Run Cable Run

  • Reading time: one-and-one-third minutes
  • Word count: 261
  • Published: 1 jan 2014
  • Author: Matador the First
  • Copyright: Matador the First, 2014


“The power switch won’t flip. Of course you taped it down. Probably the only thing here you bothered securing.” Quickbreak felt around and found the cord for the power strip. He followed it underneath a display riser, one leg of which it coiled tightly around; out the front, where it ran completely exposed across a main footpath and up the leg of another dais, then wrapped up the base of a tree; scurried off across the rest of the tree section from treetop to treetop; scrambled catty-corner to the edge of the electronics section, then ran parallel to the main walkway, jogged along the edge of the foyer, and bolted out the front door, but not without first tracing the frames of all the doors there—but out the front door all the same—to one of the columns, which column it climbed up. The cord then clung to the overhang ceiling, which overhang it followed to its end.

Then the cable leapt over to the chainlink fence walling the garden center, climbed down, and sneaked up behind a register, strangled its cashier, suffocated its lightpost, slunk down from the top to the ground, sneaked into the main store through the garden center’s sliding doors, and darted toward the Christmas-tree display.

Finally the cord slid back under the same riser Quickbreak had started at, and shot out the left side and up to a socket hanging from a cord-retracting wheel suspended from the ceiling. “New plan.”

Our hero walked back to the power strip and yanked out every cord plugged in.


“Run Cable Run” is an alternate scene cut from QDX 2013, specifically “Authentic Fauxflakes.” In most of the earlier drafts of the story—possibly all except the last, I think; I cut it pretty late in revision—this scene comes after Quickbreak hears the power switch was taped down.

I really liked the absurdity of the cable run, so I didn't want to cut it. But it had been written in to allow me to make the Kmart employee Mitchell much more hostile toward Quickbreak. Originally Mitchell sort of got pissed off and there was a joke about how his behavior changed depending on whether he was wearing his name tag, but it was slow and didn't have any punch.

When I cut that, “Run Cable Run” had no right to stay. So it didn't.

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