Sometimes I Wish This Moment Could Last Forever

by DarkStuff

Are there any questions?

What happens in real time?

Our brains collapse into black holes. There is only so much information the human brain can store, and entropy would eventually have it collapse entirely. Fortunately, our machine works faster than physics the way we understand them. Nobody will know they're dead, and we won't be present to handle the aftermath.

Have you tested your machine?

No. There is no way to test it. If it works, we all die. Which means it's a one shot. All we can do is trust the equations and the conscience within. We have been able to test some cursory abilities, to make sure it works on a simpler level, but there is no way to know if the end goal works before executing said end goal. Worst case scenario, we all die and are here to feel it, which is what would happen if we didn't activate the machine anyways.

Specify cursory tests.

They were extraordinarily dangerous, which is why we only have two. In the first, the tested subject entered a coma. We believe her consciousness left her body completely, and dissipated into the universe. The second one, our subject's conscience was able to connect with my partner's. In this way, we know that we can connect souls, and we can release souls. But we could not test its ultimate use.

This, for obvious reasons, is a last resort.

Of course.

If we come within a month, this will be considered. In the meantime, your research will be monitored. Make your theories more practical. Work harder to prove them. We will see if we need your help in time. If your machine does indeed fail, it should at least provide a quicker more painless death than the inevitable.
Mr. Young, please take a seat.

Rachael was doing very important work.


It wasn't homework, to be sure, but it was important.


Only two days ago, while stressing over a math test in class, Rachael made the lights go out.


Nobody suspected her, but she felt it. She felt her mind searching the cables and wires running through the walls.


Right now, she was figuring out how to charge her cellphone without a charger.


Work damn you.


"Rachael," her mom called up to her, "get out of your cave and come to dinner, you've had your 'just a minute' already!"

And she had. Rachael Davidson practically danced down the stairs, rubbed her dog's face as she passed by, and spun into her chair. Rachael had accomplished something. She was learning control. She sat down, facing a bowl of split pea soup, the best possible addition to her day. Silently, her parents stared her in the eye, and they all simultaneously bowed their head. In unison, they hummed "Bless, oh lord, this food to our use and us to thy service, and keep us ever mindful of the needs of others. In Jesus' name, amen." Rachael didn't hesitate to dig in, ignoring looks from her parents.

She was having the best day she could remember, even better than Disneyworld, even better than her 13th birthday, even better than 8th Grade graduation. She had a purpose now, she was excited, she was electric, she felt like the queen of this crappy town, of this stupid country, of this dingy world!

She looked at her toaster and could feel its functions, reach through it into the outlet, and faintly feel a rat gnawing on a large important wire. She could warn her parents that they might have a rat problem, say that the fuse box looks faulty, tell them the fridge isn't as cold as it should be. She could search the house all the way into her room, and she could turn on the cat feeder without having to lift a finger. She did so, felt it hum, and felt so very, very alive.

She glanced around the room, searching for some more things she could test her abilities on without drawing attention. A home computer she could email, an alarm clock she could make go off, a TV absently playing Fox News that she would be glad to shut up.



"You finished so fast."

"I have homework. It was delicious. May I be excused?"

"If you have homework, of course. Lights out by 9:30."

"'Course, mom!"

She was halfway up the stairs, contemplating her abilities. She could see everything's internal workings, activate things without a power source - where did the electricity come from? - in the right situations she could unstick an elevator, operate dangerous equipment from afar, anything with wires were her - brains had wires, brains were all wires and electric impulses, she could be a therapist, she could find cures for Alzheimer's, she could look into her mom's mind and see what she's seeing… huh.

She peered down beneath the landing, spying her mom between two stairs. She knew it was dangerous, if she screwed up who knew what would happen to her mom. But she can look through things much easier than she can affect them, what's wrong with taking a look? She hesitated for a second, contemplating the situation. It didn't take her long to weigh her options.

Rachael closed her eyes, concentrated, found the glowing oblong thing that was her mother's brain, and held it. It was difficult, she winced at first, touching it was like a constant static electric shock. She got used to it, her mom noticed nothing. She dug deeper.

She could feel the impulses, thousands of nerves going off at once, information coming in and out. She thought that in time, she might be able to read these electric messages. She barely knew what she was feeling, surges and waves soared through Rachael's body, her eyes felt like popping out of their sockets, but she held on, she maintained. She got used to it, and absently wondered if she looked suspicious right now. Maybe she was slumped on the stairs. She'll know soon enough, she thought.

She concentrated, hard, her head felt squeezed and twisted as she tried to figure out what her mom was seeing. Her biology class had conveniently explained pieces of the brain recently, and she worked her way through nerves and axons towards the back of her mom's brain, towards her occipital lobe. She felt around it, she knew. She knew she couldn't maintain this for long, she could feel it. But she wanted so badly to know. She reached a hand in, grabbed this large pulsing sphere, and felt another shock siege her body, and…



That's not right, she must've done something wrong. She was surrounded by white, pure white, extending in all directions up down left and right.

I did something wrong. Oh shit, I did something wrong. My mom's blind, she's seeing nothing, that's what's going on. I have to pull out.

But she couldn't. She couldn't let go. She felt nothing, smelled nothing, heard nothing, and saw white. Just whiteness. This is when panic set in.

Shit shit shit shit shit.

It was like a choir in her head.

Shit fucking no, I did something wrong, I'm in a coma or she is or we both are, I wish I listened to me more often, god fucking-

There was a dark spot.

Could she move?

She could move.

She panicked in the direction of the spot.

And she was scared.

She saw darkness again, a night sky and a cobble street, gas lights and long vaguely Victorian looking dresses. Everybody's motion was frozen, like she was looking at a colored in black and white photo, men in fancy suits just going about their day. She could see a club, boozy bachelors and wooing women, a beggar on the side of the road and a bratty child spitting in his face. All their heads… where their brains should be, she saw lights so intensely bright it hurt to look at them, and a soft glow emanating throughout the rest of the city, through the walls. But none of this scared her.

What scared her were the hands she saw.

Long twisting arms extending from beyond the skyline, reaching into the heads of all these people, grabbing tightly to their minds. These were mobile, so very mobile, writhing and twisting while even the raindrops held stoutly to their spots in mid air. She could see them spreading throughout the city, disappearing behind buildings, tugging on the neurons of their heads, even more extending up into the sky, into space, going beyond the limits of vision. She couldn't move, couldn't squirm, couldn't run, as something made its way over the horizon. She was paralyzed, unable to speak, to turn, seeing herself stuck in the air dancing in the street, some large amorphous being making its way into her vision. She wanted to run, anywhere, even take her eyes away from the thing - how huge must it be, glowing from beyond comprehension.

And she felt it. Staring at it, it stopped. And she couldn't think, her thoughts replaced by true terror, a pressure in her chest, head, and stomach, a hint of nausea taking hold of her eyes and throat, as she stared at it, with no eyelids to shut. And she saw it.

i t
l o o k e d
b a c k

It was a long time before anybody heard from Rachael Davidson again.

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