Clouds

Working Chapter 8 of my Is it for us alone? novel in progress

Nothing happened at first. This was to be expected of course – after all, the Earth is large and it even takes a wave of energy some time to circumnavigate it, but the delay wouldn’t be too long. Eventually, or rather within a minute, it would hit him like a wall.

What it would feel like, Anders had no idea. Still there was some recollection of this exact feeling in the back of his mind. He knew there would be something, but for now there was nothing. It was the anticipation that Dan had felt the first time he tried ecstasy. The memory was fuzzy, but he was certain this moment was comparable – the anticipation mixed with fear of something going horribly wrong – it sent adrenaline rushing through his veins in a way he had never felt before. It was beautiful and then it hit.

There was no physical sensation. His heart rate was elevated because of the adrenaline. Otherwise there was nothing. His mind was packed and overactive – like the only bunker left in town that everyone knows about right before a nuclear bomb is about to explode. Clumsily the memories swam around his brain while he tried to get to grips with it all. After a few moments of consciousness, he passed out and his brain set about sorting through the memories and adjusting itself to the new influx. Luckily Anders had remembered this side effect from his experiment and was hooked up with nutrients to ensure he didn’t die there in his garage before his solo-rule of Earth began.

*

Anders estimated that he had been out cold for a couple of days. There was no doubt that he felt weak, but he also knew beyond a doubt that he would be fine. Besides a bit of disorientation and dehydration, he didn’t really feel anything adverse. There were, however, many urges – the most powerful of which was for a cup of coffee. Many types came to mind, but a nice big cup of black coffee would do nicely – besides it was all he had in the house.

He knew there was an espresso machine in number 15 Longsten Gatan, but his current physical state made convincing arguments over any walking further than his kitchen. Groggily he made his way there and put the coffee machine on. He was on a well-practiced routine of millions so there was no thought involved at all, simply action. He sat in an armchair and stared out the window at the rising dawn. Everything in him, physically and mentally felt more content then he could have ever imagined. Of course there was the rush of triumph. The pure elation at completing a feat that had never been done before and that by its very nature can only be done once and never again. It was a singular achievement in the history of man. You may discover penicillin, but guess what, someone else can as well. But not this. Not Anders’ accomplishment.

There was also another feeling swimming around in his head. Something he had never truly appreciated. There was silence. Not simply the lack of noise, but the lack of frustrations and stresses – a weight lifted off the shoulders of mankind itself. It was incredibly calming. A truly beautiful peacefulness that had never existed before. There was no fighting, no plays for power and no destruction. Instead there was unison, collaboration – no, not collaboration – but perfect knowledge. All the human computers in the world were no slaves to one. Their knowledge would work together to understand the mysteries of the universe. It was, Anders felt in that moment, glorious.

*

Where to start really? Anders urged to do so many things all at once. He was in control – have no qualms about that – but there was so much that he wanted to do. Skydiving, for instance. He remembered the rush and wanted the adrenaline to coarse through his own veins – the memories were fantastic, but he wanted more. Many other urges bubbled to the surface. All were for experiences that he had memories of being the best that Earth and humanity could offer.

He is in control though and so brings his mind around to the task at hand – immortality. Finally, with of the pooled knowledge of humanity, he was sure he could discover the secret.

Despite contol, there are now more distractions – urges to the things part of normal lives of so many. Focus is difficult, but progress continues – immortality? Not yet, but steps are being made.[ Consider removing]

Two weeks passed without significant progress. It was not a lack of knowledge that stifled hi creativity or a lack of vision that hindered his momentum. It was a lack of focus. Billions of competing desires would flout to the surface of his consciousness and devote the energies of the population of Ander’s mind to solving some ancillary problem of the universe or fighting an urge that couldn’t be accomplished in that moment. At times he would feel pangs of loss or sorrow. They would hit him like a wave against the rocks, with great intensity and then receding back in to the ocean of his infinite subconscious.

He sat in the garden contemplating all of this, in particular his control over it. In his hand he held a cold beer, which he swigged from now and again to break the stillness of his present position and equally to enhance its tranquillity. There was something familiar and comforting about these actions. It made him feel content with his place in the universe and free from all his cares. Immortality, or rather achieving immortality, was far from his mind. Now he only wanted to fully control this onslaught from his subconscious. This moment was calm, but it was because he had reached a somewhat meditative state. As soon as he tried to focus on one thing it would cease to be.

It may now only be possible for him to focus on things that benefited this new whole, he reflected, and that personal desires could no longer take command of the resources his body had to offer. Surely there was some desire for immortality, but not that of one man. Now that only one human existed in the known universe it was difficult to discover exactly what could rank as being worth the interest of all humankind. Overpopulation, poverty, death to an extent and most of the problems with disease had been wiped out in one brutal masterstroke orchestrated by Anders and along with them war had been put to peace. He tried not to think too seriously of what he should do next and resolved to sit with his cold beer and contemplated his solitary confinement on this rock juxtaposed with the riotous prison of his subconscious.

The sun began to set behind the rocky island in the distance and into the calm and teeming ocean beyond and Anders sat and watched feeling that time had jerked itself to a halt that was uncertain. It desired to edge forward, but was uncertain how to proceed with only one human chasing it forward.