The whistle blew for the end of the shift... Theo's day was over... He walked to the locker room, showered, and put on his regular clothes... He then climbed the stairs, to get to the road level... Most people road the highspeed elevators, but he enjoyed slowly walking up the stairs, glancing out the topmost windows, appreciating the beuty of the sun and sky... He pushed open the large metal doors of the Iron factory... He looked up, and saw two great silver towers glinting in the sun... He wondered what kind'of people worked in those... He then proceeded to walk to his appartment... Most people didn't have time for this, and went from point A to point B via the transportation wires etched into the roads... The roads were long, thin strips of granite, left over from old times... Whenever one ended, it had a culdasac shape, along with different colored transportation wires ending in the same way... The transportation wires divereged much more often then the roads themselves, and sometimes came to warp points, which would connect the wire via controlled wormhole to a road in some other part of the world... These transportation wires were relavtively new, manufactured in about 2144, and put into public use around 2153... They were found in early experiments on the control of black holes, and worm holes... Theo found them interesting... But didn't use them if he didn't have to... When he reached his appartment, he accessed the holographic computer screen and gave verification of entry... He walked inside, and climbed the 21 flights of stairs to his room... He came to room 2156, gave further identification and was granted access... He was tired when he got home... More tired than usual... So he made himself a quick meal and wen't to bed... He woke up the next morning to a knocking at his door... He realized that he had fallen asleep in his clothes as he got up and rubbed his head... As he walked to the door he saw an envelope come from underneath it, and then foot steps... He picked up the envelope and looked at the back... It was blank... He opened up the door to see who had delivered it, but they were already gone... He then shut the door and sat down on the nearest chair... He slowly ripped open the envelope, and found a letter written inside it...
I know what you feel. And you're right, you are not the same as everyone else. I need your help. I can't say much more except this: Titan621.45985106601.1100h. You must be there, I will explain more then.
Theo gazed at the letter... He had a hunch what this meant, but he wasn't sure... He felt awkward that someone knew what he was feeling, yet they sounded understanding... He didn't know what to make of it... Yet, he was adventurous, so he decided that he'd do it... Theo then redressed, and wen't to work... At work, he decided to leave at 1030h, to give himself enough time... The day passed very slowly this time... Even though he had only been working since 0700h, it felt like an eternity... His mind wandered, he couldn't stop thinking about what was to happen come 1100h... Yet, do to his lack of concentration he didn't realize that he was letting his production rate lower, and he was being watched... Eventually 1030h rolled around... And Theo decided to leave... He was rather hasty, since this would be considered breaking out
... He quickly ascended the flights of stairs to ground level, and walked briskly to the nearest transportation wire... He stepped onto the small platform, which caused a holographic computer screen to popup... It said "Good day, where would you like to go?" Theo then took out the envelope from his pocket, and opened it slowly... Thinking very carefully at what he was about to do, he read the series of codes over and over... "Having trouble finding where you need to go? Try searching it on Google
," the computer monitor said... Theo then quietly said, "Titan621..." The screen then became dark, and a white box appeared... Theo touched to the numbers on the holographic keybord while watching "45985106601" appear inside the box... He pressed enter... "Warp Engaged," said a confirming voice... "Have a great day!" And Theo was gone...
After I recovered my strength and full vision, I stood up unsteadily and looked around from the spot where I stood.
The big green arms were trees, but these trees wept leaves, unlike the trees I had once seen which hardly wept at all, if ever...I don't remember where. The beautiful tears these weeping trees made rustled messily on the soft breathing ground beneath my feet. Sometimes a particularily strong breeze would make them dance around me - over and over again.
Real clouds floated in the sky, and I heard a watery rushing sound all around me. It was an island.
Alive, everything was so alive! My heart beat with desparate joy. "AHHH!" I screamed at the impossibly blue sky above me.
I ran through the trees towards where I could hear the water. Something fluttered with a noisy rustle as I ran past it. A bright orange blur on my left scuttled quickly across my path, screeching.
Then there was the ocean.
A different darker blue than the sky, it shimmered like crystals. The sand beneath my feet burned my feet and I retreated back into the cool, breathing grassy shade of the trees. Suddenly I remembered the dead, glass floors in an office building and somebody holding my hand leading the way...
Who am I?
I tried as hard as I could to remember. I was beginning to feel a need for food.
My mind went back to the syringe I found on the floor beside me.
"memoria exculpome, .05 g" it said. What does it mean?
"WHO AM I? " I screamed at the ocean that shimmered under the glaring sunlight...
and suddenly I felt lonely.
Xiu shivered, in part from apprehension and in part from cold. She rubbed her arms a bit and stared at the stark grey walls of Tunnel 8 out of boredom. Their silence answered her. Tunnel 8 was one of the old tunnels which the Iron Federation had carved out of the moon’s surface decades ago. Somewhere in the distance a high reverberation grazed the edge of her hearing. Must be a moon mole She thought. They were one of the many genetically engineered creatures that inhabited the land of the Iron Federation, created by people like her. People the Federation had hired to aid them in what she liked to think of as World Domination. The moon mole started off as a lab experiment for Earth scientists, but with the development of stem cell research it was engineered to produce valuable totipotent zygotes used for producing everything from human-compatible myelin to bovine pancreas secretions. Because these lab rats weren’t of “higher intelligence”, humans had no problem creating them only to destroy their offspring during the 10 day window. Xiu mused at this irony. Too bad scientists were too thirsty for knowledge. Some German geneticists figured out how to increase the production of their nervous cells, previously thought to be unable to undergo mitosis. Of course, something had to go wrong, and those previously harmless lab rats inherited a new gene. The gene that gave them a bit of an edge. The adult moon moles probably didn’t know exactly why they could never reproduce. But a few of them figured out it wasn’t natural. Iron Federation lost control of a few of them, and they managed to escape into the tunnels, where they waited. Tampering with their DNA sequence left high probability for mutation. Humans have natural defenses against this, with several enzymes and processes for weeding out “bad DNA”. The moon moles didn’t have these defenses. Just one of the many species that the human race lost control over in their genetic tampering. Xiu shivered again as a lower screech reverberated in the tunnel. Nobody really knew what the moon moles are doing in the tunnels, but Xiu really didn’t have the desire to find out. The Iron Federation pretty much ignored the problem, just as they ignore everything and everyone else below them. It’s kind of creepy without anybody else here, she thought. Then the image of William’s fake-white smile came to mind, and suddenly she didn’t mind being alone so much. She wondered what he wanted to talk to her about… She had heard rumors of something stirring within the upper-class geneticists. Something new… something wrong with the system…
Below the silver towers, of the great city, below the old, cracked streets from a forgotten world, far from the reach of the sun's golden rays, was a great engine... Not a mechanical engine, one made of the lesser people of the good earth. These lowlings were known above as the workers... They did all the dirty work, and didn't think twice about it. How could they? They didn't have the wisdom to realize that they were being used, they didn't have the imagination to figure a way out of the damnation, and they didn't have the love to care... They just went on with their lives, and made sure that nothing would crumble do to the experimenting of the runners, or the people that descended from greatness, above... Yet one worker was unlike the rest... His name was Theo... He was different from birth... He had a mutation... Mutations occur all the time in the birthing process, which is why doctors had begun scanning phetuses for genetic mutaions since the scare of 2169... They found out that--for whatever reason--the three viruses would mutate when the zygote had divided... In some cases, the mutations caused the phetuses to grow into horrible, unearthly creatures, that were inevitably terminated... In others, the mutations seemed to grant unearthly powers to the, otherwise normal, phetuses... Whenever this mutation was detected, the newborn was taken away for extensive testing... Their welfare is currently unknown... But this mutation was different from the rest... When scanning for viral mutations, doctors only scanned the specific viral genes, to make sure that there was no change... But, for some reason, the viral DNA was unchanged in Theo's DNA... So they passed him off as normal... Years ago, when the 3 viruses were running their courses, Theo's father was a great man... He loved knowledge, he loved to dream, and he loved his wife... It soon became clear, that the three viruses were ravaging through the bodies of he and his wife... He began to lose his love for knowledge, and daydreaming... He began to ignore his wife, and her he... He prayed every night, to be saved from this monster, who was stealing his soul... He prayed that there was some way that it would be stopped... He didn't want to lose his love for life... He didn't want to lose his soul... He and his wife, decided to have one final night of passion, before they had lost all love for eachother... And that night, Theo was conceived... The next morning, Theo's mother awoke in an empty bed... A note was written on it from his father:
I love you so much... Words cannot describe the love that is fading fast... I don't ever want to lose this love that I have for you... So I have decided to take my life, before I have lost it all...
Theo's mother then crumpled the letter and threw it into the fireplace and fell back asleep without a second thought... Little did she know, that her late-husband's prayer had been answered... On the back of chromosome 11 was a small gene, that hadn't been there before... This gene was the Hope Gene... This gene remained dormant for most of Theo's young life... But when he hit pueberty, it sprung to life, as if awakened from the dead! This gene began to repair DNA that was damaged by the viruses!! Slowly, Theo began to have thoughts... He began to dream... He began to love... Theo soon realized that he was different from the others... He soon realized that he didn't belong... Now he stands, staring at the great glowing iron-ore being poured into molds, thinking how beautiful the color is... He is almost exactly 6 feet tall, and well built... He often wonders about leaving this god-forsaken place... Just slipping away... They'd never notice... He thought to himself... He has worked in the underground iron fields for most of his life... Each day he becomes a little wiser, and plans for an escape from the hell... Each day workers are horribly killed, or injured, and no one so much as blinks... He soon figured out that he would never leave this place unless he took his life into his own hands... He just had to wait for the right moment... The right time... And then I'll sneak away... He thought, into the shadows... No one would miss me... They'd never know I was gone... I just have to wait for the right time... It'll come... I just have to wait, and prepare...
There was light. Green light.
A ruffling melody played above me like a dream. Again, and again. I opened my eyes.
There were strange tall things looking down at me, big green arms, waving but not touching me. I had never seen before. I still couldn't move very much and everything appeared fuzzy.
"Hello?" I managed weakly. A flying leaf landed on my nose, I've never seen such a leaf before! It had eyes and legs and it was shiny blue. "Wow, you're beautiful" I gasped, and sat up. The leaf flew away, fluttering its wings.
Something rolled down my chest to the ground as I sat up. Looking down, I saw it was a syringe.
As my sight improved, I lifted it up to my eyes and read the "memoria exsculpome, .05 g" imprinted on its side.
The ground beneath me was soft and moist, almost as if it were alive ... how strange. The ceiling was blue with moving white smoke that resembled mounds of the cotton synthetic-surrogate fibers...but what are cotton synthetic-surrogate fibers?
The air moved around me, dancing with my hair. It smelled sweet and fresh. O, Green Ocean!
My dark eyes were not yet accustomed to such ... such, beauty.
Where am I? Who am I? Why am I here?
The tap tap tap of the metal pointer against the holo-board irked Xiu Vervaagde more than she let on. For 5 years it had annoyed her, in fact. Every year she worked in the same cubicle, with the same boss, and the same boring staff meeting every Monday morning at 9:00 am on the dot. They were always the same. "Learn how to maximize your worker performance!" "Evading legal technicalities by utilizing the truth" "Make your time worth it" and so forth. The same old junk the Iron Federation had fed her since she graduated at Oxford University, a peaky Asian genetic genius at her youthful height. Patrishia, her company boss, jabbed the holo-board with the pointer in frustration. The gentle waves of light had shut off for a moment, only to be prodded back to life. The sallow-skinned Arian face twisted into what could have been a smile or a grimace. Xiu sat back in the magna~grav space where the mysterious forces of sub-atomic powers levitated her into a comfortable position a few feet off the ground. Patrishia was droning on about the Iron Federation's limit of power over the European Higher Thought Head Runner something-or-another. A pen rolled against her manicured hand. Tracing its path, she saw tan fingers drumming on the surface of the crystal table. She raised her gaze to meet the intense emerald eyes of William Kent, her co-worker and fellow Oxford graduate. He winked slowly, then nodded towards the pen. She picked it up, and saw something inscribed in glowing letters on the side. "Meet me in Tunnel 8, 1600 hours" Xiu started. The meeting was over and Patrishia had just whacked her on the head with the pointer, apparently for emphasis on some order she just missed. She rubbed her head in contempt, noting the tender spot where she had been struck. William rose from his hover and leaned into her as he passed. "You won't regret it" Something in his smooth tenor voice sent a small chill up her spine.
In the year 2000, the human genome was cracked. Scientists could now locate specific gene-caused diseases, and prevent them from occuring. In the year 2017, the the gene which was responsible for 90% of all malignent cancer was found, and wiped out... In the years to follow, many genes causing diseases and disabilities were found, and wiped out... In the year 2098, the human population broke 20 billion... With no diseases, and the lengthening of human life, the Earth had become over populated... There was an increase in gang violence in the world, because of this... In the year 2105, the Iron Revolution began... Hundreds of millions of people perrished, in gruesome lynchings, murders, and town fires... Each year the violence increased, and the human race became more savage... It came to the point that democracy was abolished, and many rulers were assassinated... In the year 2117, a city was constructed, on the surface of the Moon... The remaining world leaders got togethor in secret on April 2, 2117 and borded a ship to the Moon... On the ship, were who were believed to be the brightest people of the age, people they thought could make a difference... They colonized the moon, and preformed experiments on the increasingly savage human's on the Earth's surface... Every once in a while, scouts would be sent down to the Earth to bring samples for experimentation... After 4 years, on October 9, 2121 an unknown scientist discovered the gene that caused the human race to become so savage... They created a virus that cut out this gene, and inserted it's own DNA in it's place. This virus was then sent down to Earth and infected everyone on the planet... On January 1, 2128, it was decided that the gene had been completely wiped out, and Earth was inhabitable again... Over the next 30 years, Earth was rebuilt, and order was maintained... But it was eventually found out, that the gene which caused the downfall of civilization was copied onto other genes... Remembering what had happened, scientists created viruses to go on search and destroy missions to finish off this gene, and once and for all make Earth a Utopia... Three viruses were created: the Alpha Virus, which destroyed the gene that carried wisdom; the Gamma Virus, which destroyed the gene for imagination; and the Omega Virus, which destroyed the gene for love. In the year 2161, all three viruses had run their courses, and a Utopia was created... Yet, the role of God was being played, and the consequences for abolishing wisdom, imagination, and love were uknown... The present year is 2187, the human race has been divided into two classes, the runners and the workers... The runners are the decendents of the scientists and rulers, that had the idea to create the viruses in the first place... The workers are the people that have been infected with the viruses, and have no choice but to obey what the runners command of them... It looked as if the human race was damned to this divided Utopia, accept for the one thing that the scientists had hoped would never happen... The viruses mutated...
Was habe ich geschaffen? Ist es von Engel oder Ungeheuer.. Ich fühle, dass ich den Kasten von Pandora öffne.. Was auch immer von dies kommt, ich nur kann hoffen, dass es Änderung für das bessere schafft.. Für das Willen von meiner Tochter..
~Grabschrift vom unbekannten Wissenschaftler..
What have I created? Is it of angel or monster... I feel that I am opening the box of Pandora... Whatever comes of this, I can only hope it creates change for the better... For the sake of my daughter...
~Epitaph of the unknown scientist...
A man paces back and forth, mumbling under his breath. "It's here... it's gotta be here..." The cavernous walls of the library are filled with volume after volume of countless stories, facts, knowlege, and philosophies, and yet he still cannot seem to begin his search. The man rubs his fingers through his hair as he gazes up through the stories of literature. "May I help you?" The voice was feminine, soft, and ethereal. It seemed to come from the air itself. "I'm looking for something specific..." The man trailed off as he caught sight of a large leather-bound book lying open on one of the moss-covered stones. He smiled, and as if this had been some sort of signal, a ray of warm yellow light fell upon it. "Ahh!" As the man strode towards it, the cover flipped open, and a few pages ruffled in the slight eternal wind. Pulling up a library chair, he sat down and began to read.