It was bitterly cold. An old man carefully walked along an empty road, hugging his coat closer to him and warming his hands with his steamy breath. His eyes darted back and forth, watching out for something, a thing that clearly wasn't there. The sky was gray and the old city was deserted. Nobody had lived here for years and every decaying structure was proof of it. Still, he felt like something was horribly wrong here. Something out of the normal was about to happen. He was terrified, like something was about to change the course of history forever. He had to assure himself it couldn't be true. It was completely absurd.
Sure, it was not uncommon for the crazy inventor to disappear for months at a time; however, this time was different. He had always burst in through the front doors of his house at the most unexpected times, bringing in the strangest contraptions that anyone had ever seen, and babbling nonstop about things he had never heard of before. It was both annoying and amusing at the same time. His prolonged absence now felt inexplicable.
Many frightening thoughts arose in the old man's mind. Had something bad happened to him? Is he working on something secret? Is he going on strike? All of these things sounded dreadful to him, and he would never be pleased until he figured it out.
"It was me, after all, who had invested in all of this." He mumbled to himself. He had always considered the inventor to be good friends with him. He had never kept anything from him, no matter how odd.
It was supposed to be a bright and sunny day all around the world, but clearly it was not here. The foggy gray skies reminded him of how quickly the past had faded away. He began to imagine the time everyone left this place after the revolution. Things were different then. Things were nicer. The countless years that had passed felt as though they were only days ago.
His steps seemed to echo off every wall as he briskly walked in the direction of the laboratory. He wasn't even sure if the ancient structure was still standing, but he followed his feelings and instincts, knowing that it would take him to his answer.
Each building and object he passed seemed more and more foreboding. It was as if he was being watched by thousands of invisible eyes. He wondered why he felt so awful when there was no reason to worry. He repeatedly reminded himself, he would see exactly what was happening once he got there.
He approached the large dark warehouse which seemed like the least damaged building in the entire city. It stood above everything else in the vicinity and stretched wider than any other he had seen. If the inventor was working on anything here in this city, it would be in this building.
The old man stood in front of the great doors, thinking about whether he should go inside. He had come so far that it would be pointless to go home now. The double doors were slightly rusty and looked like they hadn't been opened up for years. There was a large symbol engraved between them that he had rarely remembered seeing before. It looked like a circle with six wide sections going outward from it in different directions and with a large hole in the middle. Someone had told him once that it was called a gear. The old man heard a voice in his head that said he had to leave now.
"Don't be ridiculous," he chuckled to himself, "I'm sure all will be explained soon." He raised the heavy doorknocker with a terribly loud squeak and let it fall with a bang. There was a loud hollow boom which echoed from within but nothing moved. He thought he heard the inventor's voice, but it may have just been his imagination. It was peculiar. He clanked the knocker again and still nobody answered. Everything inside seemed to be completely silent. Still, he knew he had to go in if he wanted to see what was happening, if anything at all.
He dragged the great rusted door open with another awful creak. It was completely dark in there. He had never seen anything gloomier or darker than that darkness. It was apparent the inventor wasn't there, but he went inside anyway.
"Gyro!" he shouted out. His voice echoed off the opposite wall far away and eventually ricocheted back into his ears. He readjusted his glasses and let go of the door. It slammed shut behind him. His heart thumped loudly in his chest when he realized he could be trapped here. The door couldn't open from this side. Though it was completely dark, he felt the presence of a massive figure looming close ahead.
"This really is not funny at all!" he muttered halfheartedly. Still, everything but his echo was silent. He hesitantly walked forward expecting to find something. He passed by tables of peculiar smelling test tubes that glowed faintly. He was getting closer to the large figure now. Soon he walked right into it hard and cringed in pain. It was cold, metal and astonishingly large. A lot of thoughts went through his mind. This couldn't be my investment. Why is it sitting here doing nothing? It must be a mistake. This thing needs to make some money!
He felt around for a switch or lever. It must have been some kind of machine, he concluded. Then he found what he was looking for. It was a tangled bunch of wires. There must have been some sort of eerie light source emitting from somewhere because he saw the wires very clearly. There was a blue one and a red one disconnected from each other.
"Well," he thought aloud, "I could get a lot of money out of this thing, whatever it is. I hope it starts getting to work immediately." and with that, he twisted the two wires together.
Just then, several things happened simultaneously. There was a wave of sparks from the wires and a panel sealed itself closed over them. A blinding red light came from hundreds of feet up, and a thundering voice made the floor tremble.
"I am ready."
The thing that the old man was standing next to turned out to be a foot. It rose up and the giant monstrosity moved over to one of the building's walls. It started pushing some sort of buttons on a giant control panel. Suddenly, clouds of fog erupted from another machine. Something emerged from that machine that was too horrible to describe. The giant monster then turned around glaring down with malice at the petrified, old duck. It roared with hideous mirth and Scrooge McDuck screamed. He didn't remember anything more.