The Hive World
Approximately six hours later
Simone slowly opens his eyes, feeling disoriented and weak. When he finally regains his senses, he looks around, scared and clueless with a breathing mask worn. He finds himself restrained in a hospital bed and surrounded by other victims that are being sheltered in that same area.
“What is this place? How did I get in here?”
He hears the voices of his neighboring hostage. He speaks in alien, despite being the same race Simone is.
“What? There is no doubt he is from Ohmid. Why can’t I understand him? Is he drugged? I am to share the same fate as him?”
A door opens in that room. Two Molluscoids scientists approach Simone and converse.
-Lab Drone: This specimen had something interesting, according to the soldier who abducted him.
-Lab assistant: It appears so. This one is named Simone Kratz, a certified engineer. His ideas of innovations are a dangerous competition to ours, provided that he had the resources to build such.
“What are they saying?! I can’t understand them!”
Simone desperately thought
-Lab assistant: Would it be a profit to force him into the hive?
-Lab Drone: You sound like a Deviant alright. Assimilation is the most effective way in which the abducted comply with minimal chance of corruption. Also, the wishes of the Queen herself is what is being mostly regarded with the success of this procedure.
-Lab assistant: Very well. Then this one would be next for assimilation. An excellent asset for the engineering tree.
The Scientists push the bed towards the area where Simone’s assimilation will start.
-Simone: Where are you taking me?! Get me out of this shithole!
They arrive at the room. Simone is placed among the tools that will be used for the operation.
-Simone: Can’t you just listen for a second?! I don’t want to be part of any of it!
-Lab Drone: Silence, alien!
-Simone: Huh? You… speak my language?
-Lab Drone: Specimen number 289967453. You shall witness the process of assimilation. From now on, your talents for exploiting the phenomena of nature for the betterment of the Hive’s community is your priority. Displease your Queen at your peril.
-Simone: Displease? Queen? What are you talking about?
-Lab Drone: from now on. Your new life will be dictated by the Queen herself; you shall only think of ways to please her and the Hive itself.
-Simone: No fucking way. You are all Hive mind Lunatics!
-Lab Drone: And so you will feel the extension of the network where your fellow brothers and sisters are connected to.
A few more scientists approach.
-Lab Drone: Let us commence the operation.
-Simone: Stop it! I will never…
Simone weakens. A substance is being injected at him to calm him down as the oxygenation in his mask flows normally.
-Lab Drone: First and foremost, you weaklings depend on oxygen; that is sadly a resource that comes on short supply on our planet.
-Lab assistant: check on the monitor. Genetic alteration in progress.
Simone becomes dizzy. He hears the voices muffled, focused on understanding what the lead scientist is saying as several syringes pierce through his body.
-Lab Drone: you feel the new change crawling all over your skin. With this augmentation, you will enroll into a new way of living, one that is better than the previous. As mentioned before, your talents are hers.
A scientist approaches the Lead scientist and gives him some news.
-Lab Assistant: Another humanoid is ready for the operation.
-Lab Drone: Excellent, bring it in.
“What?! I can understand them now? What kind of anomaly is this?!
Simone begins to freak out. He can understand the foreign language.
-Lab Drone: The procedure on you is already a success. I can read it in your face that now you share the tongues of your brothers.
Another held captive arrives restrained in a hospital bed. Simone recognizes the face; he sees Secille shedding tears, surprisingly fearless about the situation but happy for seeing Simone again.
Simone reaches out for her.
-Simone: I… will save us… both…
-Secille: I can’t understand you, but…no matter what happens, I will always love you.
Simone looks at her, helpless.
-Lab Drone: Love, an unneeded commodity for the Hive. It is a mere disease for the weak. I’ll make sure to get rid of that before you notice.
-Lab assistant: Cardiac rhythm, nominal. Doctor, we may proceed.
-Lab Drone: We welcome you as one of us, Simone.
-Simone: Stop it! Beast! Animals!
No other words escape his mouth when he begins to convulse with the assimilation in progress. He screams in pain, suffering an unbearable sting through his body. The procedure persisted for painful seconds before the assimilation ended. He survived.
“My… lungs… am I… breathing fire?”
The scientist removes his mask, no longer needing artificial oxygenation. The air inhaled by the Hive people is now breathable for Simone.
-Lab Drone: We welcome you as one, Brother.
As Simone finishes his assimilation, Secille starts hers. The assistants begin to stress as they notice the beeping sounds of the monitor.
-Lab Drone: What is going on there?!
-Lab assistant: The strain is too much for this subject! The cardiac rhythm is critical!
-Simone: Secille?! Secille!
Moments later, Secille remained stunned as if a torturing zap ceased to be. She fell slowly on the bed, felt the air flow inside her lungs once more before she remained unresponsive, she did not survive the assimilation.
-Lab assistant: We can’t scan any vital signs in this subject. The assimilation failed.
-Lab Drone: A pity. She will not witness the wonders of Hive nor her talents will prove any useful while unanimated.
Simone looks at her lover with a dead and hopeless expression.
“Secille… she is dead. I want to cry with all my might, but… my intentions are being suppressed. Is this… what it means to be part of the Hive? To be a will-lacking monster? I sincerely don’t feel any pity for her, even if she was the love of my life!”
-Lab Drone: Simone. Don’t mind the burning feeling in your lungs. As I said, your breathing is solely dependent on elements other than oxygen.
-Simone: I… understand.
“This is fucking hopeless. I’m fighting in favor of the urge of ripping this guy’s head, but not even a degree of heat is felt towards him. I have no reason to do so, at least that’s how it feels.”
The scientist looks at the window.
-Lab Drone: Planet Ohmid. A small, yet resourceful planet. Although resourceful for its abundant yield of vegetation, this can be an excellent subject for some of our experimentation. Simone, take a look at this.
Simone was liberated from his shackles and looked out of the window. He sees the planet from where he was abducted. His old self would have a better sense of empathizing with the people who still persist within the agonizing moments; that is no longer the case.
-Lab Drone: A test if you truly are a Deviant. Look at the other station hovering atop the planet’s atmosphere.
Simone looks at the station. It was a colossal infrastructure with a pointy tip aiming directly at the planet, thin but menacing, like a rapier.
-Lab Drone: Behold… our Planet Killer… you are about to witness greatness.
The event is being monitored across the lab. The station charges up its beam and then fires its laser. The laser punctures the earth’s atmosphere, though it causes no rupture, instead the elements of the blast begin to expand its multiple wavelengths across the planet, removing the forestall colors and transforming its surface into a dead, inhabitable area. Every soul who resisted was presumed dead.
“This is horrible! Ohmid! My home! This is madness!”
Simone, momentarily despaired by the occurrence of this event, has his feelings suppressed.
-Lab Drone: You are ready. To see your home planet destroyed and not be affected by it, you are the embodiment of success indeed. We will be on our way to Hivadra.
Simone looks down then looks at his dead lover. At this point he could care less of what happens. He witnesses how her body is taken away.
Moments later after the fleet performs a jump measuring several light years.
Simone kept his view locked on the window for the entirety of the trip; he sees a massive planet that is mostly covered by fungal surfaces. He feels indifferent, even at the sight of planetary size being so massive.
-Lab Drone: Here it is. Hivadra, your new home.
Simone remains silent
-Lab Drone: Based on an approximate calculation, your planet fits about thirty million times into ours. Surprisingly enough, this planet is also bigger than the star that served as the centerpoint of your planet’s elliptical path.
The one sided conversation of the two was suddenly interrupted by another Drone who entered their space, who is also a Molluscoid.
-Coordinator: I have been instructed that all subjects of assimilation must be assembled by the warrens once the ships land. It is mandatory to be told what to do once everyone is assigned their respective guides.
-Lab Drone: The desires of the Queen will be fulfilled. Are you ready?
-Simone: Yes. Just get this over with.
-Lab Drone: Good. You and your fellow brothers of the Hive will set foot soon enough.
Sometime later, when the ship landed at the hangar.
The bulkhead door opens, revealing the setting of the planet named after Hivadra. Simone felt a bit fatigued, especially after a few minutes of dealing with the difference of gravity. The scientist approaches him, taking steps closer with little effort.
-Lab Drone: I was assuming dealing with the weight forces would become a daily conundrum to the likes of you. It would be a matter of time before that would be no more.
-Simone: I’m holding up as much as I can.
The coordinator steps up front and begins his speech.
-Coordinator: Greetings, brothers and sisters of the Hive! I am your coordinator ordered by the Queen herself. As you can see, your lives will have a new meaning, a new way to see things; a way we all see it as equal. None of you is different, for you are connected to the land that will lend its surface for you to walk on. For those who survived the transition, you will see that you have meaning as you live in the Hive world. You will seek your purpose to serve it and the Queen who will lead your mind and thoughts for eternity. Everyone, follow the line; you will be given further instructions once you get there!
Everyone harmonically aligned in two rows, as expected of everyone being part of the Hive. They begin to walk there. After a few minutes of walking, they arrive at their destinations. The two lines now merge into one and begin to face another row of Hive population, all of which are females either long lived Xeno race forced to become hive minded or young Molluscoids already born in Hivadra.
-Coordinator: In front of you, you see the top-picked guides chosen by the Queen. They will help you to fully embrace the way of the Hive. You will be assigned one according to your skills detailed in the background that has been gathered during your assimilation. Plantoid, Fecorel…
“I feel weird. I know Secille died and I don’t feel about it, but I can’t stop thinking about it for some reason. This whole assimilation is so dark, yet with the newly assumed perspective, everything looks like heaven”
-Coordinator: She will be your guide from now to eternity. You will live together in an establishment and you will do the job assigned to you. farewell.
The Plantoid and the humanoid nod and walk away
“So… this is what they do? They give you a partner to live with? That sounds rather awkward”
-Coordinator: Humanoid, Simone Kratz… take a step forward.
Simone does as told.
-Coordinator: Your background is outstanding, given that many remarkable highlights in your line of work. Your partner only needs to fulfill the area which you lack. You are very lucky, indeed. with that said. I will call forth your partner. Yanik Moscor, take a step forward.
A yellow-skinned Molluscoid featuring human physique for the most part approaches the spot where she was called. She stops in front of Simone
“Is she a Molluscoid or a human? The tentacles replace the hair too and the mollusc eyes make her stand out.”
-Coordinator: She is a miner and will also be your guide. She will teach you to walk, eat, think and perform as a Hivemind. You will live together from now onwards. Soon you will be assigned a place to stay.
Yanik bows in gratitude and speaks.
-Yanik: I give you my sincere regards, but I already have a place to stay. I shall lead my partner there.
-Coordinator: That makes it all efficient. It seems you know the drill, so go ahead and show the newcomer around.
-Yanik: Will do.
Yanik stares emotionlessly at Simone as he gulps. Ironically, he is starting to sense fear on himself.
-Yanik: Follow me, Simone. Don’t wander off.
Yanik begins to walk and he follows.
“This is weird. I will live in an apartment with someone I don’t know. it might be unnecessary, but I will not let my guard down.”
Simone thought to himself before Yanik took the lead on starting a conversation.
-Yanik: You are not like me, but we share the same thoughts. From which planet are you?
-Simone: Umm… the planet is called Ohmid. Does it ring the bell?
-Yanik: I am a miner, not an astronomer. I wanted to quench my curiosity with your origin. With that said…
Yanik stops and looks at Simone.
-Yanik: You survived the process of assimilation, which makes you an interesting specimen to talk with.
Simone scratches the back of his head.
-Simone: Well, if you say so…
-Yanik: Come, let’s go home. That is the first place you need to get familiar with before exploring the outside world.
-Simone: Yeah. That sounds like a great idea. I would probably die just by taking two steps away from the door.
Both continue to walk.
Meanwhile at the warrens, Yanik and Simone stopped by the entrance. She makes a setup in the door and asks…
-Yanik: Bleed through this hole.
-Simone: Huh? Why should I do that?
-Yanik: The automated door will allow entry to those with their blood recognized in the warren’s database. No one except for me can go through this door, that is unless it is breached.
-Simone: Ok…so…like this?
-Yanik: Go deeper and stay still. You will feel something piercing through your hand.
Effectively Simone removed his hand shortly after feeling his hand being stabbed by a piercing element within the hole. He inspects his bleeding hand in panic.
-Yanik: That should be enough. No need to whine for such a wound.
-Simone; Are you crazy?! That will… huh?
Simone looked at his hand again after directly yelling at Yanik; he no longer sees an opening of his wound.
-Yanik: You are now registered as the owner of this room along with me. Step in.
Simone does as told, but still freaked out about his sudden sealing of his wound. As he enters, he looks around, focusing on the colors of the corridor’s wall. He reacts shockingly.
“What?! The colors are damn somber! This place feels dead!”
-Simone: So… what’s up with the colors? Is It a cultural thing to have no color inside houses?
Yanik stares at him, attempting to find the reason behind his question before answering.
-Yanik: An outsider might see it as a foreign culture, a Hive born sees it as a protective shelter. Aesthetics does not outweigh the practical purpose of the warren.
-Simone: That is… crazy…
-Yanik: What is?
-Simone: Oh…uh… I meant me! I am crazy that I find this interesting, hehe. Don’t mind me really.
-Yanik: Hmm. Then make yourself at home. Are you hungry?
-Yanik: Do you require any consumables? Traveling across the galaxy and the assimilation process might have had an effect of hunger. Or is it that you are full?
-Simone: Uh… sure. I would like to eat something.
-Yanik: Good. This is a good chance to exhibit the typical dishes of the Hive’s menu. Go to the living room while I cook something for you.
Simone walks on and turns to the direction where the living room is. The setting he witnessed was plain, barely any furnishing which consisted of only a few couches and a table in the middle. The view became unbearable to see.
“In what world this is considered a living room?! This place is more like a graveyard! This is so dead!”
-Simone: Umm. Yanik?
-Yanik: Your tone sounds displeasing. State your query.
-Simone: Where… is…the furnishing? I mean the rest of it. there’s not even a TV.
Yanik stops cooking as the remainder of the procedure consists of waiting for the next step. She goes to the living room and takes a seat as she strokes one of her tentacles sideways.
-Yanik: I supposed it was expected to hear such inquiry. You see, these quarters only provide what the drone requires for basic sustenance. For economical efficiency, every drone suffices with the little amenities they are provided, which range from an indoor place to stay, food, and a bed to rest. The “media” as you outsiders call it has no fit in the Hive, so things like entertainment doesn’t exist.
-Simone: Zero entertainment…at all?
-Yanik: That is correct. Entertainment ranges from drama, comedy, game shows to the insurmountable depravities such as pornography.
-Simone: Not even that?!
Yanik crosses her legs and arms, analyzing the weird behavior and reactions Simone is having towards his findings.
-Yanik: You had an odd reaction, especially around the word pornography. I am so surprised how other species crave so much for it, as if the performance of a partner only suffices to a small degree. That category of the media merely proves to be an illness that destroys self-esteem, so it is for the best to not have any of that.
-Simone: But wait… you do know about the concept of media even if it’s at best nonexistent on this planet. How do you know about it?
-Yanik: I can answer that simply with an unfortunate anecdote involving a Deviant speaking out loud of how the Hive lacks entertaining devices, such as the things forementioned and among others. Thanks to the exposure of his misdeeds, his punishment was made clear.
-Simone: Still, without the need of the media, how would you know what is going on outside the world? For example, the news; how will you get informed on the topics related to weather, politics and… you know? You name them.
-Yanik: We are all connected to the same network, aren’t we? Our thoughts are connected to the core where every information can easily be gathered if you ever wish to be “informed” like you said. Remember that you have new perks that you need to figure out how to utilize them, but worry not; that is the reason I have been assigned as your guide.
Simone looks down, confused and clueless, filled with worry. It is like he somehow starts to feel human once again, despite the process of assimilation taking partial effect in his system. He has one final question.
-Simone: The word Deviant, I keep listening to it now and then. I have no choice but to flag that out as a keyword. Is it bad to be a Deviant? What is the meaning of it?
Yanik closes her eyes.
-Yanik: It is difficult to explain the origin of the word Deviant since the explanation will be best if I bring the details up by its roots, and I was born too late to witness the birth of the program. I hope my answer suffices.
-Simone: Sure. Go ahead.
-Yanik: It all dated back to the time where the Queen’s curiosity built the possibility of merging dozens of aliens to create the ultimate Hive Hybrid, and thus the program for assimilation was created. The word “Deviant” never existed until the first subject to ever survive the transition proved himself loyal to the tenets of the Queen; however, he rebelled, somehow gathering enough forces victimized by the program’s so-called abusive abduction of the weak which still had a degree of willpower. Their effort to overthrow the Hive system cost their lives, but neighboring systems heeded their plight, so Hivadra has also been in countless wars against them. Naturally, our forces always bested them, so the Queen offered her mercy in exchange for a portion of the enemy’s population. The Hive became so obsessed with it that it is still in pursuit of seeking the “perfected Drone″. Many orbital cycles later, it yields no results.
Simone becomes intrigued with her backstory. Thinking he would suffice with some of her explanations, the man generates more curiosity than ever before.
-Simone: What is your opinion on this matter? I mean, the quest of searching for the perfected Hive Hybrid.
Yanik eyes him quite seriously
-Yanik: Why would I care if I have a say or not? The decision is made by the Queen and her word is final. Her guidance dictates my way of living; it doesn’t matter if I like it or not. She wants the best for everyone; to prevail as one.
The cooking finishes as a beeping sound emits from the kitchen
-Yanik: That is your meal. Let me bring it to you, meanwhile go to the dining table.
Yanik stands up and prepares the food as Simone takes a seat at the dining table.
“Weird, I believed she was mad at me when I asked that. Well, she is emotionless as far as I can tell.”
Simone sighs and the dish finally arrives at the table. He eyes the meal with disgust as it consists of a gelatinous blue substance with a tentacle attached atop the trapezoidal shaped meal.
-Simone: No offense, but this looks visually unsettling.
-Yanik: You should not be concerned with aesthetics; anything your system considers impure will be dealt with once the meal is being processed through your intestines, at least that is to be expected if you have the genetics of a Hive born.
Simone takes a spoon and digs in from the gel and eats it. He felt hesitant on each bite, but then he seemed to enjoy it.
-Simone: Huh, not bad. I really like this. Thanks for your time doing this.
-Yanik: Your gratitude is unnecessary. I simply serve your needs.
Yanik suddenly begins to undress, removing a hexagonal shaped item that somehow was merged upon her skin. This item served as part of the uniformed attire, multiple hexagonal polygons began dematerializing until her whole body was naked. Simone had her body at display, freaking out after the exposure of her indecency.
-Simone: What are you doing?! Keep your clothes on!
-Yanik: I don’t see the reason why not. We are a couple, after all.
-Yanik: I was going to shower so…hmm?
Simone dashed towards the bathroom, unable to catch the last words of Yanik
-Simone: What the hell’s up with this woman? Is she really that clueless? Shit. I need to cool off. Maybe a shower will do.
Simone removes his clothing and starts showering. He adjusts the temperature while being fully immersed under the drops of water.
-Simone: This is refreshing, just what I needed… wait a minute…
Simone realized that he was being drenched by a fluid that, unlike water, is more viscous. He begins to have a suspicion.
“I thought this was water. It has no scent, but it felt like it before I even realized it.”
Simone thought when suddenly Yanik made a surprising entry.
-Yanik: Excellent thinking. This routine of showering is perfectly efficient.
Yanik joins Simone in the shower.
-Simone: What are you doing?!!! Can’t you see the bathroom is obviously occupied
-Yanik: I fail to comprehend the reasoning of why you are upset with this scenario.
Yanik turns him around and inspects his physique as he covers his embarrassed expression.
-Yanik: Your skin looks weird. It differs from mine when it comes to producing a slimy substance to keep cool in an unfavorable environment. Even so, your build looks quite interesting.
Yanik traces her fingers across his chest and arms.
“Could you please stop?!”
-Yanik: This is the body of a human, simple with no features. Your chest is well defined, your midsections look fairly shaped and… hmm… this must be your…
Simone couldn’t handle the pressure and exited the shower.
-Simone: That’s it! This is way too much for me! You shower without me!
Simone leaves the bathroom.
-Yanik: Hmm. Suit yourself.
Simone takes a seat at the dining table and stares at the food in panic. He utterly lost his appetite after witnessing the previous events
“How can she be so oblivious?! We are barely acquainted, and she is starting to make a move on me! she is a freaking wench!”
-Simone: I hope this doesn’t turn worse when the night falls.
Simone hesitantly continues to eat his meal, despite losing the appetite.
Later at night
Simone felt tired and he found nothing inside the house nor he was ready to explore outside of it. In short, today was a wasted day. He simply spent the remainder of the night attempting to avoid a stressful sleep. In regards to his attire, he has the same clothing as Yanik, the flexibility of the item allows it to make no distinction between the wearer. In short the same item could be worn by two different individuals regardless of their size.
-Simone: Well, it was certainly boring, but it turned out to be as peaceful as I wished. Tomorrow might be a good day to have, at least that’s what I hope.
Yanik enters the room and Simone was surprised by her entry.
-Simone: Huh? Yanik?
-Yanik: It seems your focus is drifting off course too often. You might think the way of living is too difficult at first. You don’t have to worry about it though.
-Simone: Yeah… today was kind of tough, you know? It may be for the best to get some early rest.
-Yanik: I see. I feel tired too.
Yanik undresses, placing the item upon one of the desks and sleeps next to Simone.
-Simone: What?! Put some clothes on!
-Yanik: Shhh. You will wake the neighbors.
-Simone: Geeez. What’s with you, walking around naked as you please?
-Yanik: I won’t mind if you do. We are husband and wife after all.
Yanik rises and pins Simone, exposing her naked skin that glows with the reflection of the neighboring star’s dim luminosity. Simone gulps and begins to sweat.
-Simone: I’m sorry! I didn’t mean to sound disrespectful! I promise I will be more considerate with my words!
Yanik places a finger on his lips, which slightly frightens him.
-Yanik: As an individual of the Hive, I am aware of the plight you have and the challenges you will need to go through. No matter how much I say it, you still build stress at an alarming rate. However, there is still one technique which can be used to alleviate the discomfort the new bloods have during the first few days; this will also please the heart of the Queen as we accomplish to shape new life into the community, just as she wishes.
-Simone: She wishes what now?!
Simone panics as his hands are suddenly grasped by Yanik’s. She places his hand on her breast and encourages him to hold it gently.
“Is this woman fucking crazy?”
-Yanik: I have zero experience in the act of intimacy, Simone. So, I give you the honor of taking the lead in the moment where our bodies become one.
-Simone: Yanik… I…
Simone looks away, blushing, but also with a disappointed expression.
-Simone: I can’t do this…
To her surprise, all of Yanik’s “mood” diminished. Though she becomes slightly concerned of his uncalled behavior.
-Yanik: What is the matter?
-Simone: Just… unhand me. I need to be alone for a moment.
Simone rises and Yanik scoots away so he can stand up from bed. He takes a pillow and starts to walk away.
-Simone: I will go and sleep in the living room. You can stay here.
Simone leaves the room. Yanik is all by herself.
-Yanik: Simone… he might be one of them.