Times Up

Timed writing exercise, using each word from the sentence – “It is an intuitive, user-friendly
software package, simple to maintain, operate and upgrade as necessary.” – to start off individual sentences or sections of speech. Approximately 10 minutes writing time, with no expectations of completing the story.

Sentence taken from the following document: Securing the UK Government Communication Headquarters

It didn’t take long for the power to completely drain away, and leave her eyes staring at the emergency oxygen gauge. Is the prospect of death, perhaps, the greatest focus for precision and observation ever created?

An eager sub-system regulated the flow of the atmosphere that remained, adjusting the mixture of gases to provide minimal life support. Intuitive interface graphics glimmered bright and red or, more optimistically, a burnt orange. User-friendly displays didn’t figure in Amanda’s top three concerns at the moment, as a dull ache bloomed in her chest, lungs working harder to draw every breath.

Software managed the rough balance of hardware and wetware in the station, dispassionately dividing up power and resources. Package it up in statistics and even the expiry of human life simply boils down to just enough system making demands. Simple survival comes down to competing with the very objects of human creation.

To live better and more comfortably, we built without consideration of what might happen when things went wrong. Maintain didn’t figure if excess got in the way and demanded all the attention.

“Operate or die,” Amanda muttered, pulling herself across the room with leaden limbs, “Computer? Can you lock down sections nine through eleven, then channel the atmosphere through into the core?”

And then what, she thought, what more can I do except hang here a little longer, feeling life ebb away with every precious breath?

“Upgrade protocols for core services initiated. Atmospheric recycle processing.”

As the venting hissed, Amanda felt a slight buzz in her veins. Necessary as she felt her existence might be to the success of the mission, she hoped someone alive in another section of the station would value her life enough not to rob her of an atmosphere like she had just done to Groves and Oakley.

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