Artifact from the future.
Ed. note: I define an artifact from the future as something you might bring back as evidence that you were there. A sort of proof of what it is and what is there. Think Rod Taylor and the flower from The Time Machine.
Closing excerpts from a journal found in 2101.
I was born on this day in 1990. Somehow it seems as though my 111th birthday would be more auspicious, more cherished, more celebratory. They tell me I can live forever if I want. But the question that burns into my brain is, “Why?” What is left? What is there here that I should look forward too?
When I was a boy, before the surge, I remember looking forward to going to the ocean. The trip couldn’t come soon enough and the days seemed like years until finally we would go. We would drive in a car, my parents and I, and I would stand there with my feet in the wet sand and feel the warm water lap at my toes. Perhaps it was the waiting that made it all so meaningful. We don’t wait anymore. We don’t have to. If I want the ocean to circle around my ankles and feel my feet sink into the soft, supple sand, I have only to plug-in. I can smell it, feel it, hear it, and see it. If I want, I can even dip my finger into the water and experience that unmistakably intense saltiness. When I’m ready to come back, I simply unplug. I think that it is the ocean, but I know that it is not. I don’t have to wait for it.
Already I’ve had 3 organ replacements, grown from my own DNA, I’ve spent thousands upon thousands of hours in the V; the virtual world we have created out of our own fantasies, dreams and perversions. Nothing is real there, and there is no waiting. The crimes I have committed there are harmless they tell me, even therapeutic. It keeps us docile in the real world. But I think there is damage. I know there is. It goes beyond the virtual. It wreaks havoc in my soul. People don’t believe in souls anymore. They don’t have to. If you never die, what’s the difference?
My avatar tells me that death is the final frontier the one thing you can’t experience in the V.
Soon I will know for certain. Here is my plan: It’s difficult to gain access to the mag train tunnel, but I’ve found a way in. They say that when a mag train hits you at 700 miles an hour you vaporize. I kind of like the thought of that.
There’s really no one to say goodbye to. If anyone wishes to pursue the vapor trail to me, my memories and persona are in the vault at the IABank on Prosser Strasse. My account number is #459LK077JE28977. If anyone wants to know.
Good luck with all this.