My lawyer says I can get off easy, because it's hard to prove criminal negligence in a job nobody understands, and because the company won't want its business discussed in court. I say if it was that easy, they wouldn't have given me a live lawyer. I was fired from my last job for screwing around, this incident was in my sector, even if I supposedly didn't know I had a sector, and it hadn't taken any AVM talent to recognize an obviously goofed setup when they got to the second question in my initial interview.
The first question was standard enough, asking me to describe my last project. It was a salary position at a firmware company where we'd been monitoring the effects of random EMF exposure on culture growth in the next generation BIO-RAM boards. There were two unusual aspects to the project: 1) I was supposed to monitor for regularities, instead of flaws, which made my head hurt, and 2) the project was already so far behind that they put a scientist in the room with me to take a verbal description of what I was tagging and why, instead of reviewing tapes while I was sleeping.
The second question sent my mind wandering: "How did you get along with the scientist?" And I remembered her bare breasts coming between me and the screen, the closest nipple achingly close to my mouth, trying to peer over the delicious slope at the chaos of the AV even as I began to suck, feeling the AVM routines lose control to the lust processes as her breasts moved up out of the field of the screen only to be replaced by pale thighs opening to fine blond hair and another small pink nub in urgent need of sucking.
"A little too well", I finally managed to answer, figuring that piece-work jobs like this one were designed for goofs like me, and that they'd see the report from the old company soon enough. "We got distracted and missed a regularity. Certain power-on-off sequences gave the cells an appetite for silicon and caused them to trash conventional boards."
I realized then that I'd was still staring at the ceiling, and as I bought my eyes back down toward the interviewer she quickly pulled her left hand up onto the desk from between her legs, and looked back at me away from the small AV unit in front of her.
"That's fine" she smiled, with a hint of tongue, and I really began to wonder what kind of AVM job they were hiring for.
Then she asked me if I knew how to edit AV networks. I do, because I'd originally been trained as a programmer, before I realized I could monitor, but it was still a weird question. Why would they pay a monitor's salary to somebody for editing networks, when they could get 10 programmers?
I should have gotten up and walked out when she explained the work to me, because it made no sense at all. Maybe it was the need for a paycheck, and maybe it was the realization that we'd be screwing against the office door when the interview was over, but I stayed and heard the spiel, leaning over her shoulder to watch the screen, smelling the rich darkness of her hair. There were a hundred polygons moving on the AV, each with variable color, increasing volume and fixed shape indicating priority. The network had an automonitor that tagged each polygon with data from an editable store when it hit red. I would be paid based on the number of polygons tagged and their overall growth in volume times a factor for each polygon's priority, and I would have access to the network editor if I needed to make any "corrections". I started to stroke her hair as she talked, and she unbuttoned her blouse, guiding my other hand inside to the firm weight of her breasts and the throaty cry of her nipple as an adjacent circle and hexagon glowed orange on the screen and then circled each other as she stood, pushing me back to the door, her hand on my erection and mine cupping her moist cunt as her skirt rose and her tongue entered my mouth and I pinned her against the door with her legs around my hips and I thrust and I thrust and as we came a choir sang in my head about the glories of the work I was about to do.
The next morning I hurried to work, wanting to see the interviewer, hoping I could remember her name, but there was just some big guy at the front desk who handed me a live badge with a map program that talked me to my office. It was a beautiful setup: a couch, a couple of different chairs, a well-stocked refrigerator and three AV screens, one with the hundred dancing polygons, one with the network editor, and one blank. My memory of the previous day was a little fuzzy, but if I remembered correctly, the automonitor module was doing all the work, and I was just going to be paid based on its performance. 24 hours of monitoring convinced me that I was going to have to make some "corrections" if I wanted to make a living wage; the only polygons that had been tagged were a couple of pairs of triangles that had briefly gone red between 10 and 11 at night, and there wasn't any significant volume increase in any of the 100.
The network was astoundingly simple. There were 100 identical custom input nodes across the top of the screen. There were XYZ connectors and a three scalars from each one to a polygon image generator and from each one to the automonitor plus unused MPEG and AUD outputs. The automonitor had MPEG and AUD inputs from what appeared to be a standard sequential access library module, and identical outputs running to 100 custom receptors across the bottom. The polygon image generators were tied into an image averager, which connected to one of the standard rotatable, scalable display packages that controlled my central screen.
I tried bypassing the automonitor so that the library contents went directly into the polygon outputs, but the output modules started popping up error window messages with a bunch of technical mumbo-jumbo and the phrase "insufficient subject activity levels." So clearly I was stuck with the automonitor, and this really wasn't a monitoring job at all. On the other hand, it didn't appear to be much of a programming job either. I was limited to the polygon inputs, and my only feedback to the polygons were video and audio to which they were only occasionally receptive. Normally, I don't care what it is I'm monitoring; I'm just there to check for pattern abnormalities. But this whole job had an abnormal pattern, and that was making me very uncomfortable. The question now was whether I could have some fun and still get paid while living within the letter and not the spirit of my employment contract.
First I hooked up a still image processor and a coordinate displayer to each polygon image generator and arranged them in order across the top of the central display screen, so that I could tell which input module on the network went with which polygon on the display. Then I checked through the library of available modules and found an MPEG/AUD display module. Sure enough, as soon as I pulled it into the network edit field the third screen lit up and a hum came from the speakers. Easy to find for myself, already preconfigured to work, but darn hard to prove that I was supposed to use it; they definitely wanted me to reprogram the network without any liability for themselves.
I was about to hook up the MPEG/AUD display module to the library when a solitary hexagon on the middle screen started to shift yellow. Declaring that it was for the good of research, I connected the display module to the MPEG and AUD outputs of the hexagon, kicked back the chair, and went to lie down on the couch.
The video was pretty incredible. If I had to guess I'd say some kind of infrared spectral analysis fed through an AI with prerecorded knowledge of the subject matter; but otherwise it was indistinguishable from magic. I was starting to unzip my pants when an idea stopped me and I ran back to the console and added MPEG and AUD recorders to the network before returning to the couch and undressing with the girl on the screen.
She was obviously of Indian descent: mocha skin, a thin face with wide dark eyes, a perky little nose, full lips, giraffe-like legs and neck, and a long black ponytail that tickled the cheeks of her perfect ass as she bounced on dancers toes across the bare wood floor of an unfamiliar room, her firm high breasts defying the cool night air with obvious pride. I stroked myself as I remembered seeing two squares in that same spot on the screen through the night.
She moved to a dresser, running her hands across the top and then each drawer like a silent prayer before opening. On the third drawer she bent down, the gorgeous globes of her rear offered to the camera, her left hand fluttering across her breasts and her taut stomach and her clitoris as her right hand sorted through the clothing, pulling out a simple white transparent robe which she wrapped around herself, turning before the small mirror of the dresser. I felt the seed rise from my balls as she examined the small framed pictures there.
"I love you. I love you both". She whispered as I exploded, a chorus of children from around the world rising up out of the corn fields in my brain, holding red and white cans and singing of eternal brotherhood. In my delirium I pulled one from the refrigerator, rejoicing in the distinctive sound that they make when you open them.
I played with the library module for a while, keeping an eye on the babysitter nee hexagon, who had dressed again and gone to check on her charges. It had probably been a standard library module when they purchased the system, but they'd hardcoded a base file list into it, so that when I copied the module on the editor screen I got the same files, and they were read only. At least it would let me add and delete my own. As a pair of yellow squares approached the hexagon on the middle screen, I copied the automonitor and the library, connecting the copies, hooked the inputs and outputs of the two squares to the new automonitor dragged my newly created MPEG/AUD combination into the squares' new personal library, and switched the video feed over to one square output.
They were standing outside the door. The woman had her hand and eye against the ID plates, and the man was standing behind her, his left arm across her stomach and down through slit in the skirt, his dark right hand in the scoop front dress, buried in her ample pale cleavage as he licked her neck beneath her piled red hair and she pumped her buttocks back into his straining erection, turning their squares orange with lust. Then the door was open and they were in, the sitter turning from the window where she had been watching, the wife past her into the bathroom and out of the frame, leaving her husband to deal with money, loosening his tie and running his card through her reader as the sitter pressed against him, her shirt open and draped exquisitely on her hard brown nipples which he tweaked as he kissed her. And then she was gone, and he was naked in the bathroom, lowering his powerful dark body into the tub as his wife climbed on top of him, her body already glistening with excitement, the bubbles and her red hair swirling around them as she thrashed and bucked, her mouth lowering to him and then back to cry out his name in ecstasy and this time my body reacted from the visual input alone and I began to think how much the bubbles had looked like milk, and how much milk had done for their bodies as their squares went red on the central screen, and the automonitor blinked on the left.
We're trained to handle massive amounts of input, but it's usually devoid of emotional content. This was overwhelming. I wanted to sleep, but there was work to be done. I set up a private library for Allison and copied the recording of Roger and Mary into it, not sure whether having names for these strangers was making it easier or not.
I'd left the video on Roger and Mary. Their squares had faded to green, and watching them sleep was peaceful, but now suddenly they were orange again, and I turned to face the right hand screen. They were in the middle of the bed, Mary on all fours, wrapped in the transparent white robe that Allison had played in not an hour ago, her husband kneeling erect behind her, both of them pumping and licking and sucking on chocolate ice cream bars, the chocolate of the covering and the white of the ice cream mirroring the colors of their skin and I knew through the fog and the images of pasta what had been pumped into their brains the last time they came and as they collapsed with a groan, the remains of her ice cream crushed between her breasts and the remains of his smeared across her back I lovingly copied the record of their coupling into both Allison's library and into the main one.
Over the next few days I worked in a fever, setting up individual libraries and automonitors for each of my hundred subjects, moving the video from person to person, learning names and relationships, kinship bonds, illicit affairs, unrequited lusts, and the structure of power as my bank account grew with the volume of the polygons, and the dominant color of the middle screen shifted from blue into green and then yellow. The old AVM skills formed a working relationship with empathy and lust, as it became second nature to switch the video to a subject as their polygon went orange, surrender to the image and my hand while considering appropriate distribution patterns, then copy the resulting files into all the appropriate libraries as the ecstasy subsided. Faster and faster my subjects came and so did the images of their coming:
Allison making out with her boyfriend Rick in the corner of his kitchen, her skirt around her hips, her shirt untucked, his hands furiously tickling her clit and nipples as he bites her shoulder and she bites her own hand, his mother, Jane, her back turned to them, oblivious, makes small talk as she cooks with nationally advertised ingredients, while her husband, Tom, stands in the hall, eyes locked with Allison, stroking his massive cock through his pants...
Mary, seated on a table in a storeroom at her friend Julie's reception, her coral green bridesmaids dress unbuttoned down the front, her face smeared with icing, Jim, the groom, standing before her, his pants around his ankles but the tux otherwise neatly arranged, shoving wedding cake into her mouth as he fucks her, pausing occasionally to lick off icing as her stockings rub against his legs and her coral green heels dig deeper into his back.
Roger and their neighbor, Linda, sharing a hotdog in her living room at her kid's birthday party as their children play in the back yard, supervised by Mary and Linda's husband, Mark. Roger sits in a red leather chair in a darkened corner of the room. Linda is astride him, dripping with sweat, her shoulder-length blond hair plastered against her head and neck, her tank top pulled up just far enough to expose her nipples which she teases with her own left hand, her right hand holding the hotdog between them, their shorts down around their ankles. She screws him slowly, his hands guiding her hips and ass as they nibble in from opposite ends, locking mouths and twirling tongues as they finish.
They were spending more and more time every day in the supermarket. All of them. Buying food they didn't really need. Snacking as they walked down the aisles, staring, flirting, the store almost a constant glow of orange on the main screen. If I hadn't ever doubted my own sanity before I sure did now. I was past being able to accept what the screens were telling me. Past thinking of them as polygons. Past thinking of them as first names. Past the satisfaction of my own hand. I needed to be there, to see them, to know them up close and personal, to have them know me.
Based on the names I was able to find the addresses on the web, print a map, and locate the supermarket.
The police weren't there yet when I arrived, but I had to push through the crowd already forming outside the window, staring into the store, watching with Mary and Roger and Tom and Rick as Allison danced naked down the aisles, Rick's English teacher Linda concentrating instead on Rick as she knelt in front of him sucking his cock, Tom's hands wrapped around Mary from behind, squeezing her breasts, as Allison soared gracefully over Julie, who was masturbating flat on her back with a banana watching Mark fuck his tall dark-haired secretary Amy from behind against a fruit stand, the juice of the crushed fruit running down her stomach and her breasts to be licked at by Allison's best friend Jill.
In every aisle there were couples and threesomes and foursomes fucking and blowing and eating, throwing pies at each other, pouring milk over each other's glistening bodies, shooting whipped cream into each other's hair.
I knew there'd be mass arrests, and it'd be pretty damned obvious that I didn't belong when they started asking questions. I should have turned and walked out. I should have quit when I figured out what the job was. I should have left after the first interview. I should have kept my pants on at the job before this one. But instead I took my pants off, and wandered down the aisles of the supermarket, getting to know my subjects up close and personal while chewing on a breakfast bar.
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