Mark Reads ‘Deadline’: Chapter 3

In the third chapter of Deadline, this is an elaborate joke, and what the fuck have I gotten into? Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Deadline.

Chapter Three


  • Okay, I can deal with Kelly Connolly being here, right? This is going to be awesome, right?
  • Okay, wait, how does Alaric know who Kelly is? Why is she suddenly the Kelly Connolly? This makes no sense to me because why would Shaun talk about her in any way to give Alaric this impression?
  • Shit, even Shaun, who has MET this woman, doesn’t get why she is the Kelly. WHAT IS HAPPENING.
  • What the shit, Dr. Matras was her grandfather. Oh. OH.
  • Oh god, do you realize how heartbreaking it is that Shaun’s constant anger and unease is so expected by his staff that they don’t even give a second thought to his temper? H E L P.
  • Something’s wrong. Why is Dave awkwardly trying to get Shaun’s attention at the exact moment Mahir is calling Shaun to ask him why he isn’t online? Something happened. Oh god, what happened?
  • “So they’re saying one of the doctors died.”
  • What.
  • What.
  • No.
  • No, that is just impossible.
  • Nope.
  • NO.
  • “If you listen to the report, it doesn’t say I died. It just says they found my body.”
  • No, a million blood tests aren’t going to make me feel better about you. Clearly, you passed them to get in the building, so this is just a formality. HOW THE FUCK ARE YOU DEAD AND ALIVE AT THE SAME TIME.
  • “It’s all right, Shaun. I knew I’d have to answer some questions.” Kelly looked towards Becks, saying calmly, “They think I’m dead because the body they found was mine.”
  • 8 BILLION PERCENT DONE WITH THIS BOOK AND I’M ON PAGE 58. This is a fucking impossibility. No, this makes so little sense that when I read this line, I just put my head down on my desk and just refused to read on. How??? HOW IS THIS REAL AND HOW IS THIS HAPPENING??? What bizarro fucking language are you speaking, Kelly? How can they find your body at the CDC if you are right here???
  • Once I did turn back to the book a minute later, I was comforted by the fact that the After the End Times team had just as dramatic of a reaction as I did. Like, way to go, Kelly. You told them one of the worst possible things for them to hear because it makes no sense in any universe.
  • “This would be a really, really good time to say something that makes enough sense that it can keep my people from shooting you.” The only thing that makes sense in this scene. Because seriously, how did you expect these people to react to that information, Kelly?
  • “Cloning,” she said.
  • ………………………………
  • ………………………………………………………..
  • is
  • is this real
  • is this book real
  • do i somehow have a copy of Deadline that’s a one-in-a-million prank and you’re all laughing at me right now
  • “Full-body cloning isn’t impossible. It’s just illegal for anyone outside the three major medical research entities.”
  • You know, once I read that sentence, I thought, “Shit, this is nearly thirty years into the future, and I should not be surprised that governmental organizations can clone humans, and they do so for research purposes. Which provides a whole host of messy moral fabrics to cope with, and now I’m suddenly 100% onboard with this.”
  • Lead me forth, Mira Grant.
  • (PS: How amazing is it that Grant introduces human cloning into her series and it’s pretty much a disposable plot item and nothing more? Like, by the end of chapter three, I care more about forty other things happening in this story, and cloning is just a thing that people do. Bless her.)
  • So how much of Kelly got out into the world? Did other viewers notice her inside the After the End Times office, prompting Mahir to call Shaun? If so, won’t this suddenly turn into an epic disaster in like ten minutes?
  • (Wait, I need to shower praise more: this is the third chapter of this goddamn book, and I’m already on pins and needles. Bless you, Mira Grant.)
  • Oh fuck, Dr. Wynne sent her. Well, what the fuck is going on???
  • I’m totally fascinated by how Shaun frames this as “passing the buck” because it provides such a simple explanation for how explosive this is. They are a news organization at heart, and this “story” that Kelly has for them will be passed along to them to deal with. They cannot simply ignoring it. And we saw in Feed how information carries a burden irrespective of what your own intentions are. Knowing something can haunt you and follow you, even if you keep it to yourself.
  • Oh, I now understand “reservoir conditions” far better than I did before! So, Kellis-Amberlee can actually isolate into a specific part of the body but not cause amplification, which is what Georgia’s retinal KA was.
  • I was just as surprised as Dave when I found out that no one knew what reservoir conditions actually do. For all the money and research put into Kellis-Amberlee, surely someone had figured this out, right?
  • And that’s the crux of this issue: I falsely assumed that this was pretty much all the CDC did anymore. It makes sense, right? They’re the Centers for Disease Control, and what could they possibly devote their attention to aside from the biggest “disease” to ever afflict humanity? HAHAHAHA OH MY GOD, IT HURTS.
  • “It just lived inside her eyes, all the time. Waiting for the day when it would get loose to play with the rest of her body. Which it eventually did.” Oh, no, stop it, stop rubbing this in my face, my heart can’t handle it.
  • I admit that I did not understand the columns until it was explained to me, though to be fair, it’s not like I had them in front of me. But once Shaun explained it to the reader, I just felt awful. How was it possible that a portion of the population so small amounted to such a high percentage of Kellis-Amberlee deaths? That made no fucking sense!
  • And it is here that Grant ensnares me in this story in a heartbeat. I am utterly enthralled by stories about the complexity of government and how that can affect everyday citizens. I blame this almost entirely on growing up on The X-Files, and what little information I’m given from Kelly has piqued my interest. The CDC is still a government organization, which means its money comes from somewhere, which means that it’s entirely susceptible to outside control. You can look no further than the efforts of big business and super PACs within the U.S. electoral process to see parallels to how damaging this sort of behavior is to both the democratic process and the lives of people living under such systems.
  • In the context of this book, it gives Shaun a very credible theory about exactly what Tate and the mysterious “group” behind the attacks in Feed were actually up to. CDC funding often went to side projects directing the organization away from spending any significant time examining Kellis-Amberlee. They didn’t want the CDC to understand it better, and they didn’t want them connecting-the-dots in regards to reservoir conditions and death rates. Do I understand why? No, not yet, but holy shit.
  • “I put together a team of people I trusted once I realized what I was realing looking at. Someone’s killing people with reservoir conditions in truly terrifying numbers.” She took a shaky breath. “And when my team started digging, they started killing us, too.”
  • Oh my god, Becks’ blog entry at the end is STUNNING. Oh shit.

Well, this is one way to begin a book. Good god, what the fuck have I agreed to read? Grant is wasting no time making everything fucked up. And I’m certainly glad I’m on this journey.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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