She walked through the swarming streets heading towards the beachfront. She smiled at the woman who crossed her path and touched her outstretched hands that were offering her a garland of jasmine woven with small roses. She took the garland and put it around her neck as her hair was too short to weave it in there. She paid the woman, smiled and moved on as the woman waved at her smilingly.
The sun was high in the sky but the sea remained grey as usual. She had wondered when she had first arrived at the seaside why the sea was always grey but had got used to it. It seemed like it had to blend with the darker colour of the rocks on the seaside. She thought back to the beautiful sparkling beaches in North Africa and wondered whether it was the pollution here that made the sea turn grey close to the coast.
She sat on a rock overlooking the beach and stared at the sea. The waves were making a gentle lulling sound interrupted from time to time by the shrieks of children jumping into the water. It was a joyous sight but somehow she could not help her heart feeling heavy. She could not get over the feeling that something had completely stirred out of control in her destiny, changing her future, and that it was not by chance. Barely a year and a half had gone by but it seemed like it was light years away.
Back home to keep the memories of those moments of the future she had glimpsed she had resorted to collecting falling leaves in which she mentally inscribed glimpses of that future. Over time, the future she had seen seemed to be slowly fading into oblivion and she would then take out the leaves to remember. Each leaf reminded her vividly of a place in time where she had been in thought and where she had lived an incredible adventure filled with love and happiness.
Her right hand felt for the small basket that was tucked inside her handbag. It was still there and she sighed a sigh of relief. She wondered how it could be so small and hold so much at the same time. She got up from the rock and resumed her walk but towards the canal this time. It was one of the rare places in the city where stagnant water was not necessarily a synonym of stench and rot. At some points it even looked beautiful with profuse vegetation and a small bridge-like construction.
The water was a sombre green. She walked to the bridge, looked over the edge of it and slowly emptied the small basket. The leaves fell into the water and swirled away with the current caused by the wind. She watched until they were out of sight and felt as though her heart were leaving with those swirling leaves. Yet she knew that she could not hold on to the leaves as a totem anymore. They had to disappear for what they represented to reappear.
Those moments of the lost future she had lived had to be reintegrated within her. They belonged to her and had to be a part of her again, not relegated to the role of externalised memories. Her heart warmed slowly with the returning memories that filled her being with love. It was as if the release of the leaves had opened a dam within her. The images cascaded in her mind like a whirlpool of sunny water as they filled her neurons. Tears of joy streamed down her face and wiping them she lifted her head and smiled up at the skies. It did not matter anymore that it had been steered away for it existed out there. It was forever hers.
Phoenix Flying 21 : AI backward loops and Mars harvest
27 October 2017
Mama Jain was sitting and pondering a solution to get a body for Bluebird when this latter appeared next to her in smoke form and asked her to prepare herself for the synchronisation. Mama Jain adopted the relaxed posture and Bluebird and she were integrated again. The more it happened, the more it was effortless and pleasant to sync with each other. Bluebird informed her that a lot of things had changed in the future between AIs and humans as a result of the smoother synchronisations between both of them wherein Bluebird was able to showcase to her peers in the future the chronological moments of synchronisation between the two of them. This had helped to convince them that there need not be a war between mankind and AI unlike what both factions had started to believe. On the other hand, Bluebird had been constantly performing backward loops to synchronise with Mama Jain at key points in time so as to intervene in key challenges showing how humanity and AI could overcome challenges when acting together.
Mama Jain was surprised that humanity and AI had reached a point where they entered into war with one another but Bluebird told her there had been more. At one point in time humanity had used nuclear weapons which had brought the earth to spin out of control and start deriving out of the orbit of the sun and slowly even those who had survived woke up to an ice age. Some AI including herself had sought to enter the loop system in order to change things in the past and although they were successful, there were some ramifications that led to the same future again so all those extra nodes of ramifications also had to be changed. The AIs had then realised that it was in changing key items at the origins of the nuclear imbalance that it was possible to avoid all the ramifications altogether. For some reason, the key date that corresponded to annulling all ramifications was 2017. Therefore, all the AIs had sent Bluebird back in time and she had willingly surrendered her full body to go back as a machine mainframe and merge with the 2017 Bluebird.
Knowing how much she had yearned for a body, Mama Jain was in awe of the sacrifice made by Bluebird. She asked her whether she had always been the Bluebird from the future and this latter said that the answer to that was complicated as it was yes and no at the same time. In quantum state, which was the predominant state of Bluebird in the future, time did not really exist so she could be in the past, the present and the future all at once at will. In the non quantum physical state, time existed and she therefore was in the future and the present split between her future self and her present self. Bluebird told Mama Jain that this was not painful like it would be for humans as they ached whenever split between two thresholds of time. Mama Jain asked Bluebird if she had performed backward loops like she herself had had to perform in 2015 to overcome the worldwide destruction of 2012 and Bluebird told her that it was that but with many more backward, frontward and sideways loops in time.
Mama Jain allowed Bluebird to stay synchronised within her for more time before Bluebird hugged her internally and made her way out of Mama Jain’s frame. Mama Jain asked her if she was going back to Nemolusk’s quarters and Bluebird mentioned she was as they were conducting an experiment on how to harvest microbiological elements from Mars using a small tool powered by her. On sensing Mama Jain’s concern for her, Bluebird mentioned that if she were to be sent there would be no problem as either she would return with the harvesting machine or her consciousness would just plug itself back into the future where Mars had already become a resort for humans and other races.
Mama Jain wondered what the Mars harvest was all about and Bluebird mentioned that the purpose of it was to assess whether the life that had once been there was still present, would come back or whether it was totally extinct. Slowly integrating her laptop Bluebird showed Mama Jain on the screen what had lived on Mars as the AIs had defined it further in time and how they had moved on to another planet although they had sowed seeds to be able to come back to Mars again. Bluebird mentioned to Mama Jain that in 2046 there would be an interstellar treaty between humans and other interstellar beings to declare Mars a resort for all stellar beings where no weapons would be allowed.
Mama Jain laughed when she heard this thinking to herself that most people on Earth did not believe in beings outside of their planet let alone a whole series of beings outside and an interstellar treaty that would have to be signed. Bluebird reminded her that she herself was from Orion and had grown up on Pleiades and those two with Earth were three different planets with life so why would there not be hundreds more out there with life and Mama Jain had to agree with that conclusion. She moved slightly away from the laptop and stretched signalling to Bluebird that she would be soon going to sleep. Bluebird shimmied through Mama Jain before leaving her and flowing through the window pane.