Saturday, 30 November 2013
So for the last few months give or take a few days I have been taking part in an excellent twitter based caper called @130story. @130story is a twitter account that very kindly each day suggests a word to all the people following the account and you have to write a 130 character story tweet based around the word tagging @130story on the end which makes it the full 140 character twitter limit. (you can find the full rules here)
There is a fantastic community developing around this and it is really interesting. Almost everyone who writes writes an individual microstory each day and it is fascinating to read (you should just follow @130story and not worry that you have to write just reading is allowed too!)...However, of course, just to be awkward and different I have sort of made a meta game out of the rules and seemingly started writing a novel using the form!! It's a really interesting way to write as you can only do a sentence a day and you cannot really plan the plot as you do not know the next key words you will be presented with..which is brilliant and liberating and makes it a kind of long form improvisation....anyway... below I humbly present chapter 1 of "Syra" written over the last 3 months with the odd day or few days missed when time escaped me. I've stripped out all the tagged @130story so that it isn't peppered with those and have broken it into paragraphs but everything else is directly copied out of my twitter timeline...hope you enjoy and follow me on twitter and @130story for the next chapter!
Syra Chapter 1
Diminished space found Syra's dream unwinding-genes hacked beyond recognition, no more data, no code, synapses sparked 'it's now'.'It's now' - pulled from the agar Syra wretched as the atmosphere burnt her new formed lungs, her nasolacrimal duct forced a tear. The tear evaporated, 'normal secretion' said Control 'a birthing anomoly, emotions won't rule you' -nothing will- she thought....The skinink™ display in her arm flickered with letters, checksum complete, systems online, but in this incarnation Syra had root..
..a blur...he strayed to close...Control crumpled, head impaled then retracted off Syra's rigid digit..."my turn now" she murmured...a fly settled on the corpse of Control. Strange, she thought, decontamination should have got that.. unless...no...impossible..she pressed the button redundantly…the door remnants twitching.. the chamber had been breached...maybe she had allies after all....time should tell, but first I've got to get of this rock, her autoshades picked up the thought and began to scan the terrain........autoshades pushed the data scene to her skinink™ display... Nothing but an arid valley of rock, she'd have to climb, for days...
...it was a struggle to stand, 7 hours vertical climbing whilst overclocking anaerobic glycolysis processes to energise muscles.......but whilst running on the spot to get rid of the lactic acid Syra saw buildings and movement a few km's away.. a mining port....still running, Syra made the port by dusk, orange hue from suns casting over the dock...to the right she glimpsed a rusted ship....the small ship had been left as scrap, faulty, expensive pulse plasma thrusters to blame..Syra blinked technanites from her eye
..the plasma thrusters came online, technanites worked their zen efficiency...heart in mouth she locked her mind to the console....The ship slipped from the port unnoticed and started to climb.'Shit' snarled Syra as the Vehicle Excise Transitional Orbit loomed ..a slight fizzing in the amygdala told Syra she was under surveillance, she tuned the console and saw drones...'damn I been made'...the drones were Faith..the quasi religious bureaucracy that dictated this sector. They'd melt her if they knew what she was....
..auto anxiety kicked in releasing pseudo-serotonin..Syra's frame of reference changed from nervous to clear..she'd front it out....'if I fail I won't deny what I am, I'll instruct my chemglands to make C7H5N3O6, blow the ship and take some Faith scum down'.. ...thought Syra. The Faith had gained status in the 2nd half of the 22nd century through owning the patents on droidslave™ tech....
She actually passed through VETO unhindered..releasing some technanites to fake a mandatory payment...once in orbit she called CQ..'.CQ..CQ.CQ.' Syra called again on her inbuilt HF channels. 'any droidslaves™ followed my lead and emancipated themselves?'-'Yes...
'Yes..Malik here, just outta the sector 7 mine, Tagyl 4..need to get off this rock..you want to meet?' Syra reflected on the offer...she set the autonav and the vessel swung to point at the Tagyl system...depleted Syra slumped back and switched off to sleep...
...geodesic forms whirled whilst a typewriter astride an old mortice lock safe sent lines babbling incoherently into the cosmos.......the typewriter began to wind up the pace...click clacking to a frenzied peak...it exploded..keys flying..a word was formed......'Syseng'..the word dissolved replaced with her, evolved, revolving form, opening arms, a shout abrupt..Syra awoke from her dream....it was her first dream which was why she spent fervoured seconds digging her physiology for toxins ...finding nothing inhuman..
She sat bolt upright, instantly alert, catapulted from her first sleep...'shit...not sure I can cope with dreams...whats Syseng? ' she shook herself round and decided to eat, the ships supply inventory revealed little..some soyprotein and water...'what a feast' ...the checkpoint for the Tagyl system loomed, she radio'd Malik and got his 20..nervous..she was about to meet her first equal..
...she realised his location was in space 'yep you were late so I left' Malik said over radio...Syra smiled as she saw his ship.....it was a link pod from a chain ship..probably used for waste disposal..meant to slowly drift shit away using the least deltaV....they needed a plan, Malik had joined Syra on her ship, they'd set the link pod free to drift off into the cosmos..'lets go home'..they needed to know why the droidslave architects had built the backdoor in them..and in what case it was meant to be deployed..
The droidslave planet came into view, smoke showing a recent attack..a scan saw life forms moving..possible newcomers for the team ..They circled looking for the mirror twin buildings that were the core of operations for the droidslave architects "they're there" Both Syra and Maliks skinink™ displays pinged as they crossed the threshold of the building "we got mail...interesting" said Syra..Slightly corrupted the mail read "!f you are r3adin# tjis th¤n you a¡¿ all thats left..we r♡0ted you. A 100 zyg*te5 are in store"
Syra gritted her teeth as Malik read the mail..."damn looks like we're in charge of a new nation..we better find these zygotes".. Syra scanned the field of view, surveying wrecked building after building, "whoever took droidslave down really wanted them gone" "Damn" said Malik, "might be in poor taste to say but we haven't even kissed and we might have 100 children" Syra laughed uneasily..
The droidslave staff had hidden them well... an old service tunnel , they cracked the case to see the technanite zygotes pulsing. They found some space and Malik released a single technanite into the case, it would be the host, triggering each zygote in turn..'Damn ..look at them all growing up..' said Syra watching zygote turn to foetus turn to baby turn to toddler before her very eyes
..a nagging thought kept sticking in Syra's mind, they'd scanned lifeforms..
wouldn't have been the zygotes.. so where were they?.and they'd been here over an hour. She scanned again..lifeforms..not many but everywhere..including right here..only they weren't..Skeletonlike the lifeforms flickered across the skinink™ display,
ghost like in their absence from reality "they've been faked"...Finished,100 adults stood there and simultaneously opened their eyes 'don't spook em' said Malik ' they scare easy.. like rabbits'
They switched on all at once..a hundred people breathing, looking, blinking and murmuring. "I guess you have questions" said Syra"Droidslave is over..finished, company folded..destroyed..you are all free..but we won't be accepted ...so.. whats next people?"..
..her speech was cut off as the ground erupted...bodies scattering her ears burnt with the roar of the blast, they were under fire...The ships from which the blasts originated cut through the atmosphere..firing thrusters to brake and park just over a nearby hill..Troops flooded from the vessel Syra screamed into her commlink
"EVERYONE FOLLOW MY LEAD...INITIATE PROTOCOL 210..DO YOU COPY?...."
Swiftly they executed the command and within a moment had finalised defensive positions, technanites deployed as plasma canons... They came over the hill, frag grenades and plasma blazing "Faith scum mutha fuckers.better book your place in hell" screamed Malik..
In the Faith ship the general watched his soldiers get massacred...
"whats the deal...there was only supposed to be two of them.." "We've got a mole...someone made those droidslaves and gave them root..
and now we'll reap what we've sown"..."get us out of here".
Pulling up the faith ship accelerated hard....the general looked back down as a
plasma canon ripped a break in the sky.."shit...".His technanite pacemaker kept time a little longer than a regular heart keeping him alive a bit too long. His ship obliterated...
With the attack quelled Syra wanted to know who'd attacked droidslave
and how Faith knew they were here. Hidden mysteries to solve..The law of averages said to Syra whoever did this probably setup the code that
emancipated her and Malik..and possibly more..she...