The license below does NOT refer to the image above, which is a free use image from Morguefile. The license below refers ONLY to the written work below IT: the text of README by S.A. Barton.
In other words, if you do choose to spread this story around, distribute it in its entirety, unchanged, attributed to S.A. Barton, and include a link to this page. Thanks!
by S.A. Barton
“In the beginning, was the Gates…” X intoned. It was a party, they’d all had a few zots to the pleasure-reward complex. Why not preach to a random stranger?
“Why is it ‘was the Gates’, and not ‘is the Gate’, have you ever thought of that?” asked Y.
“The language has changed, duh,” X said, making a face like someone bluescreening. “It’s been like eight thousand years and a lot of translations and modernizations. But they’re all inspired by the Gates to carry the true meaning of the original.”
“How do you know that?”
“It says so in the book, of course,” X said, eyescreens translating the roll of the meat eyes underneath to rolling pixels. “The Gates gave it all to us: the touchscreen, the tablet, the brainmouse, the HUD. We crucified his AVI for it, and he forgave us and revealed the hyperdrive as his last gift. Surely you’ve heard the holy README before.”
“I’ve heard it,” Y said, holding a zotstick next to the autodownloader under the skin of his temple. He sucked in breath through clenched teeth and his eyescreens went spaz with bright cyan static for a few seconds. “Good shit. Dude, people made computers. Finds on Earth proved it centuries ago. I was just reading the other day divers think they’ve found the Silicon Valley. It was just a place.”
“The Silicon Valley was a spiritual paradise in which the Gates delivered his gifts to all mankind. If someone thinks they’ve found it, they’ve either fooled themselves or they’re trolling. The Gates removed it from the physical realm after we defiled it with his AVI’s blood. It’s all in the…”
“Yeah, it’s in the holy README, I know, I know,” Y said, waving the zotstick under X’s nose.
“Lol about it if you want, but there’s no way a human could build even a crude computer on his own. Not from nothing. Ever see a docu about regressed civilizations?”
“So? A planet gets cut off from galactic civilization, it degenerates. They can’t get any new…”
“Any new what, smartass?” X says with a smirk plastered across his face.
“Computers…” Y says, voice trailing off weakly. He lifts his zotstick up to his temple again. It fizzles, there’s no rush. “Shit, I’m out of zot.”
X hands his stick over; it’s still half full. “Go ahead, hit that. But now that you’re thinking, now that you realize that humans can’t have invented the computer, why don’t you sit and listen…”