The Interface (Adam Jacks In)
By Joshua Klessig
It was 5 months after the implant. Adam just woke out of his healing coma. The doctors ran their final tests - EEG, CAT Scan, and Spinal Tap. They all came out normal. The interface was just behind the right temple. On the outside, the implant looked like a cable jack protruding out just above the ear. On the inside, there was a cluster of four chips, with wires like rivers of silver snaking across the surface of Adam's brain.
"Well, everything seems to look fine, no more brain swelling and no infection," the doctor said as he walked into Adam's room. He put a head x-ray on the sterile back-lit board.
"All this for a little piece of metal in the side of my head," Adam said sarcastically.
"Well it's more than that, these here are the I/O chips," the doctor said while pointing out a dark spot on the x-ray, "The first one connects to the visual cortex, the second to the auditory and temporal centers of the brain, the third handles other sensory details, and the last controls the flow of signals to and from the brain."
"So can I use it," Adam said, "or do I need to wait a few weeks?"
"Actually, we insist that you use it now, it's the final test," the doctor said as he motioned to a nearby nurse. She wheeled in a cart with a computer and varied adapters. Adam put on a headband with a series of electrodes on it, attached a rectangular box to the computer, and then plugged the box into his head via a ten-pronged plug. All this was done with the sober attitude of a monk performing the sacraments.
"Okay Adam," the nurse said, "your computer is logged in, I'm going to activate the interface now."
Suddenly everything became fluid, then it was wiped away and replaced with something new. He was no longer conscience of his body; he was just a brain floating in a pool of neon. Images representing different programs surrounded him in the artificial reality. To his left, there was a purple octagon with a question mark. Adam grabbed the image, it seemed to unfold along impossible creases and expand into what looked like an Ojia board. After experimenting with it for awhile, he learned that the pedestal ahead of him was the main access to the Internet. He walked over to it, there was a blue and green sphere floating an inch off the pedestal. He placed his hands on it and somehow fell into the basketball-sized orb.
Adam was in darkness, then a blue line, thin as thread, moved across his field of vision. Then another, and soon they all formed into an image of the world, and Adam was standing on top of it all. Earth started flying at him, or he was falling into it. He plunged into the ocean and was within a villa made of coral. There seemed to be tubes leading out everywhere, and as he looked at them words appeared to identify where they would lead him. He selected the one marked Chicago Art institute and within seconds, he was standing in a museum. There was art all over the walls. He stared at a reproduction of the Mona Lisa. Then the image started morphing. Horns grew out of her head; and then she grew a mustache, taking on the visage of Satan. The museum was bathed in fire, Mona Lisa spoke.
"You know where you’re going," she said, then there was a blinding light. Adam was gasping for breath in the recovery room. There were people all around him.
"Okay, we got sinus rhythm. Vital signs are returning to normal," one of the people said and started pulling a tube out of his mouth. His doctor then came into view.
"Adam, can you understand me?"
"You suffered a grand mal seizure in the middle of the interface, your heart stopped for two minutes. Can you understand me? Are you okay?"
"Never been better."