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REPRIEVE

by S. S. Wilson

Smashwords Edition

Copyright 2011 S. S. Wilson

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The Coordinator settled into his bowl. He had deliberately arrived early, well ahead of all other Participants, in order to signal his recognition of this meeting’s gravity. Of course, in actuality that was beyond question. The meeting itself was unprecedented, having been called so far in advance of the current Quarter Circuit end.

As his ever-attentive symbionts attached his sensory leads, the Coordinator scanned the meeting chamber through a viewer. His visual organs were not well adapted to distance, but the amplifying viewer would have been necessary regardless, for the oval chamber was quite vast, stretching away from his bowl until the furthest stone walls were but vague tones of grey. It was necessarily large, having to accommodate the Participants with their widely varying sizes and wildly varying life-support systems.

The chamber was ancient almost beyond imagining, having been constructed by the Originators nearly 20 Circuits past. It was hollowed out of solid rock, beneath the surface of the moon which orbited the Study. Said moon, being lifeless, lacking an atmosphere, and being an easily traversable distance away, was an ideal observation post. It had been key in choosing the Study itself.

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