I came up with the idea for a novel that I would love to write and I have worked out most of the details, but I've never done something like this before. For those experienced in writing fiction or those just looking for an interesting read, I present to you part of the first chapter of my novel with the working title, "The Meta". Character names and writing style are subject to change, but this is what I have thus far. If you enjoyed it, please let me know! Feedback is always welcome
I got some of the ideas for this novel from Accel World and George Berkeley's Three Dialogues. Gotta give credit where credit is due!
*WARNING* THERE IS PROFANITY IN THIS WORK
Glancing at the time, the rules of reality begin to set in. I have to be at class in a few hours, most of that time will be taken up by the long and uncomfortable commute. I prefer not to dwell on the world in which I donít belong. Instead, letís focus on the reward of going out into the world, the thing I am most excited about. Obviously, this trip just serves to spend time, time before I can return to my solitude, my own world. Iíve always preferred the world of imagination or abstraction, I donít remember how I got to be this way, but it is all I can remember. My name is Wesley. Wesley Code. Iím a senior at Toronto University, majoring in Philosophy. An odd subject and one I never thought I would study, but here I am. Philosophy deals with what some would call the ďbig questionsĒ, like the meaning of life, how one should live in a virtuous manner, or even if weíre all brains in a vat! I know, a scary thought, but one dismissed easily enough. In either case, reasoned argument and logic are the philosopherís forte, which has allowed me to access what one would call the principles of the universe. It does sound somewhat grandiose, but I assure you, itís nothing too complicated. Simply put, I am able to access the principles and inner workings of the universe at a momentís notice. This access allows me to concoct impossible solutions to problems in my life. Medical miracles, the wonders of space, hell, even the meaning of life are all available to me. Since I am in direct contact with the principles of the universe, I can understand the underlying system of any given scenario and what I need to do in order to steer the course in a direction that I want. The best way to visualize this is to think of a spider web. Most people donít know where the web connects, but with this access, I do. I can influence the outer parts of the web to affect the inner web. I can know what strand of web will affect which section of the web, both in time and magnitude. Of course, this isnít to say Iím all powerful, Iím still bound by the laws of the universe, but, if one knows these principles, the limitations that people believe they have, can be...stretched. Speed, both physical and mental can be increased. Strength too can be altered. There are of course limitations to what I can access and change, but we are not nearly as limited as is generally believed.
I donít know all of the rules concerning the access I currently have available, but I have managed to discover a few rules thus far. First, I canít escape simple rules of logic. Our imaginations are contained within these rules. I cannot imagine something being true and untrue at the same time and the universe itself is governed by these rules. Second, cause and effect still hold, for every cause there is an effect that stems from an action. Finally, there are peculiar entities within the Meta. When I access the principles of the universe, I find other entities that are distinct from what I normally observe. I canít say for certain what they are, but they seem somewhat different from the system that I access. They are of course part of the system itself, like me, but they have a unique property. I have never been able to see what I look like in the Meta, so I canít infer whether these entities are other people or not. Frankly, they havenít interfered with pursuits thus far, so I havenít found a need to investigate much farther. I have to spend the time I have available to access the Meta sparingly.
I mentioned that the world of abstraction and imagination are my worlds and while I would like nothing more than to reside in them permanently, I cannot escape the simple fact that I need to be alive in order to continuously access my world. It seems that I need to maintain a semblance of balance between the physical world and the Meta. From what Ive gathered, going into the Meta drains the body and I can only do it three times a day. That limit is also dependent on what I access. The usefulness of the knowledge I gather can be tied to my school life. Yes I can access answers to tests and exams, but honestly, Iíd prefer to minimize my travels to the Meta as much as humanly possible, because I feel like utter crap when I come back. Obviously the trip and the knowledge that I return with can be worth it, but for simple things like exam questions, itís usually best to just do them normally, without the help of the Meta. It obviously helps that I have a wickedly good memory, almost ideatic, though I seem to find myself remembering useless tidbits of information, rather than more important things. Needless to say, academia is almost trivial to me, but thatís neither here nor there.
As fun as the recap of Meta rules and my personality has been, I really want to sleep, the bus is boring and its starting to get crowded. Iím so glad university classes only go till April, no sweaty bus trips for me! I have a bit of time to squeeze in a nap, thank God for that.
The bus slowed towards its final stop in front of the university. I awoke with a pain in my neck from sleeping in a weird position. Some minor discomfort for an extra thirty minutes of sleep, I obviously came out the winner. As I waited for the remainder of the other passengers to exit the bus, I noticed a girl in the front half of the bus seemingly waiting like I was for the bus to clear out. The bus is divided into two parts, where the back part is two steps higher than the front. I prefer the back part, specifically the first row, it feels, isolated and gives me a view of most of the bus. She was sitting near the very front of the bus, a peculiar spot, since she would be obligated to move for anyone with a disability. I prefer to not be disturbed, hence my preferred seat. I was awake for the majority of the trip, so she must have entered the bus during my thirty minute nap. Upon closer inspection, sheís that girl in my Ethics class! I never knew she lived so close to the university, I guess thatís what I get for sleeping so much. She has short blue hair, not that type of obnoxious punk style blue, but a darker, more refined version. Her milky white skin should seem out of place with her hair colour, but it contrasts rather nicely. Iím not one to take note of most girls, I mean, yeah, theyíre nice to look at, but honestly, given the choice, Iíd prefer my books or scouring the Meta, but this girl, sheís actually keeping me focussed on her, and those eyes! Those misty blue eyes, I feel like I could get lost just staring at them. Wait, sheís staring at me, when did that happen?! I think a smile at this point is the right thing to do, thatís polite right? I mean, it canít hurt. I nervously made a slight smile expecting her to offer one back, but nope, just a curious look in her eye. She slowly turned away, but not before I noticed an odd look in her eye, something I would akin to intrigue, maybe at the lowest, curiousness? Did I create a social faux pas? Or was that her fault? Oh I donít understand these social rituals, I seem more focussed on how other people feel during social interactions than myself. She slowly rose and exited the bus without a second look at me. After recovering from that somewhat awkward moment, I gathered my things, checked that I had all my stuff, and exited the bus, feeling somewhat cheated out of a second look at those eyes.
For being early April, itís still quite cool out. I think the middle seasons are the best, like spring and fall. Not too hot, not too cold, usually just right. Though, in the cases of extremes Iíd prefer the cold rather than the warmth. I mean, I can always add more layers, but I can only take off so many. At least the walk to class will be somewhat nice, and not too sunny either, a nice day, is a cloudy day, where the sun has as little involvement with my eyes as possible. I have about ten minutes till class starts and itís the class with that girl too, ha ha! Another chance to look at those eyes! What the hell? What am I thinking? Iím not like this! Snap out of it you dumbass, you hardly know her, hell you donít even know her name. Stay focussed on your mind, donít worry about outside, there are people out there.
Most people I donít really care for, they barely keep my interest, but her, thereís something different about her. Most people in my classes are very busy during lecture, but her, sheís like me. She just listens and seems to do as well if not better than me in grades. Honestly, in this ethics class, there are probably about forty people in this lecture hall, and everyone else, except for her and I, are usually furiously scribbling notes down, waiting to jot down another one of the professorís points. It looks like a room full of lunatics with two people just calmly staring ahead, it looks pretty odd. The lecture room, like most, has the seats pointed downward toward the podium, usually where the professor lectures. Of course, the prof isnít confined to that little area; Iíve had a few that like to move around. I know, I just blew your mind right? The lecture hall itself isnít particularly large. It seems to be one of the older ones on campus and holds probably sixty people. I prefer the seats next to the aisles. Easy access should I find the lectures a waste of time, time that could be better off sleeping or gaming. Of course, when the lecture ends, I have the easier route to the door. There are times when I prefer to sit near the front of the class, though still on the aisle seats, but thatís usually determined by the quality of the lecture material and the prof. If the topic is interesting and the professor engaging, Iíll obviously want a better seat, any other time though, it usually a toss up between even coming to class or a farther seat, with the former option usually winning out.
Unfortunately, todayís lecture was replaced by an examination, nothing too difficult, just a simple short answer exam. I donít usually find these types of exams difficult, just something that has to be done. In either case, I have to be here, such is the life of a student! Looking around the room it seems that the exam is giving the other students some form of trouble, Iíll never understand them. I mean these questions arenít even that difficult, ďwhich philosopher argues for position X and why? Give their reasons and present a case for a position contrary to their ownĒ. Same. Boring. Shit. This could be done easily enough through the Meta, I could double check my answers to make sure theyíre perfect, but I think I can rely on my memory for this one. I really donít feel like taxing myself for this. I mean it is just an examination.
Just one more answer to go with tons of time left. I wonder how everyone else is faring. Glancing up, it seems the other students are still having some difficulty, at least, everyone else except her. She doesnít even look worried, as expected. Wait, why is she reading a book? What is this?! Sheís done already? No fucking way! I knew she was smart, but outclassing me? Beat me by one question, thatís just rude. I donít need the Meta for the answers, but I mean, speeding up my writing couldnít hurt, itís just going to be one short trip, nothing too taxing, at least not compared to checking answers. Err, I donít want to cheat on an exam, but is it really consequential? I mean, I have tons of time and I know the answers, Iím just speeding up this one question. It shouldnít matter. Itís at that point I decided to enter the Meta.
If youíve ever felt a sugar rush, itís similar to that, you begin to feel light and jittery, but you donít actually jitter. You expect some form of bodily reaction, but entering the Meta is not actually visible to any other person, itís just a peculiar feeling. The Meta is a world that holds a bluish tinge, something similar to a virtual world, a copy of the physical world. The difference is that there are veins or branches that connect and permeate everything. These branches are pathways of knowledge that one can access. Different branches stem from different things, and each branch has three access points. One access point is for speed, the other strength, and the third and final branch, knowledge. I came here to speed through this final question, so I picked the speed access point for my body. With that choice, came a rush of adrenaline, a volume of which cannot be said to be normal. My brain stormed through the answer in a flash, my hands writing just as quickly. Iím honestly surprised the paper didnít catch on fire. Words were written on the examination paper at alarming speeds, sentences and paragraphs suddenly appeared on the paper a second later.
As fast as it had come on, the energy ran out, and I felt myself returning to normal. The sensation almost completely dissipated as I finished the final question. Triumphantly, I quickly scanned the paper with my last remaining bits of adrenaline. Everything seemed to be in order and ready to be handed in. As I rose from my chair, I was able to get a glance at the lecture hall in the Meta. Everything seemed to be normal and glowed with its original bluish hue, everything except this one spot, which burned with a blinding white light. I thought part of the Meta was on fire, but that couldnít be. The Meta isnít affected by things in the real world. My vision changed in a flash, the bluish hue disappeared and was replaced by the world with its normal colours as I left the Meta. The blinding light vanished too, replaced by an individual with short dark blue hair, who was reading a book during an exam. All that remained of that burning white light was the individual who finished the exam before me; that girl.