☀️ failsafe.

after walking through a whole floor of rooms with loose furniture piled up everywhere, we stepped into a cozy and well-kept room with a table in the middle, and a desk under a window at the end, with an old PC on it. a hazy gray light shone through the window from the VX1D outside.

“i thought we were in the abandoned cram school, but now it looks like we're in the Literature Club clubroom. which anime are we referencing here?” br1ghtspxrk asked, sitting down at the desk.

“oh, just wait until you turn the computer on, we'll fit a third reference in.” Sovereign busied himself making tea for the two of us.

br1ghtspxrk flicked the switch and, in a few moments, the computer booted into Angel Player. “oh, i see. that makes sense. so wait, what am i supposed to do here?”

“isn't it obvious?” Sovereign set a cup down at the desk, filling it with tea from the pot. “if you want something done, do it yourself. or in the words of Grace, 'what god doesn't give to you, you've got to go and get for yourself.'”

br1ghtspxrk took a sip from the tea. “you know, chronologically i don't know any of these references yet.”

“don't spoil the fun.” Sovereign set another cup down on the table, pulling a chair up but not sitting down in it just yet. “anyway, the terminal does exactly what you think it does. you get to write the rules now, you can manipulate the data of your world freely, reprogram and redesign yourself in your own image. in God's image.”

i looked out the window behind me. “so that's why it's so empty. but then, why are you here? if you're just going to tell me to do it myself.”

you took a long, slow sip from your own tea and then sat down at the table, throwing your feet up on it. “i am a little part of the VX1D. and now, i am a little part of you. consider me as something of an insurance policy. a failsafe.”

“failsafe? from what?”

“you made a deal, remember? i'm here to make sure both ends are held up. as long as i'm around, you can't fail and you can't die. think of me as a kind of immortality. a guardian angel, or rather a demon from hell, but same idea. you'll get what you want, and the Devil will get what he wants, guaranteed. everyone's happy.” Sovereign smiled.

“wait, go back. immortality?” br1ghtspxrk was already clicking around on the computer, figuring out the basics of the Angel Player program.

“there are only so many ways things go from here. my goal is to lead you down the right path, but if that doesn't work out, well, we can't have you deciding that passing onto the next adventure is more worthwhile than this world of suffering, however much sense that makes. your soul belongs to the Devil now, remember?”

br1ghtspxrk briefly looked up from the computer and stared out the window again, into the VX1D. “you only exist here inside of me...if i stopped existing, so would you.”

“right. which is why i can't let that happen. worst case scenario, i take over completely. i guess in one sense, that would be a sort of death for you anyway.”

“it would be a fate worse than death. i would be a ghost, trapped in limbo, unable to pass on.”

khehehe, well, then i suggest you try your best to stay alive. anyway, it's not like you wouldn't be able to come back from limbo. 'cycles of death and regeneration'...this is only the beginning, my friend.”