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My Virtual Mistress Paige


I have now merged with the machines

to such an extent that I can no longer see

the seams. 16 USB ports are installed

around my neck. I have been told that from

a distance I seem to be wearing a necklace

of shells. I do not remember when these

ports were set into my nervous system

but now I am completely dependent

on them, and the textures and contours

of memory itself have changed—long term

has gone very vague and short term

has become astonishingly accurate.

I find myself capable of mnemonic feats

that frankly would have been impossible

for the non-enhanced human I was pre-merge.




So who is Paige? Paige was at one time a real person,

a hairdresser at the place I used to go to, but now

her reality status is a little more…nuanced.

Someone made a recording of her before her death,

a complete capture at the quantum level.

Understand me—this is a perfect replica

of the hologram of her being. The copy may

contain more information than the original.


Paige is now installed in me, which is to say

she has become code, and pulses through me

like liquid flowers from the zero time.

Wes Civilz