Alex Inoue

Dead End, Zo's Journey, and more stories


Posted by on January 16, 2019

Time Logs (24 hour):

(Copied from source)


It’s time.


The door opened easily. There’s no locking it again, now.

The elevator has been much more stubborn. While it’s probably a good thing the power is out, it sure makes opening this steel clam a nightmare. What I’d give for a good crowbar.


My hands hurt. The bits of metal I have with me weren’t designed for prying things open. Most of them bent before budging the door. The angle is all wrong.

And of course I still can’t get a connection from down here. That, or the network is down. But I can’t imagine the whole city turning off.

Maybe there’s just a local outage. Even with shielding, maybe an EMP would still disrupt nearby services? It’s annoying, nonetheless.


I finally got it open. Had to take a couple of breaks to recover my strength and find better methods of entry. It took driving several wedges across the door and many more rods bent or broken, but I finally got a grip good enough to pull the way open.

…that just rhymed.


I took a moment to shine my phone into the dark and found the way up was blocked. While there seemed to be a little space to the sides, I really don’t think I can fit between there. Not to mention how high up I’d have to climb.

Nope. Not even going to try.


What would happen if I found a way to cut the cable?

Not that I even see a cable. I’m guessing it’s covered by one of those box-shaped bands of metal going up along the wall.

The way down isn’t super far. But I bet someone would hear the crash. Would it even crash?

I forget how much I use the network’s archives. I would have just looked up our blueprints and used a calculator to model it falling. But no, there’s hardly a thing this hunk of plastic and metal can do for me right now. Instead, I have a glorified pad of paper with built-in flashlight and alarm clock.


I sneezed and nearly spilled my mucky meal. Sucks to have to dribble food out of a cup. It’s like a really bad fruit smoothie. A smoothie where you tried to mix everything with your bare hands. However strange it might be to imagine, but there was once a time where people actually risked their digits putting whole fruits into a blade trap called a “blender.” Alice thought I was making stuff up until I walked her to the museum. Apparently, just an archive page with detailed images wasn’t enough to convince her.

She ended up forgetting about all the other cool machines and spent our walk home talking about how cool the big stone bowl thing with a small stone club was. I think it was called a Mortar & Presser? Once again, can’t verify anything without access to the city network.

Mortar sounds wrong…I can’t go five minutes without wishing I had a database to reference.


Yeah, plan failed. Guess I’m waiting until the lights shine.

The lights to the lab or the lights to the afterlife, whichever happens first.


I really don’t want to be stuck down here until I starve to death.


I woke up from a really shitty nightmare.

Literally. I dreamed I had to eat my own defecation to survive.

The weird part was that I was actually how I was stranded on an ice sheet. At least I think it was. I felt really cold and the ground was really hard and whitish. There was also seagulls there.

Man, my dreams get really bizarre sometimes.


Of course I have to relieve myself.

It smells weird. Rather, it doesn’t smell like much at all. Really weird. Still came out like a river.

I’m starting a new bag. Maybe this ration food leaves little waste or something? Also, I don’t feel like opening the old bag. The smell just kept getting worse each time I unsealed it. And the stench just sits around for half an hour after, too. Really shitty.


So I found some more soft-ish things to add to my bed. Don’t know what they are. Some sort of synthetic fabric, maybe? And there was a bit of cushy wall-looking boards stacked behind some boxes I mostly left alone before.

Now my bed is slightly less cold and a good bit taller.

Now I can fall out of it and though it wouldn’t hurt, I’d have to wake up a bit to climb back in. At least, I think I would wake up. Alice never told me if I sleep-walked or not. She just complained about occasional snoring and kicking.




I have to get out of here.

There’s got to be some way to climb up the elevator shaft.

Man, it would suck if the power came on and the elevator went back down while I was climbing. I need to try and measure the space behind the elevator where those sticky-outty bits were. maybe I can squeeze through, somehow? I’m not getting any thicker with my current diet, that’s for sure.


I spent at least an hour trying to find parts of some crazy contraption to measure the gap along the back wall of the elevator shaft. Long story short: I’m going to have to attach my phone to the end of a stick to scout above the elevator after I put bigger things on the end until something fits past.

I wish I were more creative.

Alice would have been much better at designing a better way to measure that distance with the parts available…

I’m going to be so angry at her when I see her again. I still can’t believe she did that!


It broke. Shit.


Good news: I can fit.

Bad news: I -barely- fit. Probably. I might not fit anyway. My method of measurement was a bit shaky and unreliable.

Really dumb news: Local Man Crushed by Elevator.


Man, if I die like that, I might not even get a cool headline like that if the city is deserted…

Fuck these people, whoever they are. Killing everyone I know is one thing, but they might even ruin my legacy if I die down here.


I was just tinkering around with random things when I realized something.

My legacy will be even worse.

Someone will find the ruins of New Seattle one day and discover a strange cave where the remains of a man lay buried in pristine plastic bags full of preserved human feces and urine. I’ll be the modern pharaoh that was buried with random tools, archaic electronic devices, and his own waste products.

I’m going to curse whoever opens this vault. Maybe death by bug bite infection, like that one guy back in the 19th century. That’d be fun.

Future Notes:

Turns out there probably wasn’t anyone in our lab anymore. They cut the power off most the city, physically severing cables when they found them. I believe they became frustrated after being unable to locate any useful information locked away in some of the city’s data centers spread across town. Looking back at some of the recovered reports, there were several access attempts but nothing made it through. I bet they thought about just taking the servers with them, but there were just far too many to bother doing so.

Instead, they ended up going around until they found a shelter with valuable people to hold ransom. Part of cutting power off was to see if they could force everyone out of the well-fortified shelters, most likely.

The worst event I found evidence for was the gassing of a particularly large shelter to presumably flush everyone out. Out of the total capacity, it seemed that at least half, or two hundred, died before they could make it outside again.


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