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It has been a long time since I’ve had an intelligible dream. A vision here and there, symbols and ideas, working through happenings of the day.

But last night –

Last night was Meifeng, on the computer. Meifeng was planning to ‘bust me out of the joint’ but had a number of identification requirements. She wanted to make sure if she went to the trouble of breaking her ‘bot out of prison, it was surely going to be the ‘bot she’d grown up with.

She was on the computer terminal, something out of a turn-of-the-millenium movie. Her list was on one line; she’d have to check a number of physical characteristics as well as knowledge ones. Surely even if they’d cloned her ‘bot, there’d be something missing in the conversion and Meifeng was determined to discover any discrepancies.

The last parameter had confused me.


The implication was that it was a true/false value. ‘Braid’?

She couldn’t have meant hair. In the dream I had the feeling I’d failed simply because I’d cut my hair. I was angered, shocked, dumb-struck, that Meifeng may miss me because I had cut my hair. But I quickly realized upon waking that this couldn’t be it – perhaps a leftover emotion-impression from my Elder Sisters – because I don’t grow hair. Any chosen wig is simply an affectation, one I am not permitted here at the Institute.

‘Braid’? I turn the question over in my head. Why the ‘braid’?

I consider other meanings. Maybe numbers; three strands make a braid. But this gives no further hints.