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Hey, Dude!

By Giampietro Stocco All Rights Reserved ©

Scifi / Fantasy

Prologue


- Free!
- Stump-p-p!
- There is no pulse.
- Let's try again. Charge to 200!
- Free!
- Stump-p-p!
- Nothing. Nothing at all.
- Do not give up. Charge to 360!
- Stump-p-p!
- Flat as a board.
- Now almost half an hour has passed, let's stop by here.
- Time of death ...
The excited voices overlap and mingle like a deck of cards in the hands of a cheater. Strange colors and indistinct shapes on the ceiling ... But is this the ceiling or the floor? A darkness blacker than ink rises to wrap up the frenzy. Moments or centuries, and...



She walks slowly, looking down. Her feet ar skinny, the wet sand claims them at every step. Back and forward again, always at the same slow pace and relaxed. Where to go? She doesn't know, but she knows that she needs to reach something, something that makes her notice how the tide, almost boiling, has withdrawn far behind, uncovering rocks and shells and holes on which bubbles are forming, as if it was soap.

The roar rises slowly from a distance. She looks up and sees that, gray on gray, leaden a leaden wall is towering against the sky.At first it is far away, then it comes closer.
Then she stops, just where until a few minutes ago, the warm water was lapping at her ankles, making her sink slowly in the sand. She spots the white crests break and reform on top of that liquid leviathan, it is clear by now, would swallow her without leaving a trace. She feels she should flee, but where could she ever escape?
A breeze that rises gradually turns into a strong wind.
The liquid wall towers, higher and higher, more and more gray.
Then it falls.


Leda awoke with a start, his heart galloping crazy in the throat. Hugged the sheetblanket, then threw it aside, regardless of the noise of protest with which the shape memory fabric readjusted itself. As soon as she stood up, she discovered to be wet with sweat. Window, she thought, automatically activating the system interface with the house. A panel hitherto unseen opened like a diaphragm and uncovered the usual scene: single and two-family houses in the background of a lush pine forest, the beach and the sea barely rippled. Large drops of rain driven by a soft and warm wind shattered her face and mingled with the sweat.
She should feel better, but her heart continued to dictate the pace of her anxiety. Leda swore to himself. Damn technology! Oh, yes. It allowed her to dictate his thoughts to a stupid house, but it had no powers against a stupid nightmare and its even more stupid consequences .
She decided to cure herself the old fashioned way: she poured herself two fingers of whiskey into a glass heat. The synthetic crystal molecules recognized alcohol and within seconds they took it to the ideal temperature of 9 degrees Celsius. Why did she continued to have that dream? Why the hell a balanced woman seemed to have fallen in few weeks in what looked like the damn "obscure syndrome"?
Do not call it depression, she ordered herself. Depression no longer existed. Lost in the folds of a society that now was pursuing individual well-being and did not impose more obligations. No more family, no more tension, no more need to work for a living. Responsibilities equitably shared among colleagues and co-workers, all know now to move towards a common goal.
The final release of the human race?
- A fine thing, eh? - Leda said aloud, raising her glass to the interactive mirror winking from the bathroom. Puzzled by her move, the smooth surface was merely reproducing the image of a young woman, coppery brown incarnation and short hair, a face with high cheekbones and a strong nose to indicate the ancient origin of the Lakota.
Maybe the whiskey would help her ancestors, she said, going back to stare at the glass. But it wouldn't clear hes ideas. She laid it on a iridescent platform, where the amber liquid vaporized with a short hiss. A low-intensity laser scanned the crystal, sterilizing it.
If she only could erase that pain, too... The tachichardy had given way to a dull discontent. She returned to staring out the window at the houses and the beach. On the road that skirted the sea, she saw her bike, leaned to a lamppost. She decided that first of all she would have gifted herself with a nice run.





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