Amy had eagerly left her home at Sydney, with no hesitation at all on the lively journey that impatiently awaited her, on a summer day of 2050, heading towards the flying taxi station found just 20 long parallel streets away from her city house.
As the automatic glass door closed gently behind her, and her humanoid assistant robot, Hurob, approached fumblingly and said farewell, with her generally human-like robotic voice, which could only be easily be mistaken with a human one by a distracted and slightly clumsy person, she vaulted over her semi-autonomous solar hoverboard, and parted with a slight swing, to which the hoverboard quickly changed direction, lest she should almost lose her equilibrium and fall onto the ground on what had once been a busy and thoroughly transited road.
Nowadays, there were fewer cars, and all of those were totally electric and autonomous, as other transport ways had gained popularity, such as the flying taxi, for intercity transport, or drones and hoverboards for transport inside a city. As she observed around her, and the hoverboard temporarily took control of the direction and speed, she could see car-sized electric autonomous drones darting past over the tall buildings, sometimes feeling the mild breeze that they produced, or the few fully autonomous and electric cars, into which you could occasionally see someone slumbering on their way to work. A red light turned on in the hoverboard, indicating that she should resume taking control herself of the hoverboard. She would open her arms, and slightly bend them to the side to which she wanted to go, or bend down to ascend in height until she reached just over the surrounding buildings, and fly past a joyfully singing bird, or incredibly carefully sit down, holding tightly to the hoverboard borders, and observing the city in an astonishing view.
Despite the sensation that you were totally safe up there from any danger or attack, it wasn’t always the case. Someone could attempt to remotely take control of the hoverboard, and ‘trick’ the hoverboard into detecting certain movements upon it, such as if the person who was riding was turning right, when he or she wasn’t, crashing into a building, for example. This was what happened to her. All of a sudden, the hoverboard veered downwards, which terrified Amy, and made her to convulsively stand up, switch the hoverboard from automatic mode, and attempt to regain control over it, which was possible, if the real signal from the person was stronger than the remote one. In this case she was lucky, and managed to take full control of it again.
You could now observe from a few hundred meters the international spaceport, where a towering blue rocket stood, the Big Falcon Rocket, ready to take off towards the outskirts of Birmingham: all just in 25 minutes.
By gradually standing up on the hoverboard, it began to descend, and in a few seconds landed on the spaceport entrance, where RRH left the hoverboard, which returned back to her bedroom through her window by itself. To access a rocket in a spaceport, you didn’t need a ticket, even though you had to buy a digital entrance to it, as the doors would just open by recognizing your face, or by the passenger placing his or her finger on a sensor.
The thick steel doors opened, and she hastily entered and sat down, as she was still somewhat shaken from the incident that had just occurred. For calming down, she got out her pair of virtual glasses, which you could wear, and use to watch movies, videos, or listen to radio broadcasts. When the glasses were turned off, the glass was just transparent, in contrast to opaque and light emitting when on. To change a channel, you would just have to turn round a wheel that was placed to a side, together with the volume or screen intensity wheel. As usual, she couldn’t find anything that intrigued her, so she just started turning the frequency randomly, in a range on which theoretically, nothing should be broadcasted. Despite this, when turning the wheel round, there was a sudden flicker in the thin screen, and an incomprehensible mix of voices which seemed to be heartily speaking.
Slowly turning the wheel around, the screen again turned opaque, the previous voices could clearly be heard, and a shocking scene came on the screen. An autonomous drone was surreptitiously placing a wide v-shaped metallic object on something that looked like a rocket nozzle, which quickly made her suspect that something unusual was taking place. Now the voices didn’t seem at all heartily or guileless as before, but totally the opposite. After a few seconds of listening, she descried about three different voices, all of men:
“Seems that everything is going on as planned... At this rate, with no one having noticed, victory is assured... Once they have been placed, there is nothing that will be able to take them away, with their super-strong—” babbled one of those voices, after having repeated the same thing several times, being interrupted by a sharper one, crammed with vile thoughts.
“You shut your mouth up, or we’re going to get arrested anytime soon,” retorted a high-pitched voice, in a haughty and commanding tone.
“But, I haven’t done anything now, you also know that there is nothing that can stop us,” blurted the first voice that spoke.
“Neither of you are right... Both of you shut up, here I’m the leader and I’m the only one who can speak when I want, meaning that this is the right thing,” snapped a third sly voice, which distinctly sounded the most controlling of all.
“What are you meaning, you idiot, I’m the leader, and you know that,” screeched the second voice.
After that, it was all a muddle of yells and insults, as a result of the pugnacious characters of those two vicious criminals.
Amy had no time to lose. The nozzle-blockers were used to block the nozzle from turning, attaching themselves to the magnetic materials found in it, meaning that if they weren’t detached from it before takeoff, it would be too late to do anything, meaning that when the BFR would have to turn around to head towards Birmingham, it would continue in a straight line, crashing into the Moon and instantly disintegrating, due to speeds of thousands of kilometers per hour, or continue into the outer planets, perhaps crashing into Mars, or even continuing further away into the outer Solar System, into the Asteroid Belt, and if not crashing with any asteroid, almost finally for sure being captured by Jupiter’s astronomical gravitational attraction, staying in orbit for probably hundreds of millions of years, if not captured by a future spaceship, even though the passengers would obviously not be alive.
Logically, having those thoughts past your head right 20 seconds before takeoff, wasn’t going to place you in a considerably soothing situation. Ten seconds had already unknowingly been wiled away amongst all the dithering and distress that the view had occasioned her, and indelible thought continued to cause. Another ten second left. Strenuously, and as if having been taking control by herself subconsciously, she seized her ultra-powerful electromagnetic handgun from her pocket, which concentrated a magnetic field in just a diameter in a range of one-to-five centimeters, whose magnetic pole faced always one direction, unless it was inverted, and calculating that the BFR nozzle was about 60 meters below, she aimed at it as if from the nozzle’s interior, and agitatedly pressed the trigger.
Turning the glasses on again, she still observed the nozzle-blockers right as they previously were, with no change at all in the scene; no noticeable stirring. She now knew what had gone wrong. A unique last opportunity was available, as it took about two seconds every time someone wanted to activate the 100m-range electromagnetic field. Five seconds left, and she would just need to wait for a long time for her thoughts to become an absolute reality.
Grabbing the electromagnetic handgun from the floor, with a last but lasting effort with clear consequences to her life and the passengers’, she inverted the electromagnetic field direction, meaning that this time it should work, and finally repel the nozzle-blockers away from the nozzle, upon which the whole successful journey depended. Three unique and crucial seconds remained, from which not a millionth should be spared.
As a result from her violently trembling hands, in addition to the fear that the situation occasioned, the trigger was pulled almost immediately, and tried to hold her arms as still as possible. It had worked. In glorious relief, she could watch in the screen, how one by one, each nozzle-blocker were pushed away from the nozzle at tremendous speeds, as if caused by some kind of mysterious and inexplicable magic; one of them crashing against the drone and destroying it into pieces. Two. One. Just in time. All of the passengers’ lives had unexpectedly been saved, yet unknowingly by Amy. With an immense roar and throttle, which could very likely have been listened and observed from a far distance, the numerous BFR engines began to quickly spit a waving soaring red flame, cause of huge thrust, consequently lifting the BFR with increasing and straining acceleration, out of the dense atmosphere in a few minutes, forcefully pressing the passengers onto their seats, which had been prepared for such occasions, for that was the only use they could receive, with a spongy gel on its interior, in an attempt to reduce the passenger’s feeling of being converted into an immobile statue.
Worry and anxiety had gained control over Amy’s consciousness and self-control, obliging her in some way to fall asleep. 20 mere minutes swiftly passed by, and the BFR, now almost over Birmingham, was beginning to decelerate and turn itself around, the top facing downwards by turning off the BFR engines briefly, and the turning them on again, to get prepared for landing on the Birmingham spaceport. After twenty seconds, at about a height of 300m the Big Falcon Rocket engines turned off again, as the BFR had gained enough speed to be able to land in the spaceport, and began to around again, with the engines facing towards the landing site, and lighted again into gigantic flaring torch, stabilizing the BFR, and decreasing its speed to virtually zero by the time autonomously landed on the pad. After another two minutes of rigidly and unwillingly being stuck to your seat, blocking you from freely moving, it was an enormous relief that any passenger’s back experienced, as if timed up with the rocket’s soft and clean touchdown.
Their was a warm and damp atmosphere inside the BFR. Most passengers were already standing up, with some still slightly dozing, which were attempted to be refreshed and waken up by an air conditioning system, and assistant robots that offered them water or another drink, or something to eat. Amy stood up slightly drowsily, sweating, just as one of the robot assistants, named “Falcon,” offered her a cold orange juice, which she clearly took and drank, and made sure that the self-adjusting flexible brain-controlled exoskeleton was still in her side pocket, which after all was the purpose of such an exciting flight at first to visit her grandmother, and give her the new invention that she needed. Her beloved grandmother’s house was in a nearby forest-city, which was totally different to many modern cities; there were large areas of flourishing vegetation and wildlife: dense and green vegetation with tall trees and plants with hanging that one could not see on a populated city, a vast greater amount of merry animals, including birds, insects and mammals such as wild squirrels, rabbits, red foxes, of whom most weren’t present at regular city, buildings covered with plants and small animals, fresh and soothing air, no vast skyscrapers or luxurious structures, but something more traditional, though modern, modern not necessarily being ostentatious, all in a fine blend with the environment.
A self-flying drone-taxi had picked her up at the spacesport’s exit, to which to go you had to descend from the rocket’s top in a compressed-air glass elevator, which just used air resistance to slow it down before it hit the ground. A minimum number of people would have to get on at the top, for the elevator to work properly and descend, compressing air, and when the passengers left at the bottom, as there was no more weight over the elevator, it would rise again by itself to the top. After the agony that she had suffered during the BFR flight, riding the drone-taxi across the fresh air, enjoying the environment was a soothing trip. The drone landed right in front of her grandmother’s house. Her grandmother saw her from the door’s inside part, which was made of a special material, and could turn transparent for the person inside the house, whilst it was still opaque for anyone looking at it from the street. Amy was going forward cheerfully to give her a hug, but she noticed that there was something wrong.
Many elderly people, who would perhaps have memory problems, had a brain-computer interface, which could be used for a wide range of applications, such as remembering certain things that they have been told, being able to retrieve them when necessary, store other memories or experiences that they had had, and even to control part of their bodies subconsciously on certain activities, which perhaps they consciously would not be able to do. In addition, someone could also use them to watch movies, with their eyes closed, or listen to music, without any of it occurring around them. That usually required an internet connection, which was always a considerable vulnerability for criminals, meaning that they could have access, if they surpassed all the security measures. However, and fortunately nothing of that had been the problem with her grandmother’s behaviour, but simply a mere distraction. In a certain way, you could also use it for dancing subconsciously, which was the mere distraction that her grandmother had, for when they were going to give each other a strong hug, she suddenly started feebly dancing, as the subconscious control still didn’t give her more physical strength, and muttering some music’s rhythm that played inside her head.
Amy, knowing that the subconscious mode was the problem for her behaviour, easily turned that mode off, and jovially laughing gave her a hearty long hug. They entered back again into the living room, where they both sat down. Her grandmother had slightly curling white hair, and wore some electronic glasses that could adjust for both near and far vision, a crooked back and thin body, with an elderly person’s skin and deep bright eyes.
The container on which the exoskeleton was stored was rectangular, and for it to deploy itself in someone’s body to give it support, the person would just need to stand over it, and wait for a few minutes.
“Grandmother, do you see that box laying on the floor?” said Amy in a sweet tone.
“Oh, yes... It makes me wonder how that could help me,” replied her grandmother, with a weak voice, stopping to take a breath in between.
Lumbering, she headed towards the box in many short steps, and with Amy’s help, lifted her feet to lay them over the box. Action was instant. It cracked open, and a plastic-like material began to shape itself, ascending through her back, and self-attaching to her legs and arms. You couldn’t just control the exoskeleton by itself, so at the final step it plugged itself onto a socket on her brain-computer interface. Just by mere thoughts, she could now jump high in the air, and run as if she suddenly had taken off herself 50 years, hop up the stairs like a rabbit would do; in conclusion, an absolute miracle for her.
“This is a miracle! It’s wonderful! Being able to do this at this age, it’s just extraordinary!” cried her grandmother, with tears rolling down her cheeks, not of sorrow, but of extreme delight.
Amy and her grandmother spent the rest of the day, talking about her journey, or far memories from her grandmother’s long life, whose access would have been restricted if it wasn’t also for the miraculous Brain Machine Interface.
“Seems that this journey was worth it. I guess astonishing to see how one passes from physically being an elderly person, to almost as a thirty year old, all in a matter of seconds,” thought Amy, who was remarkably glad at what she had seen with her own eyes. “Definitely worth it.”