While everyone sat in wonder the man walked down the aisle to the center of the room. “This project is one my team has worked on for years now, and I believe you will find it an agreeable alternative to your.. interesting propositions before this.”
“Artisian is a virtual universe my team has been working on for fifteen years. At first we planned to release it with virtual reality software, but that wasn’t enough for me.”
A gleam filled his eyes as he reached center stage, looking around the room at many of the world's most powerful figures.
“We created a device that allows us to transfer human consciousness into a virtual world. It is a one way trip, however.. I feel this is a wondrous opportunity.”
“You see, we’ve already tested this device on a few willing researchers. We have developed a 100% consciousness transfer rate after working out some kinks in the device. The good news is that everyone who joins will be granted the equivalent of eternal life.”
His eyes light up as he looked at the head representative, “The bad news, is that your body will die in the real world and you can never return.”
After a brief pause he continued.
“Artisian is a universe with many worlds, developed at the highest quality and realism. It is, in fact, also a game.”
At this comment the German representative scoffed, “What you propose is ludicrous and impossible.”
With a smile like a wolf hunting a lamb, the man turned toward the German table. “Is that so? Do I have any volunteers from the crowd then?”
The large monitor behind the head representative suddenly turned on. An image of a field with a forest in the distance appeared, the grass rustling in the wind.
“What is this? Who do you think you are?” screamed the German.
“This,” the mystery man started, “Is a direct view into Artisian.”
Noise erupted from every corner of the room as the representatives started arguing and stating the impossibility.
I don’t remember seeing him lift his cane, but I do remember the sound of it slamming into the floor.
Silence yet again filled the room as every representative looked toward the mystery man.
“German representative, Audrick Fischer. Being German myself you’re probably the only man here I recognize. Would you kindly volunteer since you were the first to be so vocal?”
Audrick became suddenly tense with fear, shaking his head. “I will not.”
Frowning, the man spun his cane. “Pity, Anabelle!” he yelled.
A young woman came running in through the double doors, pushing a small cart along as she went, apologizing to every person she passed by while looking as if she’d pass out with terror.
She arrived at the center of the room, and the man slammed his cane on the cart. “Thank you, Anabelle.”No one heard what she mumbled in reply, but the man continued on with no one else noticing. “In this cart is the device I spoke of before, I will now transfer Anabelle into Artisian.”