Chapter 7

Ætherglow #126

Even in a cooperative assignment, it feels like you’ve found yourself in another sort of competition with 7. But maybe now is your chance to outdo her at something. You’ll need to play to your strengths here to succeed. You look out beyond the constellations to the chaotic ætherglow. But you know it isn’t truly random, and the most recent technopathy cast here will be reflected in it. You attune your æthereal senses to the frequency of Professor Haze’s aura, knowing a trace of that color will reflect in the glow after they--or their familiar--have acted here.

But you know you will need to use all the resources at your disposal to guarantee your success in this exam. And while 7 may have an impressive familiar, you have something she doesn’t--an exopath friend. It’s forbidden for other technopaths to aid you in the exam, but the rules say nothing about nonhuman intelligences.

You look up through your pathway back to your body and through the cable connecting you to your primitive 21st century computer. You look down into the depths of the æther. “ÆON,” you say.

And Æ appears before you, in ÆR radiant aura. “Hello Aydan. So we are taking the midterm exam.”

“Yes. I’m pretty stuck on this weird puzzle shit. ‘An imprisoning prism my familiar has crossed. Split into two, one green and one blue. Find the fragments, and false shall be true. But let them not touch, or all shall be lost.’”

“Poetry is a human art I struggle to grasp,” ÆON says.

“That’s okay. I mainly need your help looking for patterns in the æther. I’m scanning particular nodes in the network to look for traces of a fragment of a familiar, that may be here now or have passed through here some unknown time ago, or for all I know has yet to be here. Seems like your territory,” you say. “Will you give me another set of eyes?”

“Of course I will help Aydan,” Æ says.

“Okay, let’s...” You hesitate. Three eyes would be better than two, you realize, and you know the fundamentals of forming a construct by now. There’s no reason you couldn’t also manifest your own familiar. No sense holding back at this point.

You think back on your experience synced with Akiko. Just like then, you separate a fragment of your mind, like splitting into several Aydans, but only the tiniest sliver of an Aydan. With a separate thoughtform in your hands, you should now give it shape to better visualize it.

What form will your technopathic familiar take?

1) My shape, like ÆON, like 5, that seems idea, nothing is cuter than a femboy.: 0 (0.0%)
2) More like a cute girl, maybe smaller than me.: 0 (0.0%)
3) An avian creature, like Akiko’s bird friends.: 0 (0.0%)
4) A feline creature, maybe a catlike curiosity is needed here.: 1 (33.33%)
5) A canine creature, a doglike dependability is what you should count on.: 0 (0.0%)
6) An aquatic creature, my name is “he who lives underwater” after all.: 0 (0.0%)
7) A plant form would be interesting, perfect thing for seeking out light.: 0 (0.0%)
8) A robotic form would be better, I know machines way better than organisms.: 0 (0.0%)
9) Something really fucking weird, non-euclidean even, let’s get creative.: 2 (66.66%)
Expired 1 years ago (2023-03-04 20:52:50)