Monday, August 31, 2009

Entry 48

The next few days on the ship were tedious and long. Or at least, so they felt to me. John spent the time learning as much as he could about the Universe we were now members of. He spent hours talking with Blaue about the current political atmosphere and the place of humans in Society. Blaue was never too busy to talk, because she could make several projections of herself. She could be talking to John and me at the same time while still working with Ven in the cockpit. As a hologram, she had no physical limitations.

While John spent his hours reading or talking, I was bored out of my mind. I guess I could have done research like John, but I had never been the kind of person to read about something before doing it. That was John. I swear he read the entire history of football before he tried out for the team. I was always the sort of person who just jumped in feet first. I joined band without knowing anything about music or instruments. I chose to play the clarinet because it seemed interesting. I did not do any research in advance. I never did. I just wanted to be a part of the Universe, not study it.

I suppose that’s why John and I have always made such a good team. He brings knowledge to the table, and I bring action.

[John would like to interrupt at this moment to say that his research has never kept him from action, which he feels is what I insinuated. He thinks I should not be encouraging you to believe my “sort of recklessness” is acceptable. Whatever John. I don’t like to waste time studying what I’m going to learn by doing.]

I spent a lot of my time exploring the contents of Ven’s ship. Blaue let me go anywhere except the cockpit and Ven’s personal chamber. I wandered through the cargo area, though I was forbidden to actually open any of the cargo. I fished through every cabinet in the mess hall and Blaue even let me make dinner for everyone one night. Sometimes I just searched my own room. My closet was full of wonderful clothes, like a clothing wonderland. The entertainment Blaue hooked me up with was the closest I came to studying the culture of the Universe. I started books so alien I could barely comprehend a word, even though it was translated into English. I watched movies so bizarre that they left my mind reeling. I did not let it bother me. The easiest way to understand a culture is to dive into it. Without any understanding, entertainment usually yields little to those of us who aren’t anthropologists.

What I really wanted to do was visit the cockpit, to see how the ship was controlled. Blaue tried to dissuade me from the notion, telling me it was not exciting. After all, she was the ship and she did most of the controlling. However, visions of Han Solo and Chewbacca maneuvering the Millennium Falcon filled my mind. I could just imagine the debonair Ven evading Imperial TIE fighters with the assistance of the witty and beautiful Blaue.

I harassed Ven unmercifully, trying every tactic from begging to ordering. However, nothing swayed him. He would not allow me or John into the cockpit. He was staunch, always saying, “The bridge is no place for a girl who has no idea what she was doing.”

“Is that what you tell your sister?” I demanded the first time he said it, thinking he was blowing me off because I was a girl.

“No, my sister is trained in how to fly,” Ven responded to my surprise. “I let her handle Blaue, with my supervision of course. “

“So teach me to fly!” I exclaimed, just imagining myself, like Luke Skywalker, piloting an X-wing.

“No,” Ven always answered.

Blaue kept trying to convince me to give up, but I was just as stubborn as Ven. I wanted to learn to fly and nothing was going to change my mind.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Entry 47

For a moment an awkward silence fell over the table. I could see from John's expression that he had a million questions, but he stayed quiet. He probably did not want to further antagonize Ven, who clearly did not like answering questions posed by John. Not for the first time I wished one of us was telepathic, so I could know what John was thinking and pose the questions he wanted to ask. All I could do now was guess.

"So when will this space station trip be?" I asked. John gave me a small smile, giving me confidence that I had asked a good question.

"Four standard days," Ven responded. I glanced blankly at Blaue.

"A standard day is thirty hours," Blaue answered my unspoken question.

"So in a standard day, you sleep eight hours and you're awake like twenty-two?" That was like an entire Earth day of being awake.

"Sleep cycles depend upon the person and the race, of course," Blaue said. "Ven sleeps about seven hours a night, and spends twenty-three awake." My eyebrows shot up. He was awake for almost twenty-four hours. It was going to take me a while to get used to such a schedule.

I glanced at John, wondering what he thought. Instead of increduality he shot me a stern look. I was getting off topic with my questions. He wanted to know more about the space station visit.

"Back to the space station," I said, turning my attention to Ven. "How long will we be there? Are you really going to let me and John wander around by ourselves?"

"Usually I spend an entire day on a space station," Ven answered. "It's nice to get out of the ship, no offense, Blaue."

"None taken," she responded with a smile. "I'm not very big."

"You and your androids may wander around, but I will also connect you to Blaue so she can monitor you, or so you can ask for her assistance and advice," Ven said. "This space station is not very large, but I imagine it might be a little, uh, overwhelming for someone used to a planet of only humans. I would not want you to wander into danger. Your android can protect you physically, but I don't imagine it has been programmed with much knowledge that does not deal with Earth."

"You would be correct," John concurred. "My knowledge of the universe is limited. I will have to learn as Carlee does." Ven ignored John's response, keeping his gaze firmly on me.

"Will we be in danger?" I asked, suddenly imagining Deep Space Nine with its many species and frequent dangers. "Will the Society be there? There won't be warrants for us will there?"

"No," Ven assured me. "The Society holds little power in the civilized Universe. Their true power lies in dominion over primitive planets: the containment laws and the like. They rarely tell anyone else when they lose property like you or your android. It makes them look bad. They don't like to lose face in front of the other universal organizations."

"Will you give us money?" I asked. "If we're going to wander around a space station, we'll need money for food and the like, right?"

"Blaue will take care of all of your transactions and make sure that you don't overspend," Ven said. "I'm not stupid. I don't give money to adolescent girls. My sister taught me that a long time ago." I sulked but did not mean it. I did not blame him. Scott always felt the same way. He always gave the money to John instead of me. Of course, John is generally more responsible than I am. Not because he is a boy, but because he is an android.

"So no shopping spree but other than that it seems fun," I said, glancing at John. He smiled at me, clearly pleased with my questions. I relaxed into my chair. John and I may not be telepathic, but we had our ways.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Entry 46

"I wonder what our options are," John said thoughtfully as we waited for Ven. It was not a very large ship, and I was wondering what was taking Ven so long. He was certainly taking his sweet time coming to the mess hall.

"Not leaving you," I responded as I put away the needle and thread.

"Of course we won't be separating," John agreed as I sat down at the table. "But Blaue is right. We can't just stay on the ship."

"Though I wish you could," Blaue sighed. "Ven may be my captain, but he's not always very good company." As Blaue spoke, the mess hall doorway opened. Ven gave Blaue a flat look, but he otherwise ignored her remark.

"Goodmorning, Carlee," Ven said, looking as dashing as ever. He wore an emerald green button-up shirt and black pants. His shoes were still red.

"Morning, Ven," I responded, feeling a little sullen. I did not want to deal with his self righteous tirades and anti-android sentiments. "What's up?" He frowned, looking puzzled at my words.

"There is nothing up," he said, sitting at the table. "I do not understand the question."

"Nevermind," I mumbled. He studied me a moment quizzacly and then glanced at Blaue who smiled brightly.

"It's probably a colloquialism," she said cheerily. "John and Carlee have already taught me several from their conversations."

"Just what I need," Ven muttered. "A ship that speaks in unintelligable colloquialisms." Blaue's smile turned devilish, as if she planned on baffling him with the slang she had learned.

"Blaue told us you want to talk to us about our future options," John said politely.

"Yes, I am here to talk to Carlee about her future options," Ven responded, looking at me. "You are a guest on my ship, but this is not a permanent arrangement."

"Wouldn't want it to be," I said. Ven ignored my sullen tone.

"My superiors instructed that I take you to the human colony," Ven said, "but the android complicates things. I cannot take you there unless..."

"I'm not getting rid of John like he's an old hat," I snapped.

"So you've said," Ven said. "I hope that the future will show you otherwise. For the immediate future, you will remain on the ship with me." He paused. "However, I need you to understand that freeing people from the Society is not a high paying job. It's not my career. I am a merchant."

"You're a salesman?" I exclaimed in surprise. Somehow I just could not imagine the dashing, irritating Ven as being a very good salesman.

"That word is unfamiliar to me," Ven responded. "But I buy and sell goods. I also ship goods for others. I am scheduled to stop at a spacestation later in this week to do business. I would prefer that you and your android stay on the ship with Blaue, but Blaue has pointed out that you will never truly comprehend the situation you are in unless you see more of the universe. Therefore, I will allow you to board the space station with me."

"John too?" I asked.

"Your android may accompany you," Ven said after a moment. "I think you would get yourself into too much trouble without some sort of chaperone and I cannot watch you every moment. You are a troublesome girl, Carlee Earhart."

"Thank you," I responded smugly.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Entry 45

Blaue told me where to find a needle and some thread, a technology that no amount of scientific advancement could make obsolete. The thread was lime green, the color of universal warning, which I felt was approprite for stitching John back together.

Now I am far from a master seamstress or a surgeon, but home-ec in middle school taught me the basics. I have made my fair share of drawstrings bags, pillows, and shirts. I was fairly confident in my ability to weild a thread and needle. However, John was not as confident in my ability to stitch him up.

It seemed pretty straight forward to me. I was to stitch the different parts of skin together. John, however, made me redo his elbow three times, continously correcting me and telling me I was twisting his elbow wrong.

"You're going to give me a scar if you stitch like that," he said as I stitched his elbow the third time. "Do you want me to look like Frankenstein's monster?"

"You are Frankenstein's monster," I retorted. "I'm not stitching it again, and don't guys want battle scars?" John argued with me as I started to stitch his shoulder.

It was strange to stick a needle in him and see no response. John said he felt pain - or rather his body alerted him he was being injured - but that he could ignore it much better than a normal human. I supposed that was what made him such a good football player. He could literaly ignore the pain.

"Now your hand?" I asked when I finished his shoulder.

"No, do my knee," John answered. "You can really mess up my hand if you do it wrong. I want to watch you fix my knee before I let you touch my hand."

"You don't trust me," I grumbled as he pulled up his pants leg to reveal his skinless knee.

"I trust you are far as I can throw you," he answered. "Which is actually pretty far."

When John was satisfied I could sew well enough and wouldn't cause major damange to his hand, he allowed me to slowly set it up. I made no stitch without his approval. Sometimes he made me undo stitches and try again. However, in the end the stitches held as he gently flexed his hand.

"I'll need to get a glove or else I may accidently mess up the stitches," he said as he examined his hand. "You did a good job, Carlee."

"Of course I did a good job," I responded. "I always do a good job." John smiled at me and ruffled my hair with his good hand.

"Kid?" Blaue suddenly appeared in the room with a curious expression. "Is a kid not an infant goat?"

"It's also a word used to describe human children,"John answered. "It's a colloquialism." I rolled my eyes. Leave it to John to say "colloquialism" instead of describing it as slang.

"Most interesting," Blaue said. "I will add it to my database. On another note, I'm suppose to warn you that Ven is heading here. Family reunion time is about to be sadly ended."

"Oh, joy," John muttered. "Does he want anything in particular?"

"He wants to discuss your future," Blaue answered. "As much as I would love to keep you, this is not a permamanet arrangement. So Ven just wants to discuss options."

"Wonderful," I muttered, knowing it would probably just be another meeting where Ven tried to convince me to ditch John. When would he learn? I will never leave John.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


So posting sort of slipped my mind again today. You must be thinking "What has gotten into Carlee?" And I totally understand. Because something has gotten into me. It's called education.

Apparently, I'm not educated enough.

Remember how I told you I was going through a transition, sort of like a move? That's why I did not post a few weeks ago. Well, my new situation decided that a girl of my age should not just have all this time for pure leisure. Instead they decided I need to go to school. Now, I'm all for staying in school, going to college, and all that jazz, but I guess I sort of thought I had gotten out of that. I mean, I'm not on Earth. I shouldn't have to deal with school. I'm trying to deal with things like the fact that my brother is an android. However, that argument did not get me very far. Thus, I have found myself being educated this week.

It's not even normal school. I guess its sort of like being homeschooled, except its not my parents who are teaching me.

It's Ven's parents.

Yeah, you heard me right.

But explaining how I ended up where I am, being taught by Ven's parents, would totally jump way ahead in this entire line of story we've got going on here. So you're going to just have to live in anticipation about that.

Really all of this is to say that my style is sort of being cramped right now, and I find the day whizzing by without me posting anything. I need to reorganize my schedule, because I need to post. You have to know the whole story. You have to know, so you can understand that the universe is so much bigger than we all ever imagined it to be.

So post tomorrow as usual, I hope. That's presuming Mr. Barker doesn't assign me another 5 page paper.

Sometimes I hate school.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Entry 44

I stared at John, my mind struggling with all the information I had learned in the past two day. It was still hard for me to comprehend that John was an android. Even though I could see his skin peeled back, I still could not truly wrap my mind around the fact that he was not human.

“Carlee, I am an android, a synthetic sentient,” John said, holding up his hand with the loose, torn skin. “It’s a lot to take in.”

“You’re my brother. I don’t care.” I could not imagine my life without John. I needed him. Could no one understand that his lack of humanity did not change his importance in my life?

“I know you say that, Carlee, and I’m sure you mean it now,” John responded, “but if you ever feel weird or unsure about it, I want you to know you can talk to me. I know what I am. I always have. It’s not new to me.”

“Don’t lie to me and make it seem like you are completely alright,” I retorted. “I heard everything Blaue said. You’ve grown up as a human – an equal – and the kid everyone marked as most likely to be very successful: a CEO, a president, something ambitious and powerful. Now, you’re like a second class citizen. You can’t be ok with that.” I gazed at him relentlessly, but he was silent for a long while.

“It will be an adjustment,” he admitted.

“An adjustment? That’s all you’re going to say?” I exclaimed. “John, I know you better than that. You can’t even be close to ok with it…”

“But it’s life, Carlee,” he interrupted. “What I can do? I’m not organic. I’m your property. I’m not welcome in half the universe. And there is nothing I can do about it.”

“It’s ok to be mad about it, John,” I said. “You don’t have to accept everything like a silent matry.”

“But I do. I’m the big brother. I’m supposed to take care of you, not vice versa.”

“That’s ridiculous. We’re siblings. We take care of each other. I’ll admit you take care of me most of the time, but it’s ok for me to have to help you where necessary. Like yesterday,” I pointed out. “And now. Do you want me to sow your sking back together?”

John looked down at his hand, flexing it and causing the poorly attached skin to ripple strangely. “You shouldn’t have to do this.”

“I want to,” I responded. “Surely Blauw has some thread and a needle somewhere.” I paused. “That will work, right? I can stitch it together like normal skin and it will grow back?”

“Yeah, it’ll work,” John responded wearily. “Just make sure you put the knots on the outside of my skin. Once you do my hand and elbow and shoulder, I can do the stuff they messed up on my leg.”

“Sounds good,” I said. “See, needing help isn’t that bad. Would you rather sit around with your skin in pieces?”

“No,” he admitted. He paused and look at me intently. “You know I love you, don’t you, Carlee? Just because I’m an android doesn’t mean I can’t feel. You are my little sister, no matter what anyone says, and I love you.”

“Ven says you’re programmed to say things like that.” I voiced the uncomfortable doubts that Ven had placed in my head. “He says you don’t really love me.”

“Ven is wrong,” John said firmly. “I was programmed with only two thoughts concerning you: you are my owner and I am to say you are my sister. They can’t program love. I developed affection for you just like any human does. I do love you, Carlee, as a brother loves a sister. You are my family.” Reliefed filled mat his words. Though I had not wanted to think about it, I had been worried. I had been worried my entire life was a lie.

Thoughts of family inevitable led to thought of our foster parents. “I wonder what Scott and Ellen think happened to us.”

“I don’t know,” John admitted. “Maybe one day we can send a message to them and let them know we’re ok, but for now it’s just you and me.”

“The way it’s always been,” I responded “You are the only person I’ve ever been able to count on. Nothing has changed that.”

“Except this time, it’s not a new foster family,” John pointed out. “This time the Earharts are in space.”

I smiled at my brother. “The Universe is in for a ride.”

Question Break Answers 8

Earlier this week, a question was asked through the wonderful tool of Facebook message. So Patricia asks:

I know you just posted an answer post, so maybe this can be for next week or something, but I was wondering what you miss most about Earth. I mean, besides the obvious, like your parents. And normalcy.

Thanks for sharing your story with us - I love reading it!

I've taken a while to respond to this because mainly I needed to think about it for a bit. I miss a lot of things about Earth. I miss mainly cultural things, like books, movies, and styles. I would have loved to have seen the sixth Harry Potter movie this summer. As it is, I have to wait until it makes it online somewhere. I miss my favorite books. I miss my favorite music. I miss my stuffed animals - yes stuffed animals, I have no shame. I miss my favorite t-shirts and jeans. The universe is a strange place. It's, well, alien. I feel so isolated and alien.

What do I miss the most besides Ellen and Scott? I have John, so I can't miss him. This might sound strange but I miss normalcy. I miss feeling normal. I miss not feeling like a strange alien, a backwoods alien that people find amusing.

I want to be normal again. I want to be average. I'm tired of being a spectacle. I'm tired of being strange. I want to be a normal teenager. I want to have a normal life. But that's gone now, and I must take life as it is. I have John and that is what matters the most.

But I still wish I could have seen Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Question Break 8

So I just realized I totally forgot to post yesterday. That is completely my bad. I had plenty of time to post - I just forgot. I can't believe it. I feel horrible. I hope you will forgive me. Posting will pick up as usual on Monday. Today we shall have a question day.

So maybe you have some questions on the Android Acts, since that's really what this week's postings were about. I know I was confused when I first heard about them.

Or maybe you have questions about something else entirely. Either way. Ask your questions. I am here to answer them.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Entry 43

“Please continue explaining, Blaue,” John prompted. “I am very interested in hearing about the Android Acts.”

“I would be too in your position,” Blaue agreed. “When they create you they give you an understanding of what you should obey, but they never tell you why. They make you compliant without explaining.” I glanced at John, wondering how much of what she said was true. What would it be like to be told at creation that you must adhere to a certain set of rules but never told why?

“It is an understatement to say that when androids became commercially available, chaos ensued. One set of organics were convinced that androids were their equals, therefore, buying and selling them was immoral and slavery. They lobbied for androids to be given full citizen status and be essentially set free. On the other end of the spectrum were the organics who believed androids were abominations and simply morally wrong. They believe that androids were organics’ attempts at trying to become gods but failing and instead creating creatures that would compete with organics at every turn. Androids are smarter, stronger, and more desirable than organics, not to mention the indefinite lifetime. The idea of such competition in the universe was terrifying for these organics.” It scared me slightly that I could understand the reaction to androids that these extremists had, on both sides. But I did not want to understand the people who hated John. He was my brother. I did not care he was an android. Or so I told myself.

“Most of the universe was unsure what to think, but these extremist groups were so vehement that is seemed the entire universe had been polarized. Androids were being stolen and ‘liberated’ on one planet and found and destroyed on other planets. The governments of the planets and the Universal Parliament had no idea what to do. They needed to end the chaos that ensued for nearly an Earth Century.

“That was when an organic named Rauoitlin stepped forward and proposed a compromised called the Android Acts.

“The Android Acts state that no synthetic sentient can be declared a citizen. Androids are considered property, which are ultimately the responsibility of one individual organic sentient. An android cannot leave their owner’s property with direct permission and written signed instruction from their owner. An android is forbidden from leaving any planet, moon, or otherwise inhabited planetary body without their owner. Planets were also allowed to outlaw androids, refusing to allow them to step foot on the planet. An android must also always give identification when asked. However, an android does not have to volunteer information at any time or obey anyone but their owner.”

“That’s a compromise!” I exclaimed in surprise. “Doesn’t sound like there is anything good for androids in that.”

“Oh, but it was a compromise in many ways,” Blaue responded. “Many wanted androids to wear markers visible to organic eyes so an android could be identified on sight. However, the Parliament felt that would continue to make androids a target for both destruction and ‘liberation’.”

“It still seems far from fair,” I said. “You’re saying John basically can’t go anywhere without me.”

“The parliament would say that is for his own protection,” Blaue countered. “You will always be with him to keep him from being destroyed or stolen. You can protect him.”

“John doesn’t need my protection,” I said. “I need his.”

“That is a common use for androids,” Blaue said to my confusion. “Because of the restrictions, androids have become both hard to procure and difficult to have. However, many organics use androids for the purpose of body guards since they are stronger and more durable than organics.”

“John isn’t my bodyguard. He’s my brother,” I responded, upset that she would insinuate I was simply using John.

“You are in the minority when it comes to feeling a strong connection to your android,” Blaue informed me. “Only victims of the Society of Anthropologists have such feelings and the universe it not even filled with a fraction of a percent of such organics.”

I chewed on my lip, glancing at John. What was life going to be like in a universe where John had no future outside of mine? On Earth he had college and an important career to look forward to. Out here, he could not even leave my presence without my permission.

“That’s the basics of the Android Acts though there are more laws involved,” Blaue said after a moment of silence. “If you want to see the entire set of laws they are in my databases and can be easily accessed.”

“Thank you, Blaue,” John said. “I’ll probably want to see that later. For now, can you leave me alone with my sister?”

“Of course,” Blaue responded. She smiled at us both. “If you need anything, let me know. If you run into Ven, don’t take anything he says too seriously. He may be captain, but I’m the ship. He can’t do anything without me.” Then without a further word, Blaue disappeared.

“Carlee, are you ok?” John turned to me with a serious expression.

“Yeah, I’m fine,” I answered without hesitation. John’s expression turned flat.

“Really?” he responded. “Don’t try to lie to me, Carlee. I Know you better than you know yourself. Now tell me. Are you ok?”

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Entry 42

“The Android Acts are a series of laws,” Blaue said, her face becoming serious. “They were enacted about five hundred Earth years ago, shortly after androids become a commercial item. In order to better understand I should explain some of the history of androids.

“The idea of androids has been around forever as a scientific and engineering challenge. Engineers wanted to be able to perfectly replicated organic sentients in every way: motion, function, and thought. The scientists hoped this would reveal more about organic sentients’ functions and help them to troubleshoot problems and conditions that befall an organic body.

“However, it was much easier said than done. In order to begin understanding how to recreate motion robots were created. The first robots were very limited in function, designed to do the most basic of tasks such as recognizing and fetching objects. They slowly grew more complex in abilities and intelligence, but they were never meant to perfectly replicate sentients. A robot is nothing more than a complex, intelligent machine. Organics accepted robots as they became commercially available, though there was some resistance to robots being designed to do jobs done by organics. But the bottom line is no one thought robots were morally wrong. They were simply complex and useful machines.

“In order to discover how to replicate organic minds, Artificial Cognizants like myself were created. The first Artificial Cognizants required several large processors to run and could only very basically simulate an organic intelligence. Most of the original cognizant could only simulate personality with preprogrammed responses. The major breakthrough in our design was when a Cognizant called Ltka was created. It had a natural unprogrammed personality. The engineers actually had to back engineer Ltka to figure out what they did differently to create such a unique unfounded personality. Ever since cognizant have been almost identical to organic minds in personality and reasoning.

“Cognizants were accepted very well by organics commercially. Everyone wanted one for their house, ship, or business. No one protested us because we simply made life easier. We were put in place of already existing computer systems and we were far easier to interface with. Before long everyone had at least one and many had multiple cognizant for various specialized purposes.

“Shortly after the acceptance of Cognizants, robots with cognizance were developed. These were created for experimental reasons and were available only limitedly in commercial markets. Organics were unsure how to feel about them, but if they had redeeming qualities it was that so few of them were created and that they only resembled organics in the most basic sense.

“Androids were developed long after that simply because of the challenges of developing synthetic skin and bodily systems. The first androids developd were simply robots that on the outside looked like organics, but they did not function like organics. Slowly androids became more and more like organics. First they developed muscle systems instead of complicated hydraulics. Then false nerves were made instead of wiring. Then they derived their power from eating and required sleeping. Now the only difference between an android and organic is that androids are made in factories and organics are made in homes and hospitals. That is why the name android is actually now considered politically incorrect. Organics like Carlee are organic sentients. Androids like John are called synthetic sentients. From my perspective as a cognizant and many pro-androids’ perspectives, organics and synthetics are equal in every way. Therein lays the problem and the root cause of the Android Acts.

“Wait, Blaue, can I ask a question?” I asked, a little overwhelmed by her explanation.

“Of course, Carlee,” she responded with a smile.

“So you are an Artificial Cognizant,” I said slowly, trying to figure out my thoughts. “What is the difference between your mind and mine? Or yours and John’s?”

“Well comparing you and me, I have a computer and you have a brain,” Blaue answered. “I am also capable of more computations and taks than you are. However, I have the same sort of reasoning and critical thinking facilities. Like you, I also have a personality.

“Comparing John and I, I have more extended computing abilities because I have more processing power. I am after all a ship while his processor is contained in his brain. Other than that, his intelligence is essentially the same as mine.” I frowned, more confused now then I was before.

“Then why do you consider yourself a sub-sentient thing?” I asked. “Isn’t it the mind that counts – that makes a person a person? If your mind is equal to mine and John’s, does that not make you our equal?”

“That’s very kind of you to think so,” BLaue said with a gentle smile, “but you overestimate me and my capabilities. I am much more specialized than you or John. You are both capable of many things, many possibilities. I am just a ship, and I am quite limited to my structure.” I still did not understand, and I wanted to argue, but John subtly shook his head. I understood what he meant; there was no arguing with someone who was as convinced as she was. However, Blaue seemed so alive, so vibrant to me. She seemed like a person. I could not, would not accept that she was my inferior.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Entry 41

John was waiting for me in the mess hall. His clothes still fit poorly and were unfortunately matched, as if Ven was purposefully trying to make John look awful. My attention was quickly distracted from his clothes to his joints. The skin was still loose on his elbow and hand. I could not see his knee. It pained me to see him still in disarray.

“Did you sleep well?” John asked with brotherly concern.

“I slept like a rock,” I answered with a bright smile to reassure him that I was ok.

“How odd, since it is my understanding that rocks are not alive and don’t sleep,” Blaue said, appearing suddenly in the room. Today she wore a different outfit, a long flowing dress that was quite the opposite of yesterday’s form fitting outfit.

“It’s a phrase,” I answered with a smile for the Artificial Cognizant. “It means I slept really well and nothing could disturb me.”

“I see,” Blaue said. “I will make a note of the phrase in my English language database.” She paused and smiled. “Having you here will definitely increase my knowledge of English.”

“You and Ven speak German, right?” I asked.

“Yes, fluently,” Blaue answered. “German is Ven’s first language. Speaking of Ven, he set the table with breakfast for you before going to the cockpit.” I glanced at the table in surprise, not expecting Ven to be hospitable. However, on the table was a basket of muffins as well as a pitcher of a thick yellow liquid that looked similar to milk.

“Why German?” John asked as he selected a muffin. “Is that the primary language of the human colony?”

“No,” Blaue answered. “The primary language of the human colony is Latin, which Ven also speaks fluently. However, many languages are spoken on the human colony. For example, Ven speaks German, English, Mandarin, and Latin.”

“Latin!” I said in surprise. “No one on Earth spends Latin anymore.” I took a bite of my muffin and was surprise to find it tasted exactly like a lemon poppy seed muffin. I began to eat it eagerly.

“That may be true, but you have to understand that the human colony is made up of descendants of people just like you,” Blaue answered. “Most of those end up out in space because of a war and an androids untimely end. The Society does not want to abduct humans, but they can’t take the androids out without taking their owners with them. Leaving the androids would contaminate the culture.

“Therefore, many of the first humans taken by the Society were Roman. Originally everyone at the colony was Roman because that was when the Society first identified Earth and started studying it. The Romans were also very warlike and therefore many of the androids sent to Earth met untimely ends.

“Because of this, Latin has been the main language since the beginning. Most of the humans, like Ven, are direct descendents of those Romans. They are all taught to speak Latin in school, even if they don’t speak it at home – like Ven’s family, which speaks German.”

“Are John and I going to be required to learn Latin?” I asked in horror. French II had been treating me well, but I could not imagine try to figure out Latin.

“No,” Blaue answered. “First generation are never required, though you’ll pick up the basics over time: like how to say ‘hello’, how to say ‘thank you’, things like that. If you have children while living at the human colony they will be required to learn Latin. But you will be fine speaking English.”

“That’s a relief,” I said. I was thirsty so I picked up my glass of yellow liquid. I did not want to try it, but there was nothing else on the table to drink.

“It’s just fruit juice,” Blaue noticed my hesitation. “It’s sweet but creamy. Ven loves it.” She had broken my don’t ask don’t tell policy, but I was relieved. Yellow fruit juice was something I could handle.

I took a sip and discovered that her description was accurate. It tested both creamy and sweet, sort of like how orange yogurt was creamy and sweet, but it was only as thick as milk.

“So,” I said when I was done. “What are the Android Acts all about?”

Monday, August 17, 2009

Entry 40

Sometimes I have dreams that feel so real that they feel like memories. When I wake up, I am convinced they actually happened. It’s very disconcerting when I fully wake up and realize something I thought happened had not actually happened at all.

As I woke up that morning after our escape from the Society, however, the opposite occurred. In my half asleep full awake state I was sure that the events from the day before were just a very realistic dream. Surely when I woke up I would discover I was at home in my bed – not in a hologram as I had dreamed – but in my actual bed I would wake up and discover it was yet another school day. Life would be as normal.

I lavished in that certainty as I floated between a sleep state and an awake state. I was expecting my alarm to go off any moment to wake me up for school. Ntil I heard it, however, I would just float on the edges of awareness.

But the alarm never went off. I drifted closer and closer to awareness without ever hearing my alarm’s grating tones. The worry that I forgot to set it and might be oversleeping caused me to wake much faster. I essentially woke myself up and looked about wildly for my alarm.

My room was pitch black, a pitch black I had never before encountered in my life. Usually even in the middle of the night light from the street snuck through the window. My alarm clock also gave off light as did my iHome. My room was never this dark. I could see absolutely nothing.

Then I remembered how dark my room had been last night when I went to sleep. No light broke the darkness because there were no windows or doorways. I was in a ship.

“Lights, please, Blaue,” I called. Instead of lights filling the room and completely blinding me, a weak light appeared in one corner. The orange light did not overwhelm me but just provided enough light for me to see everything in my room.

“Good morning, Carlee,” Blaue’s bodily voice said. “The lighting in your room is currently at the lowest setting. As you wake I will brighten the room at small increments so your eyes have time to adjust to normal brightness.”

“Thank you,” I responded, surprised that she was so considerate with the light.

“No need to thank me,” Blaue responded. “Ven and I had a long talk when he first became my captain about the sensitivity of human eyes. My last captain just had me turn on full lighting every morning. Ven found that very unpleasant.”

“I can imagine,” I said. “The lighting seemed very bright yesterday.”

“And that’s not my brightest setting,” Blaue responded. “When you’re ready, let me know. John is awake and waiting for you in order to eat breakfast.”

“Oh, ok,” I said. I swung out of bed and got to my feet. “Tell him I’ll be ready in like fifteen minutes.” I did not foresee needing too long to get ready in this technologically advanced ship.

“I’ll let him know,” Blaue responded.

I quickly got ready, taking a shower and discovering more clothes in my closet. Blaue had to advice me on how some of them were worn. I ended up in what seemed like a short gray halter top dress but was worn over a tight long sleeved pink shirt and tight pink pants. I don’t normally like tight clothes but the gray dress was not tight at all, making me feel much more comfortable.

“You look wonderful,” Blaue commented. “In that outfit you would fit in nicely on the Human Colony.”

“But John won’t fit in regardless of what he wears,” I responded as I laced up my shoes.

“Not all humans are the same, surely you know that,” Blaue said. “Don’t judge the colony based on Ven.”

“So the entire colony doesn’t hate androids?” I asked.

“No,” Blaue answered, “but androids are outlawed on the colony accept in extreme cases. It all had to so with the Android Acts.”

“The Android Acts?” I repeated. “Can you explain those to me?” I had been hearing a lot about them, and they seemed to limit an android’s activities. However, other than that, I knew nothing.

“Yes, but perhaps it would be best if I explained it to you and John during breakfast,” Blaue said. “I’ll join you in the mess.”

“Alright,” I answered heading towards the door that Blaue had opened for me. It struck me as odd, however, that John would not already know about the acts. Should he not as an android know everything?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Question Break Answers 7

I know it has taken me a long time to get to this, but I finally got a decent enough connection to upload stuff to the internet. Sorry for the long wait. Hopefully anticipation did not kill anyone and hopefully the connection will hold out long enough for me to put up Entry 40. Otherwise, this may be all that you get tonight, so enjoy it. We’re still working on getting a stable internet connection.

So many moons ago, or so it feels like, I got a question from an anonymous source. The question was:

Ok, what is the deal with Ven and androids? From what I've heard of Ven's reasoning, you would think Ven's position is based on philosophical concepts; however, Ven's vehemence strikes me as something originating from deeper roots. He was so wrapped up with protesting John getting a room that he completely missed Blaue calling him grotesque (though how Blaue knows what Ven looks like naked is something I don't want to get into). He likewise seems driven to distraction whenever you or Blaue bring John up in any way positive. Was Ven bitten by an android as a child or something?

As a side question out of curiousity, why does Ven speak in German to Blaue and give her a German name? Is the human colony predominantly German or something?

So that’s totally more than one question, but I’m cool with that. Let’s see if I can clear some things up here.

First off there is the question of Ven and androids. What is Ven’s deal? I mean the man seems irrational, does he not? Well, like the questioner mentioned, Ven’s reasoning is based on philosophical concepts, but he does seem to take it personally.

The thing is: androids are personal.

Ven grew up on a human colony that was founded by people who all once had an android that they thought was a blood related sibling. Some, like me, don’t care if their sibling is made of skin and bones or syntha-skin and metal. Others take it very badly. But I think, regardless of how they viewed it, none of them ever really managed to escape the Society with their android sibling. They had to distance themselves from this person they valued and cared for all their life because this person was suddenly not a part of their lives anymore. So instead of grieving the loss of a sibling, they convince themselves they never really had a sibling at all because androids aren’t human. These people try very hard to convince themselves, though I think very few of them ever believe. However, their children and their children’s children, like Ven, do believe because they’ve never had an android sibling. They take their ancestor’s words to heart and make it a part of their mantra. And since their ancestors so passionately disabused androids, they learn to passionately hate androids. Of course, this is just a theory, I’ve only spent a little time on the human colony, but I think it’s correct. I’ve talked to the people in my situation, most of them much much older than me, and they all feel some sentimental attachment to their long lost android sibling. They spend their lives trying to convince themselves that their loss is nothing, but in the end, they still miss their sibling. Instead they succeed in instilling a vehement belief in their children that androids are subhuman.

That was probably the longest paragraph I’ve ever written in my life. A real writer would probably have divided it up somewhere but give a kid a break. I’ve been out of English class for quite some time now.

So you’re sort of not stated question of how Blaue knows what Ven looks like naked. Well, I don’t think Blaue meant Ven specifically when she said that. I think she meant males in general from a clinical perspective. She’s a computer, and she knows what humans look like because she probably has our biological specifications – not to mention genome – in her fundamental knowledge. She is supposed to know as much as she can about humans to make the ship to captain interaction as smooth as possible. But though I don’t think she meant Ven specifically, I’m pretty sure Blaue knows everything that is going on in the ship and has “eyes” for lack of a better term everywhere. I don’t think I sneeze without her knowing. So does she probably know what he looks like naked? Yes. Did she mean him specifically? I don’t think so. I think she meant males in general. Blaue is a computer. Cut her some slack.

And I don’t think Ven missed what she said. I think he ignored her. He does that a lot. Blaue loves to tease, especially Ven, and Ven knows she hates it when he does not rise to her teasing. So instead of responding, he ignores her, because he knows it bothers her more.

Last but not least question: why does Ven speak German and Blaue have a German name? Well, Blaue has a German name because Ven speaks German. Ven speaks German because his family speaks German. The human colony is not predominantly German, though there is a large German group. Ven’s most recent ancestor from Earth was German, and that’s on his mom’s side. His paternal line is British, hence the name Barker. However, his father’s mother is also descended from Germans. So both of Ven’s parents spoke German and he was raised speaking German in his home.

So I hope that answers all of your questions for now. If anyone has any other questions let me know!

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Ok so this week is kind of crazy for me, and I can't promise my daily postings. I will try to answer the question I got as soon as I can and get some more posts up, but I don't know when I'll get internet again. I'm really sorry about this, but between being on a strange planet, dealing with interstellar storms, and having a lousy internet connection things have been a little crazy over here.

So I'll try to post tomorrow and the rest of the week like regular, but I can't promise it. The week after that should be fine. It should only take a week to set up a steady internet connection and for craziness to die down, right?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Question Break 7

It's another question day! You undoubtedly know what that means by now.

So summary:

John and I are getting settled in onboard Ven's ship, Der Blaue Stern.

Blaue, the ship's Artificial Cognizant, is fascinating.

Don't ask and don't tell when it comes to food.

If you have any questions let me know. Remember I'm also on facebook. You should totally friend me. I know some of you are just reading and not friending me. Shame on you. Become my friend!

Facebook shameless plug is over.

Ask your questions! I've got answers.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Entry 39

“An android world?” I asked with a frown.

“Some androids choose to go there in the end,” Blaue commented with a serious face. “Prejudices run deep in the universe. On their planet they don’t have to deal with that. Everyone is equal there.”

Separate but not equal,” John responded, causing Blaue to frown and Ven to glance at him. Clearly neither of them understood the reference.

“In Earth history, there was a time in the country of America where people with darker tinted skin were not allowed to go to school with or eat at the same places as people with lighter tinted skin,” John explained. “The rational was that they would have separate but equal facilities. But separate never means equal. If you treat a people like a second class citizen then their facilities will be second class as well. It was called segregation.”

“What does skin coloration matter?” Ven asked with a frown. “That is idiotic.”

“And some think circuitry or nerves, what does it matter?” Blaue responded with a pointed glance in Ven’s direction.

“It makes a world of difference, Blaue,” Ven answered sharply. “I wish you would stop confusing our new guest who is new to such ideas.” He motioned to me, and I scowled.

“You’re not confusing me, and don’t talk about me like I’m not here,” I scowled at him.

“Ven often forgets anyone but himself exists,” Blaue said turning to me with a smile. “I’m sure you must be tired. Perhaps it would be best if you go to bed?”

“It has been a long day,” I admitted. I had eaten all of the food Ven had given me, and now that my stomach was full I was beginning to feel a bit drowsy.

“I think bed would be best,” John agreed with Blaue. “We can then discuss our future tomorrow after we are well rested and have had time to dwell on things.”

“Well, you know where your rooms are,” Ven said. “Come back here if you get hungry or just want to go somewhere other than your room. Don’t wander around the ship.” I nodded for at the moment I had no intention of wandering around the ship. I was tired. I had started the day thinking I was on Earth with my family and now I was in a strange spaceship. It had been a long day.

“I’ll open the rooms for you,” Blaue said, rising to her feet, but Ven motioned for her to stop.

“Stay here, Blaue. We need to talk,” Ven said. Blaue sighed but took her seat again.

“I can still open the rooms for you,” Blaue reminded me. “I’ll sense when you’re near your room and let you in.”

“Thank you, Blaue,” I said, getting to my feet. John got to his feet and moved quickly to my side. “For everything. Thank you too, Ven. I’m glad I’m still not in that zoo. Thanking you for letting me take John with us.”

“I’m just doing my job, Carlee,” Ven responded. “This isn’t about you personally. It’s about the mission. The Society can’t simply abduct people from their planets and tear them from their lives. It’s not right.” I simply nodded, not wanting to rise in response to another one of Ven’s passionate speeches. I was tired. I wanted to go to bed.

John escorted me from the mess and to my room. The wall opened before me, just as Blaue had promised, revealing the purple room.

“Thank you, Carlee,” John said as he hugged my goodnight. “Thank you for convincing that man not to leave me behind.”

“I could never leave you behind,” I responded, hugging him tightly. “You’re all I have, John. I don’t care if you’re an android.”

“I’m glad,” John answered, releasing me. “Now go to bed. We’ll talk about everything in the morning.”

“Night, John,” I said stepping into my room.

“I love you, Carlee. Goodnight,” John called after me.

“I love you too,” I answered, just before the wall closed. Then I was alone, but it was alright. I knew John was just a room away, like he had been all my life.

Moments later, I was warm under the blankets in the bunk, fast asleep.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Entry 38

I stared at the green meat on my plate for a moment, and then I made a solemn vow to myself that I have held to this day. I would try everything put in front of me and would never ask what it really was, a sort of don’t ask don’t tell policy. Strange foods that sounded and looked disgusting probably filled the universe, but that did not mean they did not actually taste good.

So I inserted my fork into the green meet and put it into my mouth. Flavor exploded into my mouth. We have nothing on Earth like it, so it’s hard to describe. However, imagine something salty like bacon but with the full flavor of beef. It was simultaneously smoky and tangy. It was delicious, and I was quick to fork another bite into my mouth.

“This is good,” I said. “What…” I stopped myself when I realized that I was going to ask what it was. I did not want to know. I did not want to discover that it was some strange animal’s tongue. I just wanted to think of it as delicious meat.

“It’s a common meat in the Universe: cheap, packed with nutrients, but good,” Ven answered. “It’s called Fretan among the peoples who speak languages similar to ours. It’s one of my standard rations.”

“It is very good,” John agreed after taking a bite from the plate Ven had reluctantly given him. Ven ignored John completely.

“So what is the plan now?” I asked after a few moments of awkward silence. “Now that we’ve escaped the clutches of the evil Society of Anthropologists, what is the next thing on the agenda? The human colony?”

“The Society is not evil,” John corrected me. “Just misguided.”

“Well, we must spend a few days getting lost,” Blaue said. “We need to make sure the Society does not know where we are.” She then looked to Ven.

“Normally I would take you to the human colony after that,” Ven continued. “However, the android and your reluctance to depart from it presents a problem, as I’ve already explained that the colony does not allow androids.” He leveled his gaze on John, who stared back unflinchingly.

“I will not leave my brother,” I reiterated.

“So you’ve said,” Ven said. “However, you are still thinking of it as human. I am sure that once you realize he is not human your feelings will dissipate. I can then take you to the human colony.”

“And what about John?” I demanded. “Will you destroy him then?”

“No,” Ven looked at me as if I was insane. “I may not like androids, but I would not simply destroy it. Its body is composed of parts that could be harmful to the environment if simply released. It’s a universal offense to destroy an android without the proper procedures, which I know none of. No, there are places where androids without owners can be taken to live their supposed ‘natural lives in peace and harmony without organic interference.’” The last words sounded like they were quoted from a brochure and his face clearly showed he did not believe one of the words.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Entry 37

It was very hard to wrap my mind around the fact that Blaue was not human. She showed true excitement as she revealed the clothes she had picked out for me. She helped me pick out a new outfit to where, saying I should change after such a harrowing adventure. I changed into a lovely light blue top that seemed to be sleeveless but actually had completely see-through sleeves. The pants were a black material that she told me were just as durable as jeans, but they were ten times more comfortable. The yellow boots I put on were more supportive than my sneakers had ever been, though I did not think they went with the outfit very well. Blaue exclaimed it was the intergalactic fashion. Shoes were supposed to be outrageous.

When I went back into the hall, John was waiting for me, fully dressed and his skin stitched together. He wore a bright green shirt and orange pants, a horrid match, but apparently Ven had only been willing to give up his least favorite clothes. Blaue apologized profusely for not thinking to stock herself with clothes for John and promised we would eventually stop to find clothes in his size. Ven’s clothes were all slightly too large for him.

Next Blaue showed us the mess. I was expecting something closer to a small cafeteria, but to my surprise it was a large room that had one area that was quite an extensive kitchen, another area that held the dining table, and another area that looked like a very comfortable living room. Blaue insisted John and I sit and then had Ven make us some food.

“You must be famished,” Blaue fussed. “All the energy that run took!”

“It would have taken more if Ven had not used that gun,” I said, still not able to get over the fact that Ven had shot so many people.

“A gun?” Blaue seemed confused. Then she smiled. “Oh, you mean his sedative?” I stared at her blankly.

“Sedative?” I asked.

“It looks a little like a gun,” Ven agreed, coming over to the table with a plate of what smelled like roast beef but what looked like lettuce. “However, it simply creates a frequency that makes you fall unconscious.” Relief lifted off of my shoulders that I had not been kidnapped by some crazy killer. It was one thing to watch Han Solo shoot down half of the stormtrooper army. It was another thing for your rescuer to kill defenseless anthropologists.

“And here I thought you were threatening to sedate me with a shot,” I responded. Ven and Blaue exchanged an amused glance.

“A shot?” Ven asked. “This isn’t the dark ages, Carlee.” I stayed silent, wondering just how different the universe was going to be from Earth.

“What’s for dinner?” John asked, when he realized I was not going to say anything else.

“I forgot we have to feed the android too,” Ven responded with a frown. He glanced at Blaue. “We’ll have to pick up some more rations. I don’t have enough to feed two humans and an android.”

“Why do androids have to eat?” I asked, looking to John. “If you’re not a biological creature you shouldn’t have to eat, right?”

“I was designed to be exactly like a human,” John answered. “I need to eat. My body breaks down the food, just like yours does, to provide me energy. Otherwise I would be like a robot, and I would need to plug into some sort of electrical outlet to get power. This way I’m not dependent on having such power nearby. I make my own power.”

“It’s just another example of how androids try to be copies of sentients,” Ven said. “And another reason why so many people support the Android Acts. Androids have to eat. They eat the food that sentients need to survive. They are taking vital resources from us.” John looked at me with a frown, and I shrugged. I could not explain Ven to him, I did not understand.

“This is a type of meat,” Blaue said with a smile, smoothing over the awkward silence after Ven’s words. “Try it you’ll like it. At least, Ven likes it as do most humans I’ve encountered. I can’t try it, as I have no mouth or taste buds.” I smiled at her words and took some of the meat, even though it did not look appetizing. Who had ever heard of green meat?

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Entry 36

To my surprise, Ven did not argue further with Blaue. He let her lead John and me towards our rooms. “Please go inside,” she instructed. “Before I continue the grand tour I would like you to check out your rooms to check they are satisfactory. If there is anything you need, please let me know.”

“You’re not going to shut the walls behind us,” I responded uneasily. I did not like the idea of doors I could not open and close myself. I could just imagine that this was all some sort of elaborate trap. I would step into the room, the wall would close behind me and I would be stuck forever.

“No, I will not,” Blaue said with a kind smile. “Now, please. If you would check your room.”

Still feeling uneasy I glanced at John. He smiled at me and nodded, indicating I should do as I ask. So I stepped through the threshold and into the room.

The room was small, barely five feet by five feet, but it was colored light lavender, making it seem larger than it was. The bed was a hole in the wall, like in a lot of science fiction movies, except upon it was a large fluffy purple pillow and purple sheets. I stood in the threshold, stunned by all the purple.

“We knew we were picking up an Earth girl, so we had time to prepare,” Blaue said from behind me, her voice anxious as if waiting for my approval. “If you don’t like purple, I can easily change the walls. If you step in further, I can show you the other amenities of the room.” I stepped in mechanically. Blaue followed me in.

“Do you see this?” Blaue asked, pointing to a small raised square on the wall. It was like the raised part of the wall Ven had touched to access the directory when we were in the Society. “If you touch this square, part of this wall will become like a screen, like a television.” She smiled as if proud of her use of the word. “I have several Earth shows and movies downloaded. They will be older shows than you are used to, since we had to pick up the transmissions from outside the solar system, but I hope you find them enjoyable.”

“If you touch this,” Blaue said, motioning to another raised square on the other side of the wall, “It will reveal your rest room. It has your basic shower, toilet, and mirror. And if you touch this one,” she pointed to one on the same wall as the bed, “it will reveal your closet, which I took the liberty of stocking with clothes suitable for a human girl. If you find the clothes disagreeable, let me know. We can arrange to acquire more.”

Blaue fell silent, watching me carefully, as if waiting for my reaction. It took me a moment to find my voice.

“This is wonderful,” I said. Blaue beamed. “Purple is even my favorite color. How did you know?”

“I didn’t,” Blaue answered. “Ven wanted me to color the room blue because his sister likes blue, but I figured I would try something more feminine first.” She paused. “I’m also rather fond of purple myself.”

“Then why do you wear so much blue?” I asked.

“Because of my name, of course,” she laughed. “Der Blaue Stern. It means the Blue Star. And Ven prefers blue. I have to appease him in small ways, since I do so love thwarting him in large ones, like getting your brother a room.”

“My brother,” I repeated. “Why do you call him my brother but Ven doesn’t?”

“Ven has very strong feelings about synthetic and organic sentients,” Blaue responded with a sigh. “I’m an Artificial Intelligence. I know what my feelings are. A sentient is a sentient, whether synthetic or organic. Either way, they are my superior. My programming does not recognize a difference in authority between the two.” I frowned, finding this all hard to take in.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Entry 35

“Let’s give Carlee the grand tour,” Ven said to Blaue. “She’s going to have a bad opinion of you if we just keep her down here in the dreary cargo bay.”

“I love giving the grand tour,” Blaue responded happily. “Come on Earharts. Follow me.” She turned and began to walk towards the edge of the gray room.

“Are you really there?” I asked, unable to help myself. She seemed real enough. I thought I might be able to reach out and touch her.

“No, this body is just a holographic projection meant to help me better communicate with the people who inhabit me,” Blaue responded. “I am the ship; this image simply provides a more manageable interface for organic sentients.”

“Don’t use that phrase, Blaue,” Ven said sharply. “You know how I feel about it.” Blaue rolled her light blue eyes and then winked at me, as if saying she would use whatever phrase she wanted.

The wall before Blaue seemed to fall in on itself. I stepped to the right, trying to get a better view of what was happening. The wall fell in and seemed to form a set of stairs going up.

“What sort of technology is that?” John asked curiously. I looked up at John in surprise. I had assumed nothing would come as a shock to him, that he knew everything about the galaxy. I wondered how much of that assumption was false.

“Just your basic atomic manipulation,” Blaue answered as if it was nothing. “I can rearrange my particles on a small scale. There was only a thin wall here and the stairs were already there. I simply made the atoms in the wall part of the atoms with the stairs. It’s also how I created the whole in my hull so you three could come in.” John looked very impressed. I had barely had a few weeks of chemistry and absolutely no physics, so I had no idea what she was talking about. I stored her words away in my mind, so I could ask John about it later.

Blaue ascended the stairs with an easy elegance, Ven following close behind her. John motioned for me to go ahead of him, and then he followed me through. The stairs were slightly too high for my preference, or perhaps my height. I was by far the shortest one present. Blaue was nearly as tall as John.

The staircase was not the same dreary gray as the cargo bay. The walls were a warm and cheery yellow, making me feel like I was in a home rather than a starship.

The staircase backtracked, taking us up and over where the cargo bay was. Then it platteaued into a hall, which was the same warm and cheery yellow color. Like the cargo bay, there were no harsh meetings between the ceiling, floor, and walls like there was in Earth architecture. The walls simply curved into the floor we were walking on and the ceiling overhead.

“This is the main hall,” Blaue said motioning about her. “All rooms are off of this hall. The bridge is directly opposite of us.” She motioned ahead. I looked past her but saw nothing but the cheery yellow walls. “The captain’s quarters and two guests quarters are on this hall as well as the mess.”

“I’m not a very big ship,” Blaue said modestly. “Just a light personal vessel, but I trust you will find your rooms adequate.” She waved her hand two holes appeared in the wall, holes large enough to be doorways. “I will open the doors to your rooms whenever you ask, and I can always hear you no matter where you are as long as you are in the ship. Should you need anything, do not hesitate to let me know. Carlee’s room will be the one to my right and John’s room will be the one to my left…”

“The android doesn’t need a room,” Ven interrupted her sharply. Blaue stopped and leveled an even stare on Ven.

“The android will need a room,” Blaue responded. “He cannot share a room with his owner, as he is designed to be male and Carlee is a little young to be exposed to the grotesqueness of a nude human male. I know you would never share a room with him. He will need a room.”

“It can stay in the cargo bay,” Ven said, crossing his arms over his chest. Blaue simply rolled her eyes and turned back to us.

“You will be staying on the room to my left,” Blaue told John. “Please ignore my captain. He doesn’t like androids much.”


So you might have noticed that I did not post a "question break" this weekend. There is a good reason for that, but telling you would give away many future events. Basically I was out of touch this weekend. Recently I've moved off of Der Blaue Stern and onto a planet. Connection to Earth Internet from a planet is not as easy as it is from a spaceship. It took John a bit to reconnect. But I am reconnected, so everything should be as normal.

If you do have questions, remember you can always comment on any post. You can also ask them on facebook. There does not need to be a "question break" for you to ask your questions.