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 5     SUBMIT

The Burnrate of Markarian 421

Dan Hoy

Due to the ambiguity of the SOW and the attrition rate

and gaps intrinsic to any knowledge transfer, along with the apparent
superluminal motion cast by the relativistic shock fronts

and the observational absence of any corresponding visible object

initially (until the development of radio astronomy
made the compact electromagnetic halo visible to the un-naked eye

along with the lack of infinite strength at its center)

I’m pretty sure the Ursa Major project will never be completed.
We were sent here to establish control and maintain order

by enabling the mafiosos and entrepreneurial revolutionaries

exploiting the folds of the accretion disc stretched around
the supermassive black hole like a condom

to establish control and maintain order, our Employer

concerned only with the management of variation and polarization,
that is to say, risks—not with any affronts to its omnipotence,

which is just the sum of all the nodal points calculated in advance

to bubble up into a crisis of local rupture and emission.
We were sent here already overworked and underpaid, our hardware

and software un-updated under the assumption that inertia alone

could contort the impossible into being, our nocturnal scat
no longer able to induce a fluctuating state of excretophoria

to fuse with and offset the long hours of staring at nothing

but the raw cosmic light spurting out of the Void. Our Employer
knows the rate of converting matter and energy

into employees will someday be eclipsed by the rate of feeding them

to Markarian 421, but the plan is to not restructure the business model
into a system not dependent on the limits of the universe

until the universe is exhausted. As I said before

this plan is based on the assumption of inertia trumping
all technical and resource requirements, which as any project manager

worth their weight in carbon will tell you is a risk, which means

our Employer has failed to calculate for the gap within
its own calculation. I say this because we have no downtime,

we have nothing but the moment between emission and observation

when the gap might be seized by measuring it
against the event horizon, far enough away from the central singularity

to resist any significant tidal force long enough

to disrupt the entire operation, knock loose its holding pattern
just past the rim, our forms redshifting along with it, our time dilation

unfortunately approaching infinity as all infalling information

is annihilated—unless we sublimate somehow beforehand, the gas
sucked in but the light spat out and not just torn apart.