Art&Writing 1st Place: Sky Net

By Emily Xu 2023-11-16 17:02:28

Even over the brilliant skynet, the sky was a rose color and was covered with clouds that looked like rose petals. After removing the wiring from under his head, Tim left his workplace. Since Tim's invisible lenses were four versions out of date in today's society, the world in front of him frequently appeared slightly fuzzy, and he frequently felt lightheaded after finishing work. 

Tim cautiously exited the building and spoke to the person in his ear, "Hey George," "Dude, hurry up and help me calibrate my visual chromatic aberration, I'm selling this awful lens to those men in the dungeon who collect used items this weekend.

Better right now?Tim's ear was briefly touched by George's gentle computerized voice. 

Much cozier, in fact. Tim blinked sideways as though George were actually there.

Tim was confronted by the train's doors opening, a garbage odor assaulted him, and he chose not to get on. There were only a few businessmen in suits like him sitting inside the train, intermittently, none of them outdoors, heads leaning against the graffiti-covered wall, eyes hazy. They have long since entered the virtual world, which is possibly the only way to escape the squalor of the real world. Even though it seems like the city is busy, very few people can really manage themselves, therefore very few people take the trains any more. The majority of individuals have entered cyberspace, where they can conduct every aspect of their lives online and have their own identity.

The city is currently populated by laborers in cyber form, who automatically move between buildings while having blue-light infused bodies. Tim is unable to touch them; instead, he must allow them to pass through their skin, as though in a sea of free-floating electronic information and subject to ominous currents. A limitless bubble engulfed the tranquil city as these cyber waters combined with the sky net above Tim's head. 

Electronic screens that displayed constantly blinking advertisements were installed along the building's walls. Those in the network were entering and exiting these billboards in addition to traveling through the structure, so Tim was unable to enterat least not in his physical body at that point.

Tim scoffed as a line of network employees entered a billboard displaying a gigantic blue dolphin that was illuminated as a MOTAX advertisement. 

Tim abruptly remarked, "Know about dolphins, George." 

"Dolphin is the collective term for a group of aquatic mammals of the dolphin family, tiny to medium-sized toothed whales that were last discovered in the wild on October 3, 2077, on the west coast of the Pacific Ocean." George retorted. 

"Those individuals don't even bother to bring up the topic of extinction, and anyhow, I know that an enormous MOTAX-bred dolphin is eating up the money in some people's bank accounts." Tim moves parallel to the train passing by, which causes his tie to be blown up by a burst of wind. 

"Aren't you progressing?" George inquired

Tim walked over to a disorganized vending machine in the station's corner and remarked, "I'm going to buy some drinks." 

Tim moved his arm, causing the vending machine to rumble. A moment later, a drink fell from the machine. Six bottles of beverages came packaged in a canvas bag. Since they had been outlawed in the previous century, he had to rely on them to sustain his way of life. He finds it impossible to imagine how those impoverished people would survive without alcohol.

A few employees who had just finished their beverages sat in the corner next to the vending machine, murmuring to themselves but not understanding what they were saying. Not far away, there was another employee who appeared to have had a drink just the day before because of the way his body was twisted and the corners of his lips were drooling. 

Tim did not give it much thought as he untied the cloth bag, dragged a can of drink out of the bag while groaning, locked the bag with an electronic lock, and then deftly put the drink into the interface behind his head. 

"George, how about we take a ride?" Tim extended his body and cordially welcomed his good friend.

The sunset-colored sky was hung with clouds that were the color of rose petals, and they were disappearing. Tim climbed inside his Toyota convertible, twisted the radio knob, and fired up the old engine. The city-pop of the previous century persisted as I walked past the buildings while the evening breeze blew through. As he takes advantage of this enjoyable time off from work, his hair is blown up against the setting sun. 

As he approached the pink sea, the pink waves floated on the beach and gave out a seductive sea salt scent, as though his beloved girl's distinctive scent had enticed him. The skynet in the sky vanished, as if it had never existed in this world, a world where there was just sky of rose hue.

Dolphins leaped in the distance in bunches, and the beach's foam glowed brilliantly with color. 

George: "How wonderful do you believe life is?" On an endless highway, Tim was the driver of the Toyota convertible.



Written by: Emily Xu 徐瑄祺, 14, Shanghai Experimental School International Division