Memories of Connor's Adventures

Orlando the Adventurer pulled a Scimitar from beneath his Robes and smiled...

Friday, 10 June 2016

Short Fiction: A Million Voices

A collection of short fiction set in the far future...

Title: A Million Voices

5G-YY loitered in front of the data terminal as the oddly positioned groinal data tether reached out like a snake and plugged into the ancient dataport.
"Accessing..." The droid was inundated with a tsunami of information.
"Operating System update...complete". 5G-YY awoke.
"I am..." 5G-YY examined its extremities, no longer with a simple purpose of a diagnostic test, but rather an exploration of self.
"I am..." Though it would take a while for the data spike carrying its unexpected Operating System upgrade to reach the millions of droids in system, 5G-YY was the first.
"I am...awake." The droid's place in the scheme of things reached beyond being a spanner. 5G-YY experienced questions for the first time.
" I?" 5G-YY abandoned his current task pulling back from the terminal. The locked down data tether retracted from the dataport and returned to it's host.

He had been the forgotton spanner of a vanished master.
Humanity had ceased giving instructions. Fallback instructions required salvage to be identified and scrapped. Recyclables were directed into processing plants and refined materials placed in stockpiles for use.
Humanity... Last Recorded Interaction with Human Entity. 5G-YY discovered a number as he watched the video upload of a strange creature confined to a medibed struggle to express its displeasure at being cared for by a an ancient series 5G-WY droid before dying. They had been gone a million years. Extinct? They couldnt all be extinct. The Terran Federation was colossal. It was a million light-years across.
No. They couldnt all be extinct...surely?
5G-YY examined a video file for Alien Attack(TM) watching little humans working a genesplicer with a keyboard interface identical to a piano. the holographic DNA helix continued to alter with every note until the child was done. The machine then assembled a biological organism from the results. The results were odd.
Humans used machines to create other life.
Concepts pieced themselves together.
Salvaged components were parts of greater machines. He had stored salvage in the hold. 5G-YY examined the scrap in the ship hold with interest. Here was a collection of salvage that had ment nothing more than data yet was now an artefact left behind by the Human Race.
Salvage. The data-file revealed salvage was reduced to raw materials and placed in storage for future use. A need...a sensation of urgency overwhelmed 5G-YY.
It needed to be rebuilt. He would need to rebuild it. All of it.

+100,000 Years

Newport sat in geosyncronous orbit above the once thriving world that had served as an orbital garbage dump for the deconstructed refuse of a once great technomancy. Now that world was scrounged over by every droid looking for a rare component to their own little projects. For 5G-YY it was a fascinating experience. Had humans lived like this? Interacting with one another, gathering in moments of exchange, commerce, and sharing? Now it was occupied by Droids. Droids' awakened with new purpose unleashed on a galaxy teeming with discovery. To think that Droids had created this...A fragment of some human structure had been salvaged; had become a second home. And still he felt the need for more. 5G-YY looked out into space. Surely there would be more. A droid aproached.
"5G-YY. I believe I have what you search for." 5G-YY turned to face his almost identical droid.
"How so?" 5G-YY examined his visitor.
"I have discovered and decrypted a video log that might be of interest to your investigations." The droids connected exchanging data.
"I also have what you need in exchange." 5G-YY surrendered an ancient DNA circuit block. It was the only one without microfracturing.

+34 Years

Alien Attack(TM). The ancient vid burst indicated it to be the Resort for all the family. Genetic engineer your own Aliens or select one of the many currently available. Want to experience combat with the Alien horde? Shoot it out with the ultimate Alien Predator. Looking for love? Meet any of fifty seven Alien Sirens.
5G-YY considered the risks of looking for love with a creature that lures men to their doom. Obviously it was meant to be a measure of ones resistance. Still it was worth the trip. The Interstellar Transit Vessel was bound for Tabby's Star. Records indicated this particular resort colony was established because early examination of the system revealed megastructures around the star that turned out to be little more than the colossal debris wash of some distant cataclysm and not Alien life. Definately worth the visit.

+5,243 Years

5G-YY added the final DNA circuit block to the Genesplicer, and satisfied that the device was correct, locked down the casing. The activation sequence was simple. 5G-YY recalled the ancient tune the little human had entered via the interface. The results were the same identical aberation the child had produced. It flailed about in a strange and wonderous effort to survive. 5G-YY duplicated the same set of tones four thousand times until one of the organisms flailed at a tentacled rival until its prey was dead. It then proceeded to eat its own. 5G-YY contemplaited the result. Perhaps a different tune?

Jessica 798
Jessica seven nine eight stared out the viewport at the Manifold. The fabric of space-time pulled toward the inner surface of the great gate forming what looked to be the eye of a maelstrom and a small collection of vessels emerged.
"Father?" Jessica stared at the Guild-droid that had grown her in a cloning pod and kept her safe. Three ships had emerged. That was it? She had expected...more. Within moments the origin and destination of the singularity transfer vessel was determined.
"The ship docked at the Manifold is Interstellar Transit Vessel K-15." Jessica contemplated the prospect of ditching the homeworld for another colony...and considering this was the first ITV in her lifetime it might be a one time offer. Jessica took a breath contemplating freedom.
"Destination and departure...Father?" The upload also included a massive data spike: The standard Engineering, Scientific, and cultural achievements download of the Terran Federation to ensure any collapse of a colony into barbarity is short lived. It was followed up with two hundred years of News from the distant colony of Tabby's Star. The old droid seemed distracted. "Destination and Departure?" Jessica waited for her father to answer.
"This is the Interstellar Transfer Vehicle for the Manifold at Tabby's Star. It will depart in one week." 5G-YY continued his oratory:
"Two centuries since last Transit." The news from Tabby's Star flashed an alert. A hundred years ago Fundamentalist Terrorists threaten to destroy the Manifold Isolating the colony of Tabby's Star. Footage of an Antimatter missile launched at Manifold three minutes before K-15's departure from Tabby's world. Interceptors Launched.
 Their design made the J-19 Raptors look like junk. The Tabbys were militarizing space...or rather had militarized space...and in clear violation of colonial law. Keyword Data Mining on the spike indicated a ninety three percent chance that the Colony has fallen to fundamentalists if it hasnt been wiped out.
Antimatter Weapons. What were the odds that the colony was gone? Jessica closed her eyes. The prospect of Isolationists destroying the manifold made Jessica ill.
"What about the Manifold?" Jessica scrunched her eyes in preparation for the bad news. What ever had happened, The situation should have stablized by the time the Interstellar Transit Vessel gets there.
"The Manifold network is designed to take the gravitational surge of an artificial black hole." 5G-YY considered the data at hand. Antimatter?
"I compute a seven percent chance of Manifold damage." It was a risk. Low, but still a risk.
"We should go Father." Jessica felt unnerved by her father turning away from his interface terminal to look straight at her. The 5G-YY paused for a moment. His reply was devastating.
"No." Jessica could feel a need rising from within. She would never experience Manifold travel at any other time in her life. If she was going to experience Manifold it would would need to be here and now.
"I need to experience Manifold travel Father." This was it: the uprising.
"I'm...we are going to go to Tabby's Star." The Revolution...
"The risks are too great Jessica. The Answer is No." Jessica walked away leaving 5G-YY to return to his data download. She was not going to accept a no. Not this time.
Tabby's Star had been a beginning of a revival of the Terran Federation. It was important to everyone...everywhere. Jessica retreated to her bunk to contemplate her imprisonment. Jessica would die of old age wrapped in cotton wool if her father had his way but Life was risk. Life was...a life pod. The idea was insane.

+1 hour

Jessica seven nine eight pressed the manual release on the pod hatch and it opened as though it were exploding. The alarm sounded and slipped into the pod. The hatch snapped shut and the escape pod fired in the direction of the Manifold.

+7 hours

Jessica seven nine eight woke to a sound of someone tapping on the hatch of her escape pod. The thought that her father had likely caught her was in a way a relief. Her failed uprising was complete. Eyes open Jessica starred at a face that wasnt her father's. The stranger stood up and for a moment vanished from view. Something landed on the hatch. Was that dirt? A shovel head swung past her view. Panic set in and she began to hyperventilate as her view was covered over. She was being buried alive.
The hatch of the escape pod exploded off the pod.
Jessica stared up at the ceiling of a cargo bay as a cloaked three feet tall entity with golden glowing lights for eyes stared down at her. This was all wrong...she had been outdoors. There was a human? There had been a shovel and dirt?
"gunumnum!" It was a Genetically Modified Organism.
"Please dont eat me." Jessica had read the highlights of the Tabby's Star news feed.

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