And so, finally faced with the choice, and upon realising it wasn’t actually a choice but the only course of action, Lincoln surrendered to his fate. Faceless white-coated figures fussed around him. He was now their laboratory rat.
Just in front of him, balancing on the end of a mechanised finger, sat a sliver of magnolia paper with the word ‘AUTOSCOPINE’ embossed upon it in purple ink. Scrunching his eyes shut, he raised his eyebrows in acceptance, sticking out his tongue to receive the dosage.
He gripped the chair, his body tense with futile resistance. Exactly what they had told him not to do. He longed to be a relaxed character in that single moment, but that had never happened before in his forty-plus years and it certainly wasn’t going to happen now.
As three or four long seconds passed, Lincoln allowed himself to think that perhaps the formula had been corrupted and rendered ineffective. Maybe he could still turn back and hide forever in the conscious sleep that had for so long been his life.
And then… in contradiction to everything he had feared, a smile from the deepest part of his core spread through every cell in his body. The world was suddenly beneath him, around him and within him. Instantaneously he understood everything that had ever been on this lonely little planet for the trivial inconsequence that it was; and with that knowledge as his launch pad he found himself ascending higher and higher in body and mind. He only had to distract his thoughts for a second and he was suddenly as high as the clouds. Distracted again and he was above the clouds.
It was the easiest piece of destruction that Lincoln had ever seen. The globe that sat heaviest in the sky above him was simply torn in half like a peach under a fruit knife, spilling its core out into the night sky. Silent, but formidable. His face glowed orange from the heat. And then fear itself was torn from him. This was Amygdala. From where fear had farmed its damage across the universe for time immemorial. It was being destroyed through the love flooding from Lincoln. He felt his brain love all, embrace all and understand all. He empathised with every atom of matter in existence and feared nothing.
He was free to love. Death was no longer his concern. Change was no threat. He realised that nothing stayed the same anyway. Only fear had convinced him that it did.
The orange glow on his face transferred to his soul.
He could see the little blue dot he called home looming larger and he loved it more than ever. He was returning a changed being. He did not remember his previous self and did not recognise the new one. Though he knew he held within him something of huge importance. A new instruction or perhaps even a commandment. ‘Thou shalt not fear’ he thought to himself.
As his feet touched the Earth, he felt his power; he felt his importance. But it did not mutate into arrogance. He was equal to every molecule in this titanic universe. His only advantage was his wisdom, and that was for sharing. He was ecstatically excited to do so.
Walking once again amongst his fellow man he was overwhelmed with love, seeing past their inherent cloaks of reserve. In every one of them was friendship to be plundered and he was equipped to do so.
Together, with empathy and without fear we will be like the pioneering explorers of past centuries, venturing out into the vast sea of the galactic ocean to lands and ideas beyond our wildest dreams. We will use our innate human ability to adapt and to create; to embrace what this unending universe has to tell us. A story that we already know in our hearts and in our DNA but have been too fearful to read. Until now.