But he has no choice.
As he gets near home, a flying machine he does not recognize comes over head. He will try to hide from it, thinking it is a State contraption. But it will be Moseley. He built the flying machine several months prior, and had actually flown out of the smog several times. But he knew he could not tell his father about his own invention. They will use his flying machine, though, and Moseley’s friends, Piper, Elsie and Frederick, to save Ana as well as perhaps some others who are close to them. Piper and Elsie will be orphans - their parents lost to the State long ago, Frederick may have someone to save - his father perhaps. But his father may decide to stay with the State, thinking all will be righted again. He, sadly, will not make it to the end of the war.