Chapter 8

Ætherglow #154

“Okay, sure, I’ll take the challenge,” you say.

“Of course,” Yelena says. “I’ll go tell Iruma-san.”

Your parents go up to the stage. You go the other way to the refreshments, away from them.

You pour yourself some water. They’d probably be mad if you took some of the vodka. You almost spill it, having gotten used to the way liquids slant a little to the side in the spin-gravity of TLA, but the low gravity here on homeworld gives you time to correct yourself. Your reflexes have gotten pretty good, at least.

You overhear two expensive looking people next to you, who have taken the nice Korolev vodka.

“We’re never going to hear the end of this missile incident. I’m already getting messages from half of the Tereshkova Spaceport board.” He throws his terminal down against the table, catching it as it bounces back up off of its rubber case.

“It was bad enough with the complaints from the electric company,” his companion says. “‘Draw one more kilowatt and we’re cutting you off,’ can you believe the nerve of them?”

“Absurd. As if we’re causing any harm being warm.” The expensive half-drunk man leans against the stand of one of the heating elements scattered through the room. “The water barrier will catch our excess heat anyway, it trickles down to the rest of the city. Don’t they know anything about thermodynamics?”

Already tired of this, you turn to walk away with your water. But the Electrical System arrives at the table before you can leave.

2254-08-02 18:30:49 Électricité > ugh, what a pain...

2254-08-02 18:31:00 Aydan > they really expect us to duel each other?

2254-08-02 18:31:08 Électricité > they crave some kind of spectacle I guess

2254-08-02 18:31:19 Aydan > I don’t know what they expect to see from the surface. we’re not gonna shoot lasers out of our eyes or breathe fire or something. at least, not to their eyes

2254-08-02 18:31:27 Électricité > it’s a mockery of our art! they don’t know anything about technopathy, they think this is a performance or something...

2254-08-02 18:31:36 Aydan > normies...

2254-08-02 18:31:43 Électricité > at least after all this is over I get to go stay with my partner

2254-08-02 18:31:48 Aydan > aww, they live here?

2254-08-02 18:31:54 Électricité > yeah, it’s the main reason I went along with this. we go to different schools, but we met last year at the inter-academy competition

2254-08-02 18:32:02 Électricité > we faced each other at EvoTech, two systems hunting each other down in the æther for what felt like an eternity... evading and pursuing and invading...

2254-08-02 18:32:08 Électricité > I’ve never felt closer to someone than in that duel. afterward we made out for hours, surfaceside and ætherside. I don’t even remember who won

2254-08-02 18:32:15 Aydan > aww that’s sweet, I’m happy for you

She picks up the bottle of Yuri’s Choice vodka and one of the shot glasses on the table.

2254-08-02 18:32:25 Électricité > want some? seems like it’s free

2254-08-02 18:32:30 Aydan > _

1) > I shouldn’t...I’d probably just end up making some really bad decisions: 0 (0.0%)
2) > sure, anything to get me through this. is it anything like ketamine or dextromethorphan?: 5 (100.0%)
Expired 1 years ago (2023-04-10 17:22:47)