Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Microstory 1658: Exceptions to the Rules

The excelschians in Excelschiaverse are all pretty much the same. They’re like AI assistants, except that they can only be seen by the person to which they are assigned. The form spontaneously, to about half the population of Earth, and there appears to be no common link amongst the people who are chosen. No evidence has suggested that some kind of higher being is responsible for this in any way. Some see it as proof of a God, but it’s all just circumstantial. Those who study them have not come to any definitive conclusions. All they have found is that if someone were to hypothetically exchange their excelschian with someone else’s, nothing would change. It would still be able to transform itself into whatever shape the human wanted, it would still look human, and it would still not be able to interact with the real world. There are a couple exceptions to the rules. In one case, an excelschian appeared to develop some kind of personality, and personal agency. It started considering itself to be an independent being, and believed that it had the same rights as any corporeal individual would have. Unfortunately for it, and its physical human, there was no way to prove this either way. Only the human could see his excelschian, and while he made every attempt to fight for her rights, it was impossible. The human could have been lying, and no one would know. And even if the right authorities agreed to grant the excelschian her natural rights, what would that mean? How would that play out? She still wouldn’t be able to communicate with other people, and she couldn’t get a job, or contribute to society. All she could do was ask her human to let her make her own choices, which he did happily, and that’s as good as it ever got for the both of them. They even later fell in love.

There was another exceptional case, where the excelschian did not have trouble with people seeing him. Quite the opposite. Overtime, people around the human to which he was assigned started being able to see him, but only those who did not have their own excelschians. He didn’t develop his own personality, but he did end up with the compulsion to help everyone who was able to see him. He wasn’t exposed to just anyone who happened to pass by, but it was still a lot of people. So he began to serve as a sort of community excelschian, but this started causing problems. Who deserved him the most? Who decided what questions he answered, and when. It became so confusing that the original human had to run off to the other side of the country, and never come out of her apartment. The last major exception involves a human who found herself capable of seeing any and every excelschian. The world became a crowded place as she watched others ask their questions, and heard the answers. They didn’t answer her questions, which she tried as an experiment, but that was fine. The real problem was that it was difficult for her to move around in the world, because though she still couldn’t touch the excelschians, she never lost her instinct to give them space, and walk around, as she would do for anybody. She too had to run away from civilization, though not quite to the same degree. She just had to make sure she wasn’t around too many people who had excelschians. She actually tried to join a community of non-excelschianed humans on the edge of town, but those were pretty exclusive, and always at least a little racist, so they rejected her applications. These exceptions were not heralds of the future, or changes to the status quo. They were just different, and the chances of them happening were never zero.

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