Thursday 31 January 2019

New Year's Revolution - Blog hop

It seems the blog hop team were hot off the press at the beginning with yet another blog hop, The New Year's Revolution, this time hosted by Cara Michaels, and co-hosted with Laura James & Ruth Long.

Sadly participants were not quite so quick - like myself - so the deadline was moved back to the end of January (today in fact!).


Not what it seems

I stand clamped against the wall, breathing hard. I can hear their heavy boots clomping down the hallway towards me. I inch over into the corner. The shadow will work to conceal me - plus they can’t turn their heads when walking, only when standing still.

It’s their weakness, a vital titbit of information we’ve gained. And it wasn’t easy getting it because their strength is seeing and hearing everything – and I mean EVERYTHING.

It’s more than just tapping into our global computer networks, satellite communication systems and mobile airwaves, they’ve got some kind of insider intel.

There aren’t many of us left. The rest have been reprogrammed. We don’t know how, being that the human brain isn’t mechanical, but they all operate on autopilot: eyes vacant.

But their sentinels are mechanical, which is why their heads don’t turn when they move. Knowing that has been a game changer. I’ve managed to infiltrate buildings I couldn’t before, like this one. It houses the mainframe of their operation: a huge sprawling complex they created days after their arrival. If I can get the devices in my bag in there, we stand a chance of reclaiming our lives and planet.

I sneak through the labyrinth of corridors, turning left and right, following the map I have in my head. Eidetic memory is a blessing.

I slow as I near the room we believe houses the neural feed of operation. I expect more sentinels but there aren’t any. I haven’t identified any cameras either. It’s eerie, and unsettling. I hope we’re not wrong.

I shuffle up to the door and put my hand on the handle. I can feel a hum through it. I put pressure on it. It moves down without a sound. I open it a crack. Can it really be this easy?
It’s dark inside. I slide in, closing it silently behind me. I wait for my eyes to adjust. There’s a light in the middle of the room. It pulses. My eyes can’t leave it. I feel the pulse behind them, and fall in sync with my heartbeat.

I slip the bag off my shoulder, my eyes unmoving from the light. I open the bag and feel for the device and bring it out. I run my fingers over it, feeling the buttons, knowing what each one does. I push the large one in the middle. It beeps. I take five paces forward and place it on the floor.

The pulse continues. I can feel it in my gums now. I can see pictures in my mind, images flashing up, of all sorts of strange things. I feel a kind of tugging at the back of my brain as though it’s trying to move away from it.

The light changes colour from white to green. I move to my left, counting my steps as the high speed movie in my head continues and the light shifts to yellow.

I retrieve another device from my bag, press the button and set it down. The light’s now blue. I move again to my left and remove another, activating it and putting it on the floor. The light’s now violet.
Then once more to the left and repeat; all four devices are down and active. The light’s moving into red. I shuffle backwards to the wall, sliding along it feeling for the door handle. I find it, but my eyes are transfixed, the red light pulsing like the blood in my veins.

I need to leave. I need to go now. Over the live stream of images in my mind I can see my path out. The handle moves down and I pull the door open ajar. I move my body into the gap, but my head’s still facing the light, my mind locked in. I inch it back and then with one almighty mental pull, yank it out.

I stand for a second, the silence in my head deafening as it stops processing the images. I blink a few times. Then I move; breaking into a jog back along the empty corridors, knowing there’s no one here, because they didn’t need to be.

They didn’t need to be, because they aren’t real. They’re an illusion and we’ve fallen for it. It’s a screen for something much worse. The light’s shown me.

I need to get back to the others before the devices kick in, because all hell will break loose once they do and we see what’s on the other side.


  1. Reprogramming people is scary stuff, and very appropriate for the New Year’s Revolution challenge! You did a good job with the hypnotic nature of the light, to the point I’m not sure if the narrator had an actual insight or if they got reprogrammed. Also, eidetic memory is just cool. I’ve only ever had one character who expressly had it, but I’ve often felt I should have more because it’s so cool—and could be both an advantage and a vulnerability dealing with brain-reprogramming machines.

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it. How I sort of saw it was that because of her eidetic memory she could process the pictures in a way others couldn't, thus avoiding the programming and able to see behind the screen. Although that is no explicit.