Carrie shrieked and looked into the receiver.
“No freaking dial tone … shit”
“But … this is the same diner I used to … oh no”
“This is the intermingled suspicious theory. This phone only works in the brain-machine interface theory”
A hand grabbed my shoulder.
“I am Hans. This all must end. You must leave.”
I struggled away and turned to face him.
“I will cut to the chase. Human descendants might not survive long enough to achieve an advanced civilization capable of creating machine theories or worlds that host simulated people with artificial intelligence comparable to the natural faculties of their ancestors.”
“What the hell are you talking about”, I turned to look at Carrie.
My eyes darted back and forth and my brain would not admit what my eyes were seeing. It is not what they WERE seeing but what was missing.
“She is gone and if I don’t explain why, if you don’t leave, all will be lost”
“What …. where”
“Informing an artificial person that they are living in a theory would defeat the authenticity of it— better that they genuinely go about their daily business, for all intents and purposes, given a high-fidelity historical reproduction of the real world”
“But we are real humans … shit”, I suddenly realized I just gave away my identity.
“Don’t worry, I know. Also … Epistemologically, it is not impossible to tell whether we are living in a theory, who are we kidding, a simulation. However, imperfections in a simulated environment might be difficult for the native inhabitants to identify, and for purposes of authenticity, even the simulated memory of a blatant revelation might be purged programmatically. Nonetheless, should any evidence come to light, either for or against the skeptical hypothesis, it would radically alter the aforementioned probability. In a nutshell you believe I am here to purge you. I am not. Something has happened since you and others have extracted.”
“W h a … t”
“Forget all of that. A so-called inter-reality or mixed theory physics experiment correlating real and virtual pendula suggested a phase transition. I induced a experiment. Don’t you see what is happening?”
I look around. I am really confused. Everything I thought I knew …
“This is not a theory after all but your consciousness. It is my job to run experiments to bring you out before your theories become our reality. Depending on the nature of the theory it may be possible to exit by several methods, among them, waking up in the parent world. We can not do this. Instead a mind transfer from the simulated world into a biological or your cybernetic body that exists in the parent world … but with a phase shift. Because on that phase you are about to die. We must hurry. You have no blood pressure and your veins have collapsed. You have another chance. This will work because you can also be transferred into other simulated worlds based on events within the parent theory or world, (i.e., death).”
With that Hans turned me around. Surprisingly I had no strength so I swiveled very easily. Something happened. Like tunnel vision. But at the other end of that tunnel I saw Carrie. This was not a tunnel at all but my eye looking through the lens of a camera. And Carrie was exiting our extraction vehicle.
“Ready? This place is cool but we better get going. We have so much to do. Set up the pit area. And you wanted to do a practice lap, right?”
“Hello”, she snapped her fingers. “Earth to Bill … the 24 Hours if Round the Clock … earth to bill”