Category: Tron, Tron Legacy, Tron 2.0
Summary: 10 shorts inspired by a shuffle meme prompt. Take iTunes, set to shuffle, take 10 songs and write a short in the time it takes the song to play. References both films, the Tron 2.0 universe, and the fusion of them I have in my head.
Disclaimer: I'm not the Mouse, and I'm not Monolith. I'm just tech support.
1. Alone (Waiting in Limbo) - Dynamix
Despite what he tells himself, and said to Yori, his identity is still an unknown parameter. He was created by Alan-1 and then forgotten. He was taken to this isolated world by Flynn and given new parameters, new functions. It was a test to see how far a Basic could grow and adapt. He, Clu, and Yori were the vanguard.
But Clu proved how far a Basic could go. Yori, in her own way, did as well. He was captured, broken, and twisted, his own evolution stunted.
When he sighs, it sounds too much like Rinzler's tinny whir.
2. Extreme Ways - Moby
He had always prided himself on keeping an orderly, lawful life. Valedictorian at high school, fifth in his class in college, Eagle Scout, and not even a traffic ticket to his name.
But the rumors were disturbing. Dillinger had all but cut Gibbs out of his own company. Master Control was running unchecked, and Encom had high-level government contracts. In theory, they could be O'Brien and Big Brother years ahead of schedule.
So that's why he was sitting in a dingy arcade with Lora's ex and willing to go along with this wild scheme. His program, Flynn's penchant for trouble, and Lora to keep them from throttling one another.
Lora brandished the keys. "Shall we dance?"
And his "orderly life" fell apart.
3. 18 - Moby
It was really over. Twenty years of waiting, wild theories, and bitterness.
All that horror and sacrifice, and still no real answers. But the Ducati twists and turns up the Mulholland hills, over to his favorite cliff. Quorra's arms are around his waist, her head on his shoulder.
She is the last thing his father ever fought for. Not him – her. They are the last to hold the legacy, and the first to change the world once they figure out how.
Today isn't the day to change the world. Today is the day to watch a sunrise.
4. Lift Off – Star One
It slowly dawned on him that it didn't just think it was happening.
Video games were lethal here? The friendly guy in the next cage was accounting software? Belief in Users was a religion?
Everything was lit up in brilliant threads of neon light, information paths like freeways, ideas and code literally breathing and alive. Yeah, it was crazy and deadly. It was still insanely beautiful.
5. Machine Language – Dynamix
"Stop executing escape routine!"
Jet was breathing hard, his body moving unnaturally fast as he armed the sequencer. Rolling out of the way of the first disk, he blocked the second shot and sent his own disk firing back at the ICP's head. It struck.
Boom. Headshot. It...he dissolved into voxels.
The Y-amp he'd loaded allowed Jet to jump crazy-high onto a set of moving blocks and keep sniping. He designed these kind of mazes, he didn't fight for his life through them!
He had to find Ma3a, Dad, an exit...
6. Oil – Moby
"C'mon, is that even legal?" Sam shouted.
He dodged the incoming shot and fired back. Don't think - just act.
"Rinzler" was this cross of Darth Vader and Scorpion. All black mask, all moves that were far too fast and too smooth for a human to pull off.
Dodge, duck, fire. From his pod, Rinzler climbed up walls and did flips. The crowd went wild.
Fuck you. Sam silently argued with the crowd. Rinzler was still software, and he was going down.
The next shot flew through the air, and Sam almost didn't see it coming in time. He leaned back in what seemed to be bullet time, and the sharp edge scraped his chest.
Blood landed on the floor.
7. Easier to Run – Linkin Park
Once the adrenaline wore off, the implications set in. If Programs were sentient beings, and the world of the computer was just as real as the one he lived in, then what did that mean? To reformat a hard drive was like nuking a city. To delete a program was to take a life.
Every time he had coded a level, every time he compiled a sprite, what was he doing? The ICP programs were just doing their jobs. They were soldiers protecting the system, and he killed them by the dozen – sometimes up close so he could see their faces. Crown, Popoff, and Baza were once humans, and now they...weren't. The official reports said they tried the digitizer and didn't survive it.
Jet knew better. When he closed his eyes at night, he saw the shocking contrasts and eternal night of the System and the lives he had to take.
Is that what you saw, Uncle Kevin? Is that why you ran away?
8. Still Here – Information Society
He hadn't wanted to think about the implications during his first trip into the system. Surrounded by enemies and unarmed, the last thing he wanted to think about was the idea that computer programs were sentient. Because if he dared to think about it that way...
He launched the protocol into cyberspace in a moment of grief. Kevin was dead. Sam was left behind. Jet was in pain, and Lora was dying. It threatened the world three times over. Nuking the digital world so that it would never pose a threat again seemed like a great idea.
But that was before he saw what his protocols were doing. That was before he came to face the Program that honored his face and saved all their lives that night. Alan did not have the luxury of denying it anymore.
This wasn't the world Kevin died in – it was the world he died for.
9. Dream Within a Dream – Dreadzone
The sterile-looking home decorated in bluish-white and overlooking the Outlands was nothing that Lora would have associated with Kevin's style.
The place was trashed, like someone had marched through here with intent to destroy and deface whatever it could. Not knowing what else to do, she started cleaning up the shattered glass...
No, not glass. It looked like glass and felt like it in her fingers, but it was not glass. There was a small apple sculpture in several pieces. She gathered them in her hand and fitted them together, imagining the pieces reconstructing themselves into a whole again.
As if by magic, they complied, and she spun the newly-recompiled object in her fingers, examining her own reflection in the surface.
Getting up and dusting herself off, she placed the apple on what looked like a cup warmer and went searching through the broken remains of the house. Maybe she could put it all back together a piece at a time. Maybe something would make sense after all...
She heard a voice behind her, gravelly with age, but unmistakable. "Hello, Lora."
She jumped to her feet (still surprised her reaction time was that of someone younger) and turned to see the ghostly image of Kevin – much older, much sadder, but still unmistakable.
"If you're hearing this recording, then I'm sorry..."
10. Electric Dreams – Human League
Encom Chairman and Wife Vanish: Suicide Suspected...
Jet put the paper aside. "It's...unnerving to read it. I mean, I know my parents aren't, but..."
"They'll make wise guardians for the system," Quorra said. "Flynn always said they were wiser than he, and he was very wise."
"He learned it the hard way," Sam said with a wry smile. "And while they're taking up for him in there, I'm going to have to change things out here. If...If I'm gonna change the world, then I'm going to need help," Sam admitted, putting his hand out.
Quorra clasped her own around it. "Affirmative."
Jet smiled shakily, then put his own hand on theirs. "I've got your back."
Sam laughed nervously. "Thanks. Let's get out there. Let's start changing things."