Мое главное увлечение – это литература во всех ее проявлениях. Однако, не ограничиваясь академическими и читательскими интересами, я решилась написать свое первое стихотворение еще на первом курсе в университете. Попробовав себя в поэзии, я перешла на короткую прозу и стала писать фантастические рассказы с элементами реализма. Одной из главных целей моих рассказов является желание, заставить читателя почувствовать атмосферу произведений и соотнести себя с ними, как если бы все это происходило здесь и сейчас. Мир антиупотии, как он был представлен многими велики писателями еще в двадцатом веке, невероятно богат и в то же время далек от нашей реальности. Мне было интересно внести элементы пост-Советской реальности в рамках научной фантастики. В результате этого эксперимента у меня получился ряд взаимосвязанных историй “Автономные Единицы”, который в будущем будет доработан в виде полноценного романа.
Literature is my passion, even in the multiple ways that it manifests itself. However, without being limited to my personal academic interests and enjoyments as an ordinary reader, during the freshman year at my university I have written my first poem. After examining my skills in poetry, I moved further for short fiction and started to write sci-fi stories with elements of realism. One of the major goals of my stories is the desire to make readers feel the atmosphere of the work and at the same time relate oneself to them, as if everything is happening right here and now. The world of dystopian fiction, the way it was portrayed by some famous writers of twentieth century, is extremely rich, but at the same time distant from our contemporary reality. It was particularly interesting for me to introduce some of the post-Soviet elements into the sci-fi framework. As a result of this experiment, you can observe the presented sequence of short stories “The Autonomous Units,” which in future will be developed into a novel.
The Autonomous Units
“The AU-101 must tell the truth and the truth only. Ex-Secondary Autonomous Unit- 101 is fully aware that all its thoughts are recorded and stored in the archives of the Real State for further analysis and adjudgment on the case #**. The Real State has all rights to interpret the unit’s thoughts after all inquiries are satisfied. Now the Secondary Autonomous Unit-84 shall proceed with the interrogation. The Real State was established by Superior Units in order to maintain the Real Society in order. All Autonomous Units were irreversibly introduced into the state after the Unit Identification Process. The first step of the process was dividing the future AUs into female and male subdivision according to their sexual characteristics at birth, avoiding the old definitions of gender identity. The second step was to evaluate the reasons why the Unit was ordered to exist in the Real State under the direct control of the Superior Units. In this manner, after evaluation of my identity and previous skills, the Process concluded that as the future AU, I shall not be introduced to the production line and become involved in the product-making activities. The Secondary Units had to undergo systematic training and checks until the Secondary Units Identification Process ordered the sAUs to become the Autonomous Units to profit the State by the products of their work. During the training, all the sAUs had to undergo the medical and psychological treatment in ordinary insane asylums. The influence of the medical treatment made the sAUs unaware of the time dimensions and therefore for me, as the sAU-101, it was possible to conclude that only after the long time in an insane asylum, the Secondary Units were able to gain full Autonomous Unit status. They were rewarded by the Superiors to exist within the walls of the Real State. Shortly after, the first sAUs were replaced by an additional fifteen patients. In case with my Identification Process the Superior Units concluded that I had not obtained necessary skills and state of mind for further development into the AU yet. The treatment did not bring the required results for my personal development- because my body was resistant towards the external chemo-biological intrusions, but it had an initial impact on my cognition. As the sAU-101 I forgot everything before the Real State project was installed. I could not even tell why I was there and what is the purpose of my treatment. My body lost its distinct features, with the exception of reproductive organs. The only appearance that all the sAUs started to obtain was made of the pale face with no reflective component of their emotions. The bodies of the future units were transformed by necessary physical exercises and external impact of the transformation machines, which also collected the required amount of gametes for further creation of the newborn Autonomous Units in the reproductive factories. The State had special orders on the length of hairs and nails, making them as short as possible to avoid conscious termination of the sAUs lives before the Secondary Unit Identification Process. I can say that the amount of initial medical contamination of the SUs bodies exceeded those that were sustained further. Firstly, our bodies were bombarded by numerous pills and injections that caused severe pain and further emotional obstruction. However, further treatment in the asylum made my brain cells resistant to the external influence, in contrast to other SUs that revealed “highly successful treatment plan” implementation – as it was announced by the speakers after the Identification Process. I started to recognize my identity after the fourth group of ex-sAUs departed to the Real State. Such simple tasks like the comprehension of basic emotions and feelings was the first and dangerous step to me. Apathy. Fatigue. Fear. Curiosity. These feelings allowed me to rediscover the basic notion of my identity and had a resemblance with some kind of childhood memories. Apathy: The sAUs did not get into direct contact with any other people and therefore were ordered and served by a mechanical hand with speakers. As I already mentioned, with the first recognition of my feelings I started to observe overtly newly introduced sAUs and their development into emotionless, almost mechanical, AUs. Their eyes did not reveal anything at all. Nothing. It was like staring into the wall or the ceiling. Fear: We were held in one large room and the initial fear of the patients or sAUs was easy to identify. When they first woke up in the room, which they could not recall entering, fear was their first reaction. They were trying to untie themselves from the beds, but further medical contamination prevented their movements. The fear was also in their eyes. I saw it clearly, walking near for my dose of drugs. Fatigue: This developed into further fatigue after the prolonged treatment ended up with absolute apathy towards the existing environment. Their movements became mechanical and their eyes empty. Exhaustion and the sense of giving up was what they felt. Curiosity: The only feeling that I did not see in them, but had rediscovered in my mind, was curiosity. I started to question how and why this place was constructed and whether there was a way for the units to be introduced from the outside. I then concluded that the Superior Units and developed AUs knew the way out of this room. By patient observations I found that there was a movable part of the wall that allowed units to exit and enter. I found the way out.”