Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Orange world

"May I be excused?"

Mom did not even budge. Both she and dad were eating dinner. I wasn't really that hungry, and I had something else to do.

Quietly I slipped out of their sight and went away.

The elevator door opened to reveal a strange world.

"At seven in the evening sharp okay? Don't forget." that was what he said.

Noiselessly I walked past the protocol lobby clerk. These days, PLC's don't really do much. Things would have been different just a year ago. Everybody who entered or left must go through at least three PLC's before they could successfully pass. Now, you just walk past them without them even batting an eyelash.

The world outside was steeped in vivid yellow and orange, as if stuck in perpetual sunset. As I stepped out of the building, I can spy for miles on end endless roads going nowhere in particular. Building walls glowing in shades of yellow, red and orange adorn the roadsides. I wonder how many of them are real?

Across the corner would be the intended meeting place. I had very fond memories of that place; that was the place where we first met! It was also the place where we would always agree to meet, and always at seven in the evening sharp. We would share some fond memories there: the first time I held his hand, the first time we watched the perpetually setting sun aimlessly, our first hug, our first kiss. If there was one place on Earth where I would like to be, that place would be it.

We would often meet every other day, sometimes skipping a day or sometimes meeting two consecutive days. He would almost always initiate the former while I would initiate the latter. You can say I just can't get enough of him really, every moment I spend with him was truly enjoyable. Of course he would leave at eight P.M. sharp, I dread the hour but what can I do?

Slowly I made my way across the bright orange streets, walking past empty building facades and virtuals. You can tell real humans from virtuals by the unique tags they are wearing. Each one is marked with a number unique to the human. Virtuals are merely empty shells created for the humans of this world: doing labor, calling attention, sometimes even becoming their partners. While I always laugh at people with a virtual hanging on their arms like a real person, I guess some people are just not that gifted with attracting mates. Not like him I guess.

Still, even with the tags on, its often very hard to distinguish people from people. Humans can change their appearance anytime they want. They can change their clothes, shoes, accessories, faces, bodies; their limited to just their imagination to use the cliche. As for me, I just go as myself, I don't really mind being myself here.

From where I am right now, I can see the orange sun that gives the world its distinctive red orange glow. I don't know who wished for it to be this way, but it sure is beautiful. It's an acquired taste though, so it's not like everybody likes it this way.

"Hi! How are you?" chimed a familiar female voice.

"Oh, I was just about to meet him, you know, the usual." I cheerfully replied.

"I see, well take care then! Be careful around him though, who knows what he might do to someone like you!"

"It's not like he's like that, and besides, it's not like I don't want him to do anything" I laughed.

After the customary goodbyes, I continued my walk to that place. People and virtuals pass me by, some of them unique, most of them funny. I walked past a couple of girls making out in a corner, a guy clinging to another guy. There was a mother and son couple who seem to be getting a little too intimate with how they hold each other's hands and how they exchange glances every now and then. I saw people in extravagant clothes, clothes no one in their right minds would wear. Every possible combination of people, fashion and relationships can be found in this world, and I have not even mentioned rule 34.

No sooner had I started walking when I got to where he told me to meet up with him. I was about to sit where I used to sit, but I decided to give him a little surprise. The cafe where we were supposed to meet had low walls with a few plants on top, obviously wake. I figured I'd wait and hide behind one of those low walls and give him a surprise hug grope.

Excitedly, I snuck behind one of the low walls and waited. It was six fifty five, five minutes and he'd be here. Peeking only ever so slightly, I waited for his arrival.

Ten minutes later and still he wasn't there. I thought maybe he was just late, probably something happened that held him up for some time. Still, I decided to give him more time, and the thought of his surprised face still made me tingle a little bit.

Fifteen minutes later and the tingling feeling was gone. It's annoying when people hold you up for long, but well, something big must have been up. I left the place where I was hiding and proceeded to walk aimlessly out of the cafe after paying the kind waiter who had been entertaining me with light banter every time he passes by my little hiding place.

I sat on one of the hand railings beside a road crossing, surveying the walkways around for any signs of him. The railing where I sat wasn't that much too far from the cafe and it gives me a good vantage point. Wherever he may be coming from, I can see perfectly from where I am sitting.

It was a good five minutes when I saw a familiar person walking. He wasn't wearing his usual clothes, and he looked slightly different, but I knew it was him. No matter how much people try to hide their identities here, some mannerisms are really hard to get rid off. I stood up to meet him, he would probably be surprised I knew who he was. What I saw next though made me stop dead on my tracks.

There was a girl. Clinging to him.

I can't tell if she's a human or a virtual. I really didn't care either which way.

And to make it worse, they...


And the world stopped right there.

I could hear my mom's voice repeatedly calling my name, I wonder why...

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