There was nothing to do but get back on my board and walk...Every Space has a download bar like ours, but the bars belong to the Central Authority.
It really seems like that should be an upload bar because the power is moving away from them, but whatever - I'm the only person who cares about things like that. It's here, in the last few pages of Chapter One, that we are formally introduced to the evil future government's truly ridiculous means of generating energy, something which makes the scheme in The Matrix seem really sensible and well thought-out by comparison.
The other half of this equation is that the Central Authority needs lots and lots of babies, and...you know what? I'm going to break this down.
1.) Glenn Beck (or at least the woman who wrote this based on his ideas) truly does go his own way. I can't think of any environmentalist group that's aiming to increase the population, and the audience for this book is New World Order nuts who are convinced that the Georgia Guidestones are proof that the Sierra Club is plotting genocide. I don't know what to make of this particular plot point (except that it's stolen, but I'll get to that later).
2.) I already know what you're thinking, and no - there is no explanation in this novel as to why the evil eco-fascist government is not employing any alternative energy at all. Does it not work - a bold claim since there are renewables that work now? Is it some edict by the Central Authority? Is this society just hopelessly stupid? It's possible that this comes up in the follow-up novel, which I haven't read as of this writing. For now, I'll just say that this is far from the only thing the Central Authority does that makes no logical sense at all.
But enough of that, Emmeline is about to be introduced to her state-mandated husband. The process is oddly ritualistic, with the women wearing headscarves that are color-coded based on whether they are married/have produced children, but that's not fully explained until later. The important part is that we meet our next character, Jeremy. Here's everything we learn about him here:
Then Jeremy, escorted by an Enforcer, got off the bus-box. He was thin, scrawny, and his skin was pale...Jeremy and I were officially paired. We went into our Living Space. He looked around as though he had never seen one before..."I wanted a virgin. And what did I get?" He glanced at me. "You. And an old lady." He glanced at mother...Jeremy said nothing else, but his eyes narrowed and his lips pinched together.
I'd like you to do something for me. Get a pen and a sticky note and, based on the above chunk of text, write down some basic biographical information about Jeremy - age, race, appearance, things like that. Stick that note close to wherever it is you're reading this, and we'll come back to it much later. It's okay if you're wrong, this is more of a personal experiment. I got Jeremy really wrong when I read this the first time, and I'd like to know where the fault lies.