"There will be neither compassion nor mercy;
Nor peace, nor solace
For those who bear witness to these Signs
And still do not believe."
Book of Reclaiming 25:10
New Eden: the celestial battleground of a catastrophic war that has claimed countless lives.
The immortal starship captains spearheading this epic conflict continue their unstoppable dominance, shaping the universe to their will and ensuring a bloody, everlasting stalemate.
But a powerful empire is on the verge of a breakthrough that could end the war and secure their rule over mankind forever. For deep in a prison reclamation camp, a secret program is underway...one that will unlock dangerous secrets of New Eden's past.
It all begins with inmate 487980-A . . . Templar One.
Prepare for DUST 514.
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Tony Gonzales is the IP Development Manager for CCP Games in Reykjavik, Iceland, and is the author of two EVE Online novellas, Ruthless and Theodicy, as well as EVE: The Empyrean Age. He lives in New Jersey.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
GENESIS REGION—EVE CONSTELLATION
THE NEW EDEN SYSTEM
>> SIGNIFICANCE MISSION LOG ENTRY
Given the confines of my exile, insanity is surprisingly fleeting.
From the murky depths of madness, reality churns and boils over my head, a great distance away. Like a pair of entangled protons, my actions seem hopelessly enslaved to a new consciousness that many, including my old self, would consider repulsive or depraved. Yet at some point the mind accepts that whatever is happening , the person drowning can’t possibly be me, and that someone or something else entirely has been writing these log entries—treating them like unwanted feedback, mere static interfering with the perfectly arranged experiment.
The drone I mutilated is barely functional, though its companions are more concerned with my well-being. In fact, they were indifferent as I ripped into this creature’s innards with primordial barbarity. Instead of defending their brother, they took action to protect me from myself when it became clear that physical pain was no obstacle to my rage. My hands, pulped and broken, were tended by medical drones as others held me still. A mesmerizing ooze of cybernetic entrails mixed with my own blood coated the floor; I was absolutely captivated. It was a welcome reprieve from the unbearable ennui of this wretched life.
But my fascination eventually ran its course. The deep, jagged laceration gouged into the drone’s faceplate inspires a strong desire to do the same to myself, if only these infernal machines would allow me. For a short while, I was feeling productive, satisfied that it was better to create a disfigured monster than to not create anything at all. At least, such was the logic that justified reaching for that wrench in the first place.
The destitute thing now drags itself through the ship, searching in vain for parts that can only be had from fellow drones, who are unwilling to donate them. I note with subtle amusement that it is searching for a solution rather than just accepting an outcome without question, which vaguely resembles my own determination to understand the means through which this exile is sustained.
It stands to reason that the machine’s search for answers gives it something to live for. Science has always provided answers for me, not the pathetic faith that my deceased colleague Aulus Gord would have insisted upon. Her Majesty Jamyl would agree, if only she could do so without killing me first.
Equally disconcerting is that I needed to be carried back to my cabin following hours of intense, soul-crushing mourning. The person I used to be was dead, and I felt obliged to grieve. At first the drones offered “comfort,” as defined by the AI architect who thought to impart his own rubbish notions of empathy into these machines. Then they insisted on drugs, concerned that their inexorable mandate to protect me was in jeopardy. Clearly, I was a danger to myself. If these drones knew such a thing as hope, they might wish their orders would be lifted someday so they could give me the violent end I deserve.
I suppose none of this matters now, as there is little chance that anyone will ever find these logs. That I still adhere to the Imperial regulatory protocol of maintaining them, even when they are largely the same from day to day, speaks volumes about my decaying state of mind. So here it is:
The Significance is holding position dangerously close to the EVE Gate,* whose quantum turbulence remains markedly elevated. Tachyon emissions from this massive defect remain steady; several dozen traces of parallel universes pass through the ship every second. All systems are functioning normally, save for the drone I nearly destroyed.
No experiments are in progress. No surveillance probes are due to return for maintenance. No further progress has been made in determining the reason why I am protected from my tormentor here.
Empyreans continue to proliferate in numbers and power. The war has claimed more lives than any empire has the means to track.
We are all EVE’s bastard children. And I, Dr. Marcus Jror, am the worst of them.
Copyright © 2011 by CCP hf
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Descrizione libro Tor Books, 2012. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110765326205
Descrizione libro Tor Books, 2012. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0765326205
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