1. Raven

    Raven Banned

    Oct 14, 2006
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    The NetherWorld

    Short Story Winner (08) Written By Domoviye Heritical Thoughts

    Discussion in 'Bi-Weekly Short Story Contest Archives' started by Raven, Sep 19, 2007.


    Heretical Thoughts​

    Richard paced his luxurious room impatiently. The end was so close, only two hours left, and everything would be out of his control. He relished the thought.
    The tv that blared in the background, a constant noise, even for the Minister of Entertainment, suddenly stopped. He had been expecting that, The Guide of The People, would want to speak with him before the Program was released to the world. He turned smiling to the tv and video camera, as a face appeared on the screen.
    "Mr. Atkinson," the face said, "The Guide of The People requests your presence in the Golden Chamber, when it is convenient."
    Richard smiled broadly, "I am honoured by the request. I will go immediately."

    The Golden Chamber gleamed in the harsh fluorescent light. Tiny robots moved sedately cleaning every surface, keeping it from being desecrated by unclean people. Statues moved smoothly reenacting scenes from the Holy Book. Richard knew the statues were constantly watching the room for assassins and were programmed to kill if The Guide seemed to be in danger. He also knew that he had been scanned, and was being scanned by hundreds of different means to ensure the safety of the Guide.
    He was not afraid. Hurting The Guide physically, was the furthest thing from his mind.
    Stopping exactly fifty feet away from the gold throne on which The Guide sat, Richard kneeled in supplication. The Guide looked down on him, his eyes were covered by a dark silky band that made him look blind, but allowed him to see through any camera connected to the net. A golden net covered his hair and was draped over his body like a shroud. Like the eye band, it connected his every nerve to the net, giving him more control then anyone else on Earth could hope to attain.
    The neural garb hid The Guide in shadow, giving him a ghostly appearance. Akin to what ancient oracles achieved through torchlight, caves and careful positioning.
    "My Guide, I have come," Richard whispered to the recorders that would send it to the Emperors ears.
    A stern voice spoke from the walls, as the Emperors' mouth moved silently. "Everything is prepared?" the voice asked.
    "Yes, my Guide. Our programmers have successfully placed your Program on the Net. Your message tonight, and ever after shall be heard in every media that can be reached by the Net. All shall hear your message, from your loyalest subject, to the most cursed rebel," he said in awe.
    "Good," the voice boomed. "The heretics shall no longer be able to use background noise of the Net, to hide from the Message. The Message shall drown out their voices. Their cause will lose hope, and coherence." A rare smiled appeared on The Guides face. "I have watched you, as the Holy Mission has permitted. You have done well in guiding the programmers, and extending The Holy Message across the Net. You, will have the honour of initiating the Program."
    Despite the fact that he had expected this honour, Richard had no difficulty in making himself sound grateful. "I thank you for this honour my Guide. I have only been following your Guidance, and the Holy Mission."
    Again The Guide smiled, "Your humbleness is honourable. I, and the Holy Mission shall remember it. You may go and prepare now."
    Richard pushed his face to the floor, before silently leaving.

    Richard sat in a comfortable chair, VR equipment already in place, meditating amidst the frenzied activity. Programmers were ensuring everything was in order before the initiation of the Program. If anything should go wrong, everyone in the room who could not prove their total innocence would die. Richard felt sorry for them.
    But it couldn't be helped. Something had to be done. The Guide controlled everything, using advanced technology, and religious fanaticism. The few who tried to fight only had the anonymity of the vast net to protect themselves. Tonight if the Program succeeded, they would lose even that.
    Richard had seen too many death camps to let that happen.
    He prayed that he was doing the right thing.
    The VR equipment came on, making his brain believe he was now alone in an old fashion tv booth. A screen was counting down, five minutes to show time.
    Richard placed his hand on his head, and began rubbing his stomach. "The Guide shall protect us, even as we walk through the Valley of Death," he whispered.
    The movement and quote released a new program within the Program. If anyone was watching all they should see was Richard moving awkwardly, and quoting a common phrase. But Richard had spent the last two years making weird movements as if too calm down before big events. They were never the same, and people eventually put it down to a strange quirk. Which was exactly what Richard wanted.
    He started typing in commands on the keyboard in front of him, exactly as he was supposed to. Only unknown to everyone else, the board wasn't now hooked not only to the Net, and The Guides computer system. It was also connected to Richards brain.
    All he had to do now was press any key on the keyboard to initiate his own program.
    He started shaking. This was the final part. If he stopped now, no one would ever know.
    Could he press the key? Doubt welled up in his mind. There wasn't even a certainty that anyone could gain from what he was about to do.
    This could cause the death of millions of people including himself. At least now there was peace.
    Three minutes left before the Program started. Not much time now, he thought.
    His finger pressed the key.
    Better to die fighting for freedom, then to die screaming for saying a wrong word.
    His brain felt strange. It felt like fingers were poking and picking at his memories. Some memories were thrown away like useless trash. He felt images of his mother and father disappear into blankness.
    Other memories carefully chosen months in advance marched before his eyes. The blank stare of prisoners at Death Camps, euphemistically called Worship Areas.
    He tried to blot out the images, he still had work to do. His mind was tearing itself apart, but there were still certain tasks that had to be done.
    Cringing, his fingers typed the necessary codes into the keyboard activating the Program. He felt the Net shudder as the Program woke up.
    Only a minute left.
    He forgot what his name was. The body, formerly called Richard Atkinson, no longer cared what was happening to its mind. The images zoomed past its eyes, even as they grew blank. Only a small portion of the brain still worked, it kept a steady stream of commands going to the fingers.
    None of the people checking his vitals noticed anything. The body was physically fine. If they had been beside him, they could have notice a trace of drool rolling down from the mouth. Or the blank dead face that simply stared at the screen that it could no longer understand. They might, if they looked very closely, have noticed a trace of terror in the blank animal like eyes, as what little was left of the shredded and torn mind looked on in horror at what it had done to itself.
    But no one did. They knew that commands were still being inputted, his physical signs were normal, and if the brainwaves were odd, they were still functioning.
    Finally with one final act of will, the body of Richard Atkinson pressed enter, releasing the Program from its final bond.

    Across the world tv screens, radio's, computers, and virtual reality chambers went blank as the Program ripped apart firewalls, passwords, and anything else that stood in its path. Only key Church and Government areas remained free.
    Once it had control the Program flooded everything with its' message.
    The Guide watched, waiting to hear his voice speak out against the heretics. His smile turned to horror.
    Instead of his voice, a small girl pleaded for food. He was surrounded by starving people, thin, fleshless arms pulled at his clothes, begging for forgiveness, asking for a scrap of bread.
    A louder voice, the voice of Richard Atkinson, spoke. It explained who these people were, how they had been killed by The Guide's orders for speaking out for freedom.
    The Guide tried to run, he fled through the Net, but everywhere the Program showed the same images.
    Finally the scene shifted. A map of the world was laid out. It listed every death camp, every government or church building, every secret base. It showed how many guards protected each one.
    The Guide screamed in fury. He tried to override the program, but his passwords wouldn't work. looking over the codes he knew he could break them, but it would take time.
    Again the Net shifted. It showed Richard, The Guide, and many others writing the Holy Message.
    The Guide shrieked, cursing Richard to Hell. How dare he do this. He was The Guide. He controlled everything.
    Furiously, he tried to break through to the program. Even as the Net shifted showing secret after secret.
    Finally he was through. He entered the old fashioned tv room that controlled the Program. The mindless icon of Richard was still in the chair, drooling. The Guide tossed the body out of the seat.
    He could still make it right, he thought frantically. If he worked quickly he could control everything.
    A scream of rage filled the room. The keyboard was gibberish. Instead of being laid out properly it was covered in meaningless symbols. It would be impossible to figure out what the keys meant.
    The Guide raged. A tv screen continued to play images from Richards head. Each one a dagger straight into the heart of his Holy Empire.
    Finally he summoned his powers. If he couldn't control the Program he could stop it.
    His image flared as he channeled the power of the Gold Room directly into his equipment. The tv room ceased to exist.
    The Net went down.
    The Guide sat on his throne, sweating and shaking fiercely. His headset beep incessantly calling for his attention.
    With a thought he opened a connection. "What is happening?" The Guide demanded.
    "My Guide," the voice said, obviously scared, "we are reporting rebellious behavior around the globe. We have already lost at least five military bases."
    The Guide slumped in his Throne. All he could do was gasp a single, disbelieving word. "No."
  2. Torana

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Mar 13, 2007
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    Congradulations Domoviye. It was a fabulous piece and definately a deserving win.

    All the pieces were absolutely wonderful to read. Well done to everyone.

  3. Heather Louise

    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

    Dec 10, 2006
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    congrats Dom, an excellent peice and a deserved winner. and my commisierations to the other two, all the peices were briliiant. :)
  4. Gannon

    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

    Jan 15, 2007
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    Manchester, England
    A clean sweep on comps by Domoviye - congrats indeed!
  5. The Spartan

    The Spartan Senior Member

    Mar 24, 2007
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    Some good ideas there Dom. The final paragraph-and-a-half is well written, consuming.

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