Thursday, February 28, 2008

Pretty: Enclosure

Leah knew something was wrong. She was missing something, something fundamental.

There she was, in her room. She could see her bed, she could see her walls, with the tile inlay that she loved to stare at. But there was something wrong, something not there that should be.

It was like a tiny voice in the back of her head was trying to talk to her, but it was speaking a language she did not understand. She laid down on her bed, closed her eyes, let her mind drift. It was no good. The voice was still there, and she could hear the words it said, but she forgot them as soon as they were spoken.

Without a map, she didn't even know what she was missing. Something was forgotten, but this was no simple thing. In the course of the day, she might forget, for example, whether or not she'd had lunch yet, but she did remember that there was such a thing as lunch. Here, it was as if she'd forgotten that lunch existed altogether, and was wondering why she felt so empty inside.

Empty inside. That was it. She was empty inside.

What was missing?

She must have managed to fall asleep, because when they came for her in the morning, she didn't see them come in. For the first time that she could remember, she did not dream.

She wondered what she'd tell the doctor this time.


Monday, February 18, 2008

Pretty: Continuum

Inessa blinked. "She?"

This was the first time that she had reacted to any of David's pronouncements. Everything that he had said before had simply been said. Whether or not Inessa processed his words, spoke them again, wrote them down, or simply unsaid them was beyond the scope of David's experience. David wasn't even quite sure what the job of an observer was. Each of the readers in the room had at least one. Some of the mumbling prophets had more than one. It was the job of readers like David to develop the information that was latent in these pages, and it was the job of observers like Inessa to know that information. David was fairly sure that she would eventually report something to the Followers of Memory that seemed to be running the place, but he really didn't know.

For a moment, as David contemplated the effect his revelation had on Inessa, he forgot what he was doing. Instead, he considered must have to happen next: somehow, this information would travel through lines of power and authority to someone who was actually interested in what went on in this room. It might be possible to find out what or who was behind the operation, if he constructed the proper informational probe, but ...

"She?" Inessa repeated herself, bringing David out of his reverie.

"She. Her name is not here, but ..." David gestured at the scraps of paper that covered his table. " ... that she is a She is clear. I do not know why you are looking for her, but I can say for certain that you must find her."

((Editorial note: This is, obviously, the first post in a year. As such, I'm a bit rusty and worried about breaking continuity. So I might retro-edit it in a day or two if I realize I broke something horribly. But as they say, you've gotta keep dancing - the steps will take care of themselves. More to come.))