Impossible, Unwise


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Scene Title Impossible, Unwise
Synopsis Neither of those factors have ever stopped Monica before. Probably never will.
Date July 10, 2018

Yamagato Park

Monica isn't sure what time it is when she's cut loose from Yamagato security after going over and over her story. But she doesn't go home, she goes to the park to walk off excess energy. The night air is still warm from the day's heat, there are flowers in bloom along the walkways and benches that she passes. That isn't an abnormal thing around Yamagato Park, to see Monica up in the middle of the night, wandering on her own. Which is why she chose it. She's left her phone in her apartment. The one in her pocket is Wong's phone.

In all likelihood, she and that phone are going to be inseparable for the foreseeable future.

The quiet of the surrounding night makes the phone's chime seem all the louder. Somewhere far distant, T.Amas has been tracking this phone, choosing the timing of its response — and attempting to glean any information it can about the unexpected contact.

Its single greatest certainty is that the phone is no longer in the hands of Wong Yuet-ming.

If you intend to sell 'Joan' as a 'digital presence', you have already missed the mark.

The message comes through with a buzz and Monica pulls it out casually. She's aware that people are probably watching her— or rather, she assumes they are. But she's well practiced at hiding truths these days. The message gets a quiet chuckle.

More like a nickname. I'm really a much more physical presence. I assume we're going to need a mix of both, or you and Jeebs would have already handled this.

Even Jiba's name is skirted around. But her location is enough to make it obvious who she's talking about.

Some things are indeed self-evident. Some are… very much not.

The lull that follows is distinctly long to one accustomed to dealing with digital intelligences, but perhaps not so extended if the technopath is in fact embodied.

What 'this' is it that you perceive requires handling?

I understand that my friend's programming keeps them from making their own choices. They say their… dad trusted you. Maybe we could fix that for them. If you're willing.

Dad isn't exactly the right word. But Monica isn't fond of creator in this context. Even if the difference is only in her own mind.

That statement earns 'Joan' a much longer period of silence, the phone utterly quiescent in her hands, its unchanging appearance offering exactly zero insight as to the thoughts and opinions of the person on the other side of the conversation.

There is more beneath the surface of his situation than I expect you are aware of.

Another distinct pause; then two more messages follow.

What you ask is nearly impossible, and unwise. To attempt it now endangers at least six people, counting yourself, for a payoff that may be meaningless. What is unwritten may be written again.

We do not approve of his circumstance. We intend to address it, but our work cannot readily proceed without his father.

I mean. There usually is.

Monica isn't unused to not being fully aware of the situations she often finds herself in. It hasn't stopped her before. The only thing stopping her now is her own inability to change Jiba's circumstance herself. She glances around the park, turning a circle before she looks back to her phone. She lets her own pause linger, mostly because she's fighting off an impulsive reply.

That's a problem. But I'm working on a way to communicate with their father. Or, well. I set it up and now I'm letting the experts work on it.

Her nails tap against the back of the phone. It isn't that she wants to put herself in danger— or anyone else for that matter— but at the same time, she can't exactly leave things they way they are.

I don't approve, either.

T.Amas doesn't reply to Monica's initial message, recognizing the silence that follows as a likely pause for thought — though it has very little estimate of just what Joan's thought might entail, in that moment. Disappointment seems likely. Contemplation of alternatives.

Eventually, its waiting pays off, at least in the respect of continued conversation.

We would appreciate being informed if your experts succeed.

Can do.

Monica pockets the phone and pushes a hand through her hair. But that's as far as her downtime goes, because she turns to head back to the apartments. She has plenty of work to do.

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