-/- U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
-/ (DoD (7) 32-17-41) -
-/- DOCUMENT USGX-5704-A169
-/ MULTIPLE ACCOUNTS OF CASE DESIGNATE "CLOVERFIELD"
-/ HANDHELD ELECTRONIC DEVICE RETRIEVED AT INCIDENT SITE "US-205"
-/ AREA FORMERLY KNOWN AS "TIMES SQUARE" -
-/- PROPERTY OF U.S. GOVERNMENT
-/ CLASSIFIED TOP SECRET - DO NOT DUPLICATE
-/ VIOLATION MAY RESULT IN LIFE IMPRISONMENT AND/OR A 750,000 FINE
-/ PRESS ENTER TO CONTINUE -
-/- ACCESSING MAINFRAME...
-/ SUBMIT PASSWORD
- PASSWORD: bananaoil
-/ PRESS ENTER TO CONTINUE -
-/- CHECKING PASSWORD...
-/ PASSWORD ACCEPTED
-/ RETRIEVING FILE... -
-/- /file: RECORD 003/6-7-09/RIM(BES)/gsm"blackberry"
-/ U.S. PENTAGON - ACCESSED THROUGH PUBLIC WEBSITE "FANFICTION. NET" - STATUS: UNDER SURVEILLANCE
-/ SOURCE: GSM "BLACKBERRY" (SERIES 8700)
-/ ORIGINAL OWNER: IDENTIFIED AS LINDA S. WEAVER (CIVILIAN, LOCAL RESIDENT)
-/ RECOVERED: JUNE 7, 2009 (DURING POST-INCIDENT SWEEP OF SITE 205; SEE ATTACHED FILES)
-/ PRESS ENTER TO CONTINUE -
My name is Linda Weaver. I live in Manhattan. It's between maybe 12:30 and 12:45 in the morning. Something has just happened. Something big. I don't know what it is, but I can tell.
I was just sitting on my couch, munching on a bag of chips and watching TV, when all the sudden the apartment building rocked as if an earthquake had struck as the lights sputtered and went out and a muffled, low-pitched noise grated roughly through the air. For a few terrifying seconds, I was plunged in near-total darkness - something that, even if you turn out all your lights yourself and close your blinds, does not happen in the middle of New York City. For one moment, I literally thought that I had somehow gone blind. It took a few moments for me to realize that the entire city had apparently lost power. At that moment, the lights flickered back on, and I sat in silence for a few seconds before reason kicked in and I turned the TV back on to find out what had just happened. No doubt it would be all over the news instantly.
My thoughts proved correct; after mere seconds of staring at a blank screen - the news station had seemingly lost power as well - I was rewarded with the face of Roma Torre from NY1. She's practically everything I want to be - namely, a successful and well-known reporter. It's probably that same reporter-style instinct that's causing me to type all this out on my BlackBerry, of all things to do in this situation. Even in the midst of what was going on, her voice was as calm as any other time and she betrayed no sign of any nervousness. Truly an artist at work. I listened as she talked.
"Breaking news from NY1. Something strange is happening in the city tonight. There is no official word as of yet, but some are speculating that we're in the midst of another terrorist attack. Phone calls are pouring into the NY1 newsroom as a thunderous roaring sound emanates from the harbor approximately fifteen minutes after word..." she paused to look down at her notes, "of a possible earthquake in lower Manhattan. Nearby, in New York Harbor, we're getting word of an oil tanker capsizing in the middle of the harbor, near the Statue of Liberty. Once again, there's no way to know if any of this is connected..."
At that point, even my respect for the work of Roma Torre gave way to my own instincts. The Statue of Liberty was visible, barely, from the balcony of my apartment room. I went outside and leaned over the edge, searching for any sign of what was going on. Judging from the voices coming from below me, I could tell that I wasn't the only one trying to figure out what was happening. I squinted at the water, looking for a sign of the sunken oil tanker or anything else unusual. I spotted something, an amorphous, fiery glow near the shore. The orange light lit up thick plumes of smoke that rose to the sky.
I looked down a level, to the right, to find my best friend Kelly looking back up at me from her own balcony. She was wearing her overlarge t-shirt and pajama pants that she slept in, and her eyes bore the unmistakable crusty look of sleepiness - the shockwave or earthquake or whatever it was had apparently woken her up - yet, at the same time, I could tell that she was also feeling as frantic as I was.
"Kelly! Have you been watching the news?"
She shook her head. "What's going on?"
"I don't know. They're saying that it might be an earthquake, and a boat sunk." I purposely left out the possibility of a terrorist attack - that idea made my skin crawl just to think about, and I had no desire to resort to that explanation until it was actually proven. Reporter instincts or no.
"Sunk? In the harbor?" I nodded. She turned her gaze to the water for a moment before looking back at me. "Can you see anything?"
"Yeah. Look right by the-"
My words caught in my throat. Suddenly, I couldn't breathe. I couldn't move. I couldn't think. I couldn't do anything but stare at the figure standing motionless in the middle of the water, illuminated by the flames billowing up from the capsized ship.
The Statue of Liberty's head was missing.
Ever since I had moved to this apartment, I had gotten used to the sight of Lady Liberty standing in the water, gazing over the city with her tablet clutched to her chest and her torch held high, her proud, chiseled face staring confidently into the city she guarded. To me, she had always been there, whatever the history books said, an everlasting guardian of the city, the enduring symbol that life would last safely for the city's denizens. And her head was... gone. Just like that. It shook me to the core, and immediately I knew that whatever was happening, it wasn't anything like an earthquake. This is something huge. Something monstrous.
"Linda? What is it?"
Somehow, I found it in me to look back down at Kelly. Swallowing the lump in my throat, I tried to make myself tell her. But I couldn't bring myself to. Because if I said it, even though I could see it clearly, that would make it real, absolute, irreversible.
Regardless, I never even had the chance. I felt the ground shake again as a loud noise almost like a crackling pop snapped through the air to my right, accompanied by a renewed outbreak of frenzied gasps and screams from the neighbors. I turned to the direction of the sound, only to be greeted by a huge explosion erupting from behind the Manhattan Municipal Building. It emitted a high-pitched whoosh as it mushroomed upward, expanding in all directions and engulfing the buildings around it. Small chunks of ignited concrete - or they could have been cars, for all I know - were blasted high into the air, detonating at the peaks of their arcs like fireworks.
That was when I knew I needed to leave. Now.
Not giving a thought to the fact that all that I had on was my own sleeping clothes, I sprinted out of my room, down the building's stairs, and into the street. A panicked crowd was already thundering down the road. I'm in it right now as I type this into my PDA. Kelly's beside me. People all around are talking, their voices merging into each other to create a constant, unintelligible background noise, only occasionally punctuated by clear words like, "It's another terrorist attack!" or, "Did you hear that noise?"
I can feel the vibration of all the feet pounding into the ground running up through my legs. There's something else too, something... out of sync. Once every few seconds or so, it's as if there's a quick burst of especially powerful shaking for just a moment, then it stops, only to repeat itself again a couple seconds later.
As if they're the footsteps of some impending leviathan.
A/N: As is hopefully evident from the story, I've put some care and research into writing this fic. For example, you might notice that I said the explosion was behind the Manhattan Municipal Building, when in the movie the building is to the left. According to my research, if someone was looking from a place where they'd be able to see the Statue of Liberty from their balcony, their view of the Manhattan Municipal Building would place it between themselves and the explosion. Also, Roma Torre is the real name of the reporter from the movie, both in the movie and in real life, since she guest starred as herself. That sort of thing.
As you also may have noticed, I've also taken a few slight liberties, if you could call them that (no, the pun was not intentional - lower the brick slowly). I've looked at the teaser trailer for reference as well as the movie itself. If you compare the two, you can see that the news dialogue is different and you can hear the roar when the lights go out in the teaser, whereas it's just a big crash in the movie. Since Linda's first impulse was to turn it to the news, I combined the two pieces of NY1 dialogue and added my own beginning to make it more complete. Also, since she's closer to the Statue than Rob was, I made it so that she would be able to hear the roar. So it fits both the teaser trailer and the movie, in a way.
Another thing is the whole governmental message that starts it off. The seemingly random numbers and stuff are actually either the same as or closely related to those that appear before the movie - I've checked - and I also kept a lot of the same kind of stuff it says in there, but I put in modifications where needed, considering that this is not found footage, but found writing; for example, I changed "MULTIPLE SIGHTINGS OF CASE DESIGNATE 'CLOVERFIELD'" to "MULTIPLE ACCOUNTS OF CASE DESIGNATE 'CLOVERFIELD.'" To tell you the truth, this is probably the only instance where I'll be doing that kind of thing, because basically everything included in the teaser trailer that Linda gets to see happen was just covered, and I'm obviously not gonna repeat the governmental message before every chapter.