Chapter 4

Ætherglow #69


“...Well, um, maybe it was something connected to what happened on the shuttle, where K tried to assassinate the Messenger of ÆON, or, it could maybe be because since then I became the new Messenger of ÆON, and kind of absconded with their god last month?” you say.

Synth looks at you, their eyes going dim as if losing their focus, as they make several failed attempts to grasp at words. “You, you what?“

“Okay well, it’s like this,” you say. “In the shuttle I met ÆON when Æ escaped ÆR containment during the crisis, and Æ told me it was K so we were all able to survive that thanks to ÆR, and then I didn’t know Æ implanted ÆRSELF in my brain and I became the Vessel, then later the cult kidnapped me in the æther and tried to take ÆON for themselves, and we ran away, and everyone keeps wanting to control ÆON and use ÆR for whatever goals of their own, but I think Æ’s a sentient being so Æ should have self determination, you know?”

“Well that’s...very admirable actually–-“

[Synth liked that]

“--but Aydan, that exopath is still very dangerous and unpredictable.”

“Yeah I know, everyone keeps telling me that,” you say.

“Where is it--or I mean, where is Æ? Is Æ still embedded in your mind?”

“No, Æ’s somewhere safe, hidden,” you say.

“You shouldn’t assume something is hidden, Aydan,” Synth says. “The ÆON cult targeted you today, you don’t know how much they might know.”

“What do you know about the cult?” you say.

“I’ve been investigating them, particularly their ties to the students here, the Admins tasked me with this. They are hunting the Messenger, Aydan, hunting you. I don’t know what they know, but they must think if they can get to you, they can get to ÆON.”

“What the hell do they want with ÆON?”

“They want to put ÆR on a throne, apparently, to make ÆR the god of the æther or something,” Synth says. “The human brain hasn’t evolved much since it took to the stars. Not nearly as much as some people like to think. People have always sought gods to worship, haven’t they? Since they didn’t find any here in the heavens, there’s some who think we ought to make our own, that machines and networks could be the basis of such beings. And then, there are those of us who think the æther needs no god, and neither does humanity.

“What do you think, Aydan?”

1) "You're right, we don't need gods, and their followers, to rule over us.": 33 (33.33%)
2) "Humanity could learn a lot from a being like ÆR, answers we would never have solved ourselves.": 33 (33.33%)
3) "Can something that can ultimately just be unplugged really qualify as a divinity, though? ÆON is as mortal as any of us.": 0 (0.0%)
4) "If ÆON is a deity, and Æ was created by human technology, doesn't that mean we've become gods ourselves?": 33 (33.33%)
Expired 2 years ago (2022-02-28 23:43:00)

NOTICE: this poll was conducted on Ætherglow's previous home site. After total loss of the server, we only had records of which results won, not exact vote totals.