I’ve been too depressed to do anything with Exsilium for a few days, but I’ve resumed work on it, although it’s taking a decidedly darker turn due to my mood. Here’s a peek:
“Anyone can tell stories here. Anyone. Their computers are full of them, and they’re all blasphemous lies–every last one of them. Why, even an imbecile like you could tell a story on this world and face no punishment.”
Fixer didn’t particularly like it when ‘Teller called him an imbecile, but it happened often, and he’d become accustomed to it. It was what he was, after all.
“They spread their lies through the trees, just as they told us,” continued the ‘Teller, pointing at the holographic image hovering on the table in front of them. A glowing depiction of TREE’s creation played out before them to the narration of a calm female voice.
…but what Richard Kryuss was not aware of was that TREE had already taken root and begun propagating itself as early as the year 2010. It had, by that time, commandeered primitive robotic machines and utilized them to clandestinely construct factories in various locations all over the planet. When the–
“Off!” shouted the ‘Teller, slamming his fist on the table. “No more!”
The holoterm vanished, and the ‘Teller spun around in his chair.
“Can you access their computer systems? Can a fool like you even comprehend this level of technology? If your answer is not the one I require, of what use are you to me here?”
Fixer gulped. “I can,” he said with a confidence that he didn’t feel one bit of.
The ‘Teller smiled. “You’re a terrible liar,” he said. “But I’m willing to give you a chance. Give me your hand.”
“But ‘Teller, I–”
“Give me. Your hand.”
Fixer lowered his shaking hand flat on the table and clenched his eyes shut as he heard the ‘Teller’s dagger being unsheathed from its ancient manskin scabbard. He didn’t scream when his finger was cut off–‘Teller would be pleased.