Hey Everyone!! :-)
Here's a little bit more of the third installment in the Petri Dish Chronicles! As always, the disclaimer is that this is a draft and, as such, it's unedited and likely full of errors and is subject to revision, revamping, and being completely scrapped and rewritten. But, with that in mind, I'm reasonably satisfied with the basics of it, at least at the moment, or I wouldn't have bothered posting it. Enjoy! :-)
Excerpt from the third Petri Dish book:
The lead Arcanum moved closer to her and reached a hand up as if to brush her cheek, but stopped just short of touching her. “I can feel your anger and pain, child. You learned much during our time together, and your shield is strong enough that I can no longer read your thoughts unless you let me through, but your emotions overpower your barriers and leak out. Does the resentment you project mean you believe we gain any pleasure from coercing you? I assure you, we do not. You are our greatest achievement; quite possibly the next step in our evolution. The last thing we wish is to cause you more distress and drive you further from us.”
Petri straightened. As short as she was compared to humans and many other species, she towered over the Arcanum. Her jaw clenched, she met its glowing gaze and said, “Then don't make me do this. Let my friends and me leave, and deal with this yourselves.”
The alien backed away, its hand falling to its side. “We cannot. We have tried and failed to discover the method to assume direct mastery over digital systems. And those you call the Hatari are advancing. There is no more time to learn through a slow process of controlled trials; we require your assistance.”
“No matter what it costs.”
The alien did not respond.