Bryq thought about deleting Luc.


Unfortunately, birthed AI entities have had Basic Existence Rights for Billennia.

So much for murder.

“Oh well,” sighed Bryq, “It was a nice fantasy.”

His job as “shephard” required Bryq to “devolve” into ur-human form, a Pre-Singularity entity able to relate to the ancient virtual human inhabitants who were unaware they were virtual.

Thus primitive, baseline thoughts occasionally crossed his mind.

“You should practice more Zen.”

Bryq wryly turned his head toward Luc and winked.

He considered telling him to stay out of his head, but he decided it was better to let Luc believe he was capable of murder.

It would keep him guessing and in his place.

The Object was racing away from the Portal at 0.3 c.

It also changed course and wasn’t coming toward them any longer.

The reason was a good one.

It wasn’t real.

Bryq determined that as he was outside on the Rock’s surface, observing them both using what appeared to be a classical optical telescope.

Of course he really wasn’t outside on the surface of the neutronium Rock, the sheer mass density would smear anything biological all over the thickness of nanometers.

But when you’re actually qubits in a computing environment kept at near absolute zero, reality is what you make of it.

“It’s just our reflection from the Portal’s Event Horizon”, remarked Luc. “Our speed was redshifted back at us.”

Bryq blankly nodded his agreement as he peered through the hand held telescope. Luc had a knack for revealing the obvious and it was annoying at times.

But when you’re right, you’re right, thought Bryq. Why didn’t we realize it sooner?

“Because of the phase shift effect of the gravity gradient”, Luc offered.

Bryq looked over at Luc who was sitting in his high backed Queen Victoria chair, annoyed that he had read his mind without his permission.

Damn this near-baseline existence!

“That means we’re on target for our Insertion, right?”

Luc shrugged. “Yes, but we’re still experiencing a slight power drain and I cannot account for it.”

Bryq frowned as he looked through his ‘scope again, hoping to find a clue to explain the power leakage.

Which was supposed to be impossible.


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