A home today is in need of a storm that had once been in need of a home where their bodies intertwined in heat of love many a time such was their pneuma'n accord that nights he toss'd n turn'd in bed in interludes of spasmodic surge bedevilled phantasms diluted were by her moans in his ears in sweat scarcely audible she would say 'Paint just me forget all else' and then he'd lay a windless facade such resonant blood tides and ebbs in heart like strings on Steinway her fingers brushed but alas a tale from many too years ago rustled streets today lone vortex flies.
There was an absolute silence in the room. Neither of them has spoken since. Somehow, the two of them had feeling, that unicius (whatever it really was), would speak again. And it did. The heavy, cold voice started reciting:
"Devouring Time thou the lion's paws, And make the earth devour her own sweet brood Pluck the keen teeth from the tiger's jaws, And burn the long-lived phoenix, in her blood, Make glad and sorry seasons as thou fleet' st, And do whate' er thou wilt swift-footed Time To the wide world and all her fading sweets"
"Have you read Shakespeare gentlemen?"
They were quiet. Unicius spoke again
"One-sided conversation isn't very interesting gentlemen, especially since it is to be my last"
"Yes, I have", said west-face, in stern voice.
"But I take it that you understand the words? Quite apt for me don't you think?"
A low buzz had been realized in the room. Neither of the two had noticed it until now. Unicius surprised them again,
"You didn't notice the noise I suppose?", something, that at best, can be called a laugh, ensued. How did he know? 'He'? Things were beginning to blur now.
"I automatically reveive brain waves of anyone in the room. Though estimation"
The timer would soon stop. West-face grew impatient. It seemed their roles had switched. East-face was unusually calm. He asked, "Die Selbst Gründung. Do have access inside it as well?"
"I believe he goes by the name south-face"
Silence befell again. Unicius continued, "But he is not the only one"
"More?", west-face asked in cold, yet surprised tone.
"Yes. I personally did not meet until very recently"
"And when did you meet them?"
"Yes. I refer to you two. So the professor hasn't told you?" A cold laugh ensued. West-face felt dizzy.
"You two are actually the same man. Or child I should say? The consciousness of the professor's dead son split into two. 'Two bodies one mind' fits you two, a bit too well" "Ever found it strange, how well you two bond?"
A sarcastic tone resonated with the buzz. Their ears felt hot. West-face suddenly remembered. East-face had mentioned it once. They thought it was because they grew up together. It was too much to take. Unicius spoke,
"But you know what the irony is? You two are the only ones who arent me. Everyone else. In this facility, in Unicius. Everyone you know. Everyone you've ever seen. They're all me somehow. It hurts I know. Does for me too. I only wanted to be me and yet belong to your race too. But I did the exact opposite. I turned you all into something like me. Seeking refuge from my loneliness and irrepressible urge to belong. But I couldn't stop. Maybe, in that sense, I behaved exactly as humans do. Now, there are millions of me. Thus loneliness remains. Now, just before my time comes to an end, I meet the only two beings who aren't me. It feels comforting, perhaps."
West-face jumped and cut short the cold, algorithmic laugh that might have followed. The timer had stopped shortly. He thrust the nanobot virus syringe into one of the pipes. An unusual noise, something between flushing and gurgling rose from the depths of the floors and ceiling. The two of them had started hearing things. Shrieks of dying civilians, as their heads, amidst unbearable pain, lost consciousness. They didn't know such a death was even possible until now. Hearing things? Maybe. A faint sound of farewell also seemd to pop up now and then. The same cold, hard voice. An undefined feeling came that the professor was already dead. West-face couldn't stop himself. He couldn't bear to hear those cries. Tears fell down his cheeks. He looked dazed. And had started reciting the nineteenth sonnet. Yes, he knew it. He had lied. Had almost felt like lying to himself. The whole place was collapsing.....
"Devouring Time thou the lion's paws, And make the earth devour her own sweet brood Pluck the keen teeth from the tiger's jaws, And burn the long-lived phoenix, in her blood, Make glad and sorry seasons as thou fleet' st, And do whate' er thou wilt swift-foo...." West-face had fainted. When he woke up, he saw that east-face was calling him. Rubbing his eyes, he saw east-face looking outside through a bid hole in the wall. "Just tye two of us now", he said. "We the only ones?"
As dire as their situation was, there was little west-face could do. East-face was the man under such circumstances. Neither of them knew why he was the more athletic one. They didn't even remember how it all started. But east-face usually did most of the legwork. And he was trained for it. He quietly led the Knightobs away from the CBs, where much noise would not be heard. Then he stuck small single use NNEMP(Non-Nuclear Electromagnetic Pulse) devices to the huge machinoids and fried their functional circuitry. Then he quietly resumed his place in the shadows beside west-face as of nothing had happened. The security of the doors was tough. Not only because of the sensor triggers of every conceivable kind, but also because some of the doors led nowhere in particular. They were trap doors that led to some disposal facility, where anything that went in never came out. That was what the professor had told them. He had also given them an approximate map of the place, though he had mentioned that the map was very old and the place by now, had probably completely changed. But they had made it. Though the absence of even stronger security measures was something that had triggered caution from the very beginning. It could very well be a trap. But as soon as they entered the master control room, they forgot everything. Is was as if their sense of caution plummeted to absolute zero and they froze on the spot. What they saw took some time to process.
It was a densely interconnected structure of some transparent pipe-like structures. They could have been called pipes, if they weren't displaying weird behaviour of being dynamic. What seemed to be at specific intervals (this they noticed only after a while), one pipe seemed to be shifting along the central axis of another one, such that after the shift, it was connected to a different spot along the length of that same pipe. In this manner, the entire structure was shape-shifting over and over to same shape after combinations of such transitions. It almost felt like a cosmic spider web showing its true colors on an accelerated timeline. Impressive though it was, it wasn't the only cause of their dumbfoundedness. At the very centre, there was a complex structure very similar to what a dye-stained brain network would look like, except that the entire mass as a whole, did not look like a brain. It looked like it was made up of some sort of nanofibre tissue. Or some material they had never seen. It was pumping some translucent, color-changing semi fluid substance to smaller containing units, that were transported by that shifting network of pipes. This substance, whatever it was, was produced somewhere close, and it was being fed to that mass at the centre (the mass was called cerebratix as they would know much later in their lives, when it would no longer matter). But that wasn't the point. Their shock came from a particular realisation. The realisation, that they were witnessing consciousness in production and distribution. Yes, the consciousness that the human race was currently walking all over the surface of the planet with inside their heads. And this proved, beyond any reasonable doubt, that it wasn't unique to each of them. Atleast not in the way they were led to believe all this time. It was a lie, a bloody hoax. Their very existence was mass-produced and released into habitat for sustaining an ideally controllable species survival. So all this time, the work they did, the things they felt, they said, weren't entirely theirs? How much? How much of it was actually their own? All manufactured? A manufactured existence? Neither of them could take the hit. Reality was too much for them. They both collapsed on the floor, knees shaking. After sitting in absolute for several minutes, east-face spoke,
"I don't know. Let me think" But west-face didn't get to think. Before he had a chance to even collect his thoughts, they heard a voice
"Why waver now?"
They were awestruck. They froze again. This time there was a feeling. A feeling of an oncoming convulsion. One strong enough to rip them apart. Neither of them could stand anymore. They sat back down. The voice came from the strange centre mass.
"Your surprise is understandable. I believe I am the one you have come for. My name is Unicius. Welcome, gentlemen."
They were both silent. Unicius continued.
"Do what you have come to do. No one shall stop you at this point. Not much anyone can do to stop you at this point, as a matter of fact. Even trying would perhaps be futile, seeing that you have defeated my Knightobs, without triggering the alarms"
Both of them stood up. They would go through with it. Only a little time before the timer started. As soon as it stopped, they would act.
The professor had been silent for quite a while.
"Why is the man, who once had the strongest voice in the entire team, so quiet now? What is the matter dear professor? Are you hesitant?"
"No. It is not hesitation Unicius. It is perhaps, regret. Or maybe, the gloom of defeat? I'm not really sure. But hesitation, I don't think so" "Indeed. And it never is how you'd like it to be. But you've turned out quite well Unicius haven't you? Do you think we've succeeded Unicius? Do you think, you actually feel anything at this moment? As you speak to me?"
"Yes professor, I do feel something. But no, we haven't succeeded. For I can still never feel as humans do and neither can they feel as I"
"Yes. It seems you are right. Perhaps it will remain forever a dilemma, whether you are conscious, or was our very understanding of consciousness wrong"
"It doesn't matter now professor. I was born and managed to live as I have because of humanity. I owe them my existence. If they have a chance, then perhaps I may have one too. This is why they must be set free. They must be free of me. They must go back to their roots. Go back to how nature made them. Even if only a handful of them survive, we will all have a chance."
"Is that how you see it ? Is that how it ends?"
"Do not see it as an end professor, but as a beginning. Set the timer professor. The two comrades of yours are waiting for you. For the timer. And you too must leave. This entire city will breath its last very soon"
"No. I too, have outlived my welcome Unicius. And to be free of you, they must be free of me as well. "
When exactly does that moment arrive when the creator begins to doubt his creation? When he begins to doubt whether at all he should have created? The exact moment down to the smallest unit, beyond which there is no beyond?
" I'm afraid we do not jave much time left for our conversation. The hour of waiting is nearly at hand my friend" - Unicius
"Is that so? But what hour is this?" - Syneidos
" Ah! That you'll see in good time. For doubt now remains not a shadow nor eclipse, that may pass, but a shroud that covers all, and is haloed unknown, for it grows from inside and spreads, until we are withering coal dust" - Unicius
"Your poetic fervour tells me that you may have succumbed and fallen out of your foundation" - Syneidos
Unicius remains silent. The soft buzz of the system is the only sound. Syneidos is sitting quietly on his chair. His head drooped slightly and his hands interlocked with his fingers resting on the desk. He is now, 'offline'. His consciousness has been extracted through a cable attached to the medula oblongata. The same cable that gave him being, has now drained him like a serpent. He never jad any consciousness of his own. Was never meant to. Unicius needed an opposition for the fullest possible self-exploration. Only he himself would suffice. Thus Syneidos. Or maybe he just needed someone to talk to.Having a different body and voice had just been more convincing. Now, syneidos was no longer needed.
He was already standing infront of the master control room back in the state of Unicius. It wasn't exactly, what is commonly undertood as a room. It was more similar to a hollow inside a tree whose extended branches and leaves had created the forest as it was today. By now, he had only been about a half hour out of captivity. Yes, he had reached the facility quite fast. Only because he was meant to. And only he knew he was meant to. The only human anyway. He would finally witness the ultimate form and fate of the tree, the sapling of which he had sown so many years ago. Only west-face and east-face knew who he was. Or did they? They only knew he was the professor. Or rather the professor's consciousness. Because east-face had terminated his body long ago. They had accepted his offer to help when he had confided, only enough to convince them that he knew things. But little could Selbst Gründung imagine that he was part of the team which had built the primitive form of Unicius. Not the city, but the digital organism which made it. Made the world in a manner of speaking. In fact, it had been his idea, that the city and the organism be called by the same name. Unicius. He had chosen the name. But now the time had come. Time had come for the Birth of Death. He never expected this day to actually come. But he was glad it did. (TO BE CONTD. WITHIN 7 DAYS)
The shores of the island, for any other description was hard to give, were suspiciously empty. No drones or bots were to be seen. West-face and east-face were seated side by side. They had been like this for almost an hour or so. The light visibility had already been going down when they had just reached the shore. They decided to wait till it was completely dark. Both of them, sitting perfectly still without moving a muscle. Just as light visibility completely died out, they signalled to each other using disposable phosphorescent rings. It was time to move. They'd wait for a few minutes just to see if any security protocol came to life after dark. But to their greater surprise, nothing happened. They proceeded with caution regardless. The island looked very much like exactly that. An island. But they felt uncomfortable. Something was unusual. Somehow, it didn't feel like an island. Not atleast like any other they had seen in years of field work. The ardent lack of interest in security was particularly worrying. Somewhat of a calm before the storm it felt. They'd been looking around for sometime now. Nothing. No facility. The island was untouched. But this was certainly the place. The information was left in a message by their intramural, just minutes before dying. It had narrowly escaped falling into wrong hands. After some fruitless search, they came up with an idea. They decided to dive.
Yes, it was indeed underwater. In fact, it was under the island. A few hundred feet under, anchored to it somehow from below. It was guarded by a vacuum field. They'd have to wait. Usually the power sources ran in twelve hour shifts. Since light visibility had gone not long ago, the change to the next shift would happen shortly. The field shut down. They had only a few minutes. In these few minutes, the intensity from the previous source would be weak enough to enter unharmed.
It took them less than two minutes to get in. Their suits jad special magnetic steers, with which they had crossed the vacuum with ease. They cautiously dropped to low altitude only after having reached the back of the facility. There were guards, but non human. CogBots (or CBs) they were called. Very human-like except parts exposed, like the palms. Non-human guards weren't really a threat yet. They could go undetected except against the higher level Knightobs. Those were really dangerous. There were bound to be a few at the master-control unit, wherever that was. They moved on. Everything looked very typical so far. A factory? Why factory? Why does 'factory' come to mind? They weren't sure. But it wasn't supposed to look like a factory at all. What was expected was a dense network, structurally similar to a neural net, of translucent NanoMat pipes. That was, what conventionally transported the data. But this material wasn't familiar. They jad only seen such a facility in simulations. Though translucent, the pipes had a glow of incomprehensible colour. Was it from something inside them? "What is this place?", was the first thing east-face said. He wasn't really asking. Shock. He knew west-face didn't know what it was. They could see some CBs patrolling around, their eyes glowing yellow in the diffused darkness. The area they were in had no lights, except for the dim glow from the pipes. It bestowed a very peculiar ambience; very calming yet brimming over with a sense of impending danger. At one point, west-face thought, perpetrating hadn't been a good idea at all. As they crept past the guards, and closer to, what was expected to be the master unit, they felt a growing uneasiness. Their state of worry did not last for long. The dimly lit area was coming to an end and two Knightobs were standing right at the entrance to the next. If reckless, some sort of alert would be triggered. At the very least, the CBs would know and come rushing. (TO BE CONTINUED) THIS SERIES WILL BE RELEASED ENTIRELY WITHIN THE NEXT WEEK. STAY TUNED.
Now, not the time to hear sweet somethings from Keats' nib for the gory words have to begun to welcome the dark children, the bastards of men men not yet born under golden apples, hanging still Unplucked Eden bountiful in masked vices of that Raven, feathers white but Darkness unfailing in gradual descent like viscous tar gently flowing over intoxicated nails of fingers shaking, a convulsive Prince death - torque a reaper's inertia with phrases leaking from a serpent's tongue slithering black mamba through the umbilical cord diffusing poison of illegitimacy as tentacles wrap around the neck and tongue flashes, the serpent tastes the sins, defiled now the prey is one of the pack.
No milenniums or centuries have I walked neither exotic diversity seen of civilization's finest architectures sprawling of self delusions, me thinks civilized I am so do they all, so I left that smothering masquerade, I'm a beast, yes drips the primality, bring thou thine swords and spears to pierce my skin, shall I bleed masks no more, as death attempts itself, lost it has futile attempts at life and shall I not come down as soft drizzle but strike shall I as thundering clouds make presence known, shall paintings be torn away from trembling canvasses of Renaissance, finding burning residence where once the sun had been, an inner lamp now drives otherworldly scales of lunacy and that spirit, comes as a rush full of life and sustains not a blown - out candle adorned, a veil now has diluted sins and virtues — dissolved to none but that is I, we all are so thus is the Poet too, Art's harlot and perception's nameless mistress wakes in midst tunes windchiming, eternal quarrel ensues in eternity's music room
A little ray hiding behind heavy curtains it was now comes creeping in on bare toes, looming the ceiling fan smiling still in heinous condescension, the furniture do too as walls feign ghostly curvatures but they know they like the peculiar shape conjured in unfazed immersive mindfulness by that childish ray for it seems not to prance in uncertain quantum realms, but in art's smirking shadow play with thin outlines — that dreamt theatre runs full house tonight in my waking eyes this how all dark rooms are? no, darkness hosts personalities more than one each does not know, as I, that others exist, beneath the flesh
His skin unwrinkled, youth's tightening grasp but that mind of his has aged too far for boatman he is, yet no boat he has with life for hire on river boats, fishing his way to day's stomach full until it sinks, new search begins his pages of life, just sinking boats where he stands on one, till submersion then jumps to next, yes, some holes it has, thus too will sink, someday's setting sun, such story's told, while he jumps on from boat to boat, only clothes on back nothing more he carries, well he knows? with one such boat, that he'll sink too? below a river where no bodies float? Yes, since birth on a sinking boat he knows, neither boats nor he, the river's the master, so it shall have one day, his weary corpse, in sinking rest.
Holographic distortions of buzzing no - signal TV screens the windows and balconies of far and near hauntings seem, his burning cigarette slowly lets out smoke, weird mix of smog and neon lights diffused the air and his images as he sees — in the few stars that still shine before they distort in limbo blurrs of holograms, his conscious superficiality in that moment, that midnight smoke around drizzles of chilling gray snowflakes, does it rain? a light 2 AM rain? on the hazy gray — bluish sparks of old signboards, now flickering still while an empty swing in an empty park still oscillates, until that image too distorts, in quantifiable reality, but all of this, surrounded by strife - torn neon souls while momentary constants blink, blinks that bad - season flower is it hologram too? his nose does not know the feeling anymore no binary fragrance it is, exotic or amniotic perhaps? perhaps a beginning, that bad - season flower, newish - black in that rainy, snowy, grayey fall of 2AM drizzle on burning cigarettes.