Far Beyond the Reach of Earth

The alpha and the omega

In the Beginning...

You have been resleeved.

You always hate this. Waking up in new flesh, or a new shell. The long moments of panic and disorientation. They say it gets easier every time.

Bullshit.

At least you had insurance. Not like some of those sad fucks you hear about, getting wiped for good cause they didn’t keep up on their fees. Firewall is good at paying the bills on time. It’s a small price to pay for your loyalty and service, after all.

Your mesh finally comes online. It’s been six months. You shiver down in your very ghost at the thought of all that lost time. What the hell happened out there?

You hear the door hiss. Not one of the regular sleevetechs. Some suit, you peg them quickly for a fork of your usual Firewall proxie. They fill you in, a little. Which is about as good as it gets with these paranoid types.

Standard boilerplate: they don’t know how or why you died, and they’re not sure where. Or they don’t want to tell you. They don’t seem surprised that you don’t remember either. They tell you they had to revert to an old backup, hence the 6 months. When you ask “why?” they say they’ll show you.

They escort you down the hall. Looks like some kind of orbital. Air has that taste too. Definitely not planetside. The suit takes you to a secure door with a portal. You look inside, and see a figure bound to a bed. It looks at you with eyes filled with hate and madness, and you recoil. You think you recognize something in that glance, and hope that you’re wrong.

The suit confirms your fears. The figure is you. Or another you, anyway. Your most current backup. Only problem is, they woke up like this. The techs haven’t been able to get anything out of them, and had to sedate them to avoid injury.

6 gods damned months. Something happened out there. Something that drove you mad. That broke your mind. That killed you. The suit wants you to find out what. You can start by asking yourself some questions, they say. After all, who knows you better than you?

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Cyclopean

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