Philo's Stories

"6U of Lesbianism"

cw: mental manipulation, bodyswap(?)

this will make much more sense if you read "75Ω Love" first

as she and I set up the servers, I wonder whether outsourcing my thoughts is the right choice
when I first plug the cable in, my thoughts echo over a threshold into a cavernous space that's vaguely connected to me
she hands me a pill and tells me it'll help blur the barriers

I swallow it and reach out
the connection becomes more stable and the threshold vanishes as the space becomes more a part of my mind
my face breaks into a smile as I feel everything at my proverbial fingertips

she came in from the rain one afternoon proffering a USB hard drive
"you *need* to try this"
we install the software that's on it to my brain
"this doesn't feel any different"
"it only kicks in when you need it"
"you still haven't told me what it does"
she pauses for a moment

"where's the cheapest gas in town right now?" she asks
maps and lists of prices flash in my mind and I instantly know the answer
I suddenly know just how to get there and laugh a bit, resplendent in my newfound power

"it worked, eh?" she says

over the next few weeks, I end up buying even more storage and networking hardware to build up a sizeable cache and index
three blades full of SSDs brings my setup up to 6U of servers, all connected over 10 gigabit links

my thoughts are no longer only or even mostly inside my head; they're spread out over 3 compute nodes and 3 ceph storage nodes
with everything running, I can instantly "remember" things that I know I didn't know before and "forget" them just as quickly

when I go out, I carry my sticker-covered thinkpad and a mess of cables in a soviet surplus messenger bag
I get weird looks for having a cable coming out of my head into my bag, but it's definitely worth it to have it instead of feeling confused without it at the grocery store

mobile data is slow and expensive, so I always make sure to sync the index and a cache subset to the laptop before I head out
two hundred milliseconds feels like an eternity when I'm used to the effectively instant response from directly connecting to the servers

at night with my cable off, I'm trapped inside my head with just the cabooses of trains of thought, while the melatonin I took and the program I ran are trying to get me to sleep
if my E322 had radios like the new E444 does, I'd have to sleep in a faraday cage to be this quiet

one day, she comes by and asks me a question: "why do the servers' fans spin up whenever you see me?"
"I'm too gay to think about you with just my head" I reply

the only time I can bear to be disconnected from the servers for long is when I'm with her

it's amazing to feel her touch me and feel me touch her through the high-carbon black lipstick
it dries out my lips, but we haven't found anything else reasonably non-toxic that conducts as well
as I kiss her, I feel the data rates increase as our emotions flow together

she takes a homemade crossover cable covered in ferrites from her bag and connects us
I recoil in pain, then I blink and discover I'm somehow looking through two pairs of eyes at once and they're staring at each other
I try to close my left eye and two left eyes close

I try again and can tell them apart this time

she and her E322 are a nearly overwhelming presence in my mind just like my servers are when I'm connected to them

"no te preocupes; aún estamos personas apartes"
but she isn't actually speaking spanish or even speaking at all

what I perceived was just her thoughts before they're actually formulated into words, and my mind turned it into spanish words somehow

as I ponder this, I feel my body starting to move without me and wrap around hers in ways I never would have thought to do

I put up no resistance and give myself over to her, lesbianism echoing through both of our minds and bodies

when she has to go, we disentangle our thoughts and unplug the cable
there's a feeling of her thoughts left over in my mind just like how my pillow smells like her