Friday, June 26, 2020

Fiction Friday: It's Dangerous to Go Alone

It's Dangerous to Go Alone

***Don't miss out! Click read more to read the whole story***

Installment 2 of Uploaded Gamers (Name pending)

Timothy Ahson, Timothy, even to his friends, checked the clock.

He didn't have time for another attempt. If Timothy were still alive, he'd have shaken his head before heading for the door to reach the airport. Being dead and a digital image of his former self, he held himself back from the pointless action and switched servers, hopping from The Wilds back to the servers in the Air Traffic Control towers. Five minutes early; Liz would already be at her desk, having pushed the previous shift out so she could settle in before the dance began.

"Hello, Elizabeth." By the Just, she looked old. Timothy remembered when she'd joined the union right after college.

"Hey, Ghost." Her eyes flickered to the monitor they had agreed counted as "him." Voice tense, shoulder tight. Timothy thought he'd learned how to read people before the car crash, but the AI assistance made him wonder how well the living managed. She punched a key hard, swearing under her breath. "Thought I'd have more time before the overseer showed up."

"Elizabeth, you know that's-"

She cut him off, standing from her chair to poke the camera, "Then what is it? I never had to put up with a digital overseer when Timothy was alive." She looked at the computer board of flights, reading the notes the previous shift had left, checking the weather, making small adjustments.

Timothy kept quiet, watching her decision-making process. Liz was gifted, better at the job than he'd ever been. He checked his own weather data, seeing the modeling figures coming from the NOAA cluster. Liz made all the right decisions, unless… "Elizabeth, I'm seeing some strange winds coming from the Gulf."

She looked at the data, "It's the Gulf of Mexico, Ghost. Weather is always a little off."

"True, but if we shift the Mexaira flights to approach three, even if the weather gets bad, the most they'll have to deal with is some turbulence." He put together a quick display of his proposed changes and posted them to the screen.

Liz looked at the data, "Okay, if this is so good, why haven't you done it already?"

Timothy didn't want to bring up the union charter again. "You're in charge here."

Eyebrow raised as she stared into the camera, "Really? You've got all of Tim's seniority, Ghost. I'm still registered as the 'Junior Operator' on this tower." She pushed accept on his proposed changes, and the tower fell into silence for several hours until the phone rang. "Flash-Cane in the Gulf? No, we've already accounted for that, no need to cancel the flights."

Liz hung up the phone, the room fell quiet until you could hear the computers' soft hum. "Hey, Timothy? You said you were having trouble in your wilding game?"

"The Wilds. And yes, I'm stuck on a low-level quest to kill some pig-men."

"Want a hand?"

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