LITTLE GHOST NEBULA Chapter 1 – Epilogue

Slow night, nothing new…

I sighed lazily, watching the streets through ill-gotten camera connections. I often stared long into the night, keeping an eye out for trouble, because trouble makes work. The only sounds resonated from a speaker nearby, a relic, picking up stray transmissions from an antenna I set up outside of town. Words, stories and what had passed for music warbled through my office. Voices of the dead.

Thanks to the Grid and what we had done to the globe, EM frequencies got trapped. Bouncing around like some long-forgotten greenhouse effect. The sounds I heard, pieces of the past, kept me in my vigil. The speaker was an odd sort of comfort in this life, one of the few things I built that I had considered taking with me when this town fell apart.

The rest of society was awash with their conveniences, The Other World, safety in the Farms, their “Core Protocols”. Me? I had what I knew. I made myself useful to the town by fixing any mecha-units they rode into the ground and patched up the bio-wares as they broke. They wanted to make a living in the wastes but this was no Durian. That town had it all…

Most nights my monitors were still, but tonight was different. Movement at the edge of town.

Huh, a hoverboard, it’s been a while… My heart tightened as the stranger struck the perimeter alarm and I watched sadly as the board tumbled to the ground, such an old piece deserved better treatment. What was this guy thinking?

As he fell his powered arm struck out to stop his fall, an old Bramtech SJ-6 or 7… It’s hard to tell in this light but whatever it was, it was broken now. He was carrying something that he valued more than his tech. I tapped into several other angles to get a better view, he had no Plugs. A conflux of curios, a wonder indeed.

Tracking him was tough, he moved quickly and I had a hard time keeping up.

Through the town he searched, knocking on doors but not waiting long for a response. His search bore him down toward my end of town and his haste became mine. Flicking through my repertoire of cameras my heart pushed it’s way up into the back of my throat and I landed on the camera set atop the doorway to my building.

The knocks startled me but I opened the door before my mind caught up. I stared into the eyes of the spectre. The man with no connection to civilisation. He held a girl on his back and by the look of her she suffered from the Virus.. or had.

This was something new.