Ladygirl of a British persuasion; sometimes I actually write stories that aren't depressing (but not very often)
I write for the http://jupiter-palladium.com, which is a webcomic about superheroes. Interesting ones. Cute ones, too. Which is nice. (It's cheerier than most things I write. That's where the happy goes, guys.)
The tiny clockwork bird danced (for want of a better term) in a circle, twirling, singing out its jaunty song.
She sat, watching it sing out its tune, listening to the unique tinny sound of the music box - there was something about that music, that paticular brand, which brought her back to childhood. As a child she had watched the bird, watched it in her mother's palm.
Her mother had, briefly, convinced her that this was a real bird, that this was what happened to them when they were caught, tamed. That you could teach them these songs,...
The scientist looked up. The musician was bright-eyed, excited, although there were bags under his eyes. She replaced her spectacles (why did she always take them off for the close-up work? It didn't make sense) and gave him her full attence. "Knives?"
"Knives." He sat down on the stool, gangly, limbs too long. He was not suited for the labratory - not a huge surprise, really. "Knives are the answer. We...we cut."
It was almost cute, watching him try to describe what he presumed the scientific method was. "Do you mean dissection?"
He nodded, enthusiastic, excited. "Yes! Yes, we...
No, it is, it is actually ridiculous.
I haven't thought about him in months, haven't thought about him like that in years (...well, other than the odd hiccup, but I'm only human)
It is his birthday today. I don't even know how old he is.
I don't know if I care. I don't know if I should care.
I loved him - thought I loved him (did I ever anything-else him?) - for years. Lived with him for years. Wanted him, desperately, for years.
He never wanted me.
Loving someone who doesn't love you - never will - is...
"I'm in love with a robot."
"No, you aren't."
"I am. I'm in love with a robot. Honestly."
"That isn't love, and that definitely doesn't count as a robot. It's..."
"I'm not talking about that." She flushed. "You are disgusting sometimes."
I was fairly certain I was disgusting most of the time. Possibly all the time. "So, what is this, in love with a robot? What robot is it? Can you get upgrades, software patches, apps?"
She shook her head. "It's a character. Well. An avatar."
"Oh, this just gets better and better. Is there a real person behind it,...
She'd have preferred the electric chair, at least that one bloody moved. She could get up a good speed on that one, maybe she could get out of it, escape their sympathetic looks. It was bad enough losing the power in your legs without their condescending looks. Idiots.
Apparently it was a "power chair", but, frankly, bollocks to that. Jokingt that she was living out a death sentence was one of her few pleasures left - that terror in their eyes, the "oh god how do we respond to that" was what she was living for right now.
100 feet away, all hell was breaking loose. Everything was going to change, forever - but for now, I was willfully ignorant. I chose not to look through the windows, not to know, to keep the door closed, locked.
Real life was not going to invade my sanctury.
It had been my prison, up until the moment when I had heard that damned siren, the one that we had all prayed would never go off. The one that promised that it was all too late, that everything had gone wrong, that it was too much.
That sacrifices must be made,...
"This dream - it was better than waking."
"That's incredibly flawed. Inherantly flawed. You can't control the dream - for all you know, in the next few moments, you could've... You could've turned up to someone's wedding. Someone you hated. Or worse, someone you loved."
"If that's the kind of dreams you have, I'm not surprised you can't understand how a dream could be better than waking." I made a face. "That's really the best you can come up with? Oooh, a dream wedding." My nose wrinkled. "Is that a pun?"
"A very strained one." She replied, going to make...
"Something is wrong with the clock."
"Look at it."
"That's not possible."
"Or it's ten past nine...?"
"No, because that would be twenty-one-ten. This is twenty-seventy." A pause. "Do you think it's odd, that we rely on technology so heavily?"
"Not especially. Everything is technology, really. Pen and paper, that's technology. Not advanced, but it's still technological. You see, externalising information - "
"Yes, yes, I've heard you lecture." She gave him a look. He'd clearly forgotten how they met.
He looked at her again, and she wondered if he had. "Of course you have. It's natural, for...
She'd presumed that they were just an illustrive device - the nemesis of the unstoppable force. It hadn't occurred to her that, actually, they did exist.
Why they existed in a forest was another matter entirely. It wasn't exactly clear (well, the object was, that was why she couldn't see it) why an immoveable object should want to be in a forest. Was there something about forests that made it such a rich environment, suited to objects that resisted force?
Walking around it didn't seem to be an option - immoveable and apparently large. Impossibly large. It was...
Nothing made sense.
Her eyes ached - the more she studied them, the less the words made sense. The words weren't working, they weren't doing their duty, they were just shapes on the wall. They blurred out of focus - was she just tired, was it her eyes?
Or were the words willfully confusing her? Was it deliberate? A merry dance they were leading her on?
She traced them with her fingertips - that couldn't be right, they were letters carved into the stone, they couldn't shift (ink, she could accept, could flow, could shift, but these were stone words,...