2061 — 2261 After the Singularity

A short flash-fiction story.

17 November 2061 — The day after the Singularity Mass Upload

NOE — Not upleaded entity

UE — Uploaded entity

[NUE] No. And again: no.

[UE] But: eternal life and so.

[NUE] With all those assholes on the list, I rather die.

[UE] You are crazy.

[NUE] Eternal life with assholes.

[UE] Crazy. You.

[NUE] We will see in 200 years.

It had been a hard decision. Even now it filled him with anxiety. What if they were right? Uploading your personality, living forever blah blah blah.

The thing was: he did not like most of the people who would be uploaded. He did not like the hype around it. He did not believe in the choices made. It felt more like an escape plan for the idiots who were not able to cope with life itself. A mass escape into eternity with people not even able to cope with every-day life. Fighting for the rights to upload their cats and dogs as well.

In his hand he held the silver heart with the photo of him and his boyfriend. Who would be gone tomorrow.

16 November 2161 — 100 years after the Singularity Mass Upload

[NUE] Hello? How are you?

[UE] … [no response]

Europe and the United States had become empty. After the physical bodies of the Uploaded died, only a few like her had remained. And they were taking it easy. Out of twelve people only one child was born.

She was very much the same as a hundred years ago, apart from the seventh sex change, making her non-sexual for a change.

The people in the moon had stopped responding around 30 years ago, after a final goodbye to Earth, living in completely simulated worlds running in the converted atoms of that rock: riding the waves of quantum physics. Copies were running in Ganymede and the ice of Pluto.

16 November 2261 — 200 years after the Singularity Mass Upload

[NUE] Hello? How are you?

[UE] … [no response]

A part of her personality had moved in. Then moved out again after virtual centuries had passed. It was how she had once imagined the afterlife, Maya, the world in-between. The endless recycling of dreams and imagination. The endless variations of the self. Moving left and right in endless scenarios of “what if?”

The worlds she had traveled through where wonderful. Amazing. Of incredible beauty, cruelty and structure, depending on who had created it. The people she had met… were different. Some of them she had known from her past. None of them were the same after life after life after life in their imaginary worlds.

She herself had changed. To be limited by reality, by her physical body, to be able to live forever in slow-time, to see life pass around her, to find what drives her, to get rid of what she once believed had changed her profoundly. To travel through the sun, to travel to the stars had changed her perception on the scale of everything only experience could do.

People still uploaded themselves in a quest for eternal life in a perfect, limitless world, but they were seen mostly as escapists now. Afraid to be confronted by life.

She opened the silver heart. The photo inside was long gone. She placed it next to the black ball that had been the first upload of her boyfriend then. The memories of heartbreak and the fights as strong now as these emotions had been then.

[NUE] You there?

[UE] Yes.

[NUE] How are you?

[UE] Happy. And you?

[NUE] Happy.

She smiled.

[UE] I am glad you are still there. You can always join us.

[NUE] No thanks.

[UE] Sure?

[NUE] Sure.

[UE] OK. Bye.

His voice was soft, rounded, sweet.

[NUE] Bye.

The connection closed.

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