Gookin’s Journal

In-character Subject: Selena
Submitted: 2007-3-24 03.35

"Exiles!"
"Fuck. Operator, load it!"

Bullets rained down on the two operatives. The female was scared. Fear showed plainly on her face. The male operative had gone very still, very silent. He simply knelt there, eyes closed. When he opened them, they glowed. It was like looking into two suns, they were so bright. The room had become bright too. The female operative could see nothing, hear nothing. There was only silence… and then warmth. What was happening? Her hand went to her stomach and it was then that her eyes went wide. Her shirt was soaked with a warm sticky liquid. She looked down only to see blood!
The male Redpill had disappeared, she looked frantically for him but her sight was failing. She slumped over and then she looked up to see a blurred shape and something glinting in the blinding glow.
The glow faded and the male operative shook his head. He turned and reopened his eyes to watch as one of the exiles empty the clip of his gun into the floor.
He watched, confused, but completed what he had come here for, he jumped and came down onto the back of the exiles neck, cracking it and destroying the exile. It was only then that reality showed its ugly head. The female operative he had been with was lying on the floor, a pool of blood surrounding her body.

"Selena!"

Gookin awoke screaming her name. The door to his cabin burst open and she, Procurator, Flare and SixTwoFive ran in looking around frantically.

"What happened?!?"

Gookin looked up at his captain.

"N-nothing, it was… just a dream. S-sorry.
"Gookin, dreams for you just aren’t dreams, we both know that. Tell me what happened."
"I-I don’t remember."

The first mate lied; he couldn’t bring himself to tell them that he had seen his wife be killed. The fear had returned to him, the same fear he had felt before the construct, the fear of going to sleep. Dreams had begun to haunt him again.

*

"Selena!"

She jumped out of the navigator seat and ran to her room, where her husband had screamed. She arrived to see Procurator ram his shoulder into the door and open it.
Gookin had dreamed again. She knew he’d had other dreams recently, but he would not admit it to her. When Procurator asked what the dream was about, she noticed her husband lie and her mind raced. Why won’t he tell Proc? She thought.
"I’m fine. Honestly."

Gookin looked up and smiled weakly. She glared at him, knowing he was lying. As he turned his face to her, he saw that she knew and looked away.

*

"You better be Gookin. Don’t you dare hide anything from us! Not again!"

There was anger, fear and concern in Procurators voice, all at the same time. He had a small suspicion that his First Mate was lying but he turned and went back to make sure FrayJack and Jediken21 were alright inside the Matrix. They were on an assignment to extract code from some elite commandos. It wasn’t exactly a dangerous mission, but Proc never trusted the system, especially not after Gookins recent ’incident’. He hated the word that had popped into his head to describe the event. It was no mere incident; it had almost cost him the life of his First Mate, his friend. He and Gookin had stuck together since Gookin joined the crew of the Aggregator. Both of them knew the ship inside out, they had seen operatives come and go. Some disappeared, others had contracted abscedosis, and others had chosen alternative paths for themselves. But not Gookin; they had stuck together.

"Everything alright Flare?"
"Yep. We’re all good. They’re jacked out now."
"Good good."
"Captain! Give us a kiss!"

Jediken had run into the room. He and Fray had clearly been into the alcohol store again.

"I think you best go lie down Jedi."
"Nah, come on just a little one."
"Jedi!"

Proc had uttered that one word with all the command he could muster. The drunken operative had noticed and just walked away silently. Any other time, Proc would’ve laughed. Jedi was one of the most comedic of the crew. Put him and FrayJack together and you’d be crying with laughter in no time. He didn’t like to admit it, but recent events were making the atmosphere aboard the Aggregator, very solemn.

*

"Why did you lie to Proc?"
"I… It’s… Ugh. I can’t lie to you Selena. But I can’t tell you either."
"Why not? What happens in this dream that is so bad you can’t even tell your wife?"
"Please Selena, drop it."

A small tear fell down Selenas cheek. She couldn’t believe that he wouldn’t tell her, after all that had happened, he was still keeping secrets.
A hand came up to her cheek and wiped the tear away. He pulled her into his arms and held her.

"Don’t cry. I’m sorry."

Selena began to sob. She’d almost lost him once. It wasn’t fair that he could be in danger again.

"I think it’s time I told you everything, Selena."

Gookin did. He explained about the meeting with Gray, the shotgun, the new program that would be implanted into his RSI and then finally… the dream.
He looked at her as he told her that when he looked down, she was dead. His eyes filled with raw pain.

"That’s why I didn’t want to tell you."
"I… I die? What does it mean?"

Fear was coursing through her and Gookin knew it.

"I don’t know. But I know one thing, I won’t let it happen."
"What if you can’t stop it? The program seems to take control of you."

Gookin thought about that. He’d already agreed to have the program implemented; there was no turning back now. But he couldn’t let her die. He loved Selena, more than life itself.

"I won’t let it happen!" He muttered quietly, "I won’t! If I have to kill every exile in the system, I will not let you go."

They stared into each others eyes. In his, Selena saw that pure determination and belief that still made her heart flutter. Gookin saw Selena relax and they smiled at each other weakly. He pulled her towards him and held her tightly, gently laying a kiss on her forehead.
There was a knock at the door.

"Come in!" They both said in unison.

Flare walked into the room.

"Oh… um… sorry didn’t mean to interrupt anything."
"It’s alright. What’s up?"
"There’s just been an anonymous transmission for you sir."
"Cut the sir crap Flare, I’ve told you that 3 times this week!"
"Sorry, force of habit."

The three of them went to view the transmission.
It was a one line message:

’Tabor Central. 5:00pm. Don’t be late. AG’

"Who’s AG?"

Gookin and Selena looked at each other. They knew very well who AG was.

"It doesn’t matter. What’s the time?"
"4.50 MCT."
"Ok. I’m going in."

He turned to Selena and kissed her softly.

"I’ll see you soon. Promise me you’ll stay here."
"I know. I will. I love you."
"I love you too."

With that, Gookin went to the jack-in chair and entered the Matrix once more…

Errors

If you see this box, please inform the Chief Archivist, quoting the error messages below and the URL to the page you were accessing.

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