<USS Cervantes> Endgame Pt II

Sorry this got sent out AFTER part III! The commander and I had a
miscommunication!
 
Each game got through
Means one or two
Less mistakes
Remain to be made.
~Chess, ABBA
 

Endgame, Pt. 2

By:
Captain Al Kiara
Commander Majique Aurore

Special Guest Stars

Bela Ciardan
Douglas McKnight
Portions of this log were taken from "Quantum Physics" by Mallory, Tryn
and Darius.
 
    Trinity felt her naked and hairless body begin to tingle, a
sensation that was strangely disturbing and unlike the pleasant
sensations Neo had awoken in her. The discomfort brought her wide-awake
as it rapidly turned to painful prickles. She'd felt much the same
sensation when her foot had fallen asleep and she'd had to stand on it,
seemingly imbedding the 'pins and needles' deeply into her skin. The
tiny spears inside her body grew hotter, causing her to run her hands
down her arms in an effort to put out the purely mental flames beneath
her skin.
It was then that the gray fabric of the wall reached out for her,
roiling with an oily sheen that tore a scream from her throat before
plucking her from Neo's arms. It quickly muffled her in swathes of its
gray nothingness. She struggled and kicked, trying to return to him, but
the stuff that held her tightened, slipping around her arms, curling
about her legs and holding her immobile, motionless - helpless. She
tried to move, but was frozen in place as if held by steel bands,
trapped in undulating, living warmth of whatever surrounded her.
She could feel it invading her mind, her body, crawling through her
veins as though they were corridors into her very core. Majique screamed
and screamed, but the sound only became solid and choked her, blocking
the bile that surged up >from her gut. Her struggles hardly moved her
colorless captor, but it entered her body with liquid ease, moving ever
deeper.
The rape went on and on for a seemingly endless time, tearing through
her physical and mental self, rifling through her thoughts and organs
like a petty thief in search of costume jewelry. Soon, Majique's screams
stopped, the tears clumping into her fur fell silently, her body's
struggles slowed.
And then, with shocking speed, she was released, spat out into
nothingness. Her hands and knees caught her and her returned tail
thumped onto whatever was the floor of this place. She blinked, her
senses keenly her own once again, and tried to penetrate the murky
gloom. She shivered and sat back on her heels when her eyes began to see
shooting sparks of light and she knew they came from her desperation to
see.
"Majique," she whispered to herself. "I am Majique, not Trinity." Waves
of confusion rocked her, and with a hiss of impatience, she pushed
herself to standing, ignoring the weakened and torn sensations all over
her body and mind. There was no time for emotion - no time for pain. She
had to discover where she was and how to get out of this place and back
to her crew.
She moved out into the gloom, striding confidently despite her fear,
unsure where she was or where she was going. She only knew she had to
keep moving or she would scream. She would have to find something sooner
or later. Wouldn't she?
She could have walked only for minutes, or it could have been hours,
when she heard her name, strangely muffled by the dense grayness that
had swallowed all life but her own and the owner of the voice.
"Captain?" Maji strained her senses to follow the sounds, trying to
ignore the pain that hit her with the ferocity of a supernova. It felt
like her flesh was boiling!
Your Federation compatriots refuse to be mine - they fight me. I hurt. I
am the mirror, they must reflect. They will hurt. They will stay. You
are mine. You cannot fight. If I hurt, you hurt. I am the mirror. They
will reflect. You will reflect. We will live.
Maji jerked in startlement - or thought she did, but her body did not
move. She tried to step toward the Captain, but her body stood frozen.
She looked about her and the colorless ether was now framed by black and
she realized that she was no longer the only being in her body - no
longer the one in control. The fucking AI had turned her body into its
personal playground - had made her spirit into its own virtual reality!
She struggled and screamed and yelled, her tired and battered body
clawing and biting ferociously. She reverted to the four-legged stance
of her predatory ancestors, destroying parts of herself in her efforts
to get free. She ripped at her soul, at her body, at her mind, tearing
out pieces, only to find herself deeper and deeper within. The pain
finally drove her into a tiny ball, her spirit curled around itself,
wounded and crying, bleeding from wounds that, had they been physical,
would surely have caused her death ten times over.
The ragged sound of her soul's breath was the only thing she heard for
countless eons as her screams echoed around her, until, through the
silent suffering, came a voice. It was soft, almost tender, and she
thought she felt a gentle caress over her mane.
You are mine. I am the mirror. You are the art. I am the mirror. I
reflect you and you will help me. They hurt me! You must stop them! You
are not the mirror. But I reflect you. So you are the mirror. I am the
reflection. Of you. Make them help me! Speak, Majique Aurore, second
leader of these beings! 
"What do you desire," Maji whispered through her horror and exhaustion.
Make them stop hurting me! I am the mirror! They are the art!
"Let them go. I will stay. I will be yours."
Still they hurt me! You are the art and I am the mirror! I am the
reflection. you. you are the reflected. You are MY art!
"I. Belong. To. No. One." Majique roared! She leapt for the grayness,
digging her claws deeply into herself for purchase. A sheet of white-hot
torment enwrapped her and she was pulled under, her body never showing
any of the pain she suffered as it formed before Ashne'e. It seemed to
go forever. The words echoed over and over in her mind, mixing with the
pain, until they were seared into her psyche.
You are the art. They are hurting me! They have to stop! I know what you
are and what you can be. I will stop them. I will stop them; I have to;
you will help me! My art, stop them!
Only slowly did she regain consciousness within herself. The soft,
almost child-like voice began again. 
You are mine, my art, my art, my art. I am the mirror!
"Stop, please," she whimpered, covering her ears in a futile gesture to
still the sound. She opened her eyes and once again saw through the ebon
frames of the AI's control. The grayness swirled and she saw Machia and
his little Zeez.  Tryn appeared, scanning her unconscious body on the
planet. McKnight and Bela hung in the gray nothingness, their bodies
sagging with exhaustion and psychic pain. Below and between them stood
Ashne'e, her eyes haunted, her complexion sallow, her fists clenched.
Majique watched the three separate locations, helpless, as Darius tried
to free his crewmates, only to send McKnight and Bela's bodies twitching
with agony.
 
"Your fuck is shit, dickass." It was colony slang for "Not going to
happen", usually when someone was doing something you considered stupid
and reckless. "Look" he snapped at Tryn over the open commline, "I've
got a secure line. How're you with computers? Can you hack? If not, have
you used an old school console controller? Zeez and I are working on the
system. She's going go dive in and hack in a few minutes. I don't doubt
this system probably knows itself better than she does, though, so she's
going to need help. If you can hack or mash buttons, your assistance is
needed. If Zeez does this right, we should be able to enter its AI into
an infinite loop for a few minutes. During that time, Zeez is going to
try and do as much vandalism as she can, electronically. It should buy
you enough time to at least cleanse out those nanites. And I can help
her with that - I've had experience playing with nanotechnology." He
didn't mention he hadn't really understood most of the Borg nanite
functions, and had mostly been amused when he'd worked out how to use
them to make sugar into salt, thus making them the coolest thing ever.
Except for that other stuff, of course. 
Still, the one thing he had learned for certain was that you couldn't
shield nanotech from EMP without making them too big to be nanotech. A
couple flushes of mostly harmless radiation and the cat-girl (her name
escaped his mind... Magic? He hadn't really dealt with her much. Most of
the people he had dealt with in the VR world ended up being failures in
the candidate program.) No problems. Just, he wasn't sure if he alone
could distract the AI. He had a plan, but the more people messing
around, the better the distraction. Darius was getting sick of VR worlds
which were full of blah and bleh. It was time to add some zest. 
 
 
The little creature cuts me, hurts me. MAKE THEM STOP! I am the mirror.
You are my art. I am art? 
Majique looked out of the double windows of her eyes and was suddenly
able to feel her body, hale and strong despite the memory of pain
licking along her nerves. She moved toward Ashne'e.
"Majique?" Ashne'e asked. She glanced at the ether; gaining control of
her weakened limbs, and pulled herself to her feet. "BrainStormer, is
she the other? Or the... hostage?"
Majique will speak for me. She will help me. Tell me what you want, and
she will represent me, the mirror.
"All right..." Ashne'e shuddered slightly, glancing between Majique's
face and the unknown that lurked in the shadows as though she might be
able to catch a glimpse of their ephemeral captor. "I think we can make
everyone content. You are a mirror, and we can give you things to
reflect - things that voluntarily want to be reflected - an infinite
variety as generations pass. All of them can enter your record, your
art. We would be entering into a kind of symbiosis. Come with us, and we
will take you to a place where this can happen."
The child-machine's expressions of fear and hurt and distrust passed
over Maji's face, filled her eyes.
You will stop the little creature from hurting the mirror. The voice
changed and the searing pain started once more in her mind as the being
searched her memories.
"Please, BrainStormer! Stop! I will tell you what you wish to know! You
damage your art!" She was mortified that the words had come so easily,
even with the twitching evidence of Zeez' tampering running through Bela
and Douglas' bodies. She would do anything to save them, but her soul
was filled with humiliation.
They will promise this? They will take me someplace where I will be
safe? Where I can reflect. and not be alone?
Majique nodded. "Yes, BrainStormer. There are those that will gladly be
your art, but only if you promise to release them when they desire. You
are unique in all the galaxy, and people will come to see you from
everywhere! You will know more people, more species than only one
planet, one ship can provide."
Her vision was once more fixed upon Captain Al Kiara.
You will take me? You will. help me?
"It is our duty to help all sentient life forms. You know this." Ashne'e
wanted to walk forward and smile. Her instincts were telling her that
now was the moment to lock eyes with the computer to express her
sincerity, but how could she do that when she addressed ether? She
offered the metaphorical handshake. "We will give you a hostage -
someone to reflect as we carry you to the new place. Then you will know
we will carry out our word. I will be the hostage for you, if you
prefer."
 <mailto:larae@xxxxxxxxxxx> 
 
 

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