Private Diary 6 Sept NByr4
Something has to give soon.
I finished the bulk of the final case report on Pip. The last few bits are still blank, and staring at the file jacket in the ‘pending’ holder annoys me. If things were different, it would be over. They’d find his sorry carcass floating in the canal with a bloody pulp where his head used to be. I keep reminding myself this isn’t the old days, that it isn’t some Ministry job where the orders come down and someone goes missing. There has to be order and rules here, and the lot of following the rules has fallen to me. Follow, not make.
The folks in the bar keep talking about poor Pip, like he was a person and not some thing, some creation that mocks being alive. Focus. I can’t get sucked into the void between fact and philosophy now. What is life? Can we argue the difference between a mechanical creation who has all the appearances of being alive and a reasoning human? Where do we draw the line between programming and a soul, especially in this age of science and wonder?
Not my job. He was alive, by all accounts, and isn’t now due to the actions of another. I must keep that clear. I have my job, and I must finish it.
Sky is beginning to notice. The veneer is cracking. I saw Star again, in the Bucket. It was all I could do to keep from carrying her out of there. She only looked me in the eyes once, and when she did I felt like my very soul was being ripped out of my body. I know the words that came out of her mouth are not was her eyes told me. I’ve broken down more in the last weeks that I have since coming to Babbage two years ago. This can’t continue. I won’t let it.
I began the exercises again. Hopefully the Iron Keep will be enough to stand up to Loosestrife. Miss Hermit said there would be a sacrifice. So be it.