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 In the Beginning Ver 2

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Posts : 6
Join date : 2012-05-18
Age : 25
Location : Wilmington

PostSubject: In the Beginning Ver 2   Sun Aug 12, 2012 10:20 pm

This is an updated version of the prologue. Cut out the beginning, tried to show dialogue and relationship between Albertron and Squire.

Albertron finished reading, and resumed his pacing. He slowly shifted one foot before the other, his worn boots leaving streaks of dirt in the light blue carpet. Similar stains clung to the feet of his purple robes, contrasting the oriental elegance of the golden-sewn patterns. His left hand idly swept aside the holographic projection that he had been reading, and he took a view of the wide window beyond. He shielded his eyes with his other hand as the sun reflected brightly against his silver hairline and dully against his elderly ebony skin.
A massive window that spanned the length of twice the room stretched before him, giving him a view of the world outside of the governor’s office. Pinnacle Industries held its headquarters in the largest skyscraper in all of New Market City, a reflective silver tower that pierced the cloud-strewn sky. The office itself sat near the very tip, and the window gave Albertron a view of the stars near the edge of the atmosphere.
Below stretched the Atlantic Ocean, a flat plane of dull grey and blue that barely gave way to the sunlit horizon. Dotted along the glassy surface were several silver mounds, whale-like shapes that rode the waves in tightly knit groups. At certain intervals, one or two of the shapes would shoot into the air, breaching the surface and leaving a dim trail of water and steam. Then the Galactic Circle cruisers would hover above the water’s surface, joining the fray that covered the ocean sky like bizarre clouds. All interstellar trade focused on this ocean, and The Pinnacle formed an important central depot.
The room at Albertron’s back, facing the window, was split in two. On the left side was a single conference table, a smooth round structure with no visible support that hung motionless over a dozen armless chairs. A holographic, see-through map of the mismatched city flitted across the contours of its surface, but for now there was no one to pay it attention. At its opposite, on the right side of the room, sat an elaborately carved wooden desk. Behind the organized clutter of papers sat a middle aged man with tired eyes, smooth-combed blonde hair and a weary young face. He wore a suit, as was his custom, but the wrinkles in his shirt and the looseness of his tie showcased his inner weariness. Also, as betrayed by the tightness of his belt, he had an enjoyment for alcohol.
As Albertron continued pacing, the man behind his desk was growing frustrated. He was Governor William Squire, lead representative of the Galactic Circle on Earth. Every executive decision made in Earth politics was laid before him, only adding to the clutter of his schedule. He also acted as CEO of Pinnacle Industries, one of the many corporations entwined inseparably with the government. The Pinnacle and its hospital seemed to provide only more issues; one issue, in particular, that Albertron seemed all too keen to avoid.
Finally, the tension seemed too thick, and the subject could be avoided no longer. Squire, struggling to quiet his frayed nerves, broke the silence. “I trust that Sylvia’s report was satisfactory, Judge Albertron?”
Albertron did not turn to face Squire as he began to address him. “Sylvia has improved in her writing, governor. I suppose our new programs have helped.”
Squire nodded, reaching forward to awkwardly shift a few papers amongst the storm that clouded around his lap. “Every day we give her a new responsibility. I wouldn’t be surprised if Sylvia comes to run this wretched city. The stars know I haven’t done so well myself.” After a few moments of angrily searching amongst the papers he gave up, a frustrated growl on his lips.
Albertron turned and gave Squire a reassuring smile. “One can hardly expect one individual to make a difference for an entire city. It’s a surprise that I wasn’t called to give advice sooner!”
Squire rose with a jump, sending several papers flying across the room. “Advice for what, exactly? I was aware that Judges were only sent when colonies seemed in peril! So what, exactly, is wrong with Earth?”
He strutted over to the table opposite his desk and gestured to the holographic map. “If the food shortage is the problem, great! Just tell the intergalactic corporations to send the food faster, if their ships permit! If it’s the rioting, that’s fine! Send more police to replace the ones that get shot by terrorists and other scumbags! But hey, isn’t it true that Mars has similar issues? And the other neighboring districts? Colonies everywhere are suffering, and the Galactic Circle only has three Judges! So why was one sent here?” With a frustrated sigh, he fell into a chair and leaned his arms against the conference table, idly watching the city map.
Albertron raised a questioning eyebrow. “Do you have to assume that I was sent here, William? Perhaps I came on my own accord, for a visit.” He laughed at Squire’s startled expression, and noted the relief in his eyes. “You have done a fine job leading this colony, my friend. As I said earlier, one man cannot fix the issues lying here.”
Albertron walked to the opposite end of the conference table to observe the map. “You should consider giving a few of your menial responsibilities to Sylvia. After all, she was built for this purpose.”
“I think you’re right, Albertron,” said Squire. He leaned back in his chair, wiping sweat from his brow. “Maybe that can clear my mind.”
“To answer your question, I was not sent. In fact, neither of my fellow Judges have any idea where I am.” Albertron leaned forward, lowering his voice a certain degree. He had not risen to such an important position by disobeying the laws of theatrics. “I wanted to address a certain issue with one of our projects, specifically Project Surge.”
“Okay. Ask, and I’ll address, I guess!” said Squire. Nerves swept aside, he was curious at Albertron’s sudden shift.
“I received word from a credible source,” (Ha, I know the source by name! thought Squire with a grin) “that a recent mishap occurred with a patient that you were giving implants. Apparently, the implants created an issue when they…experienced a glitch.”
Squire was surprised. Albertron came all the way across the galaxy for that? “Yes, I’m familiar with that issue. I was informed by Sylvia, who seemed keen to alert intergalactic authorities. I still don’t understand how one patient in a hospital our size can have that large an impact on everything. Certainly not enough to warrant a Judge’s attention!”
“I’d like to know everything you can give me about that case,” Albertron briskly replied. “We may come to find that the attention of Judge may be the least we can offer.”
“Well, I’ll give you everything I can,” said Squire. He raised his right arm and snapped his fingers, pointing at a camera in the corner of the room. “The case files were sent to my office a few hours ago.”
The holographic map of the city flashed away, replaced with a much larger image that rose to face Albertron. The image, a gray x-ray that showed bones in white and everything else in black, spun slowly as it shone into focus. Next to the x-ray was a square photograph, revealing a face of the patient in question.
Albertron barely contained his astonishment, managing to keep his face composed. “I’m…surprised to see that this is only a child.”
Squire nodded. “It’s typical for our project to accept teenagers, since they’re growing. This is Marcus Flare, a nineteen year old from the Western Ma – er, District 52. Just across from employee housing, in fact. He was recruited to join Project Surge about a week ago, and he was chosen for the BioSURGE division. The red lines are his implants, as we installed them.”
Squire snapped his fingers again, and red lines quickly streaked amongst the x-ray. The lines traveled from his forehead, down his neck, to his chest, and then across his arms to the palms and fingers of his hands. “Neural implants connecting to the nervous system allow for almost complete control, at least when the batteries are plugged in. We also installed diodes in his eyes, which enhance his vision in accordance with whatever procedure he is performing. He can see in x-ray, heat spectrum and can upload computer documents directly into his vision.”
“Typical for every BioSURGE, I presume.” Albertron, completely fascinated by the nature of the implants, gestured to the skeletal hands. “The wiring in his hands…?”
“Allows for the manipulation of bio-electric energy on a cellular level,” explained Squire, a prideful expression on his face. “Complicated stuff, but when we finally perfect it, we may never have to perform a surgery ever again!”
He snapped his fingers, and, to Albertron’s astonishment, the red lines began to dance. Over a sped-up time lapse of seven days, the lines began to bulge swell around his chest, sprouting growths like the branches of neurons.
“The x-ray highlights several ulcerous growths surrounding the implants around the chest and skull, where the implants are neurologically attached to his body. There are similar growths around his heart, stomach and pituitary gland. We never even installed any implants there!”
“Isn’t that a sign that his body rejected the implants?”
“That was our first conclusion. Ulcers generally mean that the immune system is attacking the implants at specific points. SURGE-hosts could face a lot of pain, and we may be forced to remove the implants.”
“If this is a standard occurrence, then why would this require my attention? Or anyone’s attention, for that matter?”
“Well, we still can’t explain why growth occurred in other regions of the body,” Squire said. “It turns his body isn’t rejecting the implants: he’s adding to them! His body is accepting the implants in ways we never built!”
“In other words, his SURGE-wires may perform stunts that we never imagined,” said Albertron. The severity of the situation was just starting to sink in.
“Consider the document you just read,” said Squire, rising from his chair as he spoke. “The builders of Project Surge warned us that this was coming, that glitches were irrevocably built into the system. It’s been seven hundred years, and we’ve never seen any such glitch” –
“Until today,” finished Albertron. He rose to face Squire, unable to wrap his mind around their problem. “This child is potentially the beginning” –
“-of a disaster for our government.”
“What would you have me do, Squire? You see the threat behind this, how would you respond?”
“Removing the implants at this stage would kill the boy,” said Squire dismissively. He walked over to the window and thoughtfully tapped his fingers against the glass. “We’re not even sure what he’s capable of! Maybe his mutations are beneficial!”
“I have my own suspicions.” Already, wheels were turning in Albertron’s mind. He began to mentally prepare, moving cognitive piece after piece, shaping the board for his unknown trials and potential enemies. “Do you think we can get away with…observing the child? Letting him live unperturbed, but watching his every move, seeing how his mutations shape his abilities?”
“One step ahead of you!” proclaimed Squire excitedly. From his vantage point at the window, he pointed down, to the base of the tower. The shady silhouette of a large black warehouse, hidden in the shadow of the bright Pinnacle tower, could barely be seen from his height. “I can assemble an observation team in less than an hour!”
“Yet I, as Judge, am a step even further,” replied Albertron quietly. “No offense meant, but I have another group at my disposal, one more suited for observation.”
Squire immediately understood the group that Albertron was referencing. “Are you sure they’ll work? Marcus can never know how closely we’re watching him, not before he understands the nature of his implants.”
“Believe me, my men are more than qualified,” said Albertron with a grin. “With a handshake, our little conspiracy will be complete, will it not?”
Squire grinned in return as he stepped forward, his right hand extended. “I’ll have to detail Sylvia, and a few employees besides, but this will stay our little secret.”
At this, Albertron frowned. “Perhaps you’re right, my friend. This conspiracy should stay our secret. I can’t stress this enough – no one else can know. Especially not the other Judges! Not until my suspicions are alleviated.”
“Then we’ll stay quiet. This will be Earth’s secret project, our greatest contribution to the Galactic Circle!”
With that prompting, the two briskly shook hands. “To alleviating your suspicions!” laughed Squire.
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