It is the year 2080, and modern technology has taken a new turn. In a twist of fate, two people get entangled when they have an accidental virtual liason during their flight, instead of experiencing a programmed artificial intelligence. What will happen when they realize the truth and come face to face in the satellite city?
Amelia grumbled to herself, fingers clutched white around the handle of her luggage. She didn't fully trust the spider-like robots that had been spinning away the bags of the passengers in front of her as they entered the aisle of the large shuttle-plane. Apprehension twisted inside her. It was her first flight off world, even though it would be no more than five hours. Begrudgingly, she entered the aisle and released the death grip she had on her bag, sighing as she watched the many legged robots whisk it up and away. She turned to the scanner in the wall and held up her ticket. A chime sounded in confirmation and a small blue guide orb popped out of the wall in front of her and began to roll away to her seat. Amelia followed at a brisk pace, relieved when the orb chimed again and the flight AI programmed in it stated, 'arrived, seat 33a'.
A large breath whooshed out from between her lips as Amelia sank into the molding gel nanotechnology seat. It immediately formed to be the most comfortable and supportive for her body, and the temperature regulated for maximum comfort. She flicked open the simulation inducer and welcomed the slight pinching feeling as the virtual reality simulator sinked with her nervous system. Relaxing into the chair, she shut her eyes.
Opening her eyes again into the virtual reality, she saw that she was in a large library.
"Games" she said, and a large stairwell manifested in front of her leading her to the section of the library she wanted. She browsed for a moment, then selected a questing game that took place in the middle ages. Immediately, she was inside the game load out. It looked like an armory, one wall was a large mirror. She saw herself in the mirror, then shrugged, why not change her avatar's appearance a bit. Touching her reflection, she tapped on her hair, then swiped her hand through the air, scanning through colors. Instead of her natural chestnut brown hair, she went for an iridescent silver blue, and matched her brows as a dark blue, rather than keep her natural dark brown. She shrugged, smiling, then chose some light armor and a bow. She liked playing as a ranger class character from time to time. She imagined that she was a water dryad, turned huntress to get revenge for the murder of her lover... she sighed. In all her 23 years, Amelia had never known a lover, never had the kind of romance she dreamed of.
She made the exit sign with her hand, and the game was gone in a flash. She was back in the library. Amelia felt herself caught in a strange sort of longing, a loneliness she couldn't seem to escape. She drew her bottom lip between her teeth and worried it, then, mind made up, she released it.
"Erotica" she nearly shouted, then rolled her eyes at her own nerves. Yes, it was VR, but it still wasn't real, even if it seemed more real than reading it in a book. It was basically no more intimate than masterbation, and she was no stranger to pleasuring herself.
Scanning the titles, she couldn't quite decide what it was she wanted. Suddenly, a book blinking, more like a hologram, caught her eye.
"How strange," she murmered, and before she could think better of it, she reached out to touch the book.
* * *
Vince groaned, he hated long flights, and even more, he hated waiting for the boarding to finish. He had been asked by his father to conduct a survey of the processes of their company's travel service, which meant everything from observing boarding, to trying food and drinks, to experiencing the VR, or virtual reality systems. He didn't particularly like entering VR, as he felt it left him too vulnerable in reality, but he had a private room on the flight, and would be expected to enter the simulator simply to ensure it was working correctly.
As the boarding finally finished, he blew out a breath and entered his private cabin, locking the door.
"Might as well get the VR over with" he grumbled, as he threw himself into the gel of the chair and closed his eyes.
Vince opened his eyes on the library of the simulator. They had complied one of the largest VR experience libraries, as it was necessary for a company that owned not only shuttle planes, but general passenger airplanes, hotels, and even cruise ships. In fact, his family company had been instrumental in the creation of the satellite city, Pandora, which this very flight was headed to.
"Games." He ordered, and a stairwell took him to the games section. He knew the library well enough that he could navigate from one section to the other without the easy navigation commands, but it was more convenient to use them. Vince had always enjoyed games, though he rarely allowed himself to waste the time on them. Now, however, he was required to test the VR system, so why not enjoy it as best he could? When he turned down the aisle to the game he wanted, though, he saw a flash, hologram like, of a woman with long chestnut brown hair.
"s**t, that's not supposed to be here." He sighed and began to follow the hologram. He couldn't be sure if it was some glitch in the AI or if one of the non-player characters generated in a game was manifesting on accident. Regardless, he needed to follow it to determine the damaged data loop so the maintenance workers could scrub that part of the library.
Suddenly, he realized the hologram woman was in the erotica section. A split second later, she disappeared, but he noticed that one of the libraries 'books' was also hologram-like. Vince groaned inwardly. This was just f*****g perfect, he thought. Now he'd have to enter an erotica simulator to see how badly the file was corrupted. If it was too bad, they'd have to scrub the whole thing and repurchase the original file. Gritting his teeth, he reached out and touched the book.