The Adventures of Gabriel Celtic

The Adventures of Gabriel Celtic

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Circles ~ Chapter 2 ~ The Continuing Sci-Fi Serial

Because it has been awhile since I posted a Circles chapter, I have included links to the first two installments below. Happy Reading!

Circles, The Beginning
Circles Chapter 1



Circles
Chapter 2
By
JT Lewis

Copyright 2012 by JT Lewis


The smile quickly disappeared from Nile’s face.
“You can’t work for us?” He sat leaning back in his chair, chewing on his lip with a confused look on his face. Leaning forward, “I must say, you’ve taken me by surprise Annie…may I ask why?”
Annie couldn’t believe she had said it either; she had every intention of accepting the offer when she had left her apartment that morning.
“Truthfully…I can’t give you a singular reason for my decision. I have to admit that initially I had reservations related to privacy issues. But seeing Cat just now….well; I was kinda overcome with a weird feeling. Like…a big brother thing.”
Niles leaned back, nodding his head as he mulled over her concerns. “Let me run a scenario past you if I may,” he said while looking down at his hands. “Let’s say that someone breaks into a house, say it’s someone you are close to. This man thinks the house is empty, but in the process of robbing it, he stumbles onto your loved one. In a panic, he pulls out a gun that he bought at the pawn shop the day before and accidently shoots the homeowner…your friend.”
“Sad right?” Niles leaned forward in his chair. “What if we could prevent that from happening? What if by finding a thread or two of this hapless burglar identified him as someone with a high probability of something like this. We could guess by his personal associations that he would be prone to falling into a life of crime by the people he hung around with. We might find that he knows several drug dealers, meaning he’s probably a user and needing money. Or, we could make an association by his lack of connections to an employer.”
“All of these factors might lead us to recommend that someone at least watch this guy a little closer. We have all the tools to do that Annie…at least we would with someone like you to lead us in the right direction.”
Annie was shocked. “Me?”
“You’re key Annie, without a psychological input into our programming, we’re just guessing. All we have then is a bunch of circles and lines, we need you to personalize it Annie… to keep us from becoming the Big Brother you are worried about.”
“But anyone with a Psychology degree could do that,” Annie said, conflicted.
Some people could do it with your degree, I’ll admit that,” Niles stated as he leaned back into his chair once more, “and some people could program it into Cat. But you have the unique combination of degrees that make you a natural for this…and you are predisposed to it.”
A confused look crossed Annie’s face, “Predisposed?”
Niles was looking down at his hands. Looking up, “yes, you have good connections in your life that make you predisposed to helping people. Your threads are all connected to good upstanding friends and family. The very reason you were concerned about taking this job is what makes you the perfect person to take it.”
“You analyzed me?” Annie felt immediately violated. “I don’t know how I feel about that Niles… gives me the willies.”
“I’m sorry Annie, I had a feeling you would feel that way. But let me explain it this way. It’s not really spying on you; it’s just looking at your connections to other people in your life. We don’t know what you had for breakfast, who you talked to on the phone, or if you had sex last night. We can only detect the threads in your life, how strong they are, and how close they are to you. Everybody that knows you knows of some of your connections, we are kind of like a big….friend!”
Annie’s feelings were waffling. She had been so sure of her convictions earlier, but now…?
Looking up at Niles, “I have an important question. I have heard what you have said, and it is making sense to me a little. And to tell you the truth, I can see where it might work out to be something important…as long as it doesn’t get abused.”
“Ok,” Niles said with a smile, “what’s your question?”
“Ok, say I do this and it goes awry in my mind. I see the system being abused or manipulated beyond the scope of what we have talked about. Can I get out? I can’t sign if I’m contractually bound by a time limit of some sort…I just can’t do it.”
Smiling, Niles nodded his head as he leaned forward in his chair anxiously.
“Absolutely! We don’t want someone here that isn’t happy with their work, or ours. You of course would have to abide by the Non-Disclosure Agreement that you have already signed, but otherwise you would be free to go at anytime. Obviously I hope that doesn’t happen!”
Annie looked intently into Niles’ smiling face, trying to detect any deception on his part. She discovered instead a captivating smile that she hadn’t noticed earlier. He was quite good looking when he smiled she decided then.
Making up her mind, she sat forward eagerly.
“Ok, I’m your girl…except for one last thing.”
Another worried look crossed Niles’ face again as he intently looked at Annie, trying to decipher her new concern.
Sighing… “Ok? What’s that?”
Smiling now, Annie liked the feeling of having the upper hand for once.
“How much are you going to pay me?”


Copyright 2012 by JT Lewis





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