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“Activity off the consonantal shelf,” says Enrique, eyes tracking a wiggly needle.

Hazel swears. “We’ve been warning them about this for years! Get on the horn to FEMA, tell them to close the schools.”

“It’s too late now. It will have already started. We never could predict them precisely.”

“What’s the point of plate linguistics if we can’t save a way of life?” Hazel demands.

But Enrique’s eyes are wide. “Wait, this is different. Hazel–it might be another big one.”

“What? There hasn’t been a Great Vowel Shift since the savanteenth–”

They stare at each other.

“Oh shut,” she says.