Images & Words: Fire of Fanaticism

Images & Words: Fire of Fanaticism


Image
Shrapnel by Marek Okon

Words
Neal Ulen

When : Where
2307 CE Virtual : Realspace / Infinispace / Battlespace


Shrapnel by Marek Okon
Shrapnel by Marek Okon

This is a first draft excerpt from Infinispace: Deception.

Across the bridge I watched a blindingly fast ambush play out, fueled by the fire of fanaticism.

Their phantom had been hiding among the abandoned autos on Westminster Bridge. The player had uncloaked and simultaneously kicked Rose’s weapon out of her hands, then round housed her in the helmet sending it off her head and sliding down the pavement. She went sprawling into a sleek vehicle, sending broken glass spraying in the moonlight. They were both up and pulling their blades in an instant, crouching in front of each other ready to strike. The colored glow of armor penetrating decryption code lit their blades and the abandoned bridge  surrounding them. They lunged at each other in a flurry of light and speed augmented by their armor. I heard Rose’s snarl echo faintly through the helmet’s microphone which lay ten meters away from her. It made me smile.

“We’re going to lose her anyway,” I said, surveying Rose and the opposing player in their ballet of violence. She appeared out geared and outmatched, but Rose was usually more cunning than her opponents.

“Horatio … take a shot!” I said nervously though clenched teeth, hoping our sniper had a clear shot. “I’m too far away to help Rose!”

“I can’t boss, I’ll hit her! We can’t lose another player!” His voice echoed back in my own helmet.

“We’re going to lose her anyway,” I said, surveying Rose and the opposing player in their ballet of violence. She appeared out geared and outmatched, but Rose was usually more cunning than her opponents.

Just then she bent and twisted under his riposte and her yellow blade plunged into the side of the Transcendentalist player, easily penetrating his weak armor. Rose, badass as ever! The yellow light of her blade began to spread through the player, but before he could be consumed and sent back to the game queue I saw the player move his hand in a hauntingly familiar pattern. At that moment Rose also knew that she was not confronting a casual, but a role-player, perhaps even a closet Transcendentalist back in Realspace. Rose knelt down, picked up her rifle, and tilted her head in resignation.

I watched the fire of fanaticism consume her avatar.

.Game Over.


Words © 2020, Neal Ulen. All rights reserved.
Images/videos cited © to their respective owner(s).


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