Monday, April 12, 2021

Microstory 1601: Whatever Floats Your Kaya

Let’s start with a fun one. Perhaps my favorite universe is bladapodoverse. I don’t like it because of all the crazy things that happen there. I like it because of the way that people handle it. This version of Earth was infected with little creatures from another universe, which they ended up calling bladapods. The bladapods released gases into the atmosphere, and sometimes, when an individual encounters these gases, nothing happens, but sometimes it changes them. It changes them in unpredictable and often unique ways. It can also change objects, so it’s not just a genetic thing. This could have destroyed society. Some people essentially walk away with superpowers, while other people’s lives objectively become worse. But people accept these changes, and stay united, and support each other. I’ve never found such strength on any other world. They make accommodations for each other, and exercise immense patience. I’m so impressed. There is one case I wanted to illustrate. A woman, who we’ll only call Kaya, encountered the bladosphere when she was kayaking down the river alone. She tried to avoid it as she approached, but couldn’t get out in time. It’s best not to undergo a base modification while you’re alone, because you may need immediate assistance, but if there are other people around, there’s a chance they’ll be impacted too, so it’s really just a crapshoot. Anyway, Kaya kayaked right into the gases, and came out wildly different on the other side. She transformed into a human kayak. She was much taller and wider. She didn’t have a place for someone to sit, or anything, but she floated on top of the water better than a normal person should be able to, her arms and legs were gone, and she was undoubtedly kayak-like. The kayak didn’t turn into a human, but to understand the way this world works, that was absolutely not outside the realm of possibility. That’s why base modifications are so dangerous, because the rules and limitations are unclear, if any exist at all. Since she could no longer walk, Kaya couldn’t get out of the water, and since she went out alone, there was no one around to help. So she just kept floating down the river, occasionally bumping into rocks, and hoping that someone came by within shouting distance. She eventually got her wish, a few hours later, when a group of hikers happened to be walking by. They pulled her out of the water, weren’t afraid of what they were seeing, and helped her get to the nearest Base Modification Center so she could learn how to survive her new life. I wasn’t surprised that they treated her so well, but it always brings joy to my heart, and makes it easier to deal with all the other worlds, which are considerably less virtuous. Kaya moved on as a human kayak living on land. They provided her with a permanent live-in nurse and aid to make sure she had what she needed at all times. She never got back into the water, for understandable reasons, but her life wasn’t terrible, and she even managed to find happiness under extreme conditions.

No comments :

Post a Comment