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  • Logan Needham

The Verse ( Redux):

Some suburban town within a large city akin to Vancouver’s, but a bit fuzzier. As the low resolution grass blades dance in their little looping animations, the duo plop into the utopia, with the soles of the two’s just barely clipping through the floor.


Each player’s character model is generated by an AI trained to create caricatures based on photos of them scoured throughout the entire world’s image database, confidential or not.


The girl’s hair was dyed peach; Tinted orange-yellow like the evening sun. Her oversized sweatshirt, bouncy and comfortable, covered most of her body, but nobody would put it past them to believe she had a stunning hourglass figure for her age.


The other one… In contrast, has a slightly frizzy bob in a dull cream. They don a purple hoodie, which is medium sized, despite it being so desperately stretched out by them to make it the length of the girl’s. Their body’s blatantly a thin, parallel rectangle… No tapering faces nor edges to speak of. But their eyes- Their piercing, neon-green eyes glow like the crescent moon.


“Did it work?” Altalune asked nervously as they stared directly at the floor with their hands in the air.


“Woah! This place is so cool!” Cyra giggled, obviously not paying attention to the three words Altalune asked. She skipped over to the pine tree, consisting of stretching 2D textures.


“Look! It’s like you can really touch it!” She exclaimed. Altalune was clipping through the flat plane of grass like quicksand.


Cyra would take their hand before they could say anything else. And while they appreciated the probable friendly affectionate gesture, they couldn’t help but feel annoyed. 


They held hands… But there were unfortunately no sparks.


Classic Cyra. 


As they both wandered the terrain, Altalune saw every speck of the scenery was recreated in game. They saw the old school, where they and Cyra played together. They zoomed in via first person and was surprised to see all the stickers kids would slap onto the bottom of the slide. They and Cyra’s were still there as well.


They walked into the convenience store, the one which watched over the town upon a polygonal hill. Clipping inside each other, both were greeted with a low res replica of an interior. 


“I just saw your ,” Altalune laughed, trying to be funny. 


“Ew gross, dude!” 


She misunderstood the joke- Classic Cyra.


Altalune stared off into space until their eyes landed on Cyra.


 “What’re you doing?”


“Using the selling point of this game, silly.” 


Cyra went through several menus, of which Altalune would try to see by desperately looking over her shoulder as she tapped away.


“We can take whatever we want now.” 


“WHAT!? That’s illegal! Won’t we get in trouble!?”


“Not anymore!~” Cyra exclaimed sing-songedly as she twirled around and skipped to the snack aisle. 


And like that, reality set in for Altalune. They can change the very functions of life with a few buttons. No more cancer, objectification, war. And now they can get what they’ve always wanted.


Cyra was munching her digital chips… Scarily enough, she could taste them well enough due to flavor-juiced IVs connected to the internet via headset. It is transferring the salty taste through her body to her taste buds, sensual motors simulating the level of crunch, injected plugs and wires to control the nervous system, in order to stimulate immaculate taste.  It is clear the two are set to live here; To live in the -Verse for all eternity.


“What’re you doing?”


She froze. 


Literally.


“Huh? Oh…”


“...Hey… I’m sorry for…  Being a little flaky.”


“Pretending you-  Don’t exist a lot of the time…”


Altalune stood there rigidly, with the lighting reflecting off the top of their character model looking rather intimidating.


“...Go on.”


“My high energy overbears you indefinitely- I’ll learn to tone it down from now on.”


“The thing is you’re always better than me. You’re so much happier than me. I think it’s high time I make things easier for myself… Because apparently I’m just too wicked of a person to improve myself.


“You’re a good person, Altalune!”


“...And?”


“And… And I won’t criticize you.”


“Say it.”


“Of course. We’ll go talk about it outside.”


Cyra stopped by the doors. Those low-res pngs slid through the low-res plane revealing a white void. 


“You’re my only friend now”


“...Good…”


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