Will returned home later than usual, satisfied with his evening; he decided to take Luna out to dinner when they both got off shift a move which proved to be very fruitful for him. His home assistant greeted him with a holo message from his fiancé Meredith.
“Heyyyyy, I hope you’re ready for a delightful day off tomorrow, we’re going to the museum then lunch at Hardwicks followed by a wonderful stroll through the park, after that I was thinking we could go shopping for a bit in…”
As her voice trailed off Will set about his night routine, straight to the exercise equipment to ensure a fit demeanor; his fiancé’s message logged in his communicator establishing an alert and directions for the venue guaranteeing he would arrive to their date on time. After exercise straight to the shower followed by feeding the bird and dinner a’ la’ omni stove. Once settled in he decided to accompany dinner with a show, an educational documentary about the savages which live just on the outskirts of their wonderful nation’s borders. His program was cut short though by a newsflash from the nation’s capital.
“Today our hero’s in the portal have won a great victory for the glory of Lazora, our rivals across the ocean in Quaria made a fool-hardy wager attempting to best our warriors, but thanks to the superb leadership of Captain Franklin our boys pulled through. The final three to stand up to the enemy onslaught deserve our gratitude facing a total of 11 enemy combatants in the critical last ten minutes of the skirmish. These brave men are Corporal Davis, Weapons Specialist Leary, and Lieutenant Green, the victors will be enjoying their victory dinner hosted by Lazora, stay tuned for victor intervie-….”
Green, now that name brought me back ,thought Will, how many years has it been since my assignment on the wall, 5, 10? I’m not really sure anymore, but damn certainly glad to see that guy is still alive, a true equal.
Will thought about his time on the wall for a bit, and savored the feel of adventure he got while on duty, nothing like the patients he treated now, those warriors could pose quite the challenge to him at times, dismembered limbs, shattered psyche’s even strange and exotic diseases contracted from the ferals every day was a new challenge, far from his current humdrum life but still something felt off, despite the challenges of the days those too could still become routine, but then he met Alan a fresh officer in training.
Will chuckled remembering Alan’s initial disposition to combat, eager was a Captain understatement, he was fresh out of the academy mind brimming with propaganda and patriotism, he would blow up the capitol just to save the capitol if that’s what it took.
Will awoke the next morning in the usual fashion. By the time he was sitting down to breakfast his visitor alert chimed. A hologram of his fiancé appeared in the doorway.
“Wiiiiiiilllllllll let me innnnnnnnn” she playfully whined
Will couldn’t help but smile as he instructed his house virtual assistant to open the door. She came barreling through despite her delicate appearance practically hurdling over the table to plant herself on his lap to give him a kiss.
“I wanted to surprise you by coming early I figured we could walk to the museum that way!”
Will considered this option and weighed it against staying. If they stayed she’d be all over him, talking, eating, prodding, playing, most likely sex. That wouldn’t do, there’s no relaxation in that, he didn’t need the sex, at least at the museum he could be free in his thoughts he decided.
“Sounds like fun, lets go; Casper” he called to his VA, “close up, I’ll be back sometime tonight.”
“Received sir.” Chirped the VA
The two left the apartment headed down the elevator and stepped out onto the sidewalk. The intensity of the sun temporarily blinded them, once adjusted they were able to take in the beauty of their city, impossibly tall glass buildings which just touched the surface of space, and against the crisp clear blue sky above them, vehicles criss-crossed, coming and going like a swarm of insects. The entire block was absolutely pristine, not a scuff mark or piece of litter to be seen, the street was bustling with people, but devoid of children, they were socializing, exchanging contacts, eating, playing, regaling the shows and stories they had seen the prior evening, while patriotic music of Lazora’s many anthems played in the background. The maintenance caste was just barely visible remaining on the fringes of the socialites neatly tucked away in side alleys waiting for a mess to clean. Meredith tugged at Will’s arm.
“Come on let’s get moving Mr. Lazy!” She exclaimed
“Alright alright, sorry I enjoy the scenery.” He retorted
As they started walking Will took note of his surroundings, judging by the forearms he glimpsed today’s crowd was pretty diverse, scientists, diplomats, engineers, even brokers. As he walked he thought to himself how amazing it was that their civilization progressed, especially considering their humble beginnings, he prepared to dive deep in thought on the subject when he glanced at his fiancé. She seemed uncomfortable.
Probably the silence bothering her, that business caste with advertising specialty makes her such a chatterbox, being quiet must be so unbearable, he thought.
“Hey so did you sell anything ridiculous yesterday?” He asked
“Ha did I ever, get a load of this! There was this pitch for an omni-stove, they had me work on that has backwards compatibility so you could cook like they did before Lazora was founded.”
Will was intrigued, he always had a soft spot for pieces of antiquity, there was a mysticism that he enjoyed with the relics of days past, he felt that those primitive tools allowed people to become more in tune with what they were actually doing. However, there was an aspect about this venture which tugged on his conscious. Meredith was in charge of creating some advertising campaign in order to sell an out dated product most likely at an astronomical price, and to make matters worse people would happily pay the price to buy it in order to be in style thanks to the expert attack that would be created. He accidentally allowed his negativity to creep into his speech.
“Ugh leave it up to advertising to create and sell a product at what will most likely be sold at exorbitant mark-up for something that was cheaper when it first came out. Sometimes the way we operate frustrates me, I mean you might as well just try to set your whole house on fire to make a pizza with these things, they’re open flame! What’s the point of that? None of our peers will be able to effectively use it.” Will said incredulously.
Meredith did not allow Will to deflate her spirit.
“It’s an open flame type that requires so much attention to use I wonder if the food comes out of the fire” she thought aloud
“I’m hoping we can see something about it in the museum to help with my research.” She added
“And don’t think I didn’t hear you grumpy! Just relax because no one is forcing you to buy one and you can still pretend to be smarter than everyone else when you don’t buy one.”
Will begrudgingly smiled, “As usual you’re right on the money, I’m sorry I lashed like that”
He kissed her on the cheek and took her hand, then added in an innocent tone
“Yeah, I guess but that museum place is horrible, they make it nigh impossible to find what you’re looking for about our history.”
“I know, but I have a good feeling about today, besides you know what they say about information, it is those who work for it which earn it!”
Will stared at her for a second, she stared back with her full round vibrant blue-grey eyes. He truly saw her, to him she was gorgeous, flowing neat thick blonde hair dipped below her delicate shoulders, while each individual component of her body was unremarkable it was the sum of her parts which truly made her unmatched in beauty, it was her demeanor, can do, nice, optimistic, innocent attitude which put her over the top. Absolutely the best human being he had ever met, and for that matter oddly enough the perfect citizen as well. The two kissed, then kept walking as they proceeded they heard a commotion just around the corner, it sounded like several people were yelling and chanting all together.
“Do you hear that”? said Will
“Yeah, want to check it out”? replied Meredith
Will smiled, he always loved her adventurous attitude “Definitely!”
They picked up their pace and lightly jogged to the end of the corner and peered around the side of a building; the two were greeted with an eyesore that Lazora had been trying to eliminate for about the past ten years but had been failing miserably at. A group of around thirty people all dressed in hoodies with long sleeves purposely fitted over the thumb to prevent their sleeves from rolling up and exposing their caste symbols marched and chanted in unison. They were brandishing large signs with various slogans
“MOD’S ARE MAD”
“YOUR HUMANITY CAN’T BE UPGRADED”
“IMPLANTS ARE IGNORANT”
“NATURAL IS NORMAL”
They chanted “KEEP YOUR SOUL KEEP YOUR LIFE, DON’T YOU DARE GO UNDER THAT KNIFE!”
Meredith and Will both recoiled in disgust; the group was a coalition of anti-implant protestors. They were marching outside a new modification center and harassing citizens who were venturing in to expand their horizons and perceptions. The modification movement started innocently enough will recalled; after all he was a part of it having to learn some of the history surrounding the movement to assist with his own procedures. The base idea was known as trans-humanism, first there was a boom in prosthetic technology, 3-D printing combined with enhanced electronics and their work on nerve reconstruction allowed patients who had lost limbs to fully regain complete control and function albeit now with a mechanized stronger and faster limb, the intentions were good and the results phenomenal.
However, as they say the road to Hell is paved with good intentions and that’s just how it went. The first scandals to appear were on the news, it all started with sports, people were upset at finding out that some of their favorite idols were achieving and breaking records with mechanized limbs, they felt cheated, their competition was upset they couldn’t keep up. From there is where the seed of animosity grew, what Will and Meredith were now observing was the fruit of that seed. The desire to compete was unfathomable, people would attempt to remove their own limbs for the opportunity to get an improved mechanized prosthetic. Sanctions were put in place. Insurance companies revolted struggling against the new economic strains imposed by people willfully sawing off their limbs to compete. Yes the risk was great, however, the people perceived the rewards as much greater.
In the early days there were very few restrictions as to who could receive a prosthetic and how much it would cost; many made their fortunes by this path, in those times it was a sellers-market and the public was all too willing to pay. The general public perceived University as the only venue by which to attain success in life. Will chuckled to himself as he remembered that simpler time before the caste system had fully taken root. It was a rat race if there ever was one, it had been blown out of proportion to the point where you had to have a degree just to be a janitor, sterilization sciences they called it.
However, as with all things the exploit was patched, but at great cost, there was a massive economic collapse from all the students who couldn’t pay back their loans from all the exorbitant costs of their superfluous education, too many people were too qualified for too few jobs. There was chaos, “educated” people were out in the streets battling it out for the basics, food, water… shelter. Street wars were waged, despite everyone fully knowing the dangers that lay outside the walls they still wanted to destroy each other.
Luckily for Lazora strong leaders were there to pick up slack, the caste system was introduced as a public aid and gained traction as parents lost their ability to provide for their own children willfully giving them to the government. Those children were raised, taught and assigned caste jobs by government facilities and conditioned through experience that community conquers all. Several generations later it was in full swing.
The anti-mod movement was just about the only group that remained from that tumultuous time, they had strength in numbers and anonymity. It was rumored that this organization was actually cooperating between capitols and had numerous outposts and headquarters through the entire planet. Lately the anti-mod movement was gaining traction, more and more people were finding reasons to disagree with the latest advancements in neural implants. The people argued that it was another example of the rich exerting their control, creating a system in which they and their progeny could succeed. At this point both prosthetics and now neural implants came at an extremely high premium only the cream of the crop could afford them and the results were more than worth the cost. Children with implants could essentially write their ticket to wherever they wanted to go, neural implants granted them access to the internet propelling their scores far beyond an imagined high score thresholds set, 100’s on tests were no longer good enough. With prosthetic advancements sports were shattered, only those with the latest in robotics attached could compete. All this and more led to the current animosity.
These events coupled with the current weakness that prevailed through their entire government fostered the environment for a group like the anti-mod coalition to flourish. Too many politicians were too preoccupied with fighting the other nations for resources and getting re-elected to even attempt the necessary maintenance that was needed to quell the storm that was brewing within the coalition. Meredith and will backed away from the group slowly, holding hands the crossed the street and kept walking cautiously until they came to the massive structure which was the national museum. It wasn’t wholly unheard of for protestors to become violent with those who they discovered to be implanted, and unluckily for the couple Meredith and Will were sporting neural implants of her own, while it was unlikely that anyone would notice it was a risk neither wanted to take. They arrived at the museum district and the street music took on a different tone, a much more somber melody, one that told of the suffering prior to Lazora, and the struggle to found the nation.
Before them was a building as wide as an entire block, and while not tall it was formidable, massive white columns planted at the entrance framed a powerful wooden doorway fit for a giant. The entrance sat at the top of a mountain of wide stairs giving the building the appearance that it was simply lying in wait ready to pounce on its patrons from above. Will noticed that Meredith appeared to have apprehensions about entering put off by the formidable building. He knew that comforting her would be the best option so he gave her hand a squeeze and they ascended the staircase.
Will found himself thinking, what a nice little ploy Lazora has going here, to encourage us to think of the past in a polarized way they pull out all the stops! Somber eerie music contrary to our up-beat street music, a massive and mysterious looking building with proportions to set people uneasy. It may seem paranoid but I really think this was intentional to encourage us to shirk off our beginnings in favor of the present and to look towards the future. He glanced back and looked across the street at the much more inviting pristine glass and vibrant building behind him… Yeah I’m definitely right he thought.
Once inside the atmosphere didn’t improve, they were in a dimly lit circular domed grand hall, all around the circumference of the dome were countless flags of innumerable colors and designs all draped down like tapestries. This grand hall was the central hub of the building, many doorways led out of the circle, each taking the visitor to a different point of the Lazora and pre-Lazora timeline. In the direct center of the room was a kiosk with a lone employee behind it.
The man looked oddly cheery thought Will.
“W-weel…welcome…to…the…n-n-na-national moos…muse…museum!” He squeaked “W-weel…welcome…to…the…n-n-na-national moos…muse…museum!” He chirped
That explains it! He was certainly not allowed high on the totem pole, that guy came from low levelers, bit more Trenozene than your average service caste member. Will studied him closely, noted the faded look behind his eyes, almost glass really just reflecting back at you, the dried droll on the corners of his mouth and shirt. A completely unkempt hairstyle, yet that look of sheer contentment, Will almost envied him, so simple and not a care in the world, no risk loss of a catastrophic nature at all. Definitely no need to put on charm for this guy, it’d be above his head. He glanced at the nametag… Johnny.
“Hey, where can I find an open fire stove?” Will commanded
“Omn-omneee stoves arrrn’t hi-history, s-s-sorry sir.” Replied the attendant
“No it’s not an omni, something different, before then.”
The attendant vacantly stared back at Will.
“Like from the past, the history, the things before Lazora…”
The attendant perked up feeling happy he could say something to help.
“Y-y-yes sir a-all about Lazora h-h-here, p-p-past too.”
“I know that, that’s why I’m here, I’m looking for a stove” Said Will getting frustrated.
The attendant was once again perplexed.
“Omn-omnee stoves ar-arrrr-aren’t hi-history.” He said sadly
“Ughhhh” groaned Will “look it’s an older model, open fire, before Lazora?”
“Well, y-y-yes every-everything h-here is b-b-before Lazora” Johnny said, oblivious to Will’s frustration
Will was contemplating yelling at Johnny to scare him off then jumping over the desk and searching himself, there was nothing remotely efficient about this employee and Will could sense that’s exactly how the nation wanted it, which only fueled his frustration.
Just as Will was preparing to enact his plan Meredith intervened
“Hi Johhny, what do you have on 20th century pre-Lazora cooking?” She calmly asked.
Johnny was confused he had no idea how this stranger knew his name, but he wouldn’t let that deter him, he was the best at his job!
“Wa-one s-sec-second m-m-ma’am!”
He looked down at his screen and slowly typed in the request using his index fingers one key at a time, finally he looked up.
Meredith thanked Johnny, tipping him generously and they were off.
Still annoyed Will asked “Ugh why’d you tip him so much, that service was terrible.”
Meredith simply replied, “Because he did the best job that he could.”
Will rolled his eyes, “whatever you say.”
The dingy tunnel they walked through was lit by dim red lights along the walkway. The tunnel slowly introduced them to the time period they were about enter a lively and rhythmic rock tune was just barely audible in the air. As they were nearing the end bright multicolored neon lights illuminated the tunnel. They could see artifacts tucked away in glass cases along the walls. In one case there were fascinating and cumbersome cars with white walled tires, smooth curves contrasted by sharp points, no safety belts on the interiors. In another diorama, a band on stage and a crowd of people gathered around them. The neon lights formed the signs just a few feet above them at the roof of the tunnel which read sequentially Welcome… to the… 50’s! Suddenly Meredith and Will were outside of the tunnel and in what appeared to be a massive diorama which they could walk through and interact with. A VA in wearing a peculiar charcoal grey suit materialized to their right to greet them.
“Greetings and welcome to a decade which was referred to as the 50’s! If you look around right now you’ll that you are standing in a sporting arena know as a football stadium”
The stadium didn’t look like much thought Will who was standing with Meredith on the 50yard line, it was just an open field with wooden bleachers, nothing compared to our arenas. There was a fog surrounding the area preventing any vision of the area beyond the field and a nearby concession stand.
“This is a popular sporting event from the period currently being played by young teens. The persons on the field in armor are the players of the sport, both differently colored teams try violently to get an oval ball to the opponents end of the field. The people you see on either side of the field are the spectators, they frequently get very excited about games, they eat food, socialize, it was a community event!”
“Oh how wonderful!” Exclaimed Meredith
“Yeah…wonderful” Will said unenthused
The players from one team were slowly advancing on Will and Meredith play by play creeping a few yards each time, the crowd was frothing with excitement getting louder and louder. Players huddled in formation on the 50 yard line and set up for the next play. Will walked over to examine them closer, he looked at the faces behind the face masks, young, healthy, determined, there was an indescribable intensity in their eyes, it was as if their entire existence was at stake on this game. Will couldn’t fathom how people could get so hyped up over a recreational event. He was about to reach out and examine the uniform when the quarterback initiated play, the field erupted into a flurry of motion. Meredith jumped back and fell startled by the intense reaction by the crowd and players.
The hologram players ran straight through Will, he turned to look at Meredith frowning as he saw her on the ground.
“With moves like that I don’t think you should try out for the team.” Will joked as he helped her up.
She smiled at him and they watched as the team on offense finished their drive taking the ball all the way to the end zone. Despite the small crowd the cheering was deafening.
These people are so intense thought Will, the only time our citizens ever produce this much fervor is… Well he couldn’t really think of it, everyone kind of just did their own centric thing nowadays, there was really no struggle to unite them. Sure we all worked together and had great patriotism, but it’s like it was wasted with nothing to fight for.
A loud horn signaled the end of the game, the opposing team gathered at one end of the field heads hung low, the victors jauntily ran to the other end, both teams lined up and in an odd ritual began to exchange pleasantries of “good game”. After exchanged the victors began to savor their moment, waving at the crowd, hugging eachother, picking eachother up, cannons went off and confetti streamed down on the field. Slowly the whole scene began to fade to black, the crowd first, then the players, the stands, the field, the VA
and finally the fog. Meredith and Will stood in the dark looking around.
“That’s it ?!” Exclaimed Will “How did that have anything to do with stoves?”
“Shhh be patient”
“I am, it’s just we came here for one thing and we’re getting sidetracked and pushed elsewhere, I feel like this happens all the time!”
The VA reappeared in the distance near an illuminated tunnel.
“Right this way please for the next portion”
Meredith and Will walked to the next tunnel and found a red leather bench to sit on right in the middle of the walkway.
“Have a seat” Said the VA enthusiastically, “and prepare for the next portion of our voyage through time!”
They sat and a car similar to those they saw in the first hall began to materialize around them, the VA assumed the driver side, this time wearing a leather jacket, blue jeans, and saddle shoes complete with a slicked pompadour hairstyle. The VA looked at them in the rearview mirror and said
“The automobile was a large part of youth culture in this period, it symbolized freedom.”
And they were off, they drove around for what felt like to Will was hours, they stopped at various locations, drive in movie theaters, burger stands, secluded vistas where other cars all huddled and parked together at night, finally they were pulling into a housing community, house upon house each identical to the other, practically on top of each other, hardly any space. Will was extremely fed up, he wanted a clear cut clean outing, go to the museum, see a stove, learn, move on. He didn’t want the round-about cumbersome almost theatrical experience Lazora offered, which was peppered with subliminal messages as to why our current time was better.
The VA rounded a corner and a garage door opened to one of the houses, a single floor rectangular shaped abode, there were a few windows a little porch, it was evident that this arrangement would provide an ideal setup for the raising of a nuclear family which was all the tags back then at an affordable price.
Will and Meredith slid out of their seat and by the time they looked back the car was gone, they looked around for the VA but instead saw a small child probably about 7 years old with a short haircut wearing a striped shirt and jeans
“Now I’ll show you the nuclear family! Afterwards you can tour the residence and ask me any questions about the artifacts you see on display.” said the VA
He ran around the house and opened the front door. Wills patience was wearing thin, he vowed to never come to the museum again… Then he paused and thought, that’s probably just how Lazora wants it. He allowed this thought to permeate getting even more frustrated. Then he glanced at Meredith, damn she was incredible, not the least bit phased at this whole ordeal, completely blind to all the “lessons” we were learning all day, he was sure she knew we were being “educated” but for whatever reason she just chose to accept it, he wished he could just choose, it’d make life so much easier. They had talked about it before, with her advertising background she realized very quickly how all of the people were shaped and molded by media, they talked about the ethics of such things and if anyone was suffering from it. In the end Metedith opted for the high road, she would see it and accept it, Will on the other hand, he couldn’t, the mere fact that he could see it proved too much for him, he felt cheated because the illusion wasn’t perfect, and those who could see through it said nothing, it was maddening really, the feigned loneliness.
“I don’t mean to interrupt, but please step lively and follow me.” Said the VA
“Come on Mr. grumpy!” Said Meredith as she tugged at Will and dragged him along
The two entered the modest house and turned immediately to their left and arrived at the kitchen, a woman in a dress was busy moving from apparatus to apparatus stirring things in various pots, cutting things, and frying things on an open flame device…. “That must be the old stove” thought Will.
“Right now who you’re looking at is the maternal head of the nuclear family unit, this person is the mother, back in this era nearly all child-rearing was done by this person. State intervention was extremely minimal children were required only to attend for the bare minimum of skill acquisition pertaining to obtaining jobs, the state offered no help to enact effective change in regards to proper citizen education.” The VA let out a wide grin and chuckled. “I’m sure you can see how this system would afford a bad stock of children, so many mothers, so many opinions so many styles, they couldn’t all be right after all so, some children would be raised proper, many more improper, and many more after that downright despicable, because of the scattershot group of youth so many good children were tainted by the bad seeds and it created a system of mediocrity.”
Meredith looked over at Will, and plainly stated.
“You know it’s incredible that the old civilizations were able to make it so far, I mean obviously the system was fraught with many bugs, just look at how they mucked up the whole world with war before Lazora was founded. But just wow, it’s fascinating.”
“I know” said Will “It makes me wonder what we could be doing wrong, the incredible clarity that hindsight offers is fantastic, I just wish there was an easier way to see how badly we’re messing up now.”
“What do you mean? Our system is practically perfect sure there could be some small tweaks here and there but any bad mess up? Impossible, delivering kids to state education at birth and re-acquiring them after age 6 is delightful. You can focus on your career, aren’t burdened with a child you can’t communicate with, and then you get to be with them when they can actually communicate, they’re already excellent citizens and you can watch them grow up.” Said Meredith defensively.
Will looked at her smiled and shrugged saying “I guess you’re right,” but on the inside it killed him. It wasn’t that he thought she was wrong in fact he absolutely loved the current child rearing scheme as well. What bothered him was her complete lack of desire to look at something Lazora had to offer critically. It wasn’t the first time something like this had come up, it wouldn’t be the last, and the true tragedy felt Will was that she was not alone. The majority of citizens were just like her, meandering along, doing their job, not rocking the boat, not asking questions, not piquing their curiosity in matters pertaining to how they lived in the slightest. Those who did have ideas were few and far in between, oftentimes they didn’t last long either before they were blasted out of that level of consciousness by trenozene. It was a pretty efficient system that Will respected despite being aggravated by it, the majority didn’t question, and those who did were compelled by their own sense of duty to curb their behavior. He just wished he didn’t feel so alienated by his thoughts.
“Show me the cooking apparatus the nuclear head would use” said Meredith
“Absolutely right this way ma’am!”
Meredith began to poke and prod around the stove recording measurements’, asking questions for the VA, she was engrossed in her work.
Will stood by the side and allowed himself to become engrossed in his thoughts. While he had never been particularly slighted by the current Lazoran arrangement of living he wanted more, he felt that their current system could be improved drastically if only their people worked together and recognized their potential. If only they allowed themselves to think, too many of them were too content with just following the rules for the sake of rules. Discarding their materials by their best by dates regardless of its quality, buying the latest iteration of personal technology gadgetry, consuming and consuming media ad nauseum, talking about the latest trival gossip about who was assigned to who, sporting plays from the latest game on nightly entertainment programs. He felt they had lost sight of what was important, growth, their education program fostered this behavior in the worst way. No one was learning anymore, they were all so preoccupied with scoring the highest, being the best in their caste on paper. No one wanted to learn for the sake of learning, everyone was taught according to state statutes, memorized and memorized answers solely to get high marks on their examinations. No one learned anything and VA’s held their hands the entire time in their professional environments. Will couldn’t understand why people didn’t want to strive for true greatness for greatness sake, they needed their papers, their certificates, their medals and status symbols and so he just leaned back, closed his eyes and took a deep breath.
Meredith had just finished her recordings and walked over to Will
“Hey sleepy head, ready to continue this tour?”
He opened his eyes slowly and stood up, he kissed Meredith on the forehead. “Absolutely”
The VA was led them outside.
“This small green enclosure is a backyard, this is where social cookouts would occur, additionally this area would be used for child recreation.”
Meredith and Will were perplexed, there was literally nothing to do in that space, it was just an enclosed square with grass, a small concrete area and chairs, sure one could talk with others back there but there really was nothing special about the arrangement.
“Sooo what would they do here for recreation?” asked Meredith
At this the VA was also confused.
“I’m not entirely sure it replied, it might be easier for me to just show you.”
Two children ran out of the house laughing and chasing each other, they ran in circles rolled all over the grass, tapped each other shouting you’re it, they talked to imaginary creatures, they pretended to fight, they grabbed small toys and talked for them creating an entire story and universe all their own in which to play int. It was unusual for Meredith and Will to see children in this context; quite honestly it was unusual for Will and Meredith to see children at all.
While Will was engaged to Meredith and they both wholly planned on having children they were not going to be heavily involved in the child’s life as it matured and they were quite okay with that, happy even. As the system was set the two were paired for their genetic compatibility and would work to create a being who would benefit the nation. They had no idea which caste the child would be assigned. They would spend minimal time with the infant before enrolling it in government education, after 6 years they would have family gatherings for holidays. Some antiquities of the past still held, they would assign it’s name and be there as one of its resources for introduction into the world for job networking. Will and Meredith looked at each other and smiled, upon seeing the odd creatures of the 50’s play they were happy to know how their system worked and looked forward to meeting their progeny. They exchanged a kiss and asked the V.A. to lead them to the exit of the museum they had seen all they needed to see.