Week 28, 2019
Kathy was longing for a place in the world.
As she advanced in her skills and gained control of her powers, Kathy’s sensitivity to the motives of those around her became profound.
The intentions of the analysts who questioned her were an open book. She had to develop new skills, the ability to buffer, to keep herself from prying into the lives of anyone she was near.
She was starving for companionship, for friendship but she could not find it anywhere.
She did not want to know about the private lives of every person that she met, their fears, their hopes, their anxieties, and their lusts.
Those things were disturbing to Kathy, she did not want any part of them.
She reported on how easy it was for her to read anyone she spoke to. She did not tell them that she could read people from miles away, or on the other side of the world, anyone could be read if she concentrated.
She told them the types of things they wanted to hear about her abilities.
She told them just enough to give them the feeling that they could control their encounters with her.
Millions of dollars were spent to mask the thoughts and intentions of the people who had to interact with Kathy on a daily basis.
Even though these efforts were mostly connected to secrecy and national security, they were also meant to foster in Kathy a sense of belonging, and community, which they did with ever increasing difficulty.
Kathy felt the artificiality of her life, some days it weighed on her heavily, though when she was busy she hardly noticed.
In her work place, every little detail of her environment was contrived, scripted, fake. The lighting, the view, the temperature, the sounds and smells, her handlers put everything in place like they were scripting a television show.
Their aim was to keep Kathy passive, and somewhat distracted.
No effort was spared to engender within Kathy feelings of safety and love, the sense that she was valued.
They would introduce something into her environment, a painting, a vase, a lamp, then they would measure its effect on her output, her vital signs and expressions of her well-being, both voluntary and involuntary.
Kathy saw through all of the contrivances made on her behalf. At the same time, she appreciated the sentiments behind them, as artificial as they were. She accepted those things and pretended to accept them as genuine.
She was able to maintain that peaceful coexistence with her handlers for many years, into her young-adulthood. In that time she wanted to believe that the people she met had good intentions.
Over time however, all the false fronts vanished.
Kathy became cynical.
As she grew older her cynicism did not cause her to lash out.
She remained quiet and focused.
She preferred, as all cynics and pessimists do, to think of herself as a realist.
She stopped wanting to believe that people had her best intentions in mind, she did not want their kindness or sympathy even when it was genuine. She knew that she was an asset, merely a tool, and an unceasing object of fascination.
Analysts came to see her nearly every day. They brought their tests with them, they brought their questions, they brought their problems to be solved.
They brought her work.
Sundays were Kathy’s only regular time of respite, a day of reflection and a time to lose herself in the past.
Kathy listened to them, and while she did she looked into their consciousness, she explored their hearts and minds, their history.
She would privately decide on who she would help and who she would not. She did not express those decisions overtly, but every analyst who could not get resolution from Kathy on the project they were working was relieved of their duties and diligently examined.
Everyone who came in contact with Kathy was profiled exhaustivly, analyzing the analysts that who came in contact with her became a cottage industry in the intelligence community.
She read their papers, watched their films, and when they put questions to her, she shared her insight from the depths of her memory.
If she liked them then, she led them to the resolution they were seeking.
If she did not like them, their projects lingered, unfulfilled.
She read ancient languages, interpreted obscure symbols, and saw the patterns in everything.
Her handlers eventually learned what type of person they could present to Kathy, the type of people that would elicit a positive response from her, people she would help without coercion.
Kathy would not be coerced to do anything.
Kathy loved problem solving. She was making her career out of it.
She loved complex tasks, and she delighted in the resolution of new challenges.
She sought them out.
She took joy in creative and critical thinking. If her work was helpful to people, it pleased her.
Problem solving gave her a sense of purpose, that is where she found her place in the world and felt most as if she belonged to something.
In the cases she was presented, in the analysis she was asked to give, the greater the complexity and length of time for the project, the better it was for her.
She preferred challenges for which the answers did not just spring from her memories straight into her mind.
This was rare, the challenges facing human government, medicine, war, espionage, might feel new to most people encountering them, but they were not new to the human experience.
She was fascinated by encountering new things, new ideas, for this reason she devoted her private time to the study of the atom, to physics, astrophysics, and quantum physics.
Kathy quietly and privately wrote groundbreaking papers, this was an incredible source of pride and self-esteem for her.
Without being fully aware of the influence of her work, Kathy was generating research that rippled out through the global economy.
Access to Kathy was sought after by every think tank, causing the National Security Administration worked tirelessly to keep her identity a secret.
In order to maintain their own secrecy, her handlers deliberately narrowed Kathy’s focus, restricting the scope of her involvement in matters pertaining to national security.
They would parcel out questions for her in the hope that she might not see the patterns over longer periods of time.
They sought her understanding of minute details, doing everything they could to limit the information that she could glean from them about what their real concerns were
They were concerned that if she was ever discovered and captured, it could do irreparable harm to the country.
Kathy never revealed to them how easy it was for her to penetrate their thoughts.
She kept her own secrets, she held them closely, and she led her handlers down false paths to keep them in the dark about what the range of her abilities were.
If they would have known, they might have been comforted, or they might have killed her, something that many people at the National Security Council wanted to do.
She kept her full abilities masked.
She worked hard, and she produced data for the people that came to her, she offered expert analysis, and from time to time she took proactive measures to prevent a catastrophe from developing.
Her handlers were content to utilize her abilities infrequently, but on significant matters, having discovered that the more often they involved her in minutia, the more and more she was inclined to go out into the world and expose herself for who she really was.
Religious conflicts began to shape the later 20th, and the early 21st centuries. Kathy’s input regarding the origins of these conflicts was invaluable.
Current events had to be understood in their historical context, because tribal history continued to move its people long after the members had forgotten the particular details of a broken promise, an injustice, or a blood feud.
Kathy’s ability to pinpoint the specific moments in time that were the antecedents of those tribal conflict was uncanny. If she could not reach the understanding through her own ancestral memories, she could commune with the spirits of the dead, she could pull the insight she needed from the cynergenic field, the nous-sphere.
Her memory produced volumes of insight for her handlers, but questions along those lines left her deeply disturbed. It caused her to dread the entire human race, the vile antipathy people held toward one another, and how easy it was for the bucolic life of a farmer, or a herdsman to become twisted by greed and drive them toward the calamities of war. It was a weight she could not ignore.
The human psyche was incredibly easy to manipulate. People were supple, pliable, soft and reducible.
Human beings had a vast capacity for self-delusion, and a profound willingness to be complicit in it.
In the midst of research Kathy often felt the instinct to flee, to run away from everything, and to never return.
Just as she had been abandoned by her parents, Kathy wanted to abandon the world.
She desperately wanted to be alone.
She knew there was no being alone, death was merely a transition to another state of being, not an opportunity to escape.
The intelligence operatives stopped visiting Kathy in person, they engaged her by proxy and through handlers.
They did not want to expose themselves to Kathy’s penetrating psychic insight. They took every measure they could to conceal their motives. They only wanted the answers to their questions, they did not want any reflection from Kathy about the projects they were working on, the reasons why they needed their questions asked.
They submitted questions in writing.
They used a long chain of couriers to deliver the contents of their inquiries, and from which they receive their answers. Everyone who came in contact with her was watched.
The multiple degrees of separation proved to be a valuable tool. It eased the fears of the security establishment that Kathy would glean too much information from their agents and analysts if they were exposed to her directly.
Kathy received her assignments. She in turn wrote papers giving details and context in response to the questions they submitted. She deciphered code, sometimes ancient script, offered geopolitical analysis, identified covert agents, pointed out weaknesses in their own security.
Oftentimes she did not answer questions directly, she supported their work by helping them to ask better questions.
This frustrated her handlers at times, but Kathy was not being coy. They often brought questions to her that they already possessed the ability to answer. Kathy did not want to be responsible for a weakening of the intelligence and security apparatus, she wanted it to excel through her engagement with it.
She wanted to assist with the escalation of its full potential, to see it realized in her time, because for all the faults of humanity and her own government, she felt it difficult not to be patriotic, and she believed hat the American institutions of democratic government, liberal and progressive, was the only hope the world had to lift itself out of the age of conflict.
Like any other human being, she wanted her work to matter.
Part Four, Kathy
Chapter Twenty-six, Adulthood
A Novel – In One Chapter Per Week
#Emergence #ShortFiction #365SciFi #OneChapterPerWeek
Like it, Follow it, Share it!