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The Dreamer Awakens (Mission post)

Posted on Wed Mar 29th, 2017 @ 7:03am by Commander Mercia Kavi

Mission: Blackout

Jeyne turned his hand as he woke up suddenly. He gasped for a breath of fresh air that didn’t really come, now that his pod lid was open. He looked up and saw the endearing face of his wife, who held a small vile, enough air to ensure he would live until they exited the pod bay. Silently, as to not exert himself and pass out. She handed him the vile and he pressed it to his mouth, and breathed in, getting a shot of oxygen as she wrapped a jacket around him and led him through the rows of pods.

He always took a moment to look around at the fast network with thousands of pods in this room alone. The deep and high cavern was open in the middle so that bots could fly around and perform maintenance, and move some of the other AI systems around.

“It still amazes you doesn’t it?” his wife asked. Jeyne nodded as he glanced her lovely face. A face he had chosen. His legs were wobbly as they walked along the grated walk way, passed others who were waking, sleeping, or going to sleep, with loved ones and caretakers standing by.

“I am glad you are away Jeyne, I’ve missed you.” hi wife, Krina said gently, “Things have only gotten worse since you went to sleep last,” she informed him.

Jeyne had many questions, but he needed to wait until they were inside an area with a higher oxygen level, and they were nearly there, so he just listened.

“Cavern 4 lost over thousand pods last week,” she sighed.

Jeyne gripped her arm as his eyes widened, begging to know why.

She simulated a deep breath, “So called energy conservations.” she said. “According to the Corporations. The Blackout lasted for four days, how the entire cavern was not lost… it was through the efforts of the AI’s for certain.” she said.

They stepped through the heavy doors and waited until they were sealed, and it was just in the nick of time, as the capsule had run out of air. “Four days. FOUR DAYS?” Jeyne almost yelled. “And no one did anything?” he growled. Others in the ‘clean’ room looked up and stared at him. He grabbed the bag from Krina that she’d picked up from the floor and started to dress angrily. Once finished he grabbed her arm and headed out of the complex.

Once on the street he took a deep breath, to calm himself. He cupped Krinas cheeks, “I’m glad you’re alright.” he breathed.

“Of course I am alright my love.” she crooned back with a smile, “We did our best to keep everyone alive and not invite the ire of the Moderators.” she said with worry. “Even still, a number of us were shut down and dismantled for parts.” she said. “I’m grateful it wasn’t your cavern, I’d have fought hard to ensure your pod was safe.” she said.

Jeyne felt even more disturbance within his gut. To think any one would just dismantle an AI so advanced as Krina, it angered him. She was his wife, and the Moderators had no right to destroy these people, and yet they behaved as if they did. “If I die, I die, I need you to live on.” he said before he kissed her.

Jeyne pulled back and took her hand before leading her down the walkway towards a transport bus. They climbed aboard and took a seat, and he held her close. Life in the pods was contented, but some things were clearly different. As a scientist he could afford to live half of his life in the pods, and that made him a ‘Dreamer’, and it was a far better life than that of a disconnected, who had to live in the slums and hell holes that was their domed city. His work allowed him to live in the primary city, however, other cities were worse.

He frowned as they passed by a collection of buildings, and saw the number of Disconnected milling around, “Strange.” he commented. He associated with several people who lived in those buildings. He understood their plight, and while he could afford to take advantage of a Dreamers lifestyle, he felt much of what was going on was wrong, and yet the Corporations had such a strangle hold on everything, and the Moderators in their pockets, that everyone else was left to suffer, and bow to their whims. He was ready to do something about it, as were a good number of other people he knew. He’d been getting deeper in for years, and things were getting worse and worse as time went on. Now, he wasn’t certain if he would wake up when went to Dream, the Dreamers were becoming as disposable as AI’s, and neither thought was right.

“What?” Krina asked.

“There are a lot of people there…” he replied.

“Oh, They’re refugees.” she said.

Dread filled his gut as he looked at her, “refugees?” he asked. “From where?”

“The corporations voted, and decided that Krella was too costly to keep running, so they shut it down.” she said.

“Krella?! Krella is a huge city! 10,000 people live there.” he growled.

“8000 breathers, 2000 AI,” she corrected him, “which is a higher ratio than most of the cities.” she reminded him.

Jeyne knew how city shutdowns worked. Power and air was there one day, and gone the next, the corporations did not waste energy with organization and warnings and moving people. Residence were on their own. “How many made it out?” he asked quietly.

“Last I heard, about 2300.” she said. “Breathers, only a handful of the AI’s made it out, as they stayed behind to try and prolong the lives of those trapped, or denied access. Only 500 could afford to move in to Dreamers pods, the rest are Disconnected, as are any one still managing to live in Krella, which… as you know… can’t be very long.”

Rage simmered deep in Jeynes gut, “When people like you show more compassion and self sacrifice than those who rule us, something is wrong.” he grunted.

The bus stopped and they exited the vehicle. He paused outside their apartment building and looked up. Across the road was the Corporation's Complex. Inside was luxury, pods for everyone, never a lack of air, direct access to the star port, first pick of food and supplies. Perfected AI’s to maintain every thing. It was an elite living, and they cared only for what served them best, rather than fighting for the good of the Hadeen who were all slowly dying. He looked at Krina, soon, all that would be left of the Hadeen would be those like her. He gripped her hand tighter, fear filling his gut. He wanted to live on, with her, but right now, every day was becoming more and more uncertain. Something had to give.

“They’re hosting some off worlders tomorrow” she commented. “They’ve been blacking out parts of the city for the last week to boost power in the main building.” she told him. “I think they want to impress them.”

Jeyne shifted and looked down the street, towards the turn that would take him back to his friends apartment, “Maybe it’s about time for them to experience some black outs of their own.” he grumbled. “Come on, we have some people to talk to.” He said dragging her along with him.

 

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