Server Maintenance

“News, news, news…,” Carla sighed while channel surfing. Every new channel presented a well-dressed anchor with a smile and a question mark on the number ‘2010’.  “Damn, everyone’s doing a retrospective,” she mumbled to herself. The mid-30s woman glanced at each station only long enough to get the gist of it, then she moved on to the next. Finally, she found something that wasn’t a news show: a press conference.

“Fine, I guess,” Carla stopped changing channels, partly because she thought the speaker was attractive. A dark-haired woman in a crisp white suit appeared to be in mid-speech; Carla raised the TV volume.

“…and that is why a server rollback was required. While there was no other choice, Sharp Development takes full responsibility. To apologize for the inconvenience, my corporation has arranged a generous compensation package.”

“Oh,” Carla chuckled to herself. “I thought it was going to be important, I don’t care about video games.” She lifted the remote again to change the channel.

“So, you’re claiming responsibility for rewinding time to 2010?” A reported asked from the crowd.

“Wait, what?” Carla moved her thumb off the button. The woman in white gave a sharp nod.

“What gives you the right to rewind time?” Another reporter asked.

“Nothing,” the speaker replied. “No one,” her lips curled up into a broad smile. “I took that right for myself. And now, I have other appointments to keep. To receive your compensation, hold your hand out and simply say, ‘compensation node. Thank you for your time.”  At the end of her thanks, a black portal opened on the stage behind her. Without hesitation, she whirled around and walked into it; then, the hole closed.

Carla noticed everyone still on camera reaching into the air and gathering white dust in their hands. Carla shrugged then stretched her hand into the air.

“Uh… compensation node?” White dust gathered from the air into the palm of her hand. In moments, she held a small, transparent rectangle. It felt cool and solid like glass; she brought it closer to inspect and tapped the surface. It lit up with bright text.

[Welcome to the AlterNet!]

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