The face looking back at Axle from the now black laptop screen was tired, crying and angry. Her eyes felt heavy due to all the tears and her head felt heavy because of all the failed work she had put up in this last week. Her body was working at an all time low.
Her inbox was open the project statement taunting her at every step. She should have turned down this offer. There was now way she could make this work.
Axle wasn’t allowed to meet anyone on the outside. This was done so that she couldn’t share even a tiny piece of information to any living soul.
Contacting Erica for more information was useless. That lady wasn’t budging even a bit, it was like she didn’t care. And she was a mentor, it was her job to care.
Axle had food alarm five times during the day and an exercise alarm twice every eight waking hours. This was compulsory. She was healthy physically but mentally she was degrading little by little every passing minute. She had kept herself sane for years by giving her 100% at every opportunity that would have taken her closer to her dream job. That of a simulations expert at Kara-Kase Technologies. She had came pretty close but hadn’t had collected enough IP points to get in. So she had settled for the next best offer at Kara-Kase Industries.
To take her mind off all this she re-read her email to Ben.
Congratulations for your position at Future Solutions. Can’t wait to meet you again.
My assignment at Kara-Kase has begun and I would be going underground for the same. This new think-out-of-the-box stuff would really put me in the radar for a position at Kara-Kase Tech.
“Well, hello, people!”, Cynthia welcomed the new interns into an empty hall for introduction. These 20-something recent graduates had been selected to work on all kinds of projects throughout Kara-Kase Industries. Even in this age, when everything was somewhat “controlled” by the government, Kara-Kase had risen to the top and now was the home of many large and small scale operations which individuals had continued starting for almost half a century.
The orientation then begun, Cynthia explained the work timings and conduct which was expected from the employees. Then she went on to describe the time of “innovative projects” each of them would be taking, just the options. Nothing was finalized, not yet.
In the third row, near the glass window beaming with pride was Axle-4095. She had struggled hard to get here. She had applied to the Technologies section of Kara-Kase and written all kinds of creative essays, but she hadn’t been selected. So, she did what most of her class had done and taken a job as were matched by their overall performance and IP-score. IP-score stands for intellectual property, its now the only real valued property one can have after the government had started the universal basic income.
Cynthia then went on to introduce Erica. She started out by introducing herself as their mentor for review and handling of prototypes. This company was more of a creative venture so all the projects were self selected and one would be awarded higher posts based on the higher IP-score they create.
Erica then went on, “I have a very difficult offer for anyone who would want open-source coding assistance. Please raise your hand for the same.” Everyone was taken aback. Open-source code assistance meant lesser IP-score per submission, hence to qualify one would have to come up with very out-of-the-box ideas.
Axle took a deep breath, looked around, no-one was ready to take this. Even Vera her friend from college was having second thoughts. Axle knew what she had to do, she knew she wanted to progress further, this was the only way to make her mark this early. She too another deep breath as she raised her hand.
“A simulations graduate, who doesn’t want to code, ha, how refreshing.” said Erica as she noted down Axle’s name. It was obvious all details about Axle had popped up on her screen as she had typed her name.
“I will do my best.” was all Axle could say to her.
“Meet me tomorrow morning at the first bell in my office.” she said she left.
Axle was still not sure of her decision, but she had definitely made a mark. She was then moved with all the new interns to the cafeteria. Vera came and sat next to her. Vera was an artistic girl who loved weaving and was good enough at pattern recognition, the perfect combination.
“Congratulations on the project, Axle.” she smiled at her.
“Thanks, I guess.” Axle still wasn’t really inherently happy about this. She had never been too good at coding like mostly coders have been. But she knew her logical skills would come in handy somehow and she need this. She need this because she wouldn’t know what to do with her life if she didn’t.
“Don’t be so glum.” Vera put a hand on her shoulder.
Axle accepted this gesture. “Let’s walk around the office.” Axle offered.
When Axle had came back to her apartment Cynthia was waiting for her there. She would now be taken to a secret no-out apartment for the next month. It was all the hype now a days.
She was shown a congratulatory message filmed by Kase, the charismatic leader of this company. He looked so well made, as if somebody had made him on a computer. That was just some dry techie humour. And there were also stories that Kara had made herself a Kase size ironman type suit. Which was preposterous, but definitely worth discussing with a Kase fangirl.
Cynthia then should her where the food supplies and taste supplements were kept before leaving. Food was like blocks of nutrients, and sprinkle any flavour you want to taste. Same went for liquids, so everyone was always eating healthy and deliciously tasty meals. Way to go Food-in-Food.
Axle took a deep breath as she entered her work area. This was it. A special assignment to make her mark.
She opened her very first email in her new email account which only received mails.
From: Kase Kara-Kase Industries
Subject: Assignment 1 : Big Bang
Content: Simulate start of an Universe.
This is the first chapter of a novel I am currently writing on a chapter a week basis. (Hopefully)
Do you believe in parallel universes or time travel?
How high are the stakes for every small decision you have been making without giving it a second thought?
What is that defining moment your life changed that you possibly can’t go back?
Would you change anything in your life if you could go back?
Get ready to experience the life changing stories of three almost human beings.
Read the novel in order: