“Are you telling me that we’re going to travel on this?” Hiro is oddly annoyed. I rarely see him annoyed, and when I see him, I don’t understand very well why is he so. There is something different on the way he thinks. Maybe it’s the metagramatic brain he has, maybe it’s simply that I don’t have, and I will never have, his point of view. I try to calm him down.
“You have seen these devices.” I point to the mechanical car that just arrived from somewhere, without a driver, burping steam from his upper chimney. “It will allow us to transport our equipment through the empty neighborhoods, and we will be able to enjoy the trip. I think it’s a fantastic mean of transportation.”
“But it has no driver!” Hiro points out to the cabin, where the coordinate reader is.
“And? A human being can commit a mistake reading a map. A mechanism can not. What’s your problem with it? It’s pretty easy ” I get close to the coordinate reader ” you just need to set the coordinate on these dials ” I point out them ” and then press the start button. ” I point it also. ” The machine will do the rest, it will dodge obstacles, and so on. I don’t know how it does that, by the way, maybe it has some SSD parts with a hardcoded street map…”
“It’s a machine!” Hiro says it and it sounds like an insult. I look at the mecacar, with his funny cupola and the steam engine, and I get his point. “You can not trust a machine!”
“Don’t worry, I repeat. I used them before.” Yes I did. The System is using them quite frequently to impress the locals, those locals that have been disconnected or in another time flow for the last 50 years. I remember the heated discussion I was attending by chance on one of them over the management of the kernel Budapest… until the so called king of Budapest was kicked out of the vehicle when we were travelling on a fast path. But I will not tell Hiro about that part. Besides, it was another type of vehicle, more like a limousine of the old days. Being this one more a delivery van. “They are pretty safe. Besides, it will be only until we find a river. Once we find a river, I will ask for a ship.”
“Why don’t you ask for a ship now?” Hiro is not anymore looking directly at my face, so I can’t judge what’s going on. Does he know about the Budapest incident? Does he know I was there?
“Hiro.” I make one of my breaks, and I use it to go closer to him. I put my hands over his shoulders. He seems to react. “Calm down. Technology is not infallible here. I know. But the System knows what it does. They don’t want us to get lost in a fast path. They want us to find out what happened with the previous owners of this City ” I make a dramatic gesture and a soft turn, trying to theatrically cover all the ruins around us ” and why they built it this way. Are you with me in this adventure, or do you want to stay out of it?”