2.4: Laser Boy: Facilitated Consciousness
When Vince opened his eyes there were other eyes looking into his. Narrow slanted eyes that sparkled like the deep pools in the garden sphere. They were surrounded by a white downy feather disc and then a halo of pale blue.
She opened her mouth and raised her eyebrows. A screeching machine sound assaulted Vince’s brain, followed by a digitized, “You know?”
Vince sat up sharply causing Kay to stumble backwards. He looked around him, trying to connect his present to his memory. Copper blood, white walls, blue bird.
She was looking at him as if waiting for a response. She cocked her head at him quizically and some more electronic noise rattled his head, followed by, “You know?”
The HUD lights that had been dogging his vision since he came into the Science Wheel were flickering back into his awareness. He noticed the words, “Upload Unknown Data Package? Yes. No.” He concentrated on the, “Yes,” option. A new message popped up in his vision, “Warning. Source of data is unknown. Security of contents cannot be verified. Proceed?” Vince struggled to read the message for a moment and then hit proceed.
A female voice filled his mind.
“Are you okay? There is a lot of blood here.”
Vince looked at the blue and white bird girl. She was looking at him with her eyebrows raised.
Vince’s voice cracked when he tried to speak. He coughed up some phlegm and tried again.
“I don’t know… head hurts.”
The girl looked startled and stretched her mouth out and spoke normal words to him.
“You’re talking old school? Weird. No tech?”
“No. No tech. Just me.”
Vince sat up and pressed in on the sides of his head.
“Man Who Ate Japan! My head is venting ripped up.”
Blue Kay stood up and looked down at him. Her brow furrowed.
“I think all this blood came from you, but I don’t see any injuries.”
Kay tapped on a wall panel and the blood stated to fade away as nano-cleaners took over.
“I remember there was a gun,” Vince struggled to stand. Kay gripped one of his shoulders and helped him up.
“If you were shot there should be wounds…”
“No it was like on a stand or something. I don’t even see the stand now. It was right here.”
Kay stood back and looked at him sideways. He looked back at her.
They both dropped their jaws in unison.
“I know you!”
“You’re from that…”
“You’re that rich plint in that…”
“robbery with the lion and… Laser Boy!”
“video with those Shogoths… Kick Herald.. it’s… what is… Blue Kay!”
“You’re a famous criminal!”
“You’re a super rich sex… uh…”
Kay’s astonishment quickly abated and she pursed her lips together wickedly. A wave of scarlet passed through her feathers.
“You have got to come with me Laser Boy! I’m going to a lecture right near here. You can rest and we’ll see what we can do with you.”
She looked at him with a critical eye and said, “If anyone sees you like that you’re spaced. Here.”
She reached into one of the pouches on her belt.
She handed him a small thin plastic card. As soon as he took it, it launched a series of nano projectors to create a hologram around him. In the reflection of the wall he could see that he was a tall dark haired girl with scaly iridescent skin. Kay grabbed his hand and led him toward the lecture hall. Around a curve they entered a slowly moving herd of men and women in lab coats.
“They really are old fashioned, these science types. Last year they were all in tweed, and now… I don’t know what this is. Like, I think they are fashionably anti fashion or something. I don’t know. I’ve been inside for years.”
Vince stumbled trying to keep up with her quick gait.
Kay caught him by the elbow.
“Try not to attract attention. They could do these lectures in the weirld, you know, INSIDE. But they like to sit in these halls and heckle each other. I’ve never been, but I’ve seen ‘em in vids. Look here.”
They entered the auditorium, a large domed room filled with long round tables and benches stair-stepped up to the outer edge. The center platform was lower than the seats with four podiums.
“Science in the round.”
Kay led him to an empty bench at the back top row. Vince collapsed onto the pliable bench and leaned back on the wall, cradling his head in his hands. Kay looked around to be sure no one was watching and took the nano-card from him, deactivating it with a simple finger swipe.