Where Did We Go Wrong?
Submitted by Jacob Z.
That primal urge to take flight from a predator is terrifying yet exhilarating: when you run, and your heart is racing and your mind is reeling, you realize that this is living — you are alive! But if you don’t quicken the pace, you won’t get to enjoy that feeling much longer. You can hear the little hum of the rotors somewhere behind you: you dare not look back.
You seem to glide through the empty streets and alleys effortlessly, leaping over hurdles and scaling fences like your life depended on it — as surely it does. Your chest is heaving now, and your vision blurs; there are so few places to take cover, though, and your pursuers are quick as lightning.
A wrong turn, and you’re facing a wall just a little too tall to scale up; you cannot turn around, though, because they will spot you for sure. There’s a refuse bin large enough to crawl into on your left: without a moment’s hesitation you stash yourself inside just as the whirring hum looms louder…!
There’s a little flash of light — barely detectable between your eye’s saccades — but you realize with a start that they’re closing in! Should you stay in your bin, helpless but hidden? Or should you try to run past them, keep fighting on… The time it takes for you to decide proves too costly, as the whistling comes to a standstill just outside!
You hold your breath, but by some means or another — maybe infrared or x-ray? — they’ve spotted you, because the sickening mechanical motions of the drone’s weapons array coming to the fore echo in the cramped alley. And before you can even pray to your maker, the bright & sharp blade of their plasma cuts through the bin and you, striking for your spinal cord and hindbrain. There is no pain: you black out almost instantly.