I’m the first one up this morning. I feel fabulous. That great feeling when you’ve really earned your good night’s sleep. I worked hard and slept well. I only had pause for a moment when I realised I couldn’t remember if I’d had any dreams. Nothing came to mind, just a general elated feeling. No specifics but that’s okay as I was feeling… I was sure it was a good dream. I wondered vaguely if it was about Julie.
Once everyone was up and had eaten breakfast we started on the main work of the day. We would need to head to the brain as soon as we could. We started off. The aim was to get the information and hopefully back to the ear again tonight. Sometimes it takes longer at the brainface than that and then you have only an hour or two back at the membrane before leaving. But missions were never longer than three days since the Spiegalman incident. Now these things were so routine that nothing like that could ever happen. Hell even I’ve only emergency I’ve ever faced was a drill.
It took us most of the morning to reach the brainface. At this point we like to split up into groups of two as it speeds things up. As chance would have it Wally and Leftie decided to go off together leaving me and Julie to look together.
The thing with this job is that really only one of you can work at a time in a region. Julie wanted to go first. She was still new to the game and got a kick from experiencing all of the subject’s emotions. I mean I’m not saying that it didn’t affect me. I mean of course it does, you wouldn’t be a nanobot if it didn’t. But over time you do get more used to it. Anyway I was quite happy to lie there on a soft mound watching Julie probing away. She was just chatting away about all the stuff she was experiencing. And the sound of her voice was just babbling away. It was, I don’t mind telling you the happiest moment of my life up to that point. But the happiest moment now was what was going to happen next.
Suddenly Julie stopped talking and started giggling. She was laughing and smiling. And as I looked up all over her face was a look of unbelievable joy. I knew exactly what had happened but I could scarcely believe it. It was so rare. She had hit an endorphin stream. She was completely off her head on happiness!
She stepped towards me. Rather wobbly at first. But soon she was walking right over to where I was half lying – half sitting in stunned statuesque silence.
“I know something about you.” She said, her eyes glittered like they were finishing her sentence in semaphore.
“Oh do you?”
“Yes. You don’t think I know but I do.”
“Oh. What’s that?” This part wasn’t the happiest bit of my life. In truth I was quite nervous at this point.
“I know you’ve, how should I say, taken a shine to me.”
“Ah… I can explain…”
“You don’t have to explain. I reciprocate. I fancy the pants off of you.”
This bit was the happiest bit. I was quite pleased with myself. Now for this next part I must draw a delicate metaphor over the events. Suffice to say that we knew each other.
Much later the voices of Wally and Leftie came to our attention. We dressed hurriedly. And I don’t think they were aware of what had happened. Then with a mounting sense of dread they reminded me of the time. It was so late. There was no time to get back to the ear tonight. It was already one in the morning. We would have to camp by the brain.
We were in trouble and I knew it. I felt very guilty but I also felt like it was worth it for what had gone on that afternoon. In fact I felt guilty for that thought too.
I’ll need my oatcake to sleep tonight. I am so uncomfortable internally and externally it’s impossible to imagine that I’ll sleep at all tonight.