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Catch up on Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 

Melanie couldn't understand why the simple fixes she tried didn't get the network running again. But she didn't really care. She was more interested in enjoying the rest of her visit with her mother and her mother's husband, Fran. Mark would just have to use the kitchen computer. She had more important concerns–like beating her mom in Wii bowling.

The next day when her family was gone, Mark's complaints about having to come inside to use email got to her. She went out to the office determined to solve the problem. She repeated all the steps she had used the previous day, but continued to get the same error message: a network cable is unplugged. It could be the computer. She had this desktop sent in for repairs a few months before. But everything else appeared to be working. There was only one thing she could do and she dreaded it; she would have to call AT&T.

Her previous experience with the U-Verse tech support hadn't been the best. Usually she would try every combination of button pushes trying to get past the electronic man to no avail. This time she got lucky and spoke to a real human being pretty quickly. The tech had her repeat several of the things she had already tried in addition to some she hadn't. Nothing worked. When the tech recommended plugging opposite ends of the cable into the computer and the U-Verse receiver, Melanie balked. A long cable was strung between the two going through small holes in crowded closets. The tech then recommended trying a whole new cable. 

Melanie couldn't understand how a cable could suddenly be defective (she bought it in January), but she decided to buy a new one. She asked her husband how big a cable she needed and she was off to Wal-mart to buy a 25-foot Ethernet cable. 

…to be continued

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