The Myconet, Part 4

Day 61. 161 pages, 58,131 words.

I don’t know whether it’s because the Myconet grew from some unimaginably ancient alien source, floating down to Earth – or into this universe – as a spore and growing here at a rate of a few picometres a year since the dawn of time. I don’t know if it’s that, or something even stranger. But she’s never made any secret of the fact that she’s forgotten far more of herself than she remembers. She’s never claimed to be anything but a broken and pale fragment of something that I’ve tried several times to comprehend, but always wound up quitting out of a sort of directionless fear.

She once referred to herself as a copy of a copy of a copy, and once as a branch so long severed from the tree that the tree might never have existed. Once, she told me that she was the tip of an iceberg, but the iceberg itself is cold aeons lost. She’s got a lot of these sorts of pronouncements, some of them about herself and some of them about whatever I happen to be asking her at the time. Almost none of them make sense.

Don’t get me wrong, for someone who insists she isn’t a real intellect and that the overwhelming majority of her mind is lost in the mists of antique spacetime, she’s really on the ball. But the unfortunate result is that she often lacks context. This is especially frustrating when I need answers about things taking place beyond my mere super-sidekick sphere of experience. And that, I don’t mind telling you, is a sufficiently big sphere to account for a lot of my fear when she starts talking about it as though it’s a bubble in a nearly-flat glass of coke.

I have extended myself here, she usually says when I ask about things beyond her parameters, as if this should explain everything. There is nothing more. I am but a fragment.

Still, as far as fragments go, she’s handy in a pinch.

I don’t suppose I would have bothered to ask her about the old Barnsley Yard Cookhouse Trumpet, the people who died here when this city was barely even a prison settlement, or the curse that had brought them bubbling back to the surface along with a swell of groundwater late last night. Even if I’d known she was going to be here, this didn’t strike me as the sort of thing she’d know or care about. And yet, she was here.

Where does this lead?

I don’t know. Probably nowhere good.

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