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Trex World, part 20

kelson.philo's picture

Part 20
Link to part 1

Now Paul was angry. Whatever had just happened, whatever that “hemorrhage” was, it had stirred up painful memories from years past. Things better left to Retirement. The swirling circles of the ceiling were pissing him off as well. What business had they doing in his world? All opulent and grand and haughty and, he couldn’t help feeling, they weren’t jetted out of a trex. Double-you-tee-eff.

Get a grip, Paul, you’re in the lair of a madwoman with mad karate skills or whatever it was she knocked you on your butt with. Play it cool. Get the fark out of hear. Get to the Authorities. Oh, and for the love of all that’s holy,Get. To. Work.

“So, you managed to fix a brain hemorrhage in two hours, on a couch, using no medical trexing?”

“Look around you Paulie; I think the tech in here speaks for itself.”

“Yeah, but, ah kripes, I don’t know. I don’t care, either. Say, that’s odd. The ringing in my ears has stopped. I suppose you’re responsible for that as well?”

“Guilty as charged, Paulie,” she said, throwing up her hands. “I’ve got medical tech that people will simply pee their grandma’s pants for, once the revolution comes,” she said, spinning around in the large chair behind the even larger desk.

“Gross, but alright, I’m game, I’m totally in. Let’s kick the Establishment’s butt. What first? Paul found that he could sit up and not feel like blacking out. In fact, as soon as he had resolved to help her, he suddenly felt better than fine. He felt great. Like he had just come out of a hive orgy week. This might just be fun he thought, pumping his arms a bit, mimicking ever so slightly a boxer about to step into the ring.

She stood and stepped lightly over to Paul and draped her arms around his shoulders. Gads, I feel ripped, Paul thought, feeling the slight weight of her forearms on his trapeziums. What is going on? He could feel the lady’s heat. He wanted her. His heart beat through his ears. He might just take her.

“First,” she said softly, “We get you reintegrated with society.” She then moved close to him, allowed his hands to hold her waist. In pressing her coveralled body against his a sudden pressure over his entire being was released. His heart subsided. His blink rate went up for just a bit. Her sudden gentleness dispelled his urge to take her. “Shh,” she whispered in his ear. “It’s just a side effect of fixing your head, it will pass.” She smelled sweet, not like candy, like something else. Something ancient and true. If she had reacted any other way, he would have done something really and truly stupid. “Then, she continued after a few beats, “We wait for the feeds to stop talking about you.”

“How…” he managed after gulping saliva, “How will I get in touch with you?”

“Leave that to me,” she squealed in glee, changing the mood and stepping away from him. “For obvious reasons, we won’t be using the trex.”

“Not. Using. The. Trex. Right. Say, is there anyone else involved with your, er, organization?”

She laughed. “Of course! I won’t be telling you for your own safety, of course, but regardless, you shall know them by their works.”

“Ew. Cryptic. That’s nice. Can we go now? Please?”

She made a grand gesture towards the dimly lit far side of the room. “After you,” she said.

The ceiling lights were dimming as Paul walked towards the far side. It must have been farther than he thought as he didn’t seem to ever make any head way. All he could see in front of him was a blank round wall of the brown material that permeated the room. But he was walking. And the lady was walking right behind him, smiling serenely. “Um,” he said.

“Shh,” she replied, keep walking. The lights grew dimmer and dimmer like a great eyelid slowly closing, though the orbiting circles overhead increased their oscillations. And with the faster oscillation came a hum like a trex jetting material but louder, so much louder. More speed meant more hum and soon it was deafening. All was black and all was thunder-buzz.

“What is this mad house?” Paul cried.

And then the buzz stopped. And there was light.

“Well, here we are,” the lady said.

They were on the Expanse floor. What’s more, they were right in front of Paul’s office. Incoming foot traffic cursed as they passed the duo, seemingly oblivious to the fact that two humans had instantly appeared out of nowhere. Why would anybody be just stop at this time of day? What was wrong with these two?

He was struck dumb. Holy Freezus Holy Freezus, he kept repeating in his head. Get a grip Paul. She’s not God. This is a trick. This is only a trick. Something was in his hand. The sensation took him out of shock. He opened his palm and there was the tiny Matryoshka doll, the smallest one of the bunch, staring up at him and smiling.

“So, this is where you’ve been feeling very proud of yourself, being a drone at what is it?” she asked, looking at the vast building’s entryway marquis. “Panopticon Productions? Gads, sounds terrifying.”

Gads. She said ‘gads’. It was an old word. Once he had heard his grandfather use it a timeless age ago and he had since adopted as his own and tried to keep in his inner monologue. He didn’t want anyone else putting proprietary actions on it and he had never heard anyone outside his family line use it before. She seemed even more familiar now, somehow buried in his past, blossoming forth like when a scent that retrieves ancient memories. Like a scent.

“Well, gotta go,” She said walking off.

“Wait! What is your name?”

She turned and looked at him, switching stride effortlessly to walk backwards and said, “Mattie.”

Rolling the tiny figurine between his thumb and fingers, Paul repeated the name to himself while watching her walk away. Her hips were trying to communicate something to him in a language filled with ancient pentameters. Soon she was lost in the crowd.

With a heart hollowed out from longing, Paul entered Panopticon Production’s HQ.

***
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And it's one step closer to

And it's one step closer to poor Paul's train wreck. =)

I like his frantic determination to "Get. To. Work." He's getting pulled in so many directions, it only makes sense that he would fixate on that one (apparently?) stable point in his life.

One question, though: wouldn't his separation from the Trex become a problem as soon as he gets back to his workplace? Or do you already have that covered?

kelson.philo's picture

Yes, it would be a problem.

Yes, it would be a problem. The Lady, though, has some unusual abilities that are, for the time, going to flummox the System. At least until the subtle grindages of the Detective catches up with the empirical data...