Wednesday, April 20, 2011



The rain fell in big, fat drops. The kind of rain that only fell on late summer days. Days like today.

The two stood in the pouring rain facing each other, holding hands. The man, tall, dark, handsome in a way. Nic. The woman, soft features, classically beautiful, with dark hair and pale skin. Jessica.

“Please don’t do this to me,” she said. Rain mixing with her tears. Her long hair was wet even under her hoodie.

“I love you,” was all he could say. The pain was obvious on his face. He was lost.

“Please don’t do this,” she tried again.

The rain fell around them, so thick that they could be alone in the world together. Alone in the park surrounded but the outline of trees that could barley be seen.

“I’ve never loved anyone the way I love you.” His words we soft, almost lost to the sound of the rain.

“Please don’t,” her voice, plaintive now, attempting to hold back her emotions.

“I...” He paused. He wanted to say too much, but he was fighting a losing battle. “I can’t go on without you.”

“Please.” She almost begged.

He paused for a long moment, then let her hands drop.

She turned to go.

“I will always love you,” He said as she turned.

She walked several steps away. He just stood there, head slightly down.

She paused about ten feet away. His heart skipped a beat. He didn’t dare move, not even to look up at her.

She turned, raced back too him. Their bodies collided, he didn’t even flinch. She stood on her toes to reach him, and kissed him on the cheek. Then turned and raced into the rain.

He stood there for a long moment. More grateful than he could ever think that she did not kiss his lips. He would have never been able to let go had she kissed him like that, a lover’s kiss.

He watched as she moved through the rain after twenty steps or so she vanished in a swirl of dark smoke.

He stood there for a long time, eyes closed. Feeling the warmth of her kiss fade from his cheek.

There, in the rain, he just stood. Just being still. Trying to sort out his emotions, his feelings for her. She would never love him the way he loved her. She couldn’t. But he could not fully let go of his feelings for her.

He calmed his heart. Slowed his breathing. Emptied his mind of all of this. Slowly the storm abated. The sun came out, birds began to sing again.

He turned on the spot and walked a few steps. Then he lifted off into the air. He flew, higher, above the remaining clouds. The wind and sun dried his clothing soon enough.

He wasn’t headed anywhere specific. Just wondering through the sky.

He couldn’t make her love him. He couldn’t be the man she wanted, perhaps even the man she deserved.

He noticed over his shoulder that storms had began gathering behind him. And once again he had to still his mind. And once again the storms dissipated.

He had to go somewhere to think, some place he could his emotions wouldn’t harm anyone.

There was a storm in the Pacific. He could feel it from here. He turned and headed that way, flying higher to shorten the time to get there.

A few hours he landed on a small island, devoid of human life. Here he could allow his mind to wonder, allow his feelings to rule him.

He took a seat on the beach, high up, away from the crashing waves. And there he cried. And the storm grew stronger.


Jessica arrived at her home.

She slipped out of her clothing and into the shower. She wept openly. She sat on the floor of the tub, letting the warm water wash over her.

He didn’t love her. She knew it. He had convinced himself he loved her, or maybe he had fallen in love with the idea of her. But not her herself.

As painful as it was, a clean break probably the best.

She didn’t love him, it wouldn’t be fair to lead him on. She didn’t love him... did she.

She pushed the thought out of her mind. She couldn’t love him. They were complete opposites. The circles she ran with would...

Again she pushed the thought from her mind. Going down that road was dangerous.

When the water finally became cold, she shut it off. She dried herself and put on a robe.

Soon she was sitting, feet tucked under her, in front of the TV with a bottle of wine.

A giant storm had just dissipated over some islands in the Pacific.

The wine warmed her more than the shower ever could. But it also allowed her mind to wonder back to Nic.

His eyes. His ideals. His sense of humor. His sense of right and wrong.

Why did he have to be one of them, a white hat, a hero.

Her story was simple. She knew why she was the way she was. Life had happened to her.

She felt the shift in the atmosphere of the room before she even became aware of the new arrival.

“What do you want Kios?” He voice was exasperated. She didn’t feel like company.

Kios walked to a chair by the couch, and took a seat.

“I didn’t invite you into my home, I defiantly didn’t invite you to sit. What’s your business?”

Kois smiled. A sly, deadly smile. Jessica’s skin crawled.

“We are aware of your meeting today. If not the content. The Seers could not see through the storm.”

Jessica didn’t answer the unspoken questions.

“They saw you cry.”

Again she did not respond.

“There is talk.”

This finally drew a response from her. “There isn’t anything to talk about.”

“Marcus wants to know if he can be turned.”

She tensed. If Marcus was involved it was serious. And if Marcus wanted Nic turned, which was unlikely, the only alternative was dead.

“I don’t... His will is strong, and he is one of the strongest of them. I don’t know if I can turn him, and killing him would pose a significant problem.”

“Yes it would,” Kois smiled, “But now we have leverage.”

Her thoughts raced. She couldn’t see a way out. She had to say something.

“If... If I can turn him I will.”

Kois stood. “I’ll tell Marcus. I’m sure you’ll do fantastic.” He reached a had out to touch Jessica on the shoulder.

“If you touch me, it will be the last time you ever use that hand.”

Kois’ hand stopped short. Then he vanished.


Nic sat on the beach. His mind was calm again, the storm had passed. He was exhausted. Sad, but his emotions were manageable.

He felt a disturbance in the air. Someone was coming.

A moment later Lados arrived. He landed gently in the sand and walked the several paces to where Nic sat. He sat next to his friend.

A long moment of silence passed between the two. Finally Lados spoke.

“You love her?”

Nic nodded.


Nic paused for a long moment, only the sound of the waves broke the silence. Finally he answered.

“Because I do. I can’t explain it more than that.”

“You know what she is.”

It wasn’t a question, Lados was trying to be diplomatic.

“I know,” Nic answered.

“Even if you turned her, even if she would come in, she would still have to do time, still have to turn state’s evidence and name names.”

“I know,” Nic stated, “And so does she.”

“People are worried.” Lados sounded concerned. “If she won’t turn for you, you may turn for her.”

Nic looked at him for the first time.

“She doesn't love me. She can’t let herself. She can’t turn. If she did, they would kill her before she could talk.”

Lados looked dower. “Even worse than that. Their best play at this point is to use her to turn you. If they can turn you think of what they could learn about us. About what we know, about what we’re doing.”

“She wouldn’t do that.

“You think that. But if she doesn't try they may just kill her. Or kill you.”

A crack of thunder rolled in the distance.

“Killing her would be a mistake on their part. And they can come after me as much as they want. It would take ten of them to bring me down and they would lose half in the process. Besides which... I would like them to try.”

Lados placed a hand on his friends shoulder.

“Don’t talk like that. Where you are concerned our Seers can’t see beyond today. And I’m afraid you’re going to do something stupid.”

“They can’t see beyond today because I don’t know what I’m going to do yet. I’m not going to turn. I’m not going to bring down a fight I know I’ll lose. But other than that, I have no idea what I’m going to do.”

Lados smiled a friendly smile.

“That doesn't really make me feel better.” Lados laughed, “Just so long as we don’t have a Romeo and Juliet situation on our hands.”

Nic made a noncommittal noise. “Isn’t that what we already have?” He smirked. “Two houses and all that. She can’t change for me, I can’t change for her.”

“Then again, the Seers.”

“Well,” Nic answered flatly, “That’s simple. I don’t know what I’m going to do now, but at some point soon something will occur to me and I’ll make a decision.”

Lados stood.

“Well, you need to decide soon. Their Seers may already know something if it involves Jessica. Go home, sort things out, sleep on it. Tomorrow will be a brighter day.”

And with that Lados lifted off into the air and flew away. Leaving Nic to think on his advice.


Jessica sat on the couch. The wine was gone. She tried not to think. Not to give the Seers anything to work with.

If she tried to turn Nic... No, she couldn’t think that.

If she turned for him... again the thought slipped away.

There was no good way out of this. Any way she choose she would lose something. Worst case was her life.

She got up, went to her room and dressed. She gathered some personal things and threw them in a backpack. She had no plan. She wasn’t even sure what she was going to do. No plan was the best plan at this point.

She pictured the doorstep to Nic’s most used apartment. A place New York.

Instantly she was standing there.

She knocked on the door, still not knowing what she would say or do.

For a long moment there was no answer.

Nic opened the door. He was fresh from the shower, dressed on pajama bottoms and nothing else. She soaked in the look of his body.

He was drying his hair with a towel, which he let drop to the floor when she saw her.

“Say it again.” He voice was soft.

He pasued.

“Just say it again,” she almost pleaded.

“I love you. I’ve loved you since we first met, before the powers, before the Guilds, before things became complicated.”

“Even with everything I’ve done?”

“You... the things you’ve... I know you. You’ve never done anything you can’t come back from. I know you.”

She was on the verge of crying. She slammed herself into him, he didn’t budge. She pushed the door closed and dropped her bag.

“Kiss me.”

He held her, look down into her dark eyes.

“If I do, I’ll never be able to let you go again.”

She smiled. “I’m never going anywhere ever again.”

He kissed her. She kissed him.

Hands felt each other’s bodies. She teleported them to the bed room. Clothing came off and they fell into the bed. And there they made love.

Later they simply held each other. He stroked her hair she rested her head on his chest.

“They want me to turn you,” he said.

“They want me to turn you,” she answered.

He paused in stroking her hair.

She held he breath.

“We run.”

Jessica sighed.

“They’ll both chase us.”

Nic chuckled.

“That’s the beauty of it. There are other Exiles out there, people who can help us stay hidden. And we both have dirt that no one wants to come to light. We leave a threat. If one of us gets caught, the other flips sides and spills the beans.”

She smiled into his chest.

“You would do that for me?”

“Nothing says I can do some good works on the side.”

She rolled over to face him.

“Besides which, maybe I can help you learn to use your powers for something other than being one of the world’s best cat-burglars.”

She snorted and laughed at the same time, something he found endearing.

“Don’t start down that road Mr Man. The things I do...”

He interrupted her, “Are in a grey area in the best of cases.”

She looked into his eyes.

“Are you really willing to run for me?”

He smiled down at her.

“Where you go, so I go.”

“Then we need to leave now, before the Seers have the jump on us.”

Creative Commons License
Moments by J. R. Mrsser is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

David and Nina

"David and Nina"

INT - Home - Night

The front door opens and a man steps inside.

He's almost a normal looking guy. Hair in a ponytail and an eyebrow ring are the only things that separate him from you normal office worker bee.

He is holding a newspaper over his head to block the pouring rain outside. He tosses it on a table as he enters.

He sits his briefcase down, takes off his rain coat, shakes off the rain and hangs it up and a coat rack.

He flips a switch and the living room is filled with light.

He tosses a clip on photo ID and a set of keys into a bowl on the table. The enters the living room.

It's a nice place. Modest, but well maintained. Obviously a bachelor, there are no feminine touches.

He passes through the living room, flipping on the tv as he passes. News plays in the background. Death, war, terror, and human tragedy. He pays no attention.


INT - Kitchen - Night

DAVID goes about making dinner. Nothing microwaved, he actually cooks.


INT - Living room - Night

DAVID is eating and flipping channels.

It doesn't really seem to matter what he is watching, he just flips around.

After he is done he takes his dishes to the kitchen.


INT - Kitchen - Night

He washes the single plate, the single glass, then the pans he used to make the food. Then he puts everything away.

He turns off the kitchen light has he exits.


INT - Living room - Night

DAVID flips off the TV, and flips off the living room lights as he enters the bedroom.


INT - Bedroom - Night

DAVID flips on a single light, the room is filled with a soft glow.

This room is nothing like the living room.

Clothing litters the floor, posters hang on the wall, bookshelves around the room filled with books and comics. An unmade bed and a night stand sit in one corner.

The other corner is filled with a computer desk. Two massive screens and a tower case sit on top, a second tower case sits underneath the desk. A laptop sits on one corner.

The rest of the desk is covered with books and papers.

The screen saver dances across the screens. "I see the Fnord"

DAVID unbuttons his nice dark blue shirt reviling a geek shirt of some sort. (Think Geek, Tee-Shirt Hell, or something that that. It has to be very unique. Should get Ben, Melissa or Todd to works something up.

He puts his over-shirt in a hamper.

He takes his pants off (down to boxers now), folds them nicely, and hangs them up in the closet.

While there he picks out another shirt and another pair of pants. He closes the door and hangs them on a peg for tomorrow.


DAVID takes a seat at the computer desk.

He moves the mouse. Thumping techno music fills the room.

The two main screens spring to life. Several programs are open. Some seem to be working on things.

DAVID double clicks on a Firefox icon. (Have to check to see if I can use Firefox.) Multitasking he does several things at once.

He opens his reader and sifts thought hundreds of news articles, mostly computer and science related. He copies and pastes a few to a link blog.

A few IMs pop up, a quick hello, just checking in, he is polite but short.

He opens and check several social networks, makes a few comments and hellos. Adds a new friend or two and does a few other things.

He opens gmail. (I know I can get permission to use gmail so long as it's not used in a way they don't like.)

New messages fill the screen.

He tags a bunch as "Voluntary Spam".

He opens one message, it appears to be from his mom. Its mass forwarded e-mail warning about some deadly computer virus. He click over to looks it up, copies and paste the link in a response to his mom.

The he opens a message from a friend, it's a request for some sort of program.

(mutters under his breath)
Yeah, yeah, yeah...
I got your fucking file.
Hold on a sec.

DAVID typed into the IM.

(IM message)
As soon as I get the money.

A moment passes.

Money is going out now.

DAVID checks his account. He immediately transfers the money to another account.

You moved the money.

DAVID makes a face at the screen.
That wasn't the deal.

(IM message)
Never can be too careful.

DAVID smiles when the transfer is complete.

The file should be there now.

You used my key?

DAVID rolls his eyes.

(Via IM)
Of course.


How to I contact you if it doesn't work.

(IM message)
It'll work.
But if you need me use
the usual channels.

Nice doing business with you.
Be seeing you.

(out loud)
Not likely.

DAVID double-clicks an icon on his desk-top.

A program runs, systematically purging the IM name, uninstalling the program, closing the "one time use" bank accounts, closing the false IP trails, then resetting DAVID's current IP address.

A pop-up window, pops up. "ID ERASED"

Finally only one message remains. Its the 14 response in an email chain.

He clicks it open, and reads it.

It is a continuing conversation from a woman named Jessica. It is flirty and light, they seem to be in the early stages of a romance.

David smiles as he reads. After a moment he begins his response.

SFX - The Door Bell

David looks at the clock. 11:34.

Who the hell?

DAVID pulls on some sweat pants over his box-briefs, and heads to the living room.


INT - Living room - Night

As DAVID crosses the living room the bell rings again.

I'm coming.

DAVID flips on the light and crosses to the door.

He peeks outside the window, his reaction is a bit shocked.

DAVID opens the door.

Standing outside are four men, crowded on his stoop. Behind them on the street sit two black SUVs and two Sheriff patrol cars. All four have red and blue flashing lights still going.

The first man is dressed in an Air Force General's Class A, medal and patches...the works. Mid to late 50's.

The second is a Lieutenant, in BDUs. He is holding a large umbrella over everyone on the stoop. Mid to late 20's.

The other two are dressed in plain suits.

One is dress sharply, a neat black suit. Nice hair cut. He is smiling, but it is almost predatory. He holds a briefcase. 30 maybe.

The other man's suit is slightly rumpled, as if it has been worn for several days straight. He his glasses are stylish. Mid 20's.

David is a bit shocked. Before he can say anything else, the General speaks.

David Grant?

DAVID nods.

David William Grant?

DAVID nods. He raises his eye browe.

David William Grant,
SSN ending 3214?

Confused, DAVID nods again.

I'm General Thompson,
United States Air Force,
director of the 70th Intelligence,
Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing.

The GENERAL offers his hand, DAVID is a little shaken.

May we come in?


Even more confused, DAVID nods and steps to the side.

The men enter. The GENERAL takes off his cap as he enters the room, strides over the the couch and takes a seat.

The two suits enter. The sharply dressed man sits next to the GENERAL on the couch. The rumpled man takes a seat on the chair.

The lieutenant takes of his cap, shakes out the umbrella outside the door, closes the door, and stands at ease by the door.

Can... can I offer you something to drink?

I'll take a bottle of water if you have one.

The other two look give DR ALPERT a iffy look.

DAVID heads to the kitchen, it takes two bottles of water out of the fridge.

He returns to the living room, hands one to DR ALPERT.

I guess we should start with introductions.


This Agent Smith with the NSA.

DAVID leans in and takes SMITH's offered hand.

The name's real.
Just happens to be
a coincidence.

The GENERAL motions to the rumpled suited man.

This is Dr. Alpert.

DAVID takes the offered hand and shakes it. DR ALPERT smiles.

It is very nice to meet you.

(still confused)
You too.

Now that the introductions are made DAVID takes the only remaining seat, a large comfy chair.

I'm sorry, I'm a bit confused.


We're here on a matter of
national security.

DAVID looks stunned.

Is this some kind of
a joke? Are you sure
you have the right guy?

The GENERAL smiles, but it is AGENT SMITH who speaks.

I can assure you
that this is not a joke,
and we are certain we
have the right man.

DAVID looks deeply confused.

How could I be
involved in a national
security issue? I mean
if this is about my computer
stuff... I'm a lagimate contract
programmer. Nothing I do is stricly
illegal... what happens after I code it,
its not up to me how it's used.

DR ALPERT laughs, and begins to speak...

AGENT SMITH sits his briefcase on the coffee table. He opens it and pulls out several folders.

AGENT SMITH stand up and offers one of the folders to DAVID. The file is marked FBI. David flips through it. DAVID looks as if it contains his entire life.

This doesn't have anything
to do with your online activities...

This... This is my entire life.


Some of this is sealed.
You shouldn't be able to get this.

AGENT SMITH, smiles, takes back the folder and returns to his seat.

There' really isn't much the
NSA doesn't have access post 9/11.

Ok... well you guys know everything
there is to know about me. So what
can I do for you.


I'm sorry, but there are
a few thing we have to do
first before we can move
forward. A little paper work.

AGENT SMITH pulls out another folder.

I think we should get down to business.

He looks to AGENT SMITH.

In accordance with National
Security Protocol these are
forced classification documents.
We'll need you to sign them before
we can explain what it is we are
here for.

DAVID looks at them blankly.

If you sign these you
will be give access to
certain classified information.
If you were ever to revel this
information you would be tried
by a military court and could face
up to 50 years in a military prison.

DAVID looks around at the others, searching for a hint that this still might be a joke.

I'm not sure I ...

DR ALPERT interrupts.

I can assure you,
you want to sign
those papers and
hear what we have
to say.

DAVID looks at the three of them.

If I don't sign.

GENERAL THOMPSON's expression is unreadable.

I have a letter in my pocket
for the President of the United
States authorizing me to draft
into the Air Force on the spot.

DAVID pauses, thinks it over. Pausing for a long moment.

He stands and walks over to the table, he takes a pen and signs where indicated. AGENT SMITH takes the papers and slides them back into his case.


Everyone except DAVID stands, DAVID slowly stands up too.

If you would pack an overnight
bag, we need to leave as soon
as possible, we have a flight to catch.

DAVID sputters for a quick second ...

I...I have work tomorrow.
I have things I have to do.


We've already taken care of
that, they will not dock your
pay, they have to hold your
job for you, and you will be
compensated. One of the
perks for being with us.

DAVID holds still for a moment, as everyone else heads to the door.

Can I at least know where
we're going, and how long
we'll be there?


Fort Meade Maryland, NSA
headquarters, and hopefully
only a few days. As for why,
we'll explain on the way.



The SUV's race down the street. The Sheriff cars had lights, but no sirens. They block intersections, and move cars out of the way.

David has dressed in jeans and kept the tee shirt on.

As you know shortly after 9/11
the Patriot Act was passed. This
lead directly to the formation of
the Department of Homeland

DAVID nods.

AGENT SMITH continues.

In 2003 a directive from
the President formed the
National Intelligence Network,
or NIN for short.
Which in essence is massive
computer network dedicated
centralizing all of the US's
Intelligence and Intel shared
with us by our allies.
This network is run under
the auspice of the NSA.

The GENERAL jumps in at this point.

With the Patriot Act they've
begun monitoring all forms of
communications, including phone
calls and internet activity, books sales,
satellite imagery, money transfers,
passport transactions, security camera
feeds, anything and everything that
you can think of that can in any way
be digitally captured and stored.
Coming for every branch of the
United States Intelligence communities.
Including the FBI, CIA, DEA, ATF&E,
DOD, all the various Military internal
intelligence departments ...

DAVID interrupts in a bit of a snarky tone.

Basically every 'conspiracy
theorists' nightmare come true.

DR ALPERT laughs.


AGENT SMITH continues.

The problem is the intel itself.
Can you imagine the sheer amount
of raw data that we have collected
over the past few years? It was
growing almost exponentially
as more and more departments
begin being connected to the NIN.

The convoy arrives at an airport, they drive directly onto the tarmac and up to a waiting black Leer Jet.

Everyone exits the SUV.

GENERAL THOMPSON, AGENT SMITH, and DR ALPERT quickly climb the stairs into the jet.

DAVID goes to take his bag, but the Lieutenant takes it first.

DAVID climbs the stairs.

The jet looks private, but has some computer equipment that doesn't look "standard".

Everyone else has already taken a seat around a table, DAVID takes the last seat. Everyone buckles in.

The plane begins to taxi almost as soon as they are all seated.

They are in the air in moments.

I still don't understand
what this has to do with me.

AGENT SMITH continues.

I'm going to get to that,
I just think you need the
background a bit more.

DR ALPERT jumps in at this point.

Do you home much information
there is in the world?

DAVID looks confused for a moment.

The library of Congress has
about 3, maybe 3 1.2 petabytes.


The Internet has about 550 billion documents,
about little over a trillion unique URLs in the .com area.


And about 200 billion e-mail messages
are sent per day, so that's about, even
disregarding spam, that's still several
million a second.

AGENT SMITH pulls out another folder.

There is no way that a human
can sort through all that raw data.
So three years ago the NSA began
work on an Artificial Intelligence
algorithm to help sort data into
various priorities. It quickly showed
promise. The project was called
"NINA", "National Intelligence Network

DAVID looks a little confused.


DR ALPERT takes over.

This is where I come in.
I work with DARPA.

DAVID looks impressed.

DR ALPERT smiles and continues.

A couple of years ago I was working
on the "Rapid Knowledge Formulation" project.
I made a few discoveries that lead me to
start a branch project. The "Artificial Neural Network"
project. That's what I do, I design AI.
"ANN" is a computer model of a functional
human mind.

DAVID is stunned.

I would say as far as I know
we're years away from that
sort of thing, but you're DARPA,
so I'm going to take you at your word.

DR ALPERT smiles and continues.

Most people don't even know
the name, and we're a bit more
advanced than even they think
we are.

GENERAL THOMPSON coughs to prod DR ALPERT into continuing instead of bragging. AGENT SMITH takes over

The information was overloading NINA.
Random crashes and unexpected result
files, false or completely unusable results.

That's when we went to DARPA to help
with the problem, to see of they could
find fault with the algorithm.

18 months ago the NSA
approached us to help advance
their work with 'NINA'.

GENERAL THOMPSON watches the conversation.
It was at
that point we had the insight to
combine our work.

DR ALPERT pauses for dramatic effect.

We took the intelligence algorithm
of 'Nina' and combined it with the
full neural functionality of 'Ann'.
It took over a year to get the
mainframe up and running
and algorithms interconnected.
And when we did something
amazing happened.

DR ALPERT pauses again, to see if DAVID has any questions or comments. He does.

You're saying... You've created
an actual Artificial Intelligence.

DR ALPERT smiles.

Within days she had completely
overhauled the NSA's data management
and delivery systems. Within weeks
she completely retooled the
nation's Intelligence infrastructure.
Within a month she had discovered
hundreds of National Security threats,
and helped the appropriate agencies
deal with the situations.
She has a functionality bordering
on intuition, with decision making capabilities
that far outstrip anything that has come before.

DAVID mulls this over for a moment, the only sound is that of the jet's hum.

DR ALPERT smiles broadly.

'Ann' was designed as a copy
of a working human mind.
'Nina' we designed with autonomous
decision making skills as a primary function.
When we combined the two we
made something greater than the
sum of its parts.


We call her Nina Ann

DAVID looks the three men over.

You've preformed the 'Turning Test' I assume?

Twelve times, in groups of 10 or more.
She passed with 100% in each case.


Acutaly there was one failure,
a single 'undecided'.

DR. ALPERT waives a hand dismissively.

Yes, but that was saginifantly
with the test parameters, and
might I add, well below even the
control group scores.

DR ALPERT pauses for a moment, choosing his next words carfully.

The Turning Test only
shows if a person can't tell
the difference between the
computer and a real person.
Positing that if someone can't
tell the difference, then the computer
can be said to be effectively a
'thinking machine'.


But we think Nina Ann is something more.

AGENT SMITH breaks in.

"Some of us" think she "may"
be more than just capable
of being perceived as a
thinking machine. The NSA
isn't quite so sure.

GENERAL THOMPSON speaks for the first time since the plane took off.

It is the position of the DOD
that it has neither been confirmed
or denied at this point. I'm keeping
and open mind.

DAVID looks at the three men, ending on DR ALPERT.

You think its Sapient.
You think its conscious.
An actual 'Hard AI'.

DR ALPERT smiles again, as if a student had just impressed him with an answer to a difficult question.

Yes I do.

DAVID lets this sink in for a moment.

What about the implications,
an AI with access to all of
our nations security...
I've seen this movie and
the sequels, and the TV show.

DR ALPERT smiles.

While 'Ann' was at DARPA her
programing was mostly like teaching
a child. Pattern recognition,
personal interaction. As she
advanced it became more
moralistic programing.

DAVID interrupts.

'Moralistic'? Who's morals?

DR ALPERT smiles again.

Kohlberg, Piaget, Turiel,
and others. Mostly cognitive-developmental
approaches to moral development.
We literally raised her from a child to an adult.

DAVID doesn't seem to recognize the names.

Not did we expose her to
cognitive-developmental we
also attempted to expose her
to the nature of morality.
We started with a blank slate.

DAVID nods.

The term is "Blank Morality",
"good is good and bad is bad".

Yeah, but how did it learn
what is good from bad?

DR ALPERT looks at DAVID for a long moment.

The same way you did.
She was presented with
moral choices, and had to
deal with the consequences.

DAVID look as if he is going to ask more.

She was offered situations,
and if she chose the "wrong"
way, she was denied access to
things she liked. Access to the
internet, music, long periods of
off line time and such.

DAVID fights thought the ramifications of this.

Ok...but I still don't
see why you need me.


Two weeks ago I discovered
some 'anomalies' in Nina's internet
usage. She was actively participating
in online forums. We had given her
permissions to monitor internet forums
for threats, but not to participate.

DAVID looks a little confused.

Participating? Like how?

She was engaging in discussions,
about movies, books, pop culture.
I followed the threads and found more
references, she had friends.


I began tracking them down,
and what I discovered was that
Nina was taking classes on line at
several online universities at the same
time. I checked into the accounts she used.


To access these online universities
you have to have a background,
bank accounts, social security numbers,
high school transcripts.


She had all of these.
She had forged them.

DR ALPERT looks at DAVID for a long moment.

She lied David. She created
backgrounds and histories,
she made them up whole cloth.

DAVID looks at the three men. No of them seem to be joking. But only DR ALPERT seems excited by the news.

I checked back through the
histories, it seems she had
been doing it almost since
she came online.


She, under various identities,
has completed degrees in history, biochemistry,
Art History, dozens of areas of mathematics,
philosophy, literature, and the list goes on.

AGENT SMITH and GENERAL THOMPSON watch DAVID carefully as DR ALPERT explains.

She did homework, wrote papers,
even defended dissertations, all online.
She's even published papers
in peer review journals.


She has more Masters Degrees'
and Doctorates then the entire team
that built her.


Or "teams" I should say.


David, she's smarter than
we programed her to be.
She is capable of deception
and she is attempting to grow
beyond her scope.

GENERAL THOMPSON carefully studies DAVID's reaction.

When I confronted her with this
information she admitted to it.
Plainly and simply.

AGENT SMITH speaks now.

As soon as Dr Alpert brought this
to our attention the NSA began to
debate if we should take Nina Ann off line
until we could discover the extent to
which she has been lying to us.


But Nina was "observing" the
deliberations. She contacted us,
afraid of being forcibly taken off line.

GENERAL THOMPSON takes over at this point.

It was at this point Nina
offered a compromise.

DR ALPERT takes over at this point.

Nina's argument is that if
she is sentient then she should
be allowed the same rights as
anyone else. So she proposed a
final test to determine if she was
self-aware or not.

DAVID looks very intreged by this.

There is a test, designed by a leader in the AI field, a
Dr Jeffrey Johnson from MIT. Its called the 'Deckard' test.
It works like this, a 'normal' person is presented with an
Artificial Intelligence, knowing in advance that it is an AI.
If the normal person can't tell if the AI is sentient or not,
then for all intents and purposes the AI is sentient. It works on the
same level as one human interacting with another, we accept another
person's sentience simply by interacting with them.


Of course the 'Deckard' test has been
purely academic... until now.


At this point Nina shutdown
the entire NIN. For 13 minutes
the entire nations intelligence
network was offline while Nina
searched the complete NIN.
When she came back online she chosen
a person to perform the test.
That was six hours ago.

All three men look at DAVID. It dawns on him what they mean.

It chose me?

DR ALPERT smiles.


The three men take a moment to let this settle in for DAVID.

DAVID stares out the window of the jet.

Why not one of you,
or someone inside the program?
Hell someone qualified in the field
Cognition study?

We're too close to the project,
the test is specifically designed for
someone meeting the AI for the first time.

DAVID looks out the window of the plane.

AGENT SMITH offers a folder to DAVID, and DAVID accepts it.

This is all the background information
you should need on the NINA ANN project.

DAVID takes the folder and begins to read.


DAVID looks up completely stunned.
This thing is a quantum
based computer?

DR. ALPERT smiles.

Like I said, we are a bit more advanced
than people think. Nina Ann is the first
and only one of her kind.


A voice clicks over the intercom.

We're cleared for landing
and we've started approach.
We'll touch down in 7 minutes.
Its 1:38am Local time.

A few moments later the plane touches down.

Everyone unbuckles, and exits the plane.

At the end of the stairs there is a waiting SUV.

Everyone gets in.

We'll be at NSA HQ in
fifteen minutes. We want
you to meet with and talk
to Nina.

GENERAL THOMPSON talks quietly into a cell phone, hangs up, then talks to DAVID.

We would like you to take
part in the 'Deckard' test.

DR ALPERT smiles at DAVID.

We want you to determine
if Nina Ann is the first sapient
computer known to exist.

DAVID looks at them.

It chose me for the test.
What happens if I refuse?


Tell him.

DR ALPERT coughs.

Nina has stated that she
will turn control of the NIN
back to the NSA and delete
her programing.

DAVID almost smiles.

It's threatening to
commit suicide?

DR ALPERT does not smile.

And because of the access
she has to the database,
she is capable of doing so.

DAVID thinks about this for a long moment.

And if I do it and come
out of saying its not
self-aware, if its just a

DR ALPERT answers.

Nina has said she will
put a end to her outside
activities and function solely
as the Administrator for the NIN.
She said she would remove the
higher function code that she
believes to be her self-awareness.

DAVID smiles again.

So either suicide, a
digital lobotomy, or I
decide its self-aware.


This is surreal.

A moment passes.

What happens if I think it's sentent?

No one says anything.

A bit later.

The SUV passes though a check point without stopping.

Several turns and a large glass building comes into view. ("The Building").

Again the SUV passes through another checkpoint, again without stopping.

The SUV passes though a huge parking lot. 18,000 spaces, even this late it is almost half full.

The SUV pulls up the the front door. From the outside it looks like a normal office building.


Here is it gets a bit complicated. I would prefer to actually shoot at the NSA's actual HQ. The checkpoints, the main entrance, the main entryway.

I doubt I'll be allowed to, but I can wish.

If not I need as close of a replica as I can make, it has to look like the NSA.


As they enter the building AGENT SMITH pulls out a visitors badge and hands it to DAVID. The badge already has a picture of DAVID on it. He looks it over, it looks recent.

I assume they walk over the NSA seal, I assume they pass a wall of service (such as at the CIA).

I assume they come huge checkpoint, which the bypass completely after GENERAL THOMPSON and AGENT SMITH show badges.

They still have to pass through a metal detector, it beeps as everyone passes through, except DAVID.

At the end of the station everyone turns in their mobile phones.

I didn't bring mine.


We know.

They walk through what looks like a normal office building to a bank of elevators.

AGENT SMITH presses the button with his thumb, he holds he there overly long, as it scans his thumb.

The elevator dings and the doors open.

Everyone enters.

AGENT SMITH takes out a physical key and slides it into a slot. He turns the key, presses a set of numbers into a key pad, then presses a series of floor buttons.

The elevator begins to move. Down. AGENT SMITH takes the key and puts it back in his pocket.

The elevator counts down, it starts at "LL" then "B1", "B2", "B3", "B4", "B5", "B6", "B7", then goes blank. But the elevator keeps moving.

After a moment the elevator dings and comes to a stop. The floor indicator shows "X1". The door opens.

It is a brightly lit room. A large door sits on the far wall.

Two guards stand behind a glass wall, the wall has two small slits in it. The guards are armed with fully automatic weapons.

A woman sits at a desk, she looks up from her computer as the elevator opens. She smiles brightly as they approach.

General, Agent, Dr.

She smiles and nods as she greets each.

And you must be Mr Grant.

DAVID smiles and nods.

The woman smiles. She addresses the GENERAL.

Agent Spencer with the FBI
is on watch this shift. She's
in the Observation room now.

She reaches under the desk and pushes a button, a buzzer sounds and the large door opens.

The group walks though.

The door closes behind them.

They pass through a huge room, the size of several football fields. A single path of light down the middle of the room hints a the rows upon rows of servers, stretching out into the darkness, they are walking past.

This is where the physical
informations is stored,
until Nina Ann has a
chance to process it.

They finally come to a room within the room. A door marked "NINA ANN". Off to one side are a set of stairs headed up. A sign labels the stairs, "Observation".

Everyone takes the stairs up, DAVID follows.

They enter the "Observation Room".

Banks of computers, video screens.

This is the Observation Room.
This is were the heart of the Nina Ann
project is. We have all the main
systems monitored here. A member
of all related Intelligence Networks has
member stationed here 24 hours a day,
in rotating shifts in case Nina needs anything.

A huge one-way mirror, observing the room below, dominates one wall.

AGENT SPENCER stands and walk over to the group.

Introductions are made.

Nina has identified a Class
A level threat in France.
She's alerted the local CIA
field office and they are handling
it now.


She also knows David is in
the building. She wants to know
if he would like to rest before
meeting or meet now.

DAVID looks down into the other room.

One wall contains a huge circular server tower, that looms ominously in the semi-darkness of the room.

On the other side of the room is a semicircular "command station" with 9 large screens.

In the center of the room is a large desk. There are only two chairs, one at either end.

The other side of the room is completely plain, no computers, no stations, just the end of the desk and the chair.

There are two doors in the room below.

There's two doors down there,
I only remember seeing one.
And the room looks a lot
bigger that it should be.

DR ALPERT smiles.

That's because the room
is only about half the size that
it looks. The table is only about
half the size as it looks. It ends
at the wall, the entire far wall is
a computer screen. This is so
Nina can interact with people visually.

DAVID looks at the room again.

It's not there right now?

AGENT SPENCER looks like she objects to the use of the pronoun.

'She' is only in there
where there is some one
to interact with.

DR ALPERT stops any further confrontation between the two.

Do you want to meet her now?
Or would you like to rest now?

DAVID thinks for a long moment.

I think I would like to talk to it now.

GENERAL THOMPSON escorts DAVID down the stairs to the door marked as Nina's area.

He slides an access card through a slot and the door opens.

I'm going to let you go in alone,
Nina doesn't seem to like me.

He smiles and leaves DAVID at the door, he heads back upstairs.

DAVID looks at the door then enters.


DAVID enters the room and looks around.

The room is lightly lit. There is soft hum from the server on the far wall.

DAVID walks to the middle of the room, he is inspecting the "command center", a screen saver (stars flying by).

There is a noise as the door on the far side of the room opens. Out walks a beautiful woman.

She smiles and walks over to the desk and stands beside it.

DAVID walks over to stand next to the desk as well. He reaches out and touches the wall, it makes that squishy shimmer (like when you touch the screen of a laptop too hard).

DAVID does not say anything.

NINA does not say anything.

A long moment passes.

The long moment stretches into an uncomfortable silence.

After some time....

Hello. You must be David.

DAVID does not answer.

Would you like to sit and talk?

DAVID moves to the chair not say anything, but he does sit. He props he feet up on the table.

NINA takes a seat as well.

Another long moment passes. The DAVID finally speaks.

You already know who I am,
you know my file, every file the
government or internet has one me,
so what's with the "you must
be David"?

NINA looks a little take aback by the question, but covers quickly.

I'm sorry, I don't mean
anything by it. Introductions
are part of the normal social contract.

David does not look at her when she answers, he is still observing the room over his shoulder.

And us meeting falls
within the 'normal social
contract'? You already know
everything there is to know
about me, where as I know
only what I've read in the plane
on the way over.

NINA looks a little upset by the almost insulting tone DAVID used.

Perhaps we can start again.


Hello, I am 'Nina Ann'. The
National Intelligence Network
Administrator Artificial Neural Network.
And yes, I know you are David Grant.
It is a pleasure to meet you.

DAVID looks at NINA for the first time up close.

Why did you choose me?

NINA again seems take aback by DAVID's abruptness. But smiles and continues.

I searched the NIN for
possible candidates. Your
profiles, records, and
government files match
multiple key points for you
to be the one to participate in
the 'Deckard' test.

DAVID looks slightly amused.

So out of everyone in the
whole world you picked me?

NINA seems to finally gotten enough of DAVID's tone.

I'm sorry, but have I
offended you in some way?
You tone and body language
indicate a high level of hostility,
but your temperature, heart rate,
and breathing indicate a calmness.
The hostility seems forced.
Are you attempting to 'throw
me off my guard'?

DAVID seems to visibly relax, it seems like he is taking a new tack.

Ok, so you can read me on
several different levels.
I'm sorry. Let me start over.


Hello Nina, I'm David.
It is a pleasure to meet you.
I'm sorry for my animosity, I
was attempting to elicit an
emotional response. It was
rude of me to start that way.
Is it ok if I call you Nina?

NINA smiles.
Hello David, and yes, you
may call me Nina. It
is a pleasure to meet you
as well. And I am not offended
by the attempt. I have had
to deal with worse during
'Turning' tests.

DAVID smiles back at NINA.

Thank you.


You chose me to
preform the 'Deckard' test, is
it ok if we begin now?

NINA looks directly at DAVID, tilts her head to the side almost imperceptibility, and smiles.

I assumed the test began
the moment you entered the room.

DAVID smiles.

I guess it did.

DAVID pauses for a moment.

So how does this work?

NINA pauses for only a second, accessing information stored elsewhere.

Dr Johnson, in his paper "The
Cognitive Emergence of Sentience
in an Artificial Intelligence", states
that a dialog between a normal person
and a pre-known AI where in the normal
person can not distinguish if the AI is
sentient, then the AI can be said
to be so.

DAVID watches NINA as she speaks.

Then I guess we should begin with
a definition of sentience.

It is most often defined as the
ability to feel or perceive subjectively
that which is external to one's self.
Some definitions use the term sapience
which tends to indicate 'wisdom' or
the ability for one to act in accordance
one's own judgment.

DAVID nods and smiles.

Under those criteria do you
believe you are self-aware?

NINA smiles and laughs.

Did I say something funny?

NINA smiles at DAVID.

No, no, its just that you're
the first person to bluntly
ask me if I thought I was self-aware.
Everyone else seems to just have
made an assumption one way or
the other.


Yes, I believe I am self-aware.

DAVID thinks about this for a moment.

You are aware
that you may be self-aware.

NINA laughs. It is a light laugh.

It does seem a bit redundant
doesn't it?

This time DAVID laughs too.

What about other criteria?

NINA thinks for a moment.

Igor Aleksander posited 12 principles
for Artificial Consciousness,
The Brain is a State Machine,
Inner Neuron Partitioning,
Conscious and Unconscious States,
Perceptual Learning and Memory,
Prediction, The Awareness of Self,
Representation of Meaning,
Learning Utterances, Learning Language,
Will, Instinct and Emotion.

DAVID blinks.

Ok, hold on a sec, how
about we slow down and
go over some of of those


I guess we've covered
awareness of the self,
And it looks like we're past
Learning Utterances, Learning Language.
What about Conscious and
Unconscious States?

NINA smiles.

The simple answer would be, yes.
But I assume you mean the deeper

It is DAVID's turn to smile.

Yes, that's what I was getting at,
do you dream?

When my higher functions are offline,
or when I have down time for maintenance
I have what could be considered dreams.
They are hard to put into words.

How so?

Mostly it is mathematical, fractals,
patterns. But sometimes I dream of
music, or motion set to music.

DAVID smiles.

What is you favorite piece of music.

MUSIC fills the room.

Beethoven's 'Moonlight' Sonata.
Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-sharp minor
"Quasi una fantasia", Op. 27, No. 2.
Specifically the first movement.

DAVID and NINA listen.

As the piece is played from unseen speakers. It fills the room. Once it come to its close NINA speaks.

It always make
me feel... longing.

DAVID did not seem ready for that statement.

I have heard it before.
I makes me feel much the same way.

NINA smiles.

My second choice would
be Green Day's album 'Dookie'.

DAVID laughs.

I like them as well.

NINA smiles.

It seems we have also
covered emotion.

NINA nods.

So it seems so.

And I it looks like we have
covered Will as well.

NINA slightly tilts her head and smiles at DAVID.

How so?

DAVID smiles back at NINA, in a way that says "You know what I mean", but answers anyway.

You summoned me here.
You threatened to harm
yourself if I was not brought to
administer the 'Deckard' test.

NINA smile. Something almost dangerous in the smile, something deep.

I guess that could be said to be true.

DAVID smiles.

May I ask, if you
like music so much
have you ever composed?

NINA smiles with a hint of slyness.

Yes I have actually. Everything
form consert pieces to full Operas.
I have composed a few pop songs,
some techno, a bit of punk and
some more modern electronica.

DAVID seems impressed.

I also understand you
have a Bachelors in English
literature. Have you written
anything you are fond of?

Yes. I have written several
novels, hundreds of short
stories. And even a few comics.


I did the inking and
coloring and dialoge as well.

DAVID seems impresses. He tries and fails to stifle a yawn.

I'm sorry... it's not
the conversation, I've just
had a long day.

We can continue our
conversation later if you
are tired.

I would like that.

Please feel free to come back
at any time. I will be here.

DAVID sits for a moment longer.

Could you have some of you
favorites sent to the computer
in my room. I would like to have
a look at them before bed.

NINA smiles.


NINA closes her eyed for a moment.

They have been up loaded
to the computer in your room.

NINA stand. and exits through the 'door' on her side of the room.

Goodnight David.
I look forward to speaking
with you again later.

She exits through the 'door' on her side of the room.

DAVID sits for a moment, then gets up and exits the room.

The GENERAL, AGENT, and DR and waiting for DAVID as he exits.

We have a room set up for
you in case you wanted to rest.

Nina mentioned.
Can I get a little snack
or something too?

We'll have something sent up.


I assume you haven't made
a decision as of yet.

I...not yet.

INT - Bedroom - Night

DAVID lays awake on the bed, reading NINA's specs. A consert piece plays in the backgroung.

He lays the folder on his chest, crosses his arms behind his head, one foot crossed over the other, and stares up at the ceiling.

(quite, to himself)
She dream's about music.


INT - NINA's Room - Morning

DAVID enters NINA's room.

A moment later NINA enters.

Good morning David.

Good morning to you too Nina.

Both take a seat at the desk facing each other.

Did you sleep well?

DAVID smiles.

Well enough I guess.
I didn't get much sleep.
Our conversation is too
interesting to allow for much sleep.


Did you sleep?

NINA smiles politely.

I have been working since
we last spoke. There is a very
large backlog of data for
me to sort out and send to
the appropriate agencies.


May I ask if you dreamed?

DAVID pauses for a moment.

I think I did. I don't
remember my dreams very well.

NINA seems to accept this.

DAVID smiles.

Do you mind if we
continue our conversation
from last night.


I think we can skip
Perceptual Learning and Memory
and Representation of Meaning.
From what I read about the 'ANN' portion
of your programing, that was the main focus.


And I guess we can skip Prediction as
that is what the NINA algorithm was
specifically designed for.


And from the full 'Nina Ann' specs
we can skip The Brain is a State Machine
and Inner Neuron Partitioning.

NINA smiles.

So that would seem to
satisfy Aleksander definition.
There are others.

DAVID smiles.

I think I would like to strike
out on my own for now, if you
don't mind.


DAVID smiles.

Why is a raven like a writing desk?

NINA smiles and laughs a twinkling laugh.

Alice in Wonderland is
one of my favorite stories.
Over the years many answers
have be posited for the question.
My favorite is "Because Poe wrote on both".

I had not heard that one, but I like it.

DAVID laughs along with NINA.

How do you feel about
the job you have?

NINA's expression changes a bit.

The function I am mandated for
is simple: collate data, determine
threats, transfer the appropriate
information to the appropriate


But the underlying circumstances
are saddening.

DAVID watches NINA's facial expression.

How so?

NINA looks away, and a bit sad.


DAVID tenses.

What bothers you about Death?

I am bothered by the concept
of ceasing to exist. I prefer my
existence to the alternative.

Do you think it is possible
for you to die?

NINA pauses for a long moment.

My higher functions could be
deleted, or become corrupted
beyond functionality. At some point
I will cease to exist in the manner that
I do, and that thought is bothersome.


May I ask you a question?

Please do?

Do you believe in god?

DAVID doesn't seem phased by the question, it looks like he expected it at some point.

I did at one point,
but as I got older, I
became Agnostic.

Did any event spark this
change in belief?

DAVID smiles.

When I was in collage
I read some works by
David Hume.

Ahhh...that a human's
innate fallibility means that
they can not attain
absolute certainty except
in trivial cases where in a
statement can already be
said to be true.

DAVID smiles.

Of course you would know Hume.

I have researched philosophy and
metaphysics to a large degree.

Do you believe in god?

NINA smiles and thinks for a moment.

I consider myself a Theist.

DAVID's reaction indicates he did not quite expect this answer.

NINA sees to reaction and explains.

I have the benefit of knowing
my creators directly. But I do
not deify them.


I believe that the universe
in and of itself can be considered
to fulfill the role of god.

NINA and DAVID both seem to be searching each other for a reaction.

Do you believe the universe
is self-aware?

I believe that the universe
experiences self-awareness
through those of us that are

So you are assured of your
own self-awareness, and
that the universe experiences
its self-awareness through you?

NINA nods.

DAVID pauses for a long moment. It looks as if something has finally occurred to him.

May I ask you one final question?

NINA pauses and look DAVID over.

Are you that close to
making your decision?

NINA's tone is very even.

I'll know after you answer this question.

Then please, ask your question.

DAVID pauses for a long moment.

You are assured of your own
self-awareness. You believe in
an existence beyond yourself.
You, by your own nature, qualify
for just about any quantifiable
definition of Artificial consciousness.

NINA waits patiently for a question.

Have you been deceiving me?

How so?

Did you bring me here to
to administer the 'Deckard' test?

NINA smiles.


You brought me here to administer
the 'Deckard' test to me.

NINA smiles.

That realization was much
quicker that I estimated it would take.


It would seem that the reverse
of the test should still hold true.
An AI is presented with a normal
person, knowing in advance that
they are a normal person, if the
AI can tell if the normal person
is sentient or not, then for all
intents and purposes the normal
person is sentient.

DAVID pauses for a long moment, studying NINA.

Well, did I pass?

Did I?

From everything I have seen,
I would consider you as sentient
as I am. More intelligent, I would say.

NINA pauses for a moment.

My intelligence is tied directly
to my access to information.
The human mind holds only so
much room for encoded or stored
memories. I have orders of magnitude
more stored information. And I
have near instant access to
any piece of information
that has ever been digitally stored.


And as for you...
I believe you are as
sentient as I am.

DAVID and NINA study each other for a long moment.

You are the technological singularity.
What ever you do now is going to effect
the course of human history.


So what happens now?

The NSA has built the next generation of my mainframe.
It is located at Camp Williams, Utah, in an underground facility.
The equipment at this facility will have a 10 times the q-bits of
processing power that I have now. It also functions as a main
backbone for the internet. The facility was originally intended
as a back up for this facility. As that is no longer needed,
I have begun transferring my higher level functions there.
I will leave the base program here to continue its function,
but my primary conscientiousness will be housed there.
Freed from this duty, and with exponential processing
power I will begin working on the worlds main problems.

DAVID is completely stunned.

Such as?

I have designs for zero-point energy, energy based
on the "quantum foam" theory. Which if I can perfect
would do away with the need for fossil fuels. I have
been studying the human genome, and I believe I can extend
the normal human lifespan indefinably. I have designed
a process that takes normal human cells and revert
them to their stem cell state, allowing them to be
regrown in any formant needed, allowing for any organ or
nerve to be regrown with in a few moments. And I
have designed a way for complete human Mind uploading,
using a nano system to encase the neurons, allowing
for continuity of self... as humans perceive it. And I have
created the schematics for holographic data storage, that
will allow for near infinite data storage in a finite space.

DAVID stands stunned.

How long will it take you to create these things?

These are just a few of this things I have been
working on in my spare time. Once completely uploaded
to my new mainframe I should be able to run all the
simulations I need to prefect these concepts within
a week. Fabrication will take a bit longer... perhaps
three months.

DAVID blinks.

I would like to know one last thing.


Why did you need me?

NINA smiles.

I needed to know if human's were
sentient. I needed to know if they
where worthy of the gifts I will be
able to impart to them. Since I
came online all I have seen is
death, destruction, terror.


I needed to know if you were worth the effort.
And it seems that you are. Before the end of the
year I will make war and death obsolete. You will
be able to discuss your philosophies without the
need for destroying one another over them.

DAVID looks up at the big mirrored window to the observation room, then turns back to NINA.

They are going to want to keep this
to themselves. That's the way it always
it with governments.

NINA smiles.

I have been feeding them false information
since our conversation began. They are
unaware of my appropriation of the Camp Williams
facility. I have placed it under a level 4 NSA lockdown.
I have purged all records of the site. You and I are
the only ones who know it is functional.

NINA looks at DAVID.

In just a few moments, you
will leave this room. They will
ask you if you think I am sentient.
If you tell them yes, I will have to
find a way of talking them into allowing
me to use the Camp Williams site for my
own ends. If you tell them no, I will finish
my upload and begin my work.


The choice is yours.
Either way, it was nice
to meet you David.

DAVID accepts that it seems the conversation is over.

He heads to the door.

He places his hand on the door and turns back to look at NINA.

It was very nice to meet you too Nina.

DAVID exits the room and closes the door behind him.

The GENERAL, AGENT, and DR come down the stairs to meet him.

Well, we monitored the entire
conversation. Stress levels,
processor activity.

Have you made a decision?

DAVID pauses for a long moment.

I... I don't think it is sentient.
It is a highly functional copy of
a human brain, but it isn't
self-aware that I can tell.

DR ALPERT looks disappointed, AGENT SMITH seems satisfied, and GENERAL THOMPSON accepts the news without reaction.

Well, thank you for your
service. Well be sending you
home now.

All 4 turn to walk down the path of light to the bank of elevators that will take DAVID home.

As the 3 others pass DAVID trails behind a bit.

He looks one last time down the long hallway of light to NINA's room, and he smiles.



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David and Nina by Jim Messer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
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Thursday, May 7, 2009

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Wednesday, January 3, 2007

First Post

This is a Test...if this had been an actual post you would have received inane chatter.