DISCLAIMER: Well, we all know this special character and the universe around it are not mine. If I had the talent to create something like this, I would already be in Hollywood earning tons of money.

Author's note: This is just a very short fragment that deals with McQueen's state of mind while being tortured by the silicates back in the AI war. I always wondered what someone thinks when being submitted to such an extreme situation. And believe it or not - this scene was originally written as the beginning of my first draft of the third ring...

Fragments of the Sun


Susi Patzke

The Silicate drew its knife.

The blade reflected the only beam of sunlight that had mad its way past the wooden-barred window into the dark room where they *questioned* him.

He desperately needed a distraction. Now. Because this knife would soon be used. It would cut through his skin and his flesh. Would cut through veins without hesitation. Would do great harm to him.

He hated it.

His eyes flickered through the room in order to find something to concentrate on. But except for the Silicate and its knife, there was pretty much nothing else in the room to focus on. The sunbeam which seemed to be the only friendly aspect in there was nowhere to be seen - except as a reflection on the knife's blade.

So he focused on the blade, hoping to catch a glimpse of the sun on it.

In concentrating on the silvery surface of the weapon he tried to forget about the Silicate that was holding it. And that was ready to use it. His entire universe shrunk until it only onsisted of the blade's image.

The blade seemed new to him. No scratches on it. No remainder of blood on it. Clean. Shiny.

He couldn't help it but in a certain way he even saw a kind of perfec- tion before him. To be honest, it appeared to be a wonderful weapon. Wonderful in its simplicity and ist undoubted efficiency. Its purity only highlighted the perfection.

As a warrior, he had come to respect efficiency. And as a man, he had come to respect simplicity and purity. If he thought it through, he found those attributes in himself as well. Yes, he could respect that.

As a warrior, he was also used to the principle of *being used*. A soldier didn't fight for his own good but because someone else - higher in rank, stronger in power - usually ordered him to do so. He was a soldier - he knew what it meant to be used. Sometimes it would be against his will but he would go because it was his purpose of being. And if something negative occured as a result of his actions as a soldier, he could always draw confidence and redemption from the fact that it was his job to do what he was told to. His job was to be the weapon of someone else. Whoever that was. Yes, he could respect that.

Something fell into place in his mind.

He was a tool. AND the knife was only a tool, also. It was innocent. It was being used. Just like he was being used. Because it was its purpose of being. Its job was to be the weapon of someone else. In this case it was a Silicate. Therefore, it wasn't the knife's fault that it would be going to hurt him. No... No, he could respect that.

By the time the blade drilled into his already tormented body and the pain into his already tortured mind, his soul had made its peace with it.

He didn't hate it any longer.

The End

© Susi Patzke 1996

Return to General Fiction