Blue Pill

Seen on Twitter, via Slate Star Codex. Decided to try my hand at a more nuanced version. Limiting myself to 1000 words as a challenge, and to avoid spending too much time.

This is short because of lack of inspiration, and simply because I couldn’t quite get into character for this unabashed fanfic. In compensation I will post pink pill together with it.


Gives you the ability to fly, swim, and teleport to any area while being impervious to any physical dangers.

Where does one end, and the universe begin?

Teleporting an atom, and teleporting another atom, there is virtually no difference. These atoms came from a long line of creatures, feathered lizards, Roman rulers, paupers, bourgeoisie and proletariat alike. We have in each of us some from Julius Caesar, and some from St Francis. The atoms they do not care, they do not draw lines and boundaries.

The atoms they do not belong to us.

Sick of petty conflicts over special atoms on earth, I teleported myself to Mars. Myself, without the atoms I borrowed to manifest my existence; there are many more on Mars that can be used. There I built. And I observed that what I made was good.

But she was not there.

Not her atoms, but a part of her, immediately spontaneous and ephemeral, not belonging to any atom or group of atoms alone but something between the parts. Not more than the sum of its parts, but arising because of those parts. Unlike me it has not been separated from the body but exists alongside it, in the same space, the way a volume integral can only be considered in the presence of a volume.

In a few moments she will be brought here. Not her atoms, and not that spontaneous and ephemeral part of her either, just the structure that makes her recognisably her. She will get angry at me, and I will fail to understand her, because she is her and I am me. Somehow the spontaneous part forms spontaneously, not by any action of mine that I can perceive, but when I put the pieces in place (it took me a long time to learn how) in appears.

This is curious and I wish to understand it more, but she does not like it here where there is no oxygen and no atmospheric pressure, and there are things I must do on earth to ensure her continued existence.

I will do that, and then I will try my hand at creating this spontaneous and ephemeral presence. I will put atoms together in familiar and new ways and observe what brings this strange presence about.

Sometimes I wish I had taken the blue pill instead.

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