Jessica falls down a mining shaft and transitions into her life as a writer
::Hi again. I've been thinking for the past week and I've decided I want to go to school. So I sent my application last night and...they took me! But I kind of want to finish telling you about what happened back there first before I get into that.::
((Colony City - Desperot))
::Okay, so this guy keeps trying to calm me down. I mean he's saying he's as confused as I am and stuff. But he's a nerd and he really doesn't know what he's talking about. I mean I still think he and this Karynn lady and her group destroyed my home city and everybody in it.
But then he says there's something different about me. I guess it's kinda neat to hear that about yourself so I just listen in. I'm phasing in? He's using all these big words and I can't get most of what he's saying.
So anyway, like I said the woman starts trying to contact her ship and I just laugh at her because she totaled my city but now she's stuck here and can't get through. I get a few looks, like back off this is serious and stuff and then I realize things ain't how they look. So Karynn says to me,::
Ehlanii: If you have any relevant history to give us, anything that could shed light on our current predicament, I'd really appreciate you sharing that with us now, Miss Jessica.
::I'm thinking. Relevant history... relevant history. What should I do? Tell her everything about my life? No. She needs to come to know Administrator. That's the best way for her understand how it all went down.::
Jessica: Listen, I'm just a shelf stocker. But uh.. There's this mine shaft where you can lose yourself. Go down there. Administrator will show you where it is.
::I know he can do it. He made everything clear to me, didn't he? I don't know. I don't know anything anymore. I mean shouldn't I know where the mining shaft is? I'm getting off topic again. So let's see. Oh yeah the turtle guy starts talking about the reality I come from and it's sounding all weird and stuff like geek boy over there. He says they'll be marooned with the rest of Desperot. Is that what's happened here? Yes. On this deep level I know. It's so weird. One minute I'm just a shelf stocker and then these people come and I'm someone else. You know how it is sometimes?::
::Anyway geek boy goes,::
Breeman: Sir! The shuttle!
::and then says a bunch of stuff about chrono... chrono tones or something. Now I can see the city come back. It's just...coming to life. The grass is green again, the sun's out. You can hear sprinklers going in the background. I'm so relieved I'm starting to worry about Cart. He's so gonna fire me. Still, people are smiling, walking their dogs. It's all good.::
::But then the red-skin starts crying to herself. What's wrong with her, I mean we're home, we're with Administrator now. Everything's gonna be okay. But now redskin's black as... as I don't know. I've never seen a night sky yet, remember? It's freaky, like a black thing in a white room.::
::I'm happy and surprised at the same time. All I can say is,::
Jessica: What the hell? Holay!
::Then they start talking more about this shuttle they came out of. I look over and all I see is a tree standing there. It's kinda lopsided. I mean I've seen that tree before... haven't I? Oh yeah, for sure. I must have walked past it like hundreds of times. But I don't know anymore. I just don't know. Then stuff gets even weirder.
There's these birds. They're flying at me and I'm about to scream but then one of them lands on my shoulder. I don't wave it off or anything. Seems harmless enough. It's like I can hear him thinking or something. I know it sounds stupid, but seriously it happened.::
Mara: <<You're cool.>>
::And another bird lands on my other shoulder.::
Natha: <<I think we've found someone we can work with.>>
Jessica: <<Hey man, what gives?>>
Mara: <<It's cool. Just sit tight hun, we've taken care of everything.>>
Natha: <<Yeah, the interface's definitely working this time around. Got decreased levels of anxiety, neural activity's on the rise. Link's working. It's a local too.>>
Mara: <<Frack. Finally! Okay like I said we'll take it from here. Somebody got our message, looks like.>>
::I mean, they didn't exactly say that but it was kinda like that. Anyway the two birds fly off with the others. I don't know why I do it but I just kind of giggle. I dunno, sometimes you just can't think of anything to say but it's like you just have to, you know?::
::Then I forget about the birds. There's a billboard flying. Looks like another satisfied customer. Anyway geek boy's looking at me. The more these guys look clueless the more I believe we really are in trouble.::
Jessica: Billboards. The Administrator likes them to be around. Just to remind us of our freedom, you know?
::Then a guy comes out. I think I saw him at the bar this morning. Not sure if he's a regular or not. We get so many guys like him. Prospector type, wearing the same leather boots. This guy's been giving up responsibility and leaving behind the world for pleasure for a long time, looks like.::
::So the geek says he's carrying some kind of chem he found earlier. All I can do is what all good followers of Administrator's wisdom would do.::
Jessica: Isn't it great? Aren't you so happy for him? He's got everything you'd ever want, man!
Ehlanii: It doesn't take an empath to realize that that man was absolutely miserable, Miss Jessica. I'd hardly say he's got everything he wants.
::Okay, now I'm pissed. I start to walk toward her. I feel metal under my shoes. Must be the maintenance hatch. Anyway, I don't care; this heretic just dissed our messiah. What right does she have to--::
Zita: I believe I've re-established the comms, Commander.
::I stop walking. Communication from the outside world. Administrator promised we'd never hear from them again. He said we'd found our paradise. Was he wrong? Every part of my body is screaming yes. I look back and the man is gone. Now everybody's talking about going back to the shuttle. As soon as this dissing the Administrator started it's done again. But I'm finished. I'm done with Him.::
::And now Karynn's saying,::
Ehlanii: It was.... interesting meeting you Miss Jessica. I'm sorry to have to run, but we have our own time to get back to. But from the sound of it, you may be resolving into the present along with us.
::She's right. I'm through with the past. It's complete crap.::
Jessica: You were right. Thanks. Bye.
::There's something inside me that's screaming "Heretic!!!" I don't know if it's saying it to me or to her. All I know is that the voice is sounding dumber and dumber. It's like there's a whole city of others inside me that don't even have to speak to make their point to the one voice calling me a heretic.::
Ehlanii: Let's get going.
::They're walking off to that tree now. It looks kind of funny but sad too. Maybe it's like Jack and the Bean-stock. If they keep climbing they'll get home. Before I can think of anything else I hear a click and then--::
Jessica: Oh crrraaaap!!!.
::I'm flailing my arms and legs all over the place, screaming. There's no sunlight any more and the side of the mining shaft is a blur. This is the most scared I've ever been in my life. But then I remember the bird. It's all I've got left. I'm gonna die thinking about a stupid bird that... thought to me that I was okay. Just sit tight hun, we've taken care of everything.::
::The shafts in the mine are flying past faster and faster. I get quick looks at the people in them and then they're gone. It's weird because while I'm falling I can remember things. I remember stuff we did in these shafts, classes I took in school. It was all a lie. All those memories want to jump out of me like they were just staying inside my body like guests at Jezzie's, you know?
Now there's screaming below me. Oh God. Is this hell? I keep remembering the birds. I can't think of anything else. It's so damned -- oh God I can hear bones snapping, slices into skin. Is that the guy I just saw outside Jezzie's? My gut's been sliced open. No. The birds. The birds.::
Mara: <<Fear response stimulators. Thought we could get people's attention using raw emotion.>>
::The birds are back. I can hear them like they're fluttering around my head right now.::
Natha: <<Yeah... No offense but you guys really sucked at getting the message.>>
::Huh? I got the message loud and clear.::
Mara: <<No, some idiot took credit for it and then you got his interpretation.>>
::The screaming starts to subside. I'm still falling but it feels like the most normal thing in the world. I look over myself while I tumble. No sign of cuts or anything.::
Natha: <<Like I said, just stimulation of fear and pain responses.>>
::Okay. That really scared me. I mean I'm gonna hafta talk to a therapist or something.::
Mara: <<Suck it up, princess.>>
::I'm starting to feel happy, giddy. It's like I've been trying to learn about life at a neighbour's house by being stuck in their well for years and now I'm about to get out. I feel this warmth over my entire body and everything's dark. I'm free. I don't know who I am.::
((Miranda Campus Resort - Miranda Colony))
::So anyway, I think I fell asleep. When I came to I was lying on Miranda Beach with you standing over me. The sun was in my eyes. It was a real sun. I could hear the waves moving. In... out. In... out. I've never seen a real sun before or heard waves on a real beach so that's why I started to cry like that. And then I started to laugh because I thought I saw this little brown cat stare at me and then walk away into the West Forest.::
::So listen. Thanks for picking me up like that and showing me around this planet. I've never heard of the Fed-- what is it again? Oh yeah, Federation, before until those guys came and rescued me from the colony and then you told me more about it.
Anyhow, like I said, I went on the nets and applied to Orson College. I feel like writing all this down someday. There's so much stuff I want to write down. So that's what I'll be. I told you I didn't know who I was before. Now I know. I'm a writer.
I'm going to learn how to do it and then write all kinds of stuff. I'll write about those people that I keep dreaming about. You know, the ones I told you about a while back living in that giant starship. I'll write about that young kid who joined starfleet after he decided he didn't want to be just a programmer. I'll write about those floating yellow balls he got to know. I'll write about that girl who's brain was hacked by walking, talking dogs.
So I've gotta go now. Maybe we'll see each other again someday. Maybe I'll get to know some of the people sitting around us.
Jessica the former Shelf Stocker
as simmed by
Lt. Jg. Kevin Breeman
Chief of Science
This sim was an experiment with a simming maneuver called a narrative voice re-absorption. Here we see Jessica fall into a mining shaft and come out the other side in a world in which she now dreams about stories that have already occurred in the game so far. Jessica's true nature as a projection of the Desperot Entity is briefly explored through her dialog with the 'birds.'
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