32 prepared months for this, but when she saw the domes laid out in a perfect circle below her, she nearly passed out.
Emotions she had never experienced rushed through her body. A strange wail escaped her lips. Her eyes filled with burning fluid that spilled down her face.
Sensation (what is this) Burning. Wet. I'm going, she thought. I'm lobotomizing.
A hand clamped around her shoulder. She remembered. A perfectly normal response, Advisor had said. It was called "cry". A verb: to cry. Crying. Cried.
Her entire life was neatly tucked away in the corner of a sterile laboratory. All the elements of her survival were provided for her. She had never experienced illness, psychological trauma, or hunger.
She was given a name: 32.
There were others before her, but they had failed.
Advisor had told her of the Project and implantation in her youth. He had told her of Logic and stressed the importance it held in her preparation.
Logic is the root level of all events. You will study it. You will worship it. Your very existence is a logical deduction: cogito ergo sum.
She learned it.
She worshipped it.
She wrapped herself in it like a warm blanket.
Logic became her invariable spine of experience.
Logic allowed no leeway for sentiment.
"Recover, 32," a deep voice resounded from behind her.She stopped crying and wiped the excess liquid from her cheeks. The hand around her shoulder loosened. She did a quick self-diagnostic. All functions normal.
"Recovery complete," she replied. "Query." "Ask," the voice behind her encouraged. "Why am I here, Advisor?" She asked. "The information is stored internally. Find." "Finding files," she uttered.
It was developed from a technology of the late 20th century, in which sceintists attempted to grow brain cells on computer chips. Eventually, using breakthrough studies and discoveries on the processes of the human brain around the middle of the 21st century, modern scientists were able to successfully interface brain cells with microprocessors.
Using twelve human test subjects (conceived artificially and grown to maturity), the scientists and researchers of the Project implanted similiar enhanced bio- processors in each of the primary nodes of the cerebrum. Further, by attaching specialized external jacks to the cranium, these human-computers could interface with each other.
After the implants of the initial study were in place, the cognitive and physical relationship in the subjects' brain immediately deteriorated; their bodies became inanimate. The scientists determined that the enhanced brains could still be salvaged if they removed them from the dead bodies.
A second trial ensued. Using extensive VR simulations, the scientists of the project were able to encourage the motor functions of the enhanced brain. Test subjects were again prepared for implantation.
It was discovered that the brain capacity of the subjects was not enough support both computer and normal functions. Three days after implantation, surges in the node-processors of the cerebrum overloaded the corpus collosum, and the brains of the subjects effectively and irreparably lobotomized themselves. A few weeks later, all subjects experienced multiple organ failures and died. Major breakthroughs in genetics fronted the realm of science and technology. The Project responded by recruiting a team of geneticists, whose purpose was to develop embryos with enlarged craniums and brains, thus being able to handle a great deal more information. Subsequent VR studies proved to be successful. Twelve new genetically altered embryos were conceived. They were called 25 through 36.
32 pressed her face against the glass.
The First Ones were all down there.
Living tissue. Enmeshed in pure Logic. These are my ancestors, she thought.
She longed to communicate with them, the feel them inside her, spreading their warm tendrils of electricity and light through her body. She longed for the rush of a separate entity poking at her mind. She wanted to rush into them and assimilate their experiences.
Logic was lost, blasted away by a surge of ... what is this?...She wanted to belong..
Her body suddenly jerked upright in seizure. She heard tiny pangs inside her mind, sparks of overload. She heard a distant voice.
Recover, she could not. Overload. System failure.
She touched her hand on the glass.