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just a picture of a cloud
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
[Tessa Mabel Cole continued from This is not a War]

Everyone knew there were drones over Arizona.

You couldn’t see them in the sky or anything, the feds were way too smart for that, but you could see where they’d been if you knew where to look. There were holes in clouds that shouldn’t be there, or occasionally the sun might seem to be glinting off of nothing. You’d hear noises like a plane, but there’d be no planes around; the signs were everywhere, as long as you knew what the signs were.

Tessa had been reading about the signs for years.

The problem with these drones was that, according to the feds’ own laws, you couldn’t really do anything about them, not even if you knew they were there. As long as they were in your airspace and not on your property, they weren’t technically trespassing, and you couldn’t just go shooting them down. You were meant to just sit there and let their infrared x-ray microwave future cameras look down your chimney and watch you undress.

Needless to say there were people who weren’t too happy with this arrangement, and they’d figured out ways to deal with them that didn’t end up with anyone in FBI custody, being shipped off to some secret prison in Cuba with a bag over their head.

When it came to drones, there were two basic types. The big drones, the ones they used in the Middle-East were called Hunter-Killers, and those had all kinds of fancy communicators and satellite feeds and whatnot to keep them going. If one of those came for you, there wasn’t a lot you could do except hope that they messed things up and “accidentally” blew up a school full of brown kids instead of the house you were hiding out in.

No, those things weren’t to be messed with, but the little ones were just spy drones, and those communicated using good old-fashioned radio waves. Radio waves that the good folks who made up the Arizona survivalist community had all sorts of ways of jamming, blocking and subverting.

The way that Tessa had in mind was by building a spark gap transmitter.

From how that smug government stooge had talked, it was clear the collars were radio activated. When they talked about how they’d blow them up if the kids didn’t do what they said, it was clear that that required some sort of external signal, and radio was the obvious choice. A spark gap transmitter would stop those signals coming in, and once Tessa had done that, these false flag faux-terrorist fucks wouldn’t be able to do a damn thing to her.

She hadn’t built one before, since they were technically illegal (and what a shock that the Government wouldn’t be permitting its citizens to build devices that would prevent drones from hovering above their heads) but she had a good understanding of the theory behind them, and thought she remembered the practical details well enough to rig up something that worked, as long as she could find the parts.

She reeled off a list of them in her head as she trudged across the grass. It was her mantra.

“Wood. Wire. Nails. Hammer. Motor. Batteries. High voltage source.”

Most of what she could find would be at the vehicle depot, but it made sense to leave that for last. All that stuff would be heavy, and she wouldn’t make things any easier on herself by having to cart it around the island with her. No, she would gather everything she needed first, and then once she was fully equipped she would make her way there.

She’d spent a good quarter hour pouring over the map, planning her route. Much less time was spent on any of the other contents of her bag, except to note that the Claymore Mine she’d been given was manufactured by the U.S. army. But oh no, that was all just some big coincidence, wasn’t it?

Tessa had snorted. Like hell it was.

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