3.18: Scroot: Jamming Speed

Somewhere hidden away in the silver sphere, Syrge was prattling on and on to Scroot about how easy it apparently was to forge a revolution on this modern information station. “Information Station,” he repeated because he enjoyed the rhyme. And also, he meant forge in the sense of to fake, not to build from fire and steel. He took a tangent into Machiavellian considerations of the ethics of population control in a closed system, and then returned to the seeming willingness of people to have their anger sated in the most blatantly manipulative ways. All the while, he was mixing his chemicals and adjusting burners.

Scroot heard it all and apprehended none. His eyes flickered around and looked at things near to him, and his head nodded periodically. Every so often a wordless murmur escaped his lips. All of this was well-practiced conceit to keep Syrge from worrying about him.

His attention was all on the infinite field of the code that danced between the nano computer elements. This was the source of the weirld, and the communication linkages, and the… well everyting as far as Scroot was concerned.   He had, some time ago, hacked into his own wireless link-up to his mechanical arms and projected his mind into the field of nanites. His self image in this non-place had once been humanoidish. Smooth, rounded, squat, but at least it had a head and four limbs. Almost like a Fid floating in streams of bits.

Ever since Syrge encouraged him to manipulate the station’s workings to save Kay and Vince, Scroot’s avatar had turned protoplasmic. Long tendrils of his awareness latched onto so many different threads, mostly without effect. Occasionally though, he would bend or twist a bit of reality to protect his kras. But they were mostly off the grid, so he was mostly just riding around on waves. Another presence, insubstantial and ethereal, shadowed him thoughtlessly. Scroot came to think of it as a game but if anyone was watching it, it would look more like a dance. He would stretch and loop around in the connection field, and in the spaces in between, and the ethereal shadow chased him, falling behind, overshooting, but never losing him. Even when he split his mind into hundreds of tiny shards consisting of the barest hints of awareness, he was shadowed and observed. Scroot did not know it, but he was having more fun than he had ever had before.

Syrge, had he been aware of any of this, would have rearranged his priorities drastically.


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