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The Time Shall Come

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He was born September 2nd, 1988. He didn’t remember how it happened, of course. A baby’s brain cannot comprehend experiences.


He grew up in Stockton, California, in a family that had plenty of heart and no money. His childhood was full of finger-painting and Play-doh, bright plastic slides and little metal tricycles. But his innocence was shattered with bullies and graffiti, violence and drugs. By 13, he had used meth four times and been arrested twice for vandalizing school property because of the kids around him. His family moved to a quiet, peaceful no-name town, and he recovered from the terrible experiences and moved on. By the time he was 17 in 2005 he had grown successful in high school and was the top on the track team. He excelled in computer programming and hardware at school, but unfortunately his family could barely afford a car and house payment. With his own money, from months of hard work at a local car wash, he bought a beat up Toyota and traveled everywhere. He loved camping with his friends and did it often with just a tarp and some sleeping bags. By 2013, he had majored in programming in college and worked for a major computer company, developing software and hardware alike. He had begun to make a name for himself when one of his big software projects became extremely popular and sold out everywhere. He made a ton of money, but, coming from a somewhat poor family, he only spent what he had to. By 2015, when he was 27, he started to date seriously and became engaged to a girl named Alicia Lachlan, and married her on the beaches of Kauai, Hawaii (her wishes, of course). He finally settled down in Monterey, sometime in 2025, still developing for his company. His wife gave him a girl and a boy, and they named them Taylor and Matthew. In 2027, when he was 39, the company went bankrupt and he lost his job. However experienced he was, he was never able to find another well-paying job, but his savings were able to keep the family finances going. His family was always happy, however. His kids did well in school and were always good-natured, which was a very good blessing.


On October 28th, 2030, on a chilly morning, he was walking to his car, returning from a coffee shop, when a truck lost control and—



“Aaaaaagghh!” Edmond Fiegis screamed in pain. His mind throbbed with sudden exhaustion. Death seemed to have a vise-like grip, unrelentful in letting Edmond go. It was fighting for him. And he was clawing desperately for life.


He opened his eyes, only to be washed away in a dull red light. He was in a room filled with computers. Massive supercomputers lined the walls, wires like black, maniacal hair trailing in every which way. Monitors flashed millions of calculations a second and tiny red lights glowered on the cases.


He was lying on a metal table in the center of the mass confusion, a single light hanging above him, displayed like a god amid the awed computers. A headpiece was clamped down, keeping his head from moving, but his eyes roved the room. He couldn’t see anything; such was the curse of growing old in age. His eyes danced in their sockets like caged feral animals: they were ready to explode.


“Charles!” His voice barely broke through the quiet hum of the machines.


Footsteps resounded from the other side of a cold, metal door, clicking and clacking on laminated tile. The door was opened alarmingly fast and a disheveled young man in athletic pants and T-shirt strode in and unstrapped the headpiece.


Edmond didn’t move. “What year is it?”


“2049.”


“When was I born?"


“December 16th, 1964.”


Edmond groaned, bringing his frail, trembling hands to his face. “It’s always the goddamned truck.”


“Sir, we’ve been over this many times. Your subconscious creates the ending for the Experience. The real memories are not over yet because their owner is not…” Charles paled. “Oh God… sir, I—“


“Get me another one.”


Charles broke out in sweat. “Sir, I forgot to tell you. Something is wrong with the transfer table. It’s starting to kill them!”


“Get me another one.”


“Sir,” Charles pleaded, “you cannot continue to take their experiences. This is a major overuse of this system! It’s still a prototype technology and it is killing them!”


“I can do it and I will do it.”


As if from darkness itself, a man stepped into the light. He was cloaked in heavy gear, dull and black, a full head helmet hiding the certain unemotional stare that lurked behind it. A finger twitched threateningly close to the trigger of a semi-automatic shotgun. He held it like he had used it many times.


Edmond cleared his throat with a hack.


“You will get me another one. You will offer him more money and give it to his family. His death will be an accident. You will continue this, one for every hour. Twenty four Experiences a day.


Ah, yes sir.”


Edmond closed his eyes. Experiences were the only times he didn’t fear anything. But, at this moment, his fear of imminent death overwhelmed him.


The next one came. Edmond smiled as he slipped into the innocent birth of Mark Reynholdt, never once pausing to think of his certain pain as he was slowly killed by the machine in the room just next to him.


He was born into life, April 23rd, 1995…



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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

_Elsy_ said...
Dec. 3, 2010 at 7:45 pm

It's a bit confusing but I like it. My only advice is to add more description, let the reader see what you see.

btw-when you get the chance, do you mind checking out some of my stuff?

 
Miss.Chase said...
Nov. 22, 2010 at 4:57 pm
I like the concept of this one, a computer that allows you to live the life, or rather see the life of someone like it was yourself. Very nice :)
 
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