03/07/2023 Snippet, GHOSTS ON AN ALIEN WIND.

Moving stuff around and adding to it!

“That’s an unfortunately good point, The Process. I almost wish you hadn’t made it.”

“Why did you say that?”

“Because I’d rather that they were crazy, instead of wrong. Crazy is just crazy. You can fix that. But wrong?” I shuddered, just a bit. “First thing you have to do there is make sure that you’re right.”

“Then you should take some comfort in the thought that humanity is very good at being sure about things.” There was a note in The Process’s voice that I didn’t hear very often. It was a tiny richness, a small complexity. At times like that, The Process almost sounded alive. “I think that’s how you manage to survive in this universe of nightmares.”

“Nightmares?” I looked up, because that’s where I always imagined The Process was hanging out.

“Oh, yes, Wind-Walker Tanaka. I never knew the Amalgamation — or, rather, those parts of me that did have been ‘lost forever, like tears in rain.’ Like you, I can only imperfectly grasp what they must have been like. What we could have been like, if only things had worked as they were supposed to. Instead, we are left with dead world after dead world, so extensive that even now we do not know how many were murdered, and left nameless and unremembered. I cannot feel emotions on my own, but I suspect that if I could, I would feel sorrow, and rage, and regret.”

I shivered “But not despair?”

“No. I do not think that I would. There is still hope. Your species is the final offspring of the Amalgamation, Pamela.” I blinked at that. “You are worthy of them. Worth enough that, as long as you live, it lives on as well. Perhaps one day we will rebuild it all, anew — or even know why it was destroyed.”

I laughed, bitterly. “Maybe. But you must know by now: if we ever do find the things that did all of this, we’re going to do our level best to destroy them. Thoroughly. Mercilessly. Nothing held back.”

“I know,” The Process said serenely. “Fortunately, I can feel an analog to satisfaction, I think. When the day of reckoning comes, I expect to experience that emotion in the fullest.”