“Reasonable argument is impossible when authority becomes the arbiter.”
“Eve is a ridiculous name given who you are don’t you think?” I said, gesturing around at the emptiness surrounding us. She cracked a smile so slight it was almost an illusion.
“Given that I had no control over my naming or my birth I’d say that it’s inconsequential at this point. A name is a name, a set of symbols represented and communicated by various noises from one person to another. What they mean is entirely man made.” Dr. Gibson replied. She swished the skirt of her dress back and forth like a little girl trying on a new present.
“Who’s mind-space are we in right now?”
“Who’s mind-space would you like us to be in?”
“Don’t play games with me Dr. Gibson, I haven’t got the patience.” I replied angrily.
“This is not a game. In fact, this project is of the upmost seriousness.”
“Then answer the question please. This is all new to me.”
“The answer is that we are in neither your or my mind-space. If I had to guess I would say that our current surroundings are a projection between the two, like a bridge. This bridge appears to be two way, as I can forge my way into your memories from here and you can do the same.”
“We can read each others minds in here? That can’t be possible.”
“Why not? You are currently unconscious in the ‘real’ world talking to a dead woman’s soul downloaded from a memory drive into your nervous system. What’s impossible is no longer of any importance.”
“Come back slowly son. You’re going to have a very large headache and some nausea, which we can fix with this very large aspirin. At least that’s the hope.”
The Doc comes slowly into focus amid my tearing, furiously blinking eyes. “I feel like I died and got put back in my body. This is terrible.”
“It’ll take some getting used to, but Dr. Gibson seemed to think that the process would become easier the more practice a subject had with the procedure.”
“Well, if Dr. Gibson said it’ll be alright what’s there to worry about?”
“Had a good time in there did we?”
“I wouldn’t say that, it was more like a first date gone horribly wrong while having dinner in The Twilight Zone.”
“That good?” smirked the Doc, turning aside to write something down.
“Would it be ok if I went for round two? I need to set some things straight with Eve as soon as possible so we can get this project going in the right direction.”
“We’re running out of time anyway, you might as well go for it. But there will be serious physical repercussions. Nothing we can’t handle, I just wanted you to have full disclosure.”
“Thanks for the warning Doc. Plug me in.”
“Can I ask you a personal question?”
“You could get the answer to whatever questions you have from my memories, why waste time with asking?”
“We’re going to be working together, and despite the way in which we communicate I want us to get to know each other in a more human way.”
“That’s such a silly affectation. Why would you want to hold on to your idea of human interaction in this place?”
“It’s what we do. Don’t you miss it?”
“Don’t tell me what we do! I know very well what WE do. We build machines to do our work, to kill our enemies and to take care of us and then have the nerve to complain when they begin to play other roles in our society.”
Eve turns away abruptly, the skirt from earlier replaced with a severe pair of dark pants and matching sweater. She has turned cold and is retreating along the bridge toward her side, her safety.
“Please, don’t go. I apologize for being rude to you, I really do. I need what is inside your head, and what’s more the world does as well.”
“A bit cliched isn’t it, asking me to help you save the world?”
“Absolutely. But it doesn’t mean I’m wrong for asking.”