Mark Reads ‘Blackout’: Chapter 21

In the twenty-first chapter of Blackout, WHY? WHY? Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Blackout.

Chapter Twenty-One

That’s why the first bullet missed me.


There was a muted bang, too soft to be a proper gunshot, and technician who entered with Kathleen staggered back, slamming into the wall. A red stain was already spreading across the chest of his formerly pristine white lab coat. He looked down at it before raising his head and looking at me, mouth forming a word he couldn’t quite push all the way out into the world. It was George.


The second shot was as quiet as the first. Kathleen suddenly collapsed, the dead weight of her body pulling her hand out of mine. I turned, looking back at her, and at the hole in the middle of her forehead like a third, unseeing eye. Unlike George, she wouldn’t be rising.


“They’re both dead!” I shouted. “What’s going on?”

“We’re blown!”


“They’ve been with me for years – how many people do we still have in there?”

“Seven,” said Gregory. I didn’t like the resignation in his voice. “At this point, they’re locked in with two armed hostiles and at least one risen infected. Sorry, Danika, but I think we have to call this mission compromised.”


“James didn’t report for his shift. Given the timing, we have to assume he was a mole, and had been waiting for the opportunity to report back.”


“Dammit, Danika! You triggered a full lab decon!”

“I did no such thing! Someone’s playing silly buggers with the security protocols!” She sounded frantic. I didn’t blame her. I wasn’t sure what a full lab decon detailed, but I knew enough about CDC procedures to know it wouldn’t be anything good.


“What are you talking about?” I demanded. “We’re all getting out of here!”

Gregory smiled sadly. “No,” he said. “We’re not.”


There was a full decontamination cycle starting on the other side of that wall. And the only two people I knew were on my side were on the other side of it.


I CAN’T FUCKING BELIEVE THIS. Like that, every ally Georgia had is GONE. WIPED OUT. DECONTAMINATED. What does this mean for Shaun’s CDC journey??? Will they be upstaged by this? CAN THEY EVEN GET IN THE BUILDING? Oh my god, if they get within feet of Georgia and they don’t rescue her, I WILL RAGE WITH THE FURY OF A BILLION DYING SUNS. I just want Shaun and Georgia back together, and now I am thoroughly freaked out that this won’t happen.


Mark Links Stuff

– I have been nominated for a Hugo in the Fan Writer category! If you’d like more information or to direct friends/family to vote for me, I have a very informational post about what I do that you can pass along and link folks to!
I have announced what the next books I am reading on Mark Reads will be, as well as updated y’all on the events, cons, tour dates, GOING TO EUROPE OH MY GOD, and general shenaniganry going on in my life. I have a similar post up on Mark Watches, detailing the next two shows I’m doing as well as the return of Double Features, and I finally explain what happened with my Vimeo account. Check these posts out!
– If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area, I am doing a live reading/Mark Does Stuff event at Borderlands Books on April 21st at 5pm. Come on out! I’ll have copies of my latest book to purchase and sign.
- Mark Reads Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is now published and available for purchase! It’s available in ebook AND physical book format, and you can also get a discount for buying the ENTIRE SET of digital books: $25 for 7 BOOKS!!!
- Video commissions are open, and you can commission a Mark Reads/Watches video for just $25!

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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