Aug 10, 2013

Solidad - p4

Sharing a bit of my extra scenes from my WIP, Strella PAX, this month. Also looking for beta input, if this interests anyone.


The first time the idea of Big Brother came up in class, Solidad was all ears.

“I understand the government's point of view,” Shannon said, “eyes and ears help reduce the rate of crimes, or at least the rate of arrests.  But I feel so violated. Why do I have to be watched every second I'm walking around in public? The government has no right to do that, it needs to respect our privacy.  They don't need to know my morning running route or what bar I go to to pick up guys.”

“How is this any different from big brother on the web?” Another boy, Jeff, spoke up. “We've been surfing the web for years and sign up for so many services that use our private data. It's what the entire online advertising agency is based on. Googlezon already knows your porn preference and the details of your run if not the exact run.  Linking the security systems between the cameras already on the street and the private ones in buildings and giving the government access to all of that is less of an invasion. The FBI is only going look at that footage if they need it, they don't care about your daily life.”

“But this is a stepping stone, and very easily can be abused. Remember the Patriot Act almost 40 years ago? So many innocent people had their privacy violated because the government wrote itself a free pass.  This is the same thing. The legislation says nothing about needing a warrant to look at the files, the footage is already their property.”

“Good. There's too much red tape in the government. Have you seen the lines you need to go through to renew your driver's license? It will save time in catching criminals.”

“New forensic technology can do that too. It doesn't have to be like this. I hate the idea of anyone invading my privacy, and the government even more so because they are so much more powerful than an individual.  I mean, I swear sometimes that computers can read my mind nowadays and it's creepy as shit.”

Solidad let the conversation drift around her, taking note that the class as a whole seem to side with Shannon more than Jeff.

It seemed that if Camilo announced to the world he could read minds, America would react as violently as the priest who had cut out his tongue.  And perhaps start attacking anyone else who had the same talent.

No, the best way to make the world a better place for people like her friend was to make the world understand the benefits they could provide.  Jeff talked about safety, maybe mind readers could take the same position. Show that they only used their talents for the common good, were a beneficial part of society and not a threat.  Slowly, they'd be accepted.

So how to show the world that mind reading was for the best and not freak out the world?

Keep readers isolated from the public. Don't let the public know it's a talent that extends beyond that border. Put that talent to use for the public.


The Merchandise Mart had seen much better days. But at the moment it was mostly empty and not the inside was a wreck.

Solidad thought it was perfect.

The Chicago Police Depart had been talking about building a new headquarters, but the Merch Mart could easily be fixed up to serve their needs.  And hers.  Rooms underground for the mind readers to give them peace of the thoughts of others. Rooms upstairs limited only to staff needed for the mind readers to do their job – reading the minds of witnesses to get the most accurate statement possible and increase the solved crime rate. The L station could be controlled as it was situated within the building, a way to protect the mind readers, limiting the access of people who would want to harm them.

Plus, it was a historical building. The federal government would be willing to help with the costs in the form of a grant in the effort of preserving American history.

“Pretty sure this is the place.” She told Raul and Camilo.

“You don't think it's a bit too big?”

“Who knows how many people like Camilo are out there. I want to help as many people as I can.”

Camilo slipped his hand into hers, their wedding rings clicking softly together, and gave her fingers a squeeze. He approved, and Raul as normal would just fall in line with her decisions.

“We still need a name.”

“I thought that the cops had one. PAN something or other.”

“PAX,” Solidad corrected. “Psychic auxiliary.”

“That sounds so stiff.”

Camilo pulled out his tablet and typed in a sentence to be read aloud by the computer. It should be named after you.

“I'd say after you Camilo.  We started this project because of you.”

But without you it would have never happened. 

“What about in reference to you Solidad?” Raul suggested. “You're named after the Sun, and last I checked that's a star.”

 Strella PAX the tablet said, mutilating the Spanish and pronouncing it 'stre-la' instead of the proper 'straya'.  Still, it had a nice ring to it.

“The police were talking about giving code words to the readers.” Raul added, “Wanting to some distance between them and the kids I gather. We could name them all after stars.”

Solidad like the idea. For the readers would be stars, leaders bringing about acceptance, and shining due to their special talent.

“Strella PAX,” she whispered to herself. “I like it.”


And that is how Strella PAX, the evil organization in my novel, is born!  After exploring Solidad while writing this, I'm rather sad she'd the villain.

The idea of Googlezon comes from this short vid I saw in uni that I've never been able to get out of my head, because essentially human writing disappears.  Twas made in 2007.

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