Discover more from Raids on the Unspeakable
A short story of sorts.
There was a click and the lights were out again. This was the third time in as many days, even a curfew had proved inadequate. Twice already swarms had tonight snuck through the perimeter and struck another substation. Now would make the third, which seemed to herald a steady rhythm. Something had angered the bees but none knew why.
The first night it was thought oddity or mistake; then the second, its cause now apparent. That night was the worst. Whatever plans had been cobbled together that day were entirely inadequate to the task that night. Where a handful of incidents had occurred the night prior, that second wave proved decisive and the city was black until morning.
They called them bees because the drones were wiped out with the power surge, so died upon stinging and could only be used once. Internally it was acknowledged that the supply of drones corresponded to that of a stolen trainload from the month prior. The corpses which now lay in a converted airport warehouse only accounted for a small portion of this, with the sizeable shipment potentially lasting for months.
The basic technology was understood, with the use of drones an obvious factor. The target was hardly new either, as there were various military-grade methods which accomplished much the same. These were more easily traceable, however, with the device requiring a relatively advanced carrier and dispersal unit. The bees were consumer-grade untraceable tools of hybrid war.
Still these were in a significant sense not so effective as the graphite bombs had been, with more bees required for the guaranteed efficacy of each wave. The first night some few corpses were found which had burned out before doing any proper damage. Early on investigators linked these with incidents prior which now seemed test runs: modified drones found burnt out at substations.
The fourth night there were no attacks; nor the fifth. After the sixth everyone started to relax, nobody knew what had happened—nor heard anything after. The rest of the bees were never found and eventually the corpses were put into storage quietly without any noise that the investigation had stalled; it was decided to let sleeping dogs lie, thereafter the story became nigh apocryphal.
Of course, those for whom the message were intended had heard it well. They put aside their games and cooperated thereafter with renewed humility.