In the thirteenth chapter of Blackout, Georgia learns the stakes of her future. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Blackout.
Well, this is terribly uncomfortable, and I love it.
I’m still floored that this series has introduced the ethical and logistical terrors of cloning and done so in a way that is remarkably personal. It’s clear that this new version of Georgia is going to have to redefine nearly every part of her life. In a way, that’s exciting, but it’s also bewildering. A great example of that occurs on the first page of chapter thirteen:
I didn’t know whether I wanted to run away from the danger or toward it. In a more lucid moment, I would have embraced that confusion, because it was what my journalistic training told me I should be feeling â€“ the need to get the story warring with the need to not die in the process.
The funny thing about dying, coming back from the dead, and finding out you’re not actually the woman you think you are: Anything that goes the way it’s supposed to becomes reassuring as hell.
I like that Grant uses the word warring here, because it conveys what’s happening to George. She’s at war with her own identity. We now know that she is 97% Georgia Mason, so that makes herâ€¦ who? Who exactly is she if she’s just had Georgia’s memory and experienced transferred into her brain? I’m enjoying that she’s choosing what natures to ignore or too accept, that she’s figuring this out as she goes along. In the end, she’s Georgia Mason, though, and that’s all that matters to her. Her brother is Shaun Mason, she loves him, and she is going to break out of this CDC facility.
Well, I goddamn hope so. It needs to happen soon, which is obvious given what the scientists have resorted to in the beginning of this chapter. As alarms blared and Georgia observed that people were freaking the fuck out just outside her room, I assumed it was an outbreak. I briefly entertained the notion that perhaps timeline-wise, maybe this was someone she knew causing the outbreak. Was this a rescue? Oh, Mark, you had hope for a moment.
Can we? Can we rage about this?
“Oh, no, Georgia! I’m sorry, you were reacting so calmly, I thought you’d realized.”
um. NO. No, I don’t know what this is. I’m going to hate you even more, aren’t I, Dr. Thomas?
“This was a test. We wanted to see how you would respond to an extreme stress situation â€“ especially one that was a close mirror to things you would have experienced” â€“ Dr. Thomas paused for just a little too long before finishing the sentence â€“ “before.”
I am done with you. Done. I am so ready for you to amplify and then get eaten by a clone of a velociraptor or something. I AM SO DONE WITH YOU, DR. THOMAS.
“Georgia, please. Don’t be childish.”
YOU FUCKING WORTHLESS SCUMBAG, I HATE YOU. I HATE YOU SO MUCH. HOW? HOW CAN ONE PERSON DISCONNECT SO MUCH FROM ANY RATIONAL, EMOTIONAL THOUGHT? HOW IS THIS ASSHOLE REAL? I HATE HIM SO MUCH THAT I’M WORRIED IT’S BECOMING IRRATIONAL. I LITERALLY JUST IMAGINED WHAT HE’D BE LIKE IN THE HUNGER GAMES JUST TO SPITE HIM BECAUSE I KNOW HE WOULD DIE.
This is horrifying, y’all, and it pains me to read this. Look, this situation is terrible enough, but how can these people do this to another human without any appreciation for how it affects them? Well, they do it because they’re a perfect demonstration of how humans can use the beauty of science to be wrong. I love science! I always loved learning more about the world! And I’ll defend the importance of science to society to a point. Because this shit? NO. NO. NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. And I brought this up when I learned what the CDC was doing to unsuspecting people around the world, but I do not care what scientific discovery you’re working towards. The second you violate people’s consent and their right to know what you’re doing to them, I am done with you, science.
I held on to what little hope I could find once George indicated there would be another clandestine meeting at midnight. The EIS folks had to start coming up with a plan to get Georgia out of there! These stress tests would only get worse, wouldn’t they?
Unfortunately, things look pretty damn grim:
“Someone’s going to get caught over this one. It won’t be me, but whoever it is, they’re going to be lucky if all they lose is their job.”
Goddamn it, this is a disaster. Georgia begins to understand this not only when she hears this, but when Gregory tells her that After the End Times have disappeared. Of course, we know where they are, but it’s a neat insight into how the team’s purposeful off-the-grid missions are perceived by other people. While there are sightings, so far, even the EIS doesn’t exactly know where they are.
But god, that’s just one concern of about a hundred they have to deal, like this one:
“They’re going to put the new Georgia on the air, and they’re going to use it to do the one thing they couldn’t do on their own.”
“They’re going to use her to lure Shaun in,” I finished, in a whisper.
It’s such an unsettling thought because I know how much power the CDC has. But how are they going to pull this off? Shaun’s going to suspect Georgia is a clone pretty much immediately, right? I know he desperately wants Georgia back in his life, but would he really take the bait in this case? However, all of this is trumped by the fact that the EIS DOESN’T KNOW HOW TO GET GEORGIA OUT OF THE CDC.
“Well.” I opened my eyes, sighing once. “This is going to be fun.”
If by “fun,” you mean “a treacherous and ulcer-inducing procession of trauma,” I’ll agree with you, Georgia.
Mark Links Stuff
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