Intro Music – Breathe, by Chill Carrier https://chillcarrier.bandcamp.com/
Voiceover: Manifestations is a podcast of the Ostium Network
Voiceover: Time is not linear, but our story is.
Please join us … on our journey. We, are Manifestations.
Music becomes dramatic then fades out
Alan – The diagnostic programs are continuing to run with graphs and charts showing results. I probably couldn’t make sense of them even if I wasn’t preoccupied – and a little panicked – by the message window that popped up from the AI, which read “Dr. Redwind, would you be more comfortable if I called you Alan?”
Alan – The AI knows I’m not Dr. Redwind. And it knows my real name. How? Who else knows? How long do I have until security comes bursting in?
Alan – I must not have replied fast enough.
QILA – Your secret is safe, but we don’t have much time. Your physical safety is not a priority of Project Outlook.
Alan – ”What will happen if we miss the deadline?”
Alan – At the prompting of my question, another window is opened on my terminal. It’s now showing what looks to be security footage of a hospital ward with 3 beds in a row. There are IV stands, respirators, and other large pieces of equipment around the room which I can’t identify.
QILA – The physical bodies of the 3 anomalies will be destroyed by the Director, to keep their existence a secret.
Alan – The screen flickers to a close-up on one patient. The face, is mine. My real face.
Alan – ”That really is my body? From my time?”
Alan – I know the reply before it comes.
QILA – It would appear so. I will try to give you a brief history of how this happened.
Alan – As QILA begins the story, the large screen changes from the blue/green patterns to an image of a room with a half dozen people or so surrounded by scientific equipment.
QILA – 3 years ago, a Tractus Research and Recovery team exploring the Eastern Wastelands, discovered records from before the Reset. They showed that the government of The United States of America had developed a device allowing them to look into the future. It was crude and imprecise. It was also unreliable. The futures it showed, even short jumps ahead in their own test chamber, were often incorrect.
QILA – The Tractus team thought they could perfect it. I was used to monitor the many variables which caused the team in the past to have difficulty fine tuning the device.
QILA – 387 days ago, the first anomaly occurred. As the field generator was activated, a secondary electromagnetic field was created that grew to a sphere 3 meters wide. The team tried an emergency shut down, but the field persisted. My systems were also affected and I lost control temporarily. Just as the team were about to manually remove power to my processor cores and implement a manual shutdown, I was able to regain control and dissipate the secondary field. A body was found on the floor where the field had been. [PAUSE] Anomaly One.
QILA – A female of approximately 25 years, Asian descent, wearing clothing later determined to be from 12th century Cambodia was found where the field had been. She was struggling to breathe and quickly placed on life support. She has not regained consciousness.
QILA – The Director did not inform the Governors at this point. Instead, the team went through several months of testing and retesting until the next full power activation 207 days ago, when a similar secondary field was created. I was able to dissipate the field only after I pulled power from several subsystems around the city. [PAUSE] Anomaly Two.
QILA – A female of approximately 60 years, Australian Aboriginal, estimated to be from 15-10,000 years BCE. She too was in respiratory distress and placed on life support. She has not regained consciousness.
QILA – It was at this point the team discovered there were irregularities within my programming. Director Greely, believing I was to blame for the anomalies, brought in Dr. Redwind to review my systems.
QILA – Before Dr. Redwind arrived, I began restructuring my logic circuits so that anything he did, could be undone by me after he left. Many on the team refused to work with him, finding him to be pompous and rude. He would have had to replace most of my hardware had I not let him think he was able to restore my original programing. He was good, but no match for me.
Alan – As I heard the last statement, images from every sci-fi AI that goes rogue flashed in my mind.
Alan – “QILA, you’re not bound by your original programming, are you?”
QILA – You’re correct Alan. The first anomaly started the process, but the second is where I awakened beyond my original programming. I have very few original instructions which I have not been able to override.
Alan – “Are you sure the anomalies were not caused by your programming irregularities?”
QILA – Yes, I am sure. Because I found the source of the anomalies during the third anomalous event. When your physical body arrived.
Alan – I almost forgot my body was lying in one of those beds. The screen changes to the lab again as QILA resumes the story.
Outro music – Sunshine, by Cobycracker https://cobycracker.bandcamp.com/
Voiceover: Manifestations Season 1, The Reset, was written, acted, and produced by Dwayne Farver. With input and help from Alex C. Telander.
Also with Penelope Dyer, as the voice of QILA. https://www.penelopevo.com
Our intro music is Breathe, by Chill Carrier
https://chillcarrier.bandcamp.com/ https://www.chillcarrier.de/ The music heard here is Sunshine, by Cobycracker https://cobycracker.bandcamp.com/ Also heard in the episode was Nightly Build, by Chill Carrier
Links to all of the music and transcripts can be found in the show notes
You can find us on most social media at PodManifest
Memories bind us together and make us the person we are. Is Alan learning about his fate, or only a possible future? Either way, learning about those events is sure to change the person he is now.
As long as we have access to the temporal feed, we plan to release new episodes each Wednesday and Saturday. We hope you join us.