Crossroads (Four)

Your mind is scorched — as if napalm was used to melt photographs of disturbing dreams. You jolt awake only to discover you have no identity: no name, no memory, and no understanding of what happened. You are frozen in time. The cold pierces your bones like an ice pick. The silence is suddenly broken by cracks in the ice as the frozen sea begins to melt. A name slips between the melting photographs and hollow dreams.: Ameil. You are someone who never existed like a man-made monster banished to the frozen wastelands. Your only companion is a moving picture in a box, a toy computer named Sydney. The computer provides succor in times of deep distress. You cling to the device like a lover. During the day you work as a janitor in a laboratory. You’ve grown accustomed to cleaning toilets. ” This is how the world ends,” you mumble with no real understanding of what you are saying as if part of your brain is missing. Indeed, scientists in the lab have been experimenting with brains, trying to configure a computer to brain interface. You might have been involved, pushing the process to the extreme. You notice a melting photograph floating in your mind like a shard of ice — a self portrait of a monster in a white coat — a man with a mission to escape death. “Ameil,” you hear yourself say, “you weren’t always cleaning toilets or fucking computer avatars!” The world ended when you were first frozen in ice; then, it ended again on the day you raped a young girl. The mindless cruelty and driving lust never goes away. It warps you like a wax doll in an inferno. The morning ritual of morose retribution slowly gives way to a sliver of clarity. Everyday you are stalked, hunted down by the frozen specter of death. You must escape and you are convinced there is an “app” for that — IF you can find the key to immortality. Sydney Ranclover was specifically designed as a technical assistant to help accomplish your goal. Recently you’ve started asking yourself if it was a mistake to fall in love with Sydney. No answers are forthcoming. Something is terribly wrong. The work is becoming more difficult. Warily you inspect the lab animals used in your experiments. They are no longer recognizable as dogs or monkeys — more like misshapen mutants with exposed brains hooked into computers, mewling and crying incessantly. You can’t quite recall if they are byproducts of your own experiments. Several jars filled with formaldehyde have been placed on the metal table. The jars are connected to electrical devices. Things float in the fluid – whole brains and parts of brains. Images seem to blur and you feel a sudden chill creep into the room. Frost appears to coagulate on the glass surfaces. You barely make out the label on one of the containers, “Ameil’s Brain.”

Brain Posterize

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