Motionless

Just a quick bit of sci-fi I wrote out of boredom.

Motionless. The only way to describe the wasteland of Braxis. The rolling dunes of the desert were completely without movement. From one side of the horizon to the other one could look an they would see nothing but the barren plains of grey, the desert of Braxis being not covered in sand but ash. Over the centuries since the planet’s core had burst the ash thrown up into the atmosphere had settled and compacted under the harsh winds and heavy rain storms, leaving a solid floor of darkness, leaving it motionless, or all but motionless. Slowly and tentatively something small broke the surface of the ash. A small creature, it’s fur matted and coarse carefully poked it’s head from where it had been hiding beneath the cover of ash and, after many minutes scouting the area. Broke from it’s cover, running a few feet it hid in the shadows provided by the closes dune and went to ground, flattening itself to the floor and watching. Taking it’s time the predator waited, knowing that before long it’s patience would be rewarded. Finally it’s patience was rewarded when something moved, skirting the desert quickly it darted forward before stopping. Sliding forward almost leisurely the predator moved, what it was hunting didn’t matter, only that it was soon to become food. The hunter had learnt after years of life, how to move silently but quickly across the desert and before too long it had closed on it’s prey which was still very much unaware of it’s presence. Staying low the hunter stopped, knowing that even as it closed, one wrong movement would cost it it’s meal. The ash moved minutely before it as it carefully moved again, finally it was close enough, the time to strike was now and with one surge of it’s muscles it burst forward and out of the ash, It’s huge frame exploding from the ash like a breaching whale and it’s jaws scooping up and enveloping the small rodent which hadn’t even realised it was being stalked and which managed a small, pitiful squeal before it disappeared completely into the maw of oblivion.
The Dust Devil lay on the surface of the ash,resting it’s huge frame allowing it’s scales to absorb some small amount of sunlight from the clouded sky as it chewed it’s prey a few times before swallowing. In the distance it watched a as a trio of dust clouds made their way across the desert, the Devil had seen clouds like this before, it didn’t know what caused them but it’s primitive animal intellect told it that it was best to stay away for now. Even if it moved at top speed it was no match for the vehicles on the horizon, but what else it knew was that sooner or later those vehicles would releases softer, slower targets and then maybe it could claim a more significant meals that the one it had just had. Casually the beast turned back to the ash, using it’s ram like nose to crack the surface and then pulled itself underground again. The only sign that it had ever been there being the long thin track left by it’s dorsal spines as it moved, punctuated by one larger crater before the trail continued, turning east and following after the clouds on the horizon.
Heedless of the display of nature that had just occurred the small army jeep sped on across the wasteland, it’s wheels kicking up huge plumes of ash as it did so, causing the bus that followed behind it to need to keep a good distance to it’s left in order for the driver to be able to see where they were going and the same said for the cargo truck behind that, causing the convoy to gouge a wide series of tracks out of the previously perfectly flat ash.

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750 words.

The city of Indus, one of the largest cities left in the world. A sprawling metropolis of skyscrapers rising so high that, from the ground, the sky couldn’t be seen save for a few select spaces. The city had prospered greatly from the introduction of the ‘sharing of information act.’ a law passed that gave the police the right keep record any information they wanted from the populace of the city. At first the act faced extreme opposition but as the poverty rate increased so did the crime rate. Eventually the masses turned in favour of the more right wing political parties. By the time the act was finally initiated, the right wing parties had won office by a landslide victory. At first the results seemed to be in favour of the act. The crime rate plummeted as more and more criminals were apprehended thanks to the easy access of the information that helped to bring them to justice.

Eventually however the results started to slow. Be it because of the lack of criminals or of people entering the city but the act again seemed to be losing favour and there were talks of votes to remove it from usage. With the chance of their master key idea being removed, the right wing parties had to find a new way to ensure their stay in government. They decided that they only way they could keep their stay was through money and as such they started to sell the information that the police were gathering to any company that wanted to buy it and with a little side dealing, most of the police force was also added to their payroll.

As the information leaked companies became more and more successful at targeting their adverts at people. The increased income allowed more information to be bought which again boosted the companies’ profits which in turn helped to lace the government’s pockets. It wasn’t just the businesses that benefited though, it became easier and easier for people to find what they wanted. With just a few simple clicks on their computer they could have almost anything they wanted and there would always be a market for what they wanted as companies could tailor their products to the people who wanted them by simply monitoring what the people were talking about on social media sites, blogs and other internet sources. Eventually the people became lazy, contented with their lives and being, what seemed to them, to be pampered. Why complain when anything you want could be yours for a price and with such ease? When the time came for another election the only people who turned up were the people being paid to do so.

Within a few simple years a political party had used standard information about the people to earn enough money to buy the city. Most rival political parties were gone within a year, fading out to the sound of apathy. Now, with the entire city under the control, the government gave up their pretences of being there for the people, they sat back in their chairs letting the money sweep in and protecting only their own interests. The police started to sell their information, not just to businesses but to anyone who could afford to pay their prices. Suddenly identity theft was on the rise. People could lose everything in a night whilst anyone with the money could change identities like changing clothes. As the police started to become more corrupt the crime rate started to climb. As the upper echelons of society started to weigh down on the lower classes more and more people started to turn to crime to try and scrape a living for themselves and their families.

Those rich enough to keep their heads above the rising poverty level flocked to the upper levels of the city, the skyscrapers and the high rise apartments were filled with the super-rich, those still lucky enough to be on the governments pay role and anyone with enough political leverage to get themselves a hand up. The luckiest of all were members of past opposing parties, kept afloat to keep up an appearance of diplomacy in the city, though everyone knew they were nothing but glorified pets being kept as a sign of power.

As the rich rose the poor sank deeper and deeper into the depths of the city. The darkened alleys became rank with criminals. Murderers and thieves, rapists, vandals and all sorts of gangs that fought amongst themselves. There was no worse fate than to live on the streets below the skyline and look upwards towards the shining upper city, knowing that you would never reach there. For once you had fallen down into the heart of the city, there was no way out again.

Phantom Limbs XVII

Friday 14th September 2116

James Dylan’s Audio Diary

What have I done? The last thing I remember is seeing the bar as I walked down the street. The bar and the bang. What have I done? Where did I get the gun? I was just. I wanted to try and…why did I go in? Why did I order that drink? And now…Phil. The poor man didn’t deserve any of this. His house. It was so sparse. There were bottles strewn about the place. He was as drunk as I was. But he had more sense than I did. He tried to run. Cried for help. He didn’t listed to me. To my mad, drunken ramblings and I go angry. Why couldn’t he just listen? No…I can’t blame him. This is all my fault. What have I done? Now I’m just sat in this house. Alone again. With blood on  my hands. What happened to me? This is a new nightmare. My child is gone. My wife. Phil…they’re all gone. And it’s all my fault. I pushed them away. I pulled the trigger. The police will be after me now. It’s only a matter of time.

What can I do? Or is it too late for everything? Is there anything I can do to make up for the evil I have done? The computer. The automated bank. Maybe one last thing I can do…for Mily…thank god Joanna always insisted on separate bank accounts. There isn’t enough money there to buy Mily that present she wanted. Maybe her grandmother  and mother can scrape the rest together between them. Maybe after everything I can still afford to give her that little house she wanted. Got to move fast. I can hear something moving outside the door. Am I still drunk? No. It’s got to be one of those police hounds. Those mechanical hounds, more machine than I am. But less cold… there. My last deed done. They are definitely outside the house. I can hear it snuffling beneath he door. I guess this is it. Joanna.. Oh Mily. I am so sorry…

James Dylan logged out.

Phantom Limbs XVI

Thursday 13th September 2116

James Dylan’s Audio diary

You know what? What the fuck was I talking about? My fault. How is any of this my fault? My life has been going to fucking hell and I’m sat here crying like a baby because everyone else has fucked everything up for me. Did I ask to me maimed? Did I ask for my bitch of a wife to leave me? Did I not try and explain the horrors I was going through? Did she care? No no no fucking no. What the fuck did I do to deserve this? It’s her fault, and Apex for fitting me with this faulty shit augment! And Phil’s! Yea that fuck started all this. Clumsy drunken arsehole! What the fuck was wrong with him1 getting drunk and then moving that machinery. He should be fired, he should be in jail for what he did. Oh fuck off! Now the anti-auaugment bitch barmaid is giving me the evils. What the fuck does she want? Just because I’m different? Because I’m superior! Well my life is hell bitch! Oh what does this gorilla doorman what?





Now look at me. Lying in the fucking street, people looking at me like I’m some fucking drunk. I’m not drunk! That fucking anti-aug bar. Just hates machine people. Well fuck them. Fuck them all. How did I end up like this? Fucking Phil. Yea…fucking Phil. How about I go and pay fucking Phil a fucking visit. I know where he lives. He can pay me back…for all this misery he has caused. He can pay me back. And explain to my wife. And my child…and to me. Yea…lets go pay Phil a visit.

James Dylan logged out.

Phantom Limbs XV

Gonna try to rapidly get the last few chapters of this story out in the hour I have left before I head to Japan for a month so be ready for a few quick uploads. hopefully the quality won’t tank to hard and i will pretty it all up when I get back.

Thursday 13th September 2116

James Dylan’s Audio Diary

She left me…I think she’s left me. Joanna found out about the upgrade I bought.and then she started shouting. I’m in such a daze, I can hardly remember what she was saying. And then she took Mily, she took her and shouted something about her mother and then she left. Poor Mily was in tears. Her little face was balled up, she was confused. She was afraid. It was like looking into the face I saw so often in my dreams that it’s almost burned into my mind. Now I’m just sat, in this empty house…I don’t know what to do. Where did my life go wrong? I…I’m not even sure I can speak right now.

I know I did wrong here. I know that it is my fault. I should never have gotten the upgrade, never gone to the store but…nobody can understand the trauma! The dreams were nightmares, the sleepless nights. The bins piled high with packs of used 5 hour energy tablets. What was I to do? I needed something to help and, somehow something about getting the implants. It just spoke to me. Every upgrade seemed to help.they silenced the dreams, made the pain go away. Made me a better man at work. Every bit of machinery inside me has made me a better person but each piece has pushed someone else away from me. My family…my coworkers. And now I am the best at my job, I can sleep easy and I am sat alone in my empty house. I can’t stay here. I need to go get some fresh air.

James Dylan logged out.

Phantom Limbs XIV

Well this is the first post in ages. work has really been dragging my morale down and made it hard to get the drive to write but hopefully ic an get back on the waggon and finish this before i go on holiday for a month.

 

Wednesday 12th September 2116

James Dylan’s Audio Diary

Well here I am again, back in the bar. If there is one good thing to say it’s that the dreams are gone. The good ones and the bad. When I go to sleep I pretty much just shut off, when I wake up it is like no time has passed at all, it’s justs suddenly day. I can’t say I am overly thrilled about that but if it keeps those horrific nightmares away I would have done anything. That brings me back to what I have done. Joanna doesn’t know about the arm upgrade yet. I’m an idiot but I was smart enough to get the same coverings put back on so my arm doesn’t look any different. Still, it feels like she knows. She hardly looks at me anymore. I’m starting to feel my old self again and she just seems to be falling back further away from me. After my first nights sleep when I woke feeling fully rested I tried to give her a hug and she pulled away from me. In 11 years of marriage she has never refused a hug even if she has been busy. I feel like somehow this process of recovering has effected her so badly. All the time I thought it might have been me changing, that somehow it was my fault things were falling apart. What if actually it was her that was changing. All this time I was angry at her but she couldn’t help it, she’s been affected more deeply by this than she can let on, trying to be strong for Mily. I feel like such am imbecile that I didn’t see it before. I need to get home and show her how I can be strong now for all of us, she doesn’t need to anymore.

Work is even starting to progress along again. This upgrade is great. I was never a great typer before, hence all the audio diaries I guess. But now it’s like I hardly need to even be looking at the screen and I can be editing reports and everything else I need to do. This upgrade was a great idea, I’ll be moving up the ladder at rocket speed before long. The old colleagues are still being bitter about everything. They haven’t invited me out recently. Hardly even look at me to tell you the truth. So childish. And after they were so supportive when they thought I was a cripple. Though I guess they showed as much sympathy to Phil as well and nothing was wrong with him. Speaking of I now know Phil is back on the bottle. Poor sod, I would almost feel sympathy but it could be a problem in the company. Can’t have drunks about, we already know they can cause accidents. Anyway, time to go be strong for the family. One more quick drink and then back home we go. I am starting to think that everything might turn out alright.

James Dylan logged out.

Phantom Limbs XIII

Luck part 13…

 

Sunday 9th September 2116

James Dylan’s audio Diary

Another morning waking up in a hospital bed, another new surgery, more new machinery added to me. I’ve made a huge mistake. I couldn’t help myself, I was on edge. And I’ve always been one that can be talked into compulsive purchases. I bought the arm upgrade. They installed it and the update at the same time, I can’t even change my mind. It’s too late. It’s built into me. What am I going to do? I needed that money. Now how can I afford to buy Mily that gift for her birthday? That play house. She wanted it so badly. I can seen her disappointed little face when I close my eyes now. It’s worse than the dreams could ever be. What have I done? And Joanna, she’ll be furious, there is no hiding what I’ve done. How can I? If there was an award for worst father of the year than it would be me. Why couldn’t Joanna have come with me? Why did she need to be so self righteous? She could have stopped me, why didn’t she take my credit ships off me? She was always going on about how she was the smarter one with money. God damn her, she always has to be so right and now she’s going to laud this over me when she did nothing to stop it happening, if she had just listened to me for once. Worst of all I can’t even go get a drink to try and calm my nerves. I can’t drink for a few days while I am taking the medication to help they systems adapt better to me. Why should I need to drink though? Why would a man ever be afraid to go back to his own home. And I bet I won’t get any sympathy from her. I’m the victim here, I’m the cripple. She’ll forget that though, forget or ignore it like my damn colleagues. Anyway better cut this short, doctor is coming.

James Dylan logged out.