COUNTER/Weight 40: The Storm Over September

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Episode description[edit | edit source]

“It is with great joy and humility that we make the debut of this machine today. For so long, so many have struggled here on the frontier. Food is scarce, and time is even more precious. A hard day of labor is a thing to be proud of, but it does not yet stretch far enough. Soon, though, we will thrive, prosper, and if we work with dedication and vigor, we may even profit.”

-Chief Engineer Irene Klipsch-Dove, 100 years before the activation of the first Stellar Combustor

This week on COUNTER/Weight: The Storm Over September

The difference is something to do with the sound
Or partly to do with the color

Opening[edit | edit source]

AUSTIN: 44 months after the September Incident. Chief Emergency Executive Orth Godlove slides calmly across the temple floor, stepping between broken columns of polished sandstone and wading, carefully, in the shadows of sullen statues. He’d snuck away from so much; his security detail, the photo drones, the EarthHome megastar assigned to be his guide during his visit. The entertainment company, still struggling in the years since Petrichor’s hostile takeover, had petitioned him to come see their new and improved Joypark, a last ditch attempt to get in his good graces. But Orth had made up his mind years ago.

AUSTIN (as Orth): Come on, Cass. You know I don’t have all day for this.
ART (as Cass): You’re not the only busy person here, Orth.
AUSTIN (as Orth): Good to see you.
ART (as Cass): Good to see you.

AUSTIN: He looks around, at the ruined temple.

AUSTIN (as Orth): It’s beautiful here. I’m sorry we— war is terrible, but this is… this is something else entirely.
ART (as Cass): I don’t think it is, I think this is just a terrible consequence of a terrible war.

AUSTIN: He grins.

AUSTIN: (as Orth): You are a very and noble and humble leader, Apokine.

AUSTIN: And he does a little fake bow.

[Art, as Cass, laughs.]

AUSTIN (as Orth): Anyway, I have the paperwork. It’s all settled. A couple of signatures… stamps, I don’t know what you all use.
ART (as Cass): We sign our names in Apostolos too, Orth.

AUSTIN: He reaches into an inside pocket and pulls out a couple of papers and hands them over to you.

ART (as Cass): I’m so relieved there’s not gonna be a big ceremony, I’m so tired of ceremony at this point.
AUSTIN (as Orth): It’s the worst, isn’t it? It’s nice to be able to make things better, but… sometimes I think the pomp gets in the way.
ART (as Cass): Yeah.
AUSTIN (as Orth): Anyway. It’s yours.
ART (as Cass): [sigh] What a— what a project.
AUSTIN (as Orth): Good luck. There’s a lot of garbage on this planet, needs cleaning up.
ART (as Cass): Do you happen to have a forwarding address for, for Aria? I think... I think she’d like some of all this stuff.

Plot[edit | edit source]

Just by rising, Rigour has destroyed the Bacchus Recreational District and Slate Mineral Cooperative, and starts on the ships that have been sent from outsystem to attack it. It wants Voice.

Cass pilots the Apokine out of the warehouse. They open a channel to Sokrates to warn them of Rigour, and Sokrates prepares to mobilize. AuDy reaches out to Detachment where it rests in the Kingdom Come, and asks Cass to carry them north and into line with the ship. Aria calls the Brilliance to her, and jumps in.

Rigour knocks Mako off his hoverboard and he falls onto the Divine, suffering just being near it. Cass attacks Rigour with Apokine’s beam spear, though using Apokine’s power in this way grants a psychic backlash from drawing on the same source as Voice. Mako keeps Rigour’s wound open, slowing it from healing using nanomachines. Aria draws Jace’s blade and strikes at Rigour, cutting off its arm, which slams into the Brilliance as it falls.

AuDy leaves the Apokine as they pass the ruins of the bunker. They run toward the ship while Liberty and Discovery search for data on Rigour. They recall there is a way to lock one Divine away, with the sacrifice being that two other Divines must lock themselves in with it.

Rigour moves toward the September Institute. As Twelfth tries to control it, a dead-eyed Paisley Moon shoots him in the head. Mako crawls into Rigour’s body and finds Natalya Greaves inside it, but can think of no way to free her. AuDy gets the Kingdom Come into the air and enters Detachment. Voice has been freed by the death of Twelfth, and the people of September cry out for help. Mako asks the other strati connected to Voice to help him, and they use their powers to pull him out of Rigour, badly hurt.

Detachment and Voice begin to open the doors that will shut September away. At the same time, the Chime manage to save Paisley, Maxine, and Lazer Ted. Liberty and Discovery are desperately trying to get out of Detachment. AuDy pushes back on them, insisting they stay as the portals close.

Orth, Jacqui and Mako are returned to the Kingdom Come. Below them, the planet is falling apart. Rigour tries to climb and escape, but it too is caught in the cut-off portion of September. The rest of the planet begins to slowly fall out of its orbit.

The galaxy reacts to everything that’s happened.

And 53 months after the September Incident, in the blizzard-swept remains of Mode City, AuDy and a dying Maryland talk about gardens and the nature of time.

Cast[edit | edit source]

Other Characters[edit | edit source]