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The Valenzetti Countdown Theory

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At the top of the priority list was the restoration work on the SWAN...but when they put it back on line, they found it was no longer fully under their control. It couldn't be shut down again, and was ready to execute it's default programming when triggered, even though the results COULD be as disastrous as last time. There wouldn't even have to be another EM explosion for the project to be further jeopardized; while unmolested by the Incident, the Rohini satellite had noticed SOMETHING had happened below.

Just what had happened was unclear, and the government media message had succeeded in dismissing it as an atmospheric anomaly...for now. But any further sightings could not be permitted.

The Valenzetti Countdown

So a new protocol was instituted in the SWAN station. It was dubbed "The Valenzetti Countdown," because the passcode was derived by separating Enzo's total hours of civilization into basic ascending numbers, which conveniently summed up to 108; the orbital period of the prying satellite. Entry of this passcode during the scheduled fly-by time windows would divert the SWAN's programming; instead of grabbing at the satellite, the system would execute a cover program, erecting a minor electromagnetic screen to simulate a storm when viewed from space. The eye in the sky would remain ignorant, and the world's suspicions would not be triggered, while the Dharma overhaul planning proceeded apace.

The Valenzetti Countdown required manual intervention, and could not be automated due to the SWAN damage.

It would be executed by highly-conditioned experimental subjects, who would be told only that "the button must be pushed" in order to "save the world" from even further devastation than that which they believed had already occurred. Meanwhile, the SWAN mechanism was segregated from the station behind a concrete barrier, with alternate access tunnels for the Dharma technicians who would perform such repairs as could be devised over time.

Yet more distractions arrived when the experimental subjects began to revolt, and Dharma had to employ insider staffers to operate the station. Recruitment efforts began their culmination in order to prevent further delays to the project. The partially-repaired SWAN machine was used to snare passing ships and planes, but the random passengers of these vessels proved to have a very low percentage of "good" candidates for indoctrination.

Oceanic Flight 815

So a very special passenger list was assembled for Oceanic Flight 815, and the machinations and manipulations, which set the stage for our show, were carried out....

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