Monday, January 01, 1990

The Web--The Lightning Jacks

The lightning jacks are the most blatant example of how the Web exists as a leech on the Citadel. As was mentioned previously, the Citadel has its own electric generators that operate under the control of the Keepers. In their eyes, electricity is the mystic power of Pheric himself, to be dispensed in accord with his wishes and desires. The faithful may receive a ration of power, but the heathen and outcast cannot.

The Web is filled with “heathen and outcast.” There is no way that the Keepers would provide electricity to the huddled masses of the Web. So the lightning jacks steal it for them. Under the dark of night, the lightning jacks creep from the Web to tap into the power cables that crisscross the Citadel, stealing electricity for the Web.

This is an incredibly dangerous job. First, the lightning jack takes the risks of working with the powerful electrical flows that course through these power cables. Many novice lightning jacks never return from their first raid, and there is always the chance, even for the veterans, that this time they will slip. But even for the successful lightning jack, the danger is not over. Stealing electricity is very illegal, and the Noble-born warriors are empowered to kill such thieves on sight. But even that is a mercy compared to the fate that would await him if the Keepers caught him. There are whispered rumors of the ancient torture chambers beneath the Keeper Temple. The truth is even more horrifying.

The lightning jacks know the risks. So why do it? It is quite simple. Among the people of the Web, a lightning jack is sacrosanct. No one touches a lightning jack. No one. All the gangs of the Web would rise as one against anyone who would dare harass or harm a lightning jack. There have been gang brawls that have paused to allow a lightning jack to pass unharmed. It is a dangerous job, but it has its rewards.


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