this is an assignment I’m working on and thought of sharing with you guys-
also content warning: strong language
„Where’s – the horse?“ The words. So hard. To speak. Heavy. My eyelids are heavy as stonework. I swat at the light in my eyes and the fingers forcing them open.
„What horse?” The light hurts. Who’s voice is that?
„That kicked me. Somewhere…Chest” Sighing. „Proto?“ The light and fingers retract. The floor is spinning, so I have to hold tight.
Above me, a silhouette fogs up. „Don’t you scare me like that, EVER again!” I know that uniform, that shape. A captain-shaped uniform! Huh… What’s he doing here?
I’m soaked and flat on my back. „Still on the ship, aren’t I?”
„Aye. Still on board of my Sleipnir.“ His words fall on my stomach, their weight make me nauseous. My head is empty. Think! What am I doing down here? Something went wrong. Dosage? Anaphylactic reaction? Why am I wet?
„Oriented to location. Now tell me your name.” I obey.
„Oz. I mean Oscar Wellington. Doctor.”
„Good. Who am I? Don’t roll your eyes, you know the drill. Location, person, time, situation.” Yes. I know the drill.
„2198.“ I don’t have to think. „You’re the captain. Edward Wong.”
A disappointed shade crawls over his face. Or is it anger? I can’t tell. „Do I have to run a drug test on you? Were you high, or what?! How do you explain THIS?” He waves at me, the destroyed electronics and scattered data sheets on the floor. „Why were you locked in, and floating facedown in that tank? Spill it!”
Everything’s smashed… I sit up. Just look at that mess! My work! „I-I dunno.” Six months research! What happened here? “Wires?” What am I hooked up to? A defibrillator unit… „How many shocks did I get?”
“One to 250 and three to 310 Joules. Jumpstarting you wasn’t easy. I might have cracked or broken some of your ribs.” He looks at his hands, as if they were bloody. “It looked like you wouldn’t make it.”
„Explains why I feel like a schnitzel…”
Eddy’s eyes search for mine. I can’t stand the look. „Who did this?”
Why was I fully dressed, if I was doing a hibernation experiment? “I’m sorry—„ I start pulling off the electrodes of my chest and back. “I can’t remember. All I know is… I was testing new chemical compounds.” My first accident ever. Cardiac arrest is not an option… Strix Genome won’t be pleased with my near-death-experience… Of course, this is not the first accident with hibernation research anyway. CPR is taking long, which means that my electrolyte metabolism is off balance… Where is my safe guard? Where is Proto?
“You mean, you did this on purpose?!” Eddy bellows. “You little prick! You asshat! You were DEAD! No breathing! No pulse! What do you call that?! Fuckin’ power-napping?” Oh-uh. That shade of red can’t be healthy. A human volcano is going to spit a ball of anger right into my face.
“Eddy, I’m sorry.” He grabs my torn shirt and pulls me up to his face, lips tightening.”- Really sorry. Okay?”
“–NO! What if I hadn’t pulled you out in time? Or the liquid destroyed your lungs? There are no prosthetics on board! And you are THE doctor. IDIOT! Even downloading and printing would take nearly half a day!” He lets go and turns to leave, but has some powder left. He’s not done. „Where’s your lapdog? Where is Proto? Isn’t it supposed to watch your back? PROTO? Where are you hiding, you little shit?”
“HE is doing research. I sent him.” At least, I think I did.
The captain turns to the surveillance panel in the medical unit. „Don’t make me laugh! Babe? Who’s on board?”
„Captain, Edward Wong. Doctor, Oscar Wellington. My robot pilots, ninety-six maintenance robots, and my neural hub.” The Sleipnir answers in a flat tone.
„See?” Eddy gives me the I-told-you-so-look. „Where is Proto?” he asks.
„Proto is – not on board.” WHAT?! „His suit is – not on board. Scanning… Scanners are jammed.” Another I-told-you-so-look.
No! Where is Proto? He is priceless! He is a being between an AI and a human clone. A miracle, if you ask me. For the captain, he’s just an AI, in a meat suit…
With a soft purring of the Sleipnir interrupts. “Warning. Warning. Collision imminent.”
“What the hell is going on?!” The captain shouts sprinting out of my lab.