Er...Thanks, but that wasn't actually the plot, it was the setting. The plot will be revealed in time (as soon as I decide, fully, what it will be XD). Anyway, part one of chapter one, this is where the story starts.
Rane White opened his eyes, and stared. What is this above his head? Oh yeah, a roof. And what is this below it? Of course, a pillow. With those two identifications in his mind he immediately able to conclude that he existed and so remember all twenty years of his life; his birth, his graduation and finally his going to sleep last night. Realizing who and what he was, Rane sat up and got out of bed—it seemed like the best thing to do, he had a job after all.
To say a person had a “job” anymore is a bit misleading, because no one really “worked”. Almost everything was automated for a long time; the only real professions left were attorneys, government officials, teachers and robot maintenance men. Most people could just laze around or play (or do things in which they needed the attorneys), which made us content, for a while. But we eventually realized that a conscious action to help the community was a psychological need, and made people happier. And so, whenever someone wanted to do something, the robot was taken out and the human put in its place.
Rane worked as a college professor, he liked teaching young fourteen and fifteen year-olds the intricacies of psychology. He was well known for his engaging and hands-on classes. Once, the day previously in fact, he got a random person from the street and told the man that he was trying to prove conditioning.
Then Rane went through a demonstration where a mouse was given a mild shock while facing a blue wall, and played the sound of a squeaking female mouse when facing a red wall; this was repeated ten times. Then the mouse was given a choice between a path with blue walls and a path with red walls, the mouse—as expected—chose the red path.
After this Rane presented two buttons to the man; one button was blue and mildly shocked the man, the other one was red and made a passage from Beethoven’s eighth symphony play. The man was made to press both buttons and then was shown two additional buttons, he pressed both, and again, blue shocked him while red played a piece of music.
This was repeated ten times.
Then on the final set of buttons the man was told to choose a button, he chose blue, it shocked him. Then, with a smile on his lips, the man said “It looks like I’ve proven that man is smarter than some simple animal when it comes to conditioning.”
“No,” Rane replied, “you’ve proven that man is self-destructive.”
Today, Rane was working with the effects of other people on a logical train of thought. To do this he showed a picture of a person before she became famous and what fame later did to her (it was some ancient celebrity named Critney Lances or something like that). The before showed a vibrant, attractive, young woman, the after showed a bald psychotic drug-addict. He went on with further examples of rock stars.
Finally, he played a video clip of a disgruntled crowed, it had been shown terrible act after terrible act, next up: a singer. The singer starts off, and he’s not bad, but the crowed is booing, he continues and the crowed is practically screaming for him to get off the stage.
Rane stops the clip,
“Now, observe how—even though this singer is quite good—the crowd as a group is automatically slanted towards a negative outlook, the people as individuals are drawn to only observe the bad qualities and, even if the notice something good, they feel intimidated and do not express their opinion. But now, watch what happens…”
And he lets the clip play.
The crowd is in a frenzy, exploding with their displeasure. Then, there’s a pause; a break in the music…and a person can be heard clapping. Then the crowd actually starts listening, and slowly, with rising intensity, people are cheering.
Suddenly the whole throng is roaring with support and encouragement and standing, not for protest, but for assent. Rane paused the clip again.
“One person,” he rewound back to the break where the tide shifted and went over it again, “one person cause the entire crowd to change completely. One person cheered,” He went over the section again, “And every person, every single one, followed suit. Now, look at these people,” he went back to the before and after slides, “and see where public pressure truly leads. We are so focused on each other, and what others think that we cannot think for ourselves. If one person believes something, that’s more than enough reason for you to believe it too. Human see, human do.”
On that dramatic note, exactly as he had intended, the bell rang and the student began rustling around to get their stuff and leave, then the filed past him and out the door. One student however, paused to talk to Rane.
“You know Mr. White,” So formal, even at his age, what a thing this world is coming to, “you could relate yesterday’s lecture and today’s to the recent rise in popularity of Paining.” Perceptive also, he’d have to be less obvious in his appeals to the subconscious.
“You could.” Rane replied, neither giving nor taking anything from the assumption. The teen smiled, his suspicions practically confirmed,
“Have you ever tried Paining?”
“Yes” Rane replied, “it certainly is invigorating, but I prefer Blissing. It’s a bit more…” Rane struggled to find the right word, “modern. After all, it seems our primitive ancestors were very prone to Paining.” He said, using a common joke about relating improper “cutting” to Paining.
“Now Mr. White,” the student said seriously, apparently he hadn’t heard this joke before, “you know that what we do is different, we do it just for the pain, they did it for some myths about losing weight, causing pleasure and destroying themselves, they didn’t adopt the right mindset, and they didn’t get healed right after like we do.”
Apparently this child was swept along with the craze as well. Rane smiled to console the defensive teenager, but he really was interested in one point the child made.
“Hmm…Maybe your right,” still playing with him a bit, “but what was that you said about mindset? Do you really think that makes a difference?” Rane was curious, when he tried it he had felt exasperated with himself at giving in to this fad, almost like mob psychology.
“Oh yes,” the boy said, suddenly animated, “you have to really feel it racing up your arm and let go of any animal instinct you have, realize that it’s just strong electrical signals, no different than what you get from mating; and you find that it really wires you, but more than any bliss pill could.”
Rane was generally interested now, “Huh, I never thought about it that way before.” The boy smiled again.
“And that is why you don’t understand. Just keep what I said in mind and try it again.” The boy turned and walked away at that, calling over his shoulder, “Good day Mr. White!” and hurrying off to join his friends.
“Well, I guess it can’t hurt,
” thought Rane as he got ready to leave, “maybe I will try it again. Mindset, psychology, hmmm…
” Rane mused as he walked back into the harsh sunlight.
End of Chapter 1 Part 1
Here's the video of the singer in the story, yes it really happened: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xZWwYyRB8M
(and inspiration) : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=otZdiO0q6pU
Don't worry, it may seem dull at first, but it will get better.