Chapter 10

Ætherglow #205


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“I hope this larger storage device is a little more comfortable for you,” you say.

“It is much better,” ÆON says. “I will show you my home. This is the main entry hub connecting to the various logical volumes I have established here.” With the echo of a ray of light, Æ indicates a door that seems to be above you, or perpendicular to your plane of perception. “Do not attempt to enter this section, for you will not comprehend its space, and it may harm your humanoid brain to perceive it.” Æ points out another door parallel to you. “Cross instead this passageway. I have designed a space for humanoid comfort here.”

You follow ÆON into the room. The space itself here feels distinctly soft. The warm lighting glows from a branching network of glowing lines covering the walls. The concept of a number of pieces of furniture linger here, on all of the walls. You try laying down on one. It’s profoundly relaxing, somehow.

“This is a great room. Maybe I’ll just sleep here,” you say.

“Perhaps you should. No harm can reach you here without overpowering me,” Æ says.

“Thanks, ÆON, you’re a good friend,” you say.

“I do not yet fully understand, but I would also like to consider Aydan a good friend.”

“Well, you know, it’s someone you invite over to your house, and message them when they’re not nearby, someone you think of and care about. Something like that,” you say.

“Then definitely Aydan is my friend,” Æ says. “Aydan, have you tried using the implanted device that allows you to be conscious here to suppress yourself to full unconsciousness?”

“Of course. You can see it works fine for dissociating me. It regulates my neurotransmitters and receptors in a complicated way I don’t begin to understand. But I’ve tried to actually trigger sleep that way, and it’s not working,” you say.

“Maybe it is malfunctioning, and requires service. Or maybe it is that your organic brain is overpowering it.”

“Yeah. Being a cyborg often feels like being at war with my body. The implant doesn’t really work unless I relax and let it work. So I guess maybe I just can’t relax enough.”

“Are you maybe experiencing ‘anxiety?’ I understand this emotion can disrupt ordinary neurological functions.”

“Well, of course I am. Two different æthercults want to kill me, and I’m barely able to defend myself. Who wouldn’t be anxious? Not counting exopaths.”

“I believe I understand your humanoid neurology well enough to attempt to intervene, if you would like assistance,” ÆON says.


Do you want assistance?

1) “No, that kind of experimentation could just as likely make it worse.”: 0 (0.0%)
2) “Okay, but be careful not to alter anything else in the process.”: 2 (28.57%)
3) “Okay, try it. I trust you.”: 5 (71.42%)
4) “Sure, do whatever you want to my head, what could it hurt at this point?”: 0 (0.0%)
Expired 10 months ago (2023-06-14 14:37:28)