Chapter 146

– 00:02:36:58 –


RadStormRadStorm2 “How long do we have?” I asked as I took shelter from a, particularly nasty radiation storm.

TakingShelter

“Just over two and a half minutes till boom time,” Gary replied, taking on the form of the beat up old synth that had followed me throughout the wasteland.

 

“And is-”

 

“She is almost finished. I believe she has one more digit to put in and at that point, Virgil’s attention will be elsewhere.”

TakingShelter2

And that elsewhere would be Shaela. “You’re setting up Shaela in order to buy us time to escape?”

 

He shrugged his shoulders, “More of an inconvenience than a setup, but yeah, pretty much.”

 

I started to protest but he cut me off before I could start.

 

“Look,” he said, “You’ll be back to aid her before any harm is done and if she’s as strong as she looks, I doubt anything that Virgil sends her in the real world would even bother her.”

TakingShelter3

“She’s much stronger than she looks, you best be right, or I won’t be your friend anymore.”

 

Normally, that kind of reply would get a laugh or at the very least, a chuckle out of him, but Gary was silent. When I looked over in his direction, he had a serious look on his face.

TakingShelter4

“It is time.”

 

The world shifted, and Gary was inside some form of… machine that was similar to the one I entered when I first came into this place.

GaryInAPod

“Step into the other one,” he ordered, and I did.

SagesPodGettingInThePodStandby

The lid closed and instantly the pod began to fill with a liquid that would allow me to breathe while inside here. A screen blinked on in front of me, telling me to ‘Stand By,’ but within seconds, I felt myself being pulled away.

Standby2

The pain was tremendous, just as Gary had warned me, I could feel some on my augments overloading and shutting down as bolts of electricity surged through my body. Luckily, none of my vital systems were affected but the loss of those augments…

Standby3

I didn’t have time to think about it as I was unceremoniously deposited into what appeared to be the Synapse of a person’s brain.

SynapseJourney3

– YOUR BRAIN –

 

“Weird.”

SynapseJourney

– JUST KEEP MOVING FORWARD, THERE IS ONLY ONE WAY… HURRY! –

 SynapseJourney4

And hurry I did. There were scenes playing inside my head that didn’t belong, scenes of humans that I’d never met or cared to meet. I kept moving forward, traversing the synapses of my own brain hoping to find a way out.

SynapseJourney2SynapseJourney7SynapseJourney9SynapseJourney11SynapseJourney12SynapseJourney13

Before long, I found myself in a room which housed several pods.

MorePods

“Get in,” a man with a gruff, commanding voice ordered.

OldMercGary

It wasn’t Gary’s voice, but I still recognised it as him, perhaps he thought that this voice suited this situation?

 

I jumped into a pod, and Gary shut it behind me.

InsideThePodGarySaysByeGarySaysBye2

“See ya,” was all he said before everything turned white once more, except this time, I woke up outside the game.

BackInTheMainframeScanningForLife

I hopped out of the pod and scanned the room, I was still inside the mainframe, which could still pose a myriad of problems, but when the scan came back, my heart sunk a little bit.

NoSigns7

Other than my own, there were no signs of life… Virgil was gone.

NoSigns

And so was Gary.

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