Aleksander Ruegg

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Suns Go Dark - Part 2

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Apr 1, 2020 9:30:00 AM


FOUR | The Eidolon

It was so obvious. The Author had expected him to try to steal a sun. It was the only object in known reality that could accommodate a tithe of that size. The search for the solution had only been momentary. It was a wonderful coincidence that his brief observation of the murals had spurred him in a timely manner. And he had been able to earn Einie’s commitment to help in the process.

“You’re really a sterling human being, Virgil,” Einie said, following.

“Einie, relax. You’re with me, nothing’s gonna happen. Just come along and for a hot minute and you’ll be back to out-classing your peers’ gentle hum of their mediocrity. I mean, this could be fun, you know? Stealing a sun? Kinda neat, right? All the other critters your age will like hearing that story!”

“They think I’m lazy for faking my work quotas. Because you keep hijacking my time! I’m gonna be older than you before I’m allowed to go to the planet, at this rate.”

“Yeah, well, you can fight me on this, Einie, but maybe choose another hill to die on, if you know what I mean? This isn’t a great conflict, as they say. Not a good use of energy? They want to blow up my body for that exact reason. For not pulling my own. Whatever that means. And anyway, if you are indeed the reincarnation of a trans-galactic despot, you’ll probably know how the machinery you’ll rule over really works. C’mon, I docked the Eidolon over here.”

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Suns Go Dark - Part 1

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 30, 2020 9:30:00 AM

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ONE | The Tithe

Encircling a half-burned planet far past the known heliostasis was a bras and granite superstructure birthing a ring of suns. The first Emperor built the structure during untold generations passed.

If he had glanced to his left out the window, Virgil could have observed the tremendous ring, and her pocked machinery, and the one hundred and eight suns she carried forth, hovering in a rigid dance around the planet below. They orbited above the lush continents. Virgil could not be bothered with the sight. Virgil ignored the celestial bodies, ignored the air rank with wet metals, and ignored the rickety atmosphere drones buzzing in their struggle to keep the ring habitable for he and trillions more young souls.

Virgil even ignored the Author reading his alleged crimes back to him. Virgil focused instead on how difficult it might be to steal one of those suns.

Just one sun!

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Godsource - Part 3

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 27, 2020 9:30:00 AM


SEVEN | Judgement Time

“You have done Christendom a great service,” the Prince said to Layla once they were alone in the tower. Delirium dwindled from Layla’s eyes. She mopped battle grunge and shock off her face.

At the Prince’s bidding, two uniformed men set down a chest heavy with coin. They returned two more times with additional chests to complete the payment. Zachary knelt, hands to his knees, head bent over the covered body of the bloody Akhet, dead where he lay.

Chemos wheezed in his instrumental voice under the net. Every few minutes, Layla pumped quicksilver vapor on the angel, exposing its form to the Prince and Zachary, so they could see what Layla saw plainly.

“Sorry about the mess,” the Prince said, wiping blood from her forehead. The color still had not returned to her face. “But if you don’t deliver this coin to Led Píl the Druid of Scapa Flow in the next fortnight, underpaid men will scrape you two off the walls with a bucket and brush. You’ve completed your mission. You’ve won your lives. Go pay your pagan debts.”

The Prince stepped to Akhet’s body. He motioned Zachary away.

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Godsource - Part 2

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 25, 2020 9:30:00 AM

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FOUR | A Plot Against the Ark

Layla sat with the Princess. They excused themselves from the men, side by side at the far end of the cherry table. The Princess explained what she had seen in as much detail as she could summon.

An angel. Tall. A concert of luminous dust. This did nothing to raise Layla attention until she mentioned what the angel wore.

“Is such a detail important?” the Princess asked.

“Have you ever seen an angel wear clothes before?” Layla answered. She held back breath for a moment to invite trust. “We see them. We—all see angels. They don’t. Can’t. But we do.”

The Princess went into detail.

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Godsource - Part 1

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 23, 2020 9:30:00 AM




ONE | Ruins of the Angel Generation

The great red moon hung above the French countryside. The celestial monument filled a quarter of the cloudless sky, now that she was full. Her crystalline halo girdled the bright body in a calm orbit.

Three figures knee-deep in fen mist made haste across the earth below. The two on horseback kept their mounts at a canter. The third held pace on foot with her eye on Monaco’s glow just past the horizon, kissing the darkness, unmistakable, even at a distance. The lead rider raised a finger to the halo around the moon, sighting something.

They halted. The second rider rifled through the baggage weighing down his wheezing horse to pass the runner a collapsed gold and limestone device. The runner drew alongside the first rider, his arm still raised.

“If my mother only knew what I was spending her loans on,” she said to him. 

He sounded an amused grunt. “You’ve never met your mother.”

“I’ve met her coin.”

“That does simplify the relationship.”

“Not when you continue spending said coin on devices of such elegant make.” She wiped moisture from her forehead. “But we must nonetheless survive. Somehow.”

She sighted the gold and limestone instrument. Her fingers laid on the gears and made small touches to the focus. She set beside his aim, feeling the earthy heat coming off him from the long ride.

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The Diffused States of America - Part 3

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 20, 2020 9:30:00 AM


EIGHT | The Malice Herself

The deafened landscape separating Calvin and Ivory’s hiding place from the fire-lit garage was a snowy, uncolored tomb, mixing the visible with the invisible. A gigantic figure passed back and forth across the garage’s forge.

Above the garage read the sign: Athenaeum—Racing School for the Gifted.

“Athenaeum, last of the [Original SIx],” Ivory said, soft as the snowy world. “Still in operation in minor leagues under Charlotte Wright’s leadership, D3CRL portal ID: 0000-000-00-0002.”

“Why do you figure she killed those dealers at the streamer’s commissary?” Calvin asked.

“They were dealers for local teams. The ones that came after us were from Corps racing—bigtime league-level stooges. A snowball like Char must’ve been offered the world itself to get her hands dirty like this though. Their generation’re all hateful hypocrites.”

Calvin panted visible breath in excitement, alarmed that they were already across the road and entering the garage.

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The Diffused States of America - Part 2

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 18, 2020 9:30:00 AM


FOUR | Dealers

The men in blue chrome jackets tried to ram the control room’s door. They made a second attempt. The door burst outward instead. Calvin herded stumbling attackers back across black ice.

The dealers yelled, tumbling.

“Pin him—chat is asking I try that cool kick move!” He was reading text off an AR-visor.

“Which move? Is the drone—where—get in fucking frame—”

“—this’ll sell it if we can—like, an inside axe-kick, like that movie—”

Ivory raked a ditch into one dealer’s forehead with a bat. Blood pressed from every hole and socket.

“Kid, kill em!” she shouted. “Or they'll cook you into sauce!”

Calvin loosened a knuckleduster with his free hand to tread upon another unsuspecting jaw. It was a hollow metal on meat noise. Calvin breathed out, still, only pawing at the air with form befitting a trained boxer. The immediate ferocity was enough to leave the remaining men questioning their motivation.

Calvin and Ivory fled into the crowded stadium and the dealers followed.

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The Diffused States of the America - Part 1

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 16, 2020 9:30:00 AM




ONE | Hid Among the Dead

Tobias Gilroy traded in his name the day he began tending to the lucid mecha at the racetrack by the bay. He wouldn’t earn any notoriety without a more remarkable name and he self-identified as Stro the moment his profile confirmed the update. A runner wrangling adoration from a lively grandstand—and respect from his biomechanical partner, the rekt—required a delusional / confident aura, elitist-level taste musical taste, and genius coding skill. The rekt’s virtual intelligence spewed from the roiling ocean of networked data that’d come before. The rekt also abided no redundancy. Those virtual minds weren’t aware of themselves, but they were aware of SOMETHING. They preferred—they sided—with things never before seen in recorded history. Runners like Stro were succulent athletes of beastly originality. Show any weakness and their machines would reject the runner. The human brains would fry like eggs from stem to cerebellum when attempting synchronization.

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The King North of the Sky - Part 3

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 13, 2020 9:30:00 AM

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FIVE | Moving Targets

Astrid froze at the sight out the windows. The entire wilderness came at her as if she were driving a car. Ridley shoved her into the fireplace to avoid a gunshot. A bump in the hill sent both he and the gunman tumbling. The gunman flapped his arms and cracked his head on the ceiling. Ridley slammed to the floor. He spread his arms and legs like an insect to find balance.

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The King North of the Sky - Part 2

Written by: Aleksander Ruegg | Follow on: Twitter, Facebook

Published: Mar 11, 2020 9:30:00 AM

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THREE | Malicious Intent

The facts were these. 

According to Ridley’s research in the San Francisco Chronicle’s archives, Astrid’s father, Lord Lloyd Cornwallis, had once been acquainted with the Remington family back in England. A very well to-do clan present throughout Britain's imperialistic history, the Remingtons maintained a generational legacy as hoarders of valuable antiquities. They rarely shared these treasures, with Lord Cornwallis being the notable exception. Arthur Remington II gifted the Lord a golden Incan sphere, gathered from an unknown Andes ruin.

It was written the thing somehow shone dimly, even in full darkness, and it smelled of mint.

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