The day played out exactly as the one before it, and that one also played out as the day that preceded it, which also was exactly the same as the day before it. Darcel was tired. Not even exploring the carefully crafted worlds of the virtual simulations satisfied him anymore. He wanted a real experience. He looked at the window. Outside a vibrant forest with tall green grass and enormous trees expanded into the horizon. Darcel yearned to get lost in its woods, exploring every little detail hidden underneath the tall grass. If only that forest existed. The window merely projected a pre programmed image meant to conceal the monotony of life in the City. It was a lie, an illusion.
His watch announced 6pm, the designated time to eat dinner. Like a perfectly programmed machine, Darcel made his way to the front door. At the other side of the door there would be a small bag with a small portion of food delivered every day to him via automated drones. Unconsciously, he opened the door, leaned down to grab the bag and returned home. Except this time there was no bag.
This sudden disruption brought Darcel back to consciousness, whose only answer was to stare at the outside world puzzled. No system ever failed in the City, so where was his food?
Suddenly, over the flat rooftops that lined the house in front, the sky was starting began to get engulfed by a reddish color. A giant orb descended into the horizon. Darcel let out a faint gasp. For the first time in his life, he had watched the Sun set.
The soft glow of the setting Sun called Darcel, it wanted to chase it until its very source. But he couldn’t. He had no oxygen credits, no knowledge of the outside world and soon darkness would claim all. An immense dilemma spawned in his mind. Above all, he was afraid to brake from his usual routine, to venture into the unknown and bring about a change that he might regret. It was better to go back inside, and pretend that none of this had ever happened.
At least that what was his mind told him. The light was getting dimmer and dimmer, darkness was descending and his mind begged to go back inside. Darcel made up his mind, or rather ignore it completely.He ran and ran through the empty streets chasing the setting Sun.
The outside world was worse than he imagined it. Every house looked the same, a small cubic-like structure made up of nothing but grey concrete. It resembled a graveyard more than a neighborhood.
While his legs sprinted through the concrete forest, he felt truly free, all his doubts vanished as he once again felt the master of his own life. Regrettably, the feeling did not last long. From behind a loud robotic voice commanded him to stop and stay still. Darcel stopped instantly. All his fears returned, he felt alone, helpless and imprisoned. The drone approached swiftly and within an instant rendered Darcel unconscious.
Darcel awoke in an unfamiliar place. Somehow, he did not feel afraid or lost. In front of him there was an old monitor that displayed a bright text over a dark background.
The year is 2043. The world once again finds itself on the brink of nuclear war. The called Third World countries have united under a single banner. The United States and Europe stand ready for the call to arms. Eastern nations led by China are poised and ready for combat. You’re the President of The United States. Your nuclear arsenal is ready to be deployed by the press of a button. How will you resolve the situation?
Darcel did not recognize the names on the text, but he felt as though he was ready to solve the situation.
>Press the button
A new text appeared on the screen.
The world has fallen over on itself. The ideals of man, greedy in nature and contradictory in practice, have finally condemned humanity. You survived the cataclysm with your powers still intact. Together, with similar minded leaders, you rebuild a new society where no ideals will ever misguide the mind, where no emotions will ever control the heart, and where change will never again disrupt the fabric of society.
This world is your own.
Darcel did not feel anything upon reading the text. He was fully convinced he had made the right choice. In a world that was too far gone it is only acceptable that those who wielded the most power had the choice to rebuild it for they are the only ones capable of understanding the future.
While the computer restarted, Darcel was overcome with fatigue and fell asleep on the chair.
His dreams brought him to a world different from his own. He was sitting in a comfy couch in front of an old looking TV. The walls were lined with colorful wallpapers, and decorated with painting and pictures of people he had never seen before. They all looked so happy.
A well-dressed man appeared in the TV screen. His face was somber and his voice trembled as he announced:
“The President has entered the bunker. Nuclear war is upon us. Let us take this moment…. to say goodbye…. To the ones we love”
The man broke out in a loud cry. Outside, the sky was violently overtaken by a bright red color. Darcel felt drawn to it…
When he awoke a new text appeared had appeared on the screen.
The year is 2024. The world is recovering from a massive economic cataclysm. Citizens around the globe struggle to make ends meet. Businesses are heavily subsidized by the Government to prevent complete collapse. You’re in charge of a big nation’s central bank. At your disposal are the tools needed to mend the economy. One such tools is very effective at stimulating businesses however at the expense of the citizens. How will you resolve the situation?
Darcel did understand a thing about economics, yet felt quite confident in his ability to solve the situation.
>Use the tool
The computer quickly generated the result.
The world has fallen over on itself. The ideals of man, greedy in nature and contradictory in practice, have finally condemned humanity. Your actions have brought about a change in the economy. You do not feel the consequences of your actions, yet the common citizen voices his dissatisfaction. You quell their cries with vague promises of imminent change. Society remains at your disposal.
This world is your own.
The computer was taking a long time to restart so Darcel decided to sleep again.
This time his dreams took him a to a familiar place, his house. He had just disconnected from the virtual simulation, and heard faint sobs from the neighboring room. It was his mom. She was speaking with someone on the phone:
“He… he was just laid off…. I do not have enough money to cover rent… or for credits… I think… I think… I will have to… no…”
His mother broke out in a loud cry. Darcel wanted to ask her what was wrong, to hear her voice telling him that all will be alright, but the heat of the setting Sun beckoned him again.When he turned back both the light and his mom were gone. A tint of sadness invaded Darcel’s heart.
A new text appeared on the screen.
The year is 2052.The world has fallen over on itself. The new society that rose from its remnants works with outmost precision and efficiency. You’re an Overseer. Your mission is to ensure all citizens follow their designated freedoms at all time. One of your drones have spotted an unidentified man running illegally through the streets. With the press of a button the dissenter would be neutralized. How will you resolve the situation?
A Déjà vu-like sensation hit Darcel. This time he did not feel as confident as with the other situations. His hands hesitated upon the keyboard. He attempted many solutions to try and save the dissenter, however the computer would not allow it.
Finally, Darcel understood everything. There was no way out. Before, all actions seemed clear, but now, with his own fate in his hands, we could not find a solution.
Darcel slowly typed his final command.
>Neutralize the dissenter
The world was never your own
Спасибо за чтение!
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