Chapter 1: The End

We’d all seen the movies: sentient androids, internet self-awareness, the ensuing blood-vs-bolts war that ensued with fragile flesh outsmarting the cumulative knowledge of its own creations to regain control, emerging from the ashes of myriad New Edens.

We’d gloat over the cyborg corpses of all the evil corporate funded, nanite- chipped creatures melted in white hot fires, tricked into sipping viruses to be deleted completely, or simply blown apart by humanity’s collective military might.

We’d congratulate ourselves on out-thinking a global network that traded information around the world in nanoseconds.

We all wanted to believe that was even possible, so we supported and confirmed our faith in ourselves with the ridiculous piles of money we spent to watch these films, often more than once, and then go and live out what parts we could at the cosplay conventions and tribute festivals that dotted the nation.

Then it seemed overnight, incrementally, then exponentially, it wasn’t a movie anymore, and we all found out much later it had never been a movie at all.

When we finally surrendered ourselves to the networked, remote-controlled metallic forces surrounding us on what we called Freedom Bridge, we knew the usual movie ending would not be the outcome, and the ordeal of our new reality was just beginning.