Master PC – Mind Magi
Part Six—Tangled Web
Chapter Forty-Three—Trying To Reason
I didn’t expect to have surprise on my side when I arrived. Fiona was in an office suite that, like Lord Morehouse’s office, was very tasteful and very expensive. And like Lord Morehouse, she was waiting for me.
“Ral, I’m so glad you could make it,” she said sweetly. She got up from her desk and walked toward me with her arms out for a hug.
She hadn’t even noticed my flustered state. Maybe she had expected it. Maybe she knew what had just happened. Maybe I was right and she had killed Morehouse.
Fiona wrapped her arms around my neck, pulling me into a wonderful hug. Instinctively, I hugged her back. Then it dawned on me that I might be able to stop everything happening.
Pulling Fiona to me tighter, I could feel emotions stirring in me that I wasn’t prepared for. Theodore’s memories were more powerful that I had thought. Having lived for so long, transferring from one body to another, making sure that every memory was included, he would have never let anyone else’s memories override his and I realized how much Theodore had always enjoyed holding her. It really felt as if we, that is to say Theodore and Fiona, were meant to be together, not only emotionally, but physically too.
However, my emotions were not to be completely denied. Memories of my own were triggered by the same hug. Faces floated through my mind: Renée, Erin, Nadia, Sally and my other women. The contentedness I had found with them helped me stay grounded and not give in to the wrong choices I might make while with Fiona.
Fiona still wore the same red dress she had donned when we got ready to leave her place that morning. Yes, that morning. It felt like it had been years ago.
Fiona pulled back enough to see my face. “I’ve wondered where you’ve been all day.” She shimmied against me in a very agreeable way. “I was hoping you’d stay with me another night before heading home.”
She was acting like nothing was going on. Like the world was simply moving along outside her door like it should. Was it an act? Was she really innocent?
Theodore’s memories told me, no.
I shook my head and stepped back from Fiona, forgetting even to try to command her to change her plans.
She let me go and studied me. “Now I know something’s wrong,” she said.
I looked at her. Her deep brown eyes. Her wavy brown locks framing her glamorous face. Even without a smile, she was a knockout. The touches of makeup weren’t needed either. She was naturally gorgeous.
I moved further away, wanting to be out of reach. I felt better for it and realized one of her abilities was probably to make herself more attractive to those near her.
Once I felt the effect leave me, I said, “I have to know where the Master PC server is.”
She cocked her head to the side. “Master PC?” she asked.
“You don’t have to play ignorant... Sandra. I know your history.”
She straightened up and raised an eyebrow. “Theodore...”
I looked down at that. “I’m not Theodore, though I do have his memories.”
She looked down at my chest. “And his abilities too.”
I nodded. “But I don’t have his consciousness. He made sure that was filtered out.”
She looked back up puzzled. “That’s not possible.”
“For him it was,” I said. “I have memories of him transferring before he got to me. I know what it felt like for him to go from one body to another.”
Fiona’s face softened. “Then he’s truly dead...”
I nodded. “I’m sorry.”
A tear trailed down her cheek. She looked up at me and I met her gaze. “I really thought you were him. There were so many times that I thought I wouldn’t find him.”
“What made you think I was Theodore?”
She shrugged. “You have the right build and look. We always chose similar appearances for each other.”
That was exactly what Theodore’s memories had told me. “And after being with me last night?”
She smiled, her face flushing a bit. “It was like with being with him again, but not.
“I am sorry for your loss Fiona,” I said, feeling her raw emotions.
She shook her head. “No, don’t apologize. I suppose that I should have seen it coming.”
“Why do you say that?” I asked.
“He was growing sentimental,” she said. “It was a conversation we had on a few occasions.” And then she looked up. “He wondered what it would be like to die.”
Knowing that Theodore had been effectively ageless, I could only guess at his state of mind. Though I had his memories, it was still somewhat an alien concept, wondering what death would be like. I wasn’t depressed and had no desire to die myself.
Looking at Fiona, I was sure she had disagreed with his curiosity. Her reason was simple and selfish. She didn’t want to be alone.
Regardless of her relationship with Theodore, there was the more immediate issue to deal with. “Fiona, where is the Master PC server?”
She looked up at that. “Why?”
“I have to shut it down.”
“Why?” she asked again with growing concern.
“Because someone is trying to make changes that could affect the world.”
She nodded. “I know. That’s been the intent of the program all along.”
I shook my head. The culmination of memories and clues added up to only that answer. I had ignored it, hoped there was another reason, but for her to say it so blatantly, it took a second to truly understand what was happening. “It’s wrong Fiona.”
She cocked her head to the side. “What makes you think it’s wrong?”
“What makes you think its right?” I countered.
She smiled. “It’s necessary.”
“Why?” I asked.
I could feel the shift in her emotions. Before there had been grief, now self-righteousness replaced it. “I have spent countless lifetimes among them. I have watched the countless wars. One empire after another would rise and fall. Leaders come and go. I have seen the horrors that humans have inflicted upon their brothers and sisters for any reason. Religion, Kingdom, survival... You could not possibly imagine.”
I tapped my head at the temple. “Yes, I can.”
Though she had risen on a tide of anger and frustration, my one reminder of her beloved slowed her race. “You’ve... seen...”
I nodded. “I remember them as if I had been there.”
Her face brightened. “Then you, of all people, should understand what I’ve been trying to do.”
I shook my head. “No, I don’t.”
Fiona pushed passed me and headed for the door.
“Fiona, wait,” I said, following her.
She went out through the door.
Just before it closed, I grabbed the handle, opened the door and stepped through.
Something hit me in the back of the head.
I went down to my knees. Stars were swimming in front of me.
Again I was hit. This time higher up on my head. It was enough to put me out.