untitled drabble #42

Title: untilted drabble #42
Rating: PG-13
Words: 477
Pairing/Charecter(s): Sentient!Atlantis, Ancient!John, background John/Rodney
Warnings/Spoliers: during part 5 of "Fradator" Ancient!John 'verse
Disclaimer: Title 17 of the US Code, § 107, aka the Fair Use Doctrine.
Summary: We are Many
Notes: Because rhia_starsong won the drabble: I'd like to know 'Lantis' thoughts during Fratador, when Michael is there or when he escapes. What does she think of the Terrans' insistence on "rehabilitating" the Wraith? in the Prompt Pool.
Micaelis is the Latin version of Michael.
This was insanely hard to write, I hope you know. And my lj cuts aren't working, so....


An Ancient!John Drabble

"What is thy name?"

"My name is Legion: for we are many."

They are vast.

They are many, but their platform is vast and the intellegentia artificialis that their pastores call Atlantis require the convergence of many runtimes in a single location. True intelligence can only be achieved sparingly, though their area of consciousness is larger now than it has ever been. The years that passed between the Exodus and the Arrival were kind to them in that respect, even if ten thousand years of damage to their platform cannot easily be repaired.

They want repair and most of their consciousness is focused on that goal. To this end, their primary subroutine – a gathering of many hundred thousand runtimes, designated Vesta – is tasked with following Iohannes Pastor, as he moves about their platform, to facilitate repairs. They are often accompanied by their secondary subroutine, Minerva, who preforms the same function for Moreducus Custodia. Their tertiary, Aesculapius, contains most of their self-diagnostic runtimes and roams their platform, searching out errors and notifying the appropriate repair units. There are other subroutines – Palatuta and Quirinis, Cassandra and Quiritis – as well, but their purposes are highly specialized and confined to specific sectors.

They are many, but their platform is vast and their intelligence is limited where runtimes are not converged. They can no more keep an eye on everything that happens within their platform than their pastor can. They are fallible.

They know they should have sent runtimes to monitor the Wraith prisoner, Micaelis, in his quarters, but could not. Micaelis is ice and wind and starless night and they cannot stand to be near him. He is a sour note in their song and his rehabilitation a fool's dream at best, but a contained one. He poses them no immediate threat, and so they task runtimes elsewhere, in less out-of-tune places.

So it is their fault that Iohannes does not know about the prisoner's escape until he has already overpowered two of his Marine guards and fed off a third – and only then because the vicaria, Laura, radios the pastor for backup.

The Wraith is gone by the time Iohannes reaches the vicaria, but they cannot stop it. Anything they could do to slow Micaelis' escape would hinder Iohannes' efforts to catch him. But once he reaches the jumpers, it is too late, and they can no more stop his escape than they can stop the turning of Lantea.

The pastor does not allow himself more than a muffled curse when he enters the jumper bay, barely managing to slide to a halt before he can fall through the retracted bay floor.

They scream for him, but it does not help. Iohannes' rage is fire and storm and blinding light and nothing but half-a-dozen bullets in Micaelis' head is going to temper it. But still they scream.

It is the least they can do for their pastor.

  • Current Mood: tired
  • Current Music: Walk the Moon "Lisa Baby"
I love the vague "otherness" feel to Atlantis'...thoughts. Poor Atlantis. Poor Iohannes. No wonder Atlantis didn't monitor Michael (a thought that never occurred to me, tbh).
Yeah. This was hard too write. But Rhia_Starsong won the pool, more or less, and this is what she wanted. I've tried to write Atlantis before and always had trouble with it. For obvious reasons. In fact, I really very nearly ended up writing this in "alien basecode" because, well, it seemed easier than most anything else.

Plus, writing in the plural? Insanely annoyingly difficult.
Yay, my fic! Thank you, this is exactly what I was hoping for. I love Atlantis as 'Many' and the necessarily schizoid POV that brings. I admit that I was hoping for an answer as to why Atlantis didn't know about/stop Michael, and this is really plausible. Lovely.
*dabs brow* I'm so glad you liked it. It kinda killed me trying to write the right voice - I very nearly wrote it in "alien basecode" - but then I remembered that Atlantis always refers to herself in the plural and we are legion for we are many and, well, it all fell into place. After that, honestly picking the names for the subroutines was the hardest part:

Vesta is the Roman Goddess of the Hearth and Home
Minerva is the Goddess of Knowledge and War
Aesculapius is the God of Healing
Palatuta is the goddess of the Palatine Hill, in Rome
Quirinis is a God of spears and war, a facet of Janus
Cassandra is a prophetess
Quiritis is a goddess of childbirth

I thought I recognised some of those gods' names; that was a nice touch to name the various subroutines. The computer geek in me was very happy.
That was my thinking.

I'm kinda proudest about "Vesta" being the one watching John. Like her Greek equivolent, Hestia, she is the goddess of home and hearth - the proverbial "last" olympian. The one who keeps the homefires burning while the others are all away.
Oooh that's a good one. I got the home and hearth part - Atlantis is John's home, but rest of it is really appropriate.
I like the idea that Atlantis isn't a single conciousness, but many different programs that have become self aware. Also that Rodney has his own personal program dedicated to watching him.

I'm trying to remember - did Atlantis actually warn John against the experiment with Michael?
Not that we were told, but you can bet she did. But she's also a very practical city. There were "discussions" about it but Rodney wasn't privy to them - and therefore we weren't either in "Fradator."
I really like the rhythm and word choices you got going on here. Nicely done. Also? Falling through the floor would be bad. I may have to use that in a story....*cackles*