Forge Netting 9: Response

He sat there looking rather undignified; not at all commanding of the respect that Colin told him was deserved. This place that was said to be the workshop of a genius – the place wherein the human race would be resurrected in the full glory of their memories.

‘What must one do, you ask, my forgetful friend, when the world is falling?’ said the engineer, pausing for dramatic effect ‘One must forge netting. And, in case you were to foolishly think that I am referring to myself as some kind of fisher of men you are sadly mistaken. What I am trying to talk to you of is the need for anti-suicide nets to catch all the jumpers.’

‘How did you get into this line of work?’

‘I was a memory specialist before this thing blew out of all proportion, but I had already submitted a research paper for consideration that outline how this whole thing was going to be an eventuality, and that it was only a matter of time before something like this manifested.’

‘And they didn’t listen to you?’

‘Why would they want to? Stopping the treatment of anyone, let alone the number of people who were on prescription drugs at that point, would have cost them a shitload of money.’

‘I can see that.’

‘Of course you can – you voluntarily forked out for your amnesia, didn’t you?’

‘What was it that was so bad that you would choose to rather erase your whole memory rather than confront it?’

‘I …’

‘Don’t remember.’

‘No.’

‘BUt you will.’

‘It sounds like a threat.’

‘Of course – responsibility always does sound like a threat.’

If patents had still mattered worth a damn then the process would have been patented – he had worked hard to discover how to make it most effective. The retention of the disease was in the nanites maintaining a fixed position and emitting a disruptive signal in brain. The organic element was a biological reaction to what the artificial was doing. A hybrid disease required a specialised treatment. The electrical charge used to short out the mechanical aspects of the infection was followed by a tailored viral load that settled into the receptor sites on cells grew grey around the neural clusters.

For the patient it was not the most pleasant of procedures – in fact certain parts of it were downright painful. Ruebeau didn’t want the process, wasn’t feeling thankful for having stumbled across this activist cell, but Ruebeau was responding to the treatment.

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