I'm ready to leave the world behind. Right about now. Not in a morbid, suicidal way, more in a - it's going to happen eventually and I'm pretty comfortable with that - sense. This is convenient really, given that I'm going to be dead in less than thirty seconds time. I don't know that I'm about to leave but I've just realised I'm ready. Funny how that works out. Some might claim design. There is design, of course, intelligent design, behind the framework, driving the sims but as for my fate, within the parameters of the god-machine, it's just my luck. A very real phenomenon, no less so for it's absolute subjectivity.
I know none of this. I'm hanging upside down in a kayak, turbulent water bombarding my senses. I'm enjoying the thrill, pitting myself against the ocean. The ocean just handed my ass to me, like it has a thousand times before. My head smashes against the underwater rock, with the force of a couple of thousand tons of water behind it. The inquest will blame my lack of helmet. A cautionary tale. The helmet wouldn't have saved me - there was enough force applied to tear my head clean off my shoulders had I been wearing one. Without the helmet, the right side of my skull cleaves off pretty clean, freeing the rest of my head from the hole in the reef and, in doing so, literally saving my neck. But only the neck. Most of the brain is obliterated, as it sloshes out the hole and gets caught up in the current and beaten on the reef.
And then that's it. I'm dead. I'm somewhere white. I'm struck by how corny that is, just as I realise I'm being integrated with something else. I'm losing my self in ... that's weird ... I'm losing myself in myself.
... I blink. And a lifetime appends itself to my memory timeline. Forty-odd years subjective, inserted in a momentary bat of simulated eyelids. Welcome to the future. When? What does "when" even mean any more? Sometimes I go in blind, fullspeed, like just then. So my root indentity freezes for a split second, meanwhile I'm born again. An implanted zygote, carrying my full genotype plus a phenotype scaffold - just enough so it feels like me when it comes back. Any number of years passes where baby me grows up and eventually bites the bullet then... Blink. Was that forty years or didn't that time count?
Funny thing Is, I'm late. Not because of the forty years thing, that was practically instantaneous in root time, I'm late on purpose. Being late psyches out the opponent. Gives me an edge. If I'm going to win this thing, I'll need all the edge I can get. I've just tagged on four point two million lives, running in parallel chunks of two thousand forty eight. Millennia in subjective time, couple of dozen cycles machine time, less than a second root time, outside time? There is no outside time - nothing out there to keep it. Four point two million unique timelines lived. Experiences, insights, memories. All these are mine now. I'm armed.
I blink. A large steel door appears in front of me. Alternatively, I appear in front of the door. Meta-causality in effect. It's impossible to say. I push open the door and step into the courtroom. The defendant, a weakly godlike planetoid simulation node, who calls itself Isaac, is charged with deleting more than seven billion human consciousnesses. I'm here to plead the case of the defence. Only one problem. I've just lived four point two million lives in Isaac's simspace. I'm not only ninety nine percent certain the AI did it, I'm also convinced Isaac did the right thing.