Synthetic Journal -- Day: 10,991
Time: 19:01
Zone: Repeatable Results

Woke in a cold sweat, got up and smashed my mentalstat into a thousand pieces. First I made absolutely sure that the power supply was completely ruined and permanently non-functional. Then, for personal satisfaction more than anything else, I bashed in its little brain.

I knew that I wouldn't be seeing Nadja again to get her to undo whatever it was she did to the dammed thing in the first place.

I also knew what the inescapable consequences of this act of violence against a piece of required property would be. Ranger Diode and one or two of his goons would pay me a visit and fine me or invite me to accompany them down to the Hall of Rules and Etiquette for a day or two. Then the bastards would issue me a new tamper-proof model (the one in pieces on the floor in front of me was also tamper-proof) and bill my account for it. I didn't care. It wouldn't be the last time I'd be in trouble.

Even with my mentalstat in a pile of carefully broken pieces on the floor I wouldn't allow myself to sleep that night. When I thought I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer I went out walking. I walked through the night until I watched the sun come up over the entrance of the Zone of Genetic Progress. I kept walking until I couldn't go any further and then I caught a shuttle back towards my personalspace.

Sometime in the late afternoon I began to doze off in a chair. And sure enough in that twilight between waking and dreaming I could feel the NeverMind creeping into my head like a fog.


I dreamed of Nadja again. She is the Parks newest wonder. Beside her the replicas of the ancient ones seem shabby, run down and obsolete. She is all of them combined plus the library at Alexandria thrown in for free. Taller than the Tower of Onan she stradles the entrance to the Zone of Bold Horizons and gazes impassively out over the Park. She is the Colosus of Rhodes and the Pharos Lighthouse and the Hanging Gardens and those others I can never remember. The little red sparks in her eyes are now searchlights so bright they light up the noontime sky as she stares catatonically across the length of the Park and out into space. The voiceless narrator inside my head lets me know that Nadja has somehow gotten her wish.


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