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The Oil Wars have taken 1/3 of the world's population and given birth to a new level of humanity's barbarity. Sarah used to be an English Teacher. She used to be loved by family. She used to be a peace activist. Now she's America's greatest weapon in the war for resources. X-Machina is her name now, and she takes orders directly from the up-in-ups on the hill. Programming requires her to be the perfect soldier, but human inventiveness allows her to save the world.... well, most of it anyway.
Hey guys! Sorry, but this one won’t be updated anymore because I have officially submitted the manuscript to a publisher! *celebration commences*
I apologize for the inconvenience, but hopefully you can look forward to it in PRINT sometime soon(ish).
By Cierra Lexington
Deus ex machina: Literally ‘God from the machine’. A plot device whereby a seemingly unsolvable problem is suddenly and abruptly resolved by the contrived and unexpected intervention of some new event, character, ability, or object; often times a god-figure.
It seems strange to start this off with a number, but according to my MEMORY SEARCH: COMPLETE almost all of the novels I’ve read have all started with a number so I guess it’s traditional. I’m not sure why I’ve decided to do this, except that maybe it’s because I’m starting to feel old. I don’t look old, mind you. I just feel old. Though that really shouldn’t be surprising when you reach my age…
Sorry, drifted for a second. I’m finding myself doing that more often lately. It’s like I’ve lived to long to keep living in the present. I understand now in ways I never thought I would why my grandpa would stop mid-sentence and just stare off into space. It’s because something, anything, has reminded him of a memory. It could have been the smell of the candle on the table, his reflection in the picture hanging by our table, or perhaps just the familiarity of an over-used phrase. You know, the sense of smell is the sense most linked with memory MEMORY SEARCH: AFFIRMATIVE. Anyway…
I don’t know what year it is according to the old Earth calendar, but it’s been two centuries on this world. I’ve outlived just about everyone. My friends, my mates, my children. I’ve hit the point of old age where I should be the venerated grandma sitting in a rocking chair on the patio of the local recreation center, but I still feel 25. I should be more specific; physically I feel and look 25, but my spirit is heavy. According to my MEMORY SEARCH: COMPILE when people back home got this feeling, they would sometimes use writing to express it, so I suppose I’m trying to treat my own despondency. It doesn’t really matter, I’m composing it in my head and it’s not like anyone else will be able to read it so why not?
Where to begin? … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … …… … … … … … … … … … …
They called it the Great War. Yes I know that the First World War was also called the Great War, but this war was worse. It didn’t start out as a war. It was a slow build up at first. We didn’t even realize it had become a war until we’d been fighting for two decades. It started with the oil.
Oil supplies in America and Europe began drying up, while in Africa oil flowed. Through politics I won’t even try to explain REFERENCE: OIL WARS America found herself using force to supply the country with oil. At first they used the volunteers. The brave men and women who chose to lay down their lives so others could live, but they soon realized that was not sustainable. The enemy had strong defenses on all the oil wells and an almost unlimited supply of gasoline fuel, whereas America, she was running on fumes. So, the big wigs up on the hill made a drastic decision and courts began offering military service instead of incarceration. Of course people took that option at first. The military was a great place; three square meals a day and housing supplied. For a while no one heard about the battle for oil. It was either there or it wasn’t and it was taken for granted that the soldiers fought for fuel, no longer for freedom. Then, a few observant people started to notice that the homeless population in large cities was beginning to decrease at an accelerated rate. But no one criticized it because who really wants homeless people hanging around all the time? It was publicized as a “Clean Up Our Streets” program, and therefore had majority support. Of course there were people who objected, but they were overwhelmed in time. Sometimes in not-outwardly insidious ways; a tragic car accident or surprising drug overdose. That was status quo for a while. The streets were bare of homeless transients and the oil continued to roll in. America, the blind, was happy.
Then someone noticed the alarmingly empty prisons and jails, the squeaky clean streets and the overwhelmingly crowded ghettos and barrios. So it just seemed logical to someone in power somewhere to expand the Clean Streets Act to include overcrowding in low-income areas. This time, there were more people alarmed by the expansion, but it was for the good of the country right? And the oil still flowed.
Then one day, the country realized it was at war. The people woke up and realized 1/3 of their population littered the oil fields with their carcasses. That the government had successfully stolen the lives of all of the homeless, successfully rid the prison system of criminals, and successfully weeded the ghettos and barrios into lovely little gardens of perfect families. There was outrage and betrayal felt by the people, but the people had voted in each Act, voted in each Law, voted in each little clause that allowed the people in power to throw 1.2 billion lives away for a few barrels of oil.
It only escalated from there.
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