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The Cabal of Iron

The Cabal of Iron

He watched as a hand reached out over him, its palm glowing faintly through the smoke. Up until a few moments ago, Randal had managed to comfortably drift through the ignorant bliss of his former life. But, as he lay there on the shattered remains of what had been his chair, covered in debris and shards of glass, it became obvious that all of that was about to come to an end. His reality was about be engulfed by the savage consequences of an invisible war.

In his new reality, Randal was caught between the Brethren, a martian extremist group that demanded a planet-wide purging of all AI systems, and TORUS, the neural network diligently controlled all the automated processes on Mars. But what did he have to do with ‘The Martian Amish’ and their radical anti-technology stance? Had he somehow managed to anger TORUS, as it omnisciently drifted through the 0’s and 1’s of cyberspace?

The questions weighed heavily upon his consciousness, but his time was about to run out. What remained of his life seeped out out of his body, and he could feel his consciousness begin to dissipate.

“Just relax,” a synthetic figure instructed coldly.

As glowing heat seared the skin along his temples, Randal felt what seemed like violent shaking; not just a vague tremor, but it was as if every molecule in his body had begun to vibrate. He had the strange sensation, that he was somehow being sucked up and transported somewhere. Randal wanted to scream in terror, but as fast as the sensation had begun, it stopped, leaving him with only darkness.



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