Dead Zone
Cabin Pressure

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Cabin Pressure

Johnny carefully puts both hands on the air vent. He goes into a vision of himself, standing on the wing. He kneels down and touches the wing. At first, I thought it was really dirty, because it's all streaked, but it turns out that it's supposed to be ice. Johnny snaps out of his vision and tells the captain that there is a lot of ice on the wing. The captain checks his displays and says that the wings are clear and the anti-icing is on. Johnny says it's not working on the right side, and the instruments are wrong. The captain say that instruments don't lie, and that what Johnny's describing is improbable because in fifteen years, he's never had trouble with the systems. Johnny asks how ice on the wing would affect the flight. The captain says it depends on how bad it is, but that they would have difficulty maintaining lift and the plane could stall. Johnny asks how he'd fix it. The captain and co-pilot share a look and the captain admits that he'd go to max power on both engines. The captain and co-pilot look at each other again.

Back in the cabin, the plane is still bouncing around a bit. Purdy checks his watch. Another dude -- who looks like a stereotypical college professor, so I'm going to call him Prof -- is asleep. Larraine gets on the intercom and makes the landing announcement. The turbulence continues, and a glass falls off a tray table. Nicole walks forward to clean it up as the turbulence gets worse.

In the cockpit, the co-pilot tells the captain that the autopilot could be compensating for the ice, and mentions a past flight where that happened. The captain thinks real hard and then tells the co-pilot to go back to the main cabin and check for ice. He also orders Johnny and Kelly back to their seats. Johnny says he might be able to help out, because the captain will have a lot of decisions to make in the next few minutes, and Johnny can help him make the right ones. The captain sighs and tells Johnny to sit down. He orders Johnny to fasten his seatbelt and not to touch anything without asking.

In the cabin, the passengers get anxious as the turbulence continues. The lights start flashing. Purdy checks his watch. Larraine grabs Nicole and reminds her that they have a job to do. The co-pilot runs through the cabin and checks the wing. He heads to the back and calls the captain to say that there is definitely ice on the wing. The plane jolts, and the co-pilot falls to the floor. Larraine asks if he's all right.

In the cockpit, the captain says he's going to descend to a lower altitude, so that the heat and the friction break up the ice. Suddenly the steering wheels (yokes? I don't know what you call them in airplanes) pop out, and the captain says that the autopilot has failed. The captain broadcasts a mayday signal. An air-traffic controller gives the captain some instructions. The captain tells Johnny to help him keep the nose of the plane down. The yoke starts shaking. The captain says it's the stall warning, so he needs to get up some speed. He reaches for the throttle, but hesitates, and tells Johnny that all of his training is telling him to go to max power. Johnny says that if they do, the right engine will explode. The captain doubts it, but Johnny reminds the captain that Johnny was right about the ice. The captain decides to lower the flaps to get some lift. Johnny grabs the control and goes into a vision of the plane rolling. He tells the captain that the flaps are iced up. The captain yells, "I need airspeed, goddamnit!" He's got a need. A need for speed. The captain says, "God forgive me, it's the only thing I know to do in this situation," and reaches for the throttle. Johnny yells that they can't do it. The captain decides only to give max power to the left engine, and does so. The plane continues its rapid descent.

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Dead Zone

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