Story :: Disassemble

A pretty weird one today. This is heavily inspired by the incredible transhuman roleplaying game Eclipse Phase, not to mention all the other posthuman books I’ve been reading lately, including but not limited to: Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, Old Man’s War, Glasshouse and Blindsight. If you want to know more about this kind of hard sci-fi, just ask! Or read some of the above 😀

 

Disassemble (339 words)

 

The mood was light and the hab sky was shining today as a record crowd showed up for the twice-annual Re-2-use Festival. As usual the main event was the eating contest, sponsored by Full Moon Embotics who kindly donated their last quarter’s waste.

We had the usual line up of Re-2 fanatics and blueprint chasers eager to earn soul with Full Moon, and a few outer-rimmers here for the spectacle. After the early stage knockouts our big contenders were defending champion Jap from right here on Indive Hab, newcomer Skire from the Shades of Oberon, and Full Moon backed Grate from FM-CorpUnit.153Fjx. Unfortunately Re-2’s biggest fan, Spot from Armada, was once again deemed over the weight/consumption ratio limit and disqualified in the heats. Someone loan this guy a disassembly morph already.

The contest got off to a slow and steady start, while the contestants were cheered on by local Re-2 band Jenny Hanniver. After fourteen hours the band had packed up, along with defender Jap. It was just down to independent Skire and corporate mascot Grate. Both had by this point consumed something in the region of eighty kilos (see below for weight/mass/gravity conversion table depending on your location) and were still going strong.

Unfortunately for all of us, the contest had to come to a halt, and as Indive went into its fortieth spin, Skire collapsed and was escorted to Full Moon’s local headquarters to have their intake processed for reassembly, leaving Grate as the new Re-2-use eating contest champion. Full Moon issued the following statement:

We express joy that our mascot Grate has excelled in the Re-2-use eating contest on Indive Hab. Their support will allow Full Moon Embotics to provide greater service to you in the future. If you’d like to know more about the extraction process for reassembly please contact our Marketing Team via your uplink or personal networking system. Full Moon Embotics Assemblers deliver fast, high quality assembly for all your commercial and personal needs. Activate the following code to receive our sales brochure.

 

Like this? Try reading Control. Written for the CAKE.shortandsweet Wednesday Write-in

Read my other free stories here.

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About sarahgracelogan

Sarah Grace is an itinerant scribbler and general layabout. She runs a writing group called CAKE.shortandsweet, because any form of procrastination from actual writing is always attractive to the serious author of refined taste. When not distracted by laser pens, Sarah Grace writes novels, short stories and flash fiction, poetry, stage scripts and screenplays. She has performed her work at Stirred Poetry, Bad Language and Tongue in Cheek Manchester. Her first publication, Humping the Boonies is a self-published chapbook available directly from the author, or from Travelling Man, Manchester. You can find more details about her ongoing projects, not to mention a selection of free stories up for grabs right here on her blog. https://sarahgracelogan.wordpress.com/about/ She also likes to talk about theatre, film, books, photography, and especially games and other things that involve collaborative storytelling. Sarah Grace likes feedback, in whatever form it comes.

18 comments

  1. Since I’m new to this genre, it took a more careful reading to connect all of the characters (or rather mascots) to the various corporations and space boroughs that they represent.

    This world seems almost like a Huxley dystopia to me, a seemingly antiseptic playground for greedy conglomerates ready to commoditize anything, even the human digestion process . . .

    • I’ll admit this is just a first draft so it might be that I didn’t make things clear enough 🙂 The story is set on Indive Hab, which is a habitat (like a space station) on an orbit. It spins to create false gravity.

      Yes, absolutely, that’s a huge aspect of the world of Eclipse Phase. Rather than government, a lot of societies are ruled by huge corporations; it’s ultra-capitalist in a post-scarcity world. I won’t start rambling too much though!

      • Oh you mean you thought about this world before you started breathing life into it? 🙂 Just kidding. The theme and details have me hooked. We in the outer rims anticipate more from Eclipse Phase.

      • Oh man I could talk about Eclipse Phase for days on end, it’s a brilliant game packed with more ideas than you could shake a stick at. I wish I could take credit for it!

        I don’t think my brain is weird or lateral-thinking enough to really do transhumanism justice, but it’s a really fun world to play in. I just know that whatever I might come up with, Posthuman Studios (creators of EP) already had 100 more awesome ideas.

        But yeah, if you’re at all into sci-fi I really hardcore recommend all of the above books, and also Altered Carbon by Richard K. Morgen, which has some fun similarities to the world of Eclipse Phase (though it’s probably not nearly as nasty, and the sex scenes are a bit painful to read).

        (Damn, I said I wouldn’t ramble – sorry!)

      • How interesting. I didn’t realize that this is a world that someone else is responsible for creating that is sustained by a community of other creative minds.

      • Yeah, essentially all of the base stuff is written by a team called Posthuman Studios, but bits and pieces are altered by players to fit their needs. At the moment for example, there’s a writer of another long-running rpg who’s running a blog where every day he posts an idea for the world of Eclipse Phase, whether it be a character, a setting etc. So it does become this big collaborative world. I’m just borrowing ideas from it for this story 🙂

  2. Elaine Peters

    As you say, it certainly is weird, but interesting although I am not at all into sci-fi. It reads like a press release or news report except for the sentence ‘Someone loan this guy…’ which to me doesn’t seem to fit the style. (And ‘…Skire …their…’ – is he a single entity?)

    • Yeah it was meant to be like a local news story, like a magazine column, so it has a hint of chattiness. Skire is referred to as their because s/he is gender indeterminate, at least as far as the writer understands 🙂

  3. Patrick

    I now know I can’t write science fiction. Whole new world(s) and language(s). Superfoodbowl of the future (unless this is now).

    A great read.

  4. Not knowing anything about these worlds, it forced me to spend more time reading, after one quick and one slow read, I think I get it, and it somehow made me think the whole thing was just a big publicity/marketing event. I hope that’s right.

    The piece was out of my reading comfort zone, but it was engaging (once I gave it the attention it deserved.)

    • More or less, yeah. I think it started as a local festival type thing but quickly got taken over by corporate nonsense. As these things do.

      Haha thank you, it was out of my writing comfort zone too!

  5. Elaine McKay

    New for me, too. Yeah, consumerism does seem even more grim having read this. Thanks for the introduction.

  6. Emmaleene Leahy

    I’m not used to this genre either so had to take my time reading. You did a great job of evoking a scary corporate ruled world (or is it universe!). Interesting stuff!

  7. Abstract, but I think I got it! I will probably revisit it tomorrow when I am bright eyed and bushy tailed.

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