In Version; Chapter 92, Brown 268

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Stories from the Verse
In Version
Chapter 92:  Brown 268
Table of Contents
Previous chapter:  Beam 183

Derek and Vashti were seated at Bob and Shella’s dining table, drinking water from the tap.  Bob raised the question.

“So I think what they forgot to tell us was how we get food, and how we spend all these factory seconds that aren’t defective merchandise but money.”

Derek glanced around the room.  “Somewhere, depending on the design, there should be an access screen.  It does everything–tells you when someone wants to enter the apartment, communicates with your chauffeur, and lets you order things.  The harder part is figuring out what you can eat.  Obviously food is sold for every lifeform on the planet, including the Kelp and some others whose digestive systems are different from ours.  From what I can tell, though, what the Anders eat is closest to human food, although I don’t think anything eaten by the Parakeets or Chlorophytes or Dvandars is poisonous.”

Slade nodded.  “Shella?  Do you have any idea where this thing is?”

“Um–wait, I think I saw something in the kitchen,” and she left the room.  Her voice echoed from the other door.  “Yes, this might be it.  Derek?  You’re the expert.  How does this work?”

Derek rose and headed toward the voice, and heard Slade and Vashti behind him.  “It’s probably a touch screen; also, if you know its name it should respond to voice commands.”

“It has a name?” all three of them said almost in unison.  Derek laughed.

“Yeah, sort of.  What it has is an activation command word.  It constantly listens to what everyone says, and if someone says the activation command word it assumes that the next thing they’re going to say will tell it what to do.  They usually give them command words that are names, but unusual names, to personalize it, make it feel like it’s a real person serving as a personal assistant.  Let’s see,” as he reached the device and looked over it.  Indeed, there was a sticker.  “Yours is named ‘Pandora’,” he said. and there was a beep.

Slade said, “How appropriate.”

Derek continued, “Show options for delivery of prepared meals for Anders.”  A menu appeared.  “You can probably scroll through that by moving your finger over the screen,” he said as he did so.  “Got it?”

“I think so,” Shella answered.  “Will you be eating with us tonight?”

Derek looked at Vashti, who said, “That would be lovely, thank you.”

“Do you want anything specific?”

Slade answered, “I haven’t had beef steak in quite a while; see if there’s anything remotely like that.”

“I’ll do my best,” Shella said, and the other three returned to the dining room to wait.

Next chapter:  Chapter 93:  Kondor 243
Table of Contents

There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with eleven other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #491:  Verser Ventures.  Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter.  It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.

As to the old stories that have long been here:

Verse Three, Chapter One:  The First Multiverser Novel

Old Verses New

For Better or Verse

Spy Verses

Garden of Versers

Versers Versus Versers

Re Verse All

In Verse Proportion

Con Verse Lea
Stories from the Verse Main Page

The Original Introduction to Stories from the Verse

Read the Stories

The Online Games

Books by the Author

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M. J. Young Net

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