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Fermius Firefly

A Dream Log, whenever I remember the dreams I've had.

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Location: San Marcos, United States

Fermius is a pen name drawn from a series of short fiction I wrote when I published the small press magazine Stellanova (on paper.) I play RPG games to escape from my daily grind as a technology wage slave for the state of California. I eat out a lot in order to do my part in supporting our increasingly service level economy. I am butler to 2 feline masters. If you ask them they will tell you I'm not very good at it, late with dinner, don't have enough hands with brushes in them, and sometimes I even lock them out of their office.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Trans Dimensional Rift War

          Stale Chocolate bars in a drawer beneath a drafting table. I figured the chocolate would still be safe, but apparently there was too much milk in it and it had turned rancid. The section leader called over the radio to warn us. I found one bar still wrapped and it didn't smell or taste bad to me, but I didn't finish it, just to be safe.
          We reported to the front of the design building where we (a group of about a dozen) were assigned to a virtual machine interface. The mission started in full video with cgi overlays for the multidimensional threats that were brewing in our skies. There was a sort of cartoon aspect to the overlays as more threats began to form. (Apparently the drones were fired out of a cannon of some sort and the wings were deployed once we reached the target area.)
          We had a sort of chemical laser to fire into the micro rifts when we spotted them. There were only about a dozen shots per drone however, so the control center had to monitor who was available and route us accordingly. I was almost on top of a rift shortly after launch and my laser activated and was fired in a matter of a few seconds after my wings deployed. All faster than I could have reacted. I boosted my power draw to catch up to my flight and took the far right tail position of our "V" formation. In many ways us pilots were simply along for the ride, the AI in the drones was much faster than a human pilot ever could be. Only thing the drones didn't have was the visual processing ability and decision making process that went along with it. The control center was wired directly into our heads, so it sometimes reacted to our perceptions of threat before our conscious mind was aware of it. It was a very odd feeling. We flew our patrol, splitting up to surround a newly formed rift. One of the flight was in position to take two rifts when a second formed near by, and she got a double kill.
          We congratulated her, but knew that any of our drones would have reacted the same if we'd had the shot.
          Soon, however, there were too many threats, and the system began to simplify, eventually we found ourselves flying our drones through a sky full of wire-frame models, that, when there finally was a breakthrough (which we were supposed to prevent if at all possible) there was an explosion of black and purple rotary winged creatures that split off in all directions, they sprayed a caustic chemical of some sort that would then violently explode if we got too close. It made following them very dangerous (for the drones at least.) We lost a couple of drones before we figured out this new tactic.
          Our front mounted guns didn't have much ammunition, so we had to conserve by using single shots or three shot bursts or risk not being able to survive the whole engagement. This was the sort of flying and shooting that the drones excelled at. Unfortunately the targets that dropped out of the rifts weren't always the same, so humans had to make the fine targeting calls, as well as prioritizing the targets, and coming up with tactics to deal with the unexpected; like exploding chem trails. In this particular mission, there were just over sixty rifts, and we managed to stop all but two of them.
          When we formed up after the engagement to return the drones to our base, there were only eight of us left. We'd shot down a similar number of aliens (or alien craft, the researchers couldn't agree on that, some believing that the living craft were a drone, like our own.)
          According to historical data, the engagements always lasted anywhere from 21 to 84 minutes in increments of 21 minutes with rifts forming three to five per minute. We didn't have any good theories as to why that would be, just that it always happenend that way. If no micro-rifts formed at the 22 minute mark, then we knew it was safe to stand down for another few days.
          Later I was at my parents old house, still in the world of the rift war, and came upon a drawer full of small scorpion-like creatures. I knew immediately that they were part of the alien invaders' little left overs. I immediately went numb on the right hand pinky and ring finger when one of them stabbed me. Quickly I ran water in the sink and dropped the whole drawer into the hot water. The little silver and blue critters could actually swim, and started darting around picking up their eggs (which were a fuzzy flourescent green color.) It took several seconds to rinse the critters off my arm and hand. The hot water seemed to be slowly killing them, though I had to keep sweeping escapees back into the sink. I used the back of a carving knife for that. After I cut the first couple in half, tricky since they were all of two centimeters long, they learned to avoid the knife by rolling up into a little ball. I'd tried crushing them, but the little ball was impossible to break, so I just rolled them back into the sink. I finally had the situation under control enough to activate my headphone and call it in. I knew I was in for a long decontamination and that my parents' house would be incinerated and passed through a triple zero mesh. (Whatever that is.)

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