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If you only read part of the audition script, please choose the dialogue towards the end. 2013-04-20 02:02:36 GMT 2013-04-24 23:00:00 (GMT -07:00) Mountain Time (US & Canada) Yes (click here to learn more about ) Closed 0 0 23 direct invitation(s) have been sent by the voice seeker resulting in 0 audition(s) and/or proposal(s) so far. Voice123 SmartCast is seeking 25 auditions and/or proposals for this project (approx.) Invitations sent by SmartCast have resulted in 0 audition(s) and/or proposal(s) so far.
• Audio files must be delivered via FTP/Dropbox/Google Drive/cloud
If you only read part of the audition script, please choose the dialogue towards the end. Vonnie shivered, an intensely ugly sensation inside her suit. She'd locked the joints and torso to become a statue, preventing herself from causing any movement whatsoever, and yet inside it she was skin and muscle.
The feel of her body against this shell was repulsive. She squirmed again and again, trying to shrink away from it, which was impossible.
The rut in her thinking wasn't much better. She wished Choh Lam hadn't tried to... She wished somehow she'd saved the rest of her crew. Lam understood so much so fast, he might have already found a way out, a way up.
She'd cobbled together a ghost using his mem files, but she couldn't give it enough capacity to correct its flaws. In order to expand the ghost's abilities, she would need to shut down her ears or the override she'd programmed into her heat exchanger, each a different kind of death. If she couldn't hear, she would be utterly lost. And if her suit exuded body heat instead of storing it, her ambush would fail.
It would be better to forget Lam. She thought she should erase him, but even at three-quarters logic he was useful. He'd suggested a tranquilizer and Vonnie had popped one tab, which slowed her down enough to feel clear again. Clear and cold. She shouldn't be cold, sweating inside her hard shell, but the waiting was like its own labyrinth of ice -- the waiting and the listening and the deep bruises in her face.
She didn't care how sophisticated the medical systems were supposed to be. On some level, her body knew it was hurt, even numbed and shot full of don't-worry.
Her head had a dozen reasons why she was safe, but her body knew the sunfish would come again. The lonely dark was alive. That truth no longer surprised her, and she strained her senses out into the dark, frozen spaces of the chasm below her.
She was more afraid of missing the sunfish than of drawing in an attack. It was superstitious to imagine they could hear her thoughts, she knew that, but at the ravine they'd run straight to her hiding place despite three decoys. How did they keep zeroing in on her?
She needed to learn if she was going to live.
This rock shelf seemed defensible. There was nowhere to retreat but she only had one approach to cover. Overhead was a spongework of holes where she could dump her waste heat before leaving.
Vonnie laid on her belly, facing outward, trying to eat and trying to rest, trying to ignore the nasty, anesthetized pressure of the med beetles slithering in and out of her temple, her cheek, and her eye socket.
Both eyes were damaged, yet she'd elected to deal with her left eye first in case something went wrong. The nanotech might need to scavenge one eye to save the other. Step by step surgeries had been Lam's idea. He'd also agreed that her helmet would retain its integrity if she broke off her gear block and stripped it for parts. What else would he have tried?
The plastisteel of her suit should contain all sound, but there was another risk in talking, a risk she ignored just to be with someone.
"Are you still there?" she whispered.
His voice was uneven and rushed, too emotional for an artificial intelligence:
--Von, listen. Don't close me down again, please.
"Tell me what Lam would do," she said. "Am I safe here? I need to rest. I laid down a false trail with my spotlight."
--They'll catch us.
"Did you check my map? I made it almost three klicks."
--They will. The probability is eighty-plus percent, but I can talk to them. We have enough data now. With temporary control of the suit, I could at least establish...
--Vonnie, most of their language is postures and shapes. I can't tell you fast enough how to move.
"No. Self-scan and correct."
"I said scan for glitches and correct. Off."
Could a ghost be crazy? If so, it was her fault. Lam was the first she'd ever made. She'd rushed the process because she was angry with him -- the real him. She'd let him remember how he died, and it had made him erratic. Maybe he'd never doubted himself before.
Bauman would have been a better friend. Bauman had been older, calmer, another woman, but she was a geneticist and Lam's biology/ecology skills were too valuable. The decision had been obvious. Vonnie didn't have the resources to pull them apart, then build an overlay with Bauman's personality and Lam's education.
She was alone.
She itched her fingertips inside her rigid glove. Too soon, she prompted her clock and was discouraged. It would be six minutes until her skull was repaired, thirty before she regained her optic nerve.
Can I improve him? she wondered. I can't give him more capacity, but maybe I can talk him through his error lists. He's a learning system. He should respond.
Patience was supposed to be one of her strengths. Four years ago, she'd been a top instructor at Arianespace. She'd led classes in cybernetics, although her specialty had been ROM welding and construction, using remote operated mecha in low gravity environments, zero gravity, underground, or underwater. Then she'd been recruited by the European Space Agency for the same job with better pay and better students.
Vonnie enjoyed working with her hands. She loved igniting a spark in people who wanted to learn. Tailoring her approach for each new individual kept her job interesting. The ESA was full of ambitious, hyper-educated men and women who challenged her with their egos, their experience, and their own expectations.
"You can't wait until you can see," she argued with herself. "Otherwise he'll keep trying to take over the suit. Run more voice checks. Keep command. If he gets twitchy, just lock him down again."
A noise echoed through the blackness like two rocks clacking together, barely audible in the distance.
On my left, she thought.
Was it a rock fall? Tremors and avalanches regularly split these caverns. The noise could have been a natural event, but Vonnie knew better.
Something was coming.
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