Monday, June 17, 2019

Microstory 1126: Cambria Buchanan

Cambria Buchanan was born and raised in Kansas City. Her parents were desperate to figure out something she liked, and could do well. They signed her up for all kinds of classes, in a wide variety of fields; art, golf, swimming, LARPing, whathaveyou. Cambria didn’t hate any of these things, but she never felt passion for them either. Finally, they decided to just go all in, and registered her for the City Frenzy. This was one of the hardest races in the country. It was like a marathon, except streets weren’t blocked off for the racers, and there were few rules about where one could and couldn’t run. Like everything else, she didn’t like it all that much, but it served to lead her to what she would come to love for the rest of her life. This was a huge event, and only grew larger year by year. The first one was funded by donations, but the more popular it became, the more of a draw there was to the KC Metro. People would come from all over the country just to get a glimpse of these crazy kids. Pretty soon, the leadership realized they could be making some serious money if they broadcast on the web, for the whole planet to see. It was an advertisement-supported service, with premium features available for a modest charge. Of course, a lot of the revenue went back into improving the race, and its logistical necessities. One of the things they didn’t hold back on was broadcasting technology. Cambria’s first and only year was the first to use drones alongside the usual action cameras. She ended up not even finishing her race, because she couldn’t keep from looking at the drone that was following her around. She went straight back to the headquarters, which was only the size of two small business store fronts at the time. She struck up a conversation with the broadcast supervisor, and started learning about what it is they did. The more she listened, the more she wanted in, and so the next year, she was part of the crew. She would quickly prove herself to be an invaluable asset, and ended up running the entire department, ultimately upgrading her sensory cortex so she could manage the cameras pretty much all by herself. She adopted the nickname Agent Nanny Cam, because it fit her real name; Cambria Buchanan, and her profession as a cinematographer. But it was not she who came up with it. That honor belongs to her good friend—and future husband—Alexi Lanka. He was an actual runner, who used the race, and others like it, to channel his personal anger issues. He was always great with Agent Nanny Cam, though. She calmed him down better than any exercise could ever hope to. Together, they had a daughter named Aldona, who would go on to have two children of her own, Loris and Marcy.

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