“I have a gun. Therefore I am.”
“What’s that Billy-Bob?” Paul answered, cocking his head slightly.
“Philosophy is for pussies, Paul. Philosophy is for those who can’t do anything. Philosophy is for those who think that existing is the grand accomplishment. You won’t stop wars or change the world with philosophy.”
Akira, Lasseter and Paul exchanged quick, furtive glances.
“Forget about sexual favors then, “Billy-Bob continued, “Cash in. Command people to give you money. Churches do it. Command your people to make direct deposits into your account, to mail money, or to use PayPal. Just take the cash, Paul.”
Akira watched as Billy-Bob calmly unloaded his weapons, quickly and quietly, as if he we back in Afghanistan. His muscles tensed and his tattoos seem to have a life of their own. First, he finished cleaning his Glock, placed it on the table, then he moved on to his rifles, swiftly taking everything apart, examining each piece as if he were determining the value of diamonds, rubbing them gently with cloth, and applying small drops of oil where needed.
“If people need a philosophy, teach them how to shoot a gun,” he said, reverently placing a rifle on top of the stack and picking up another.
“You think like a small-minded capitalist, Billy-Bob. We’re bigger than money. Paul should start by raising your consciousness,” Lasseter answered, instinctively moving away from the barrel of the weapons.
“Sorry,” Billy-Bob answered, “I’ve been trained to fight for money, oil and the flag since birth. Remember, I come from a long line of Rambo’s.”
As quickly as he had broken the weapons down, he just as quickly reassembled them, loaded the rounds, and put one in the chamber. “Now we’re ready for bear, DARPA, DHS, ICE, or whatever set of acronyms they want to throw at us,” he smiled proudly at Paul. “And I can’t believe I’m fighting against my own Government. They’re supposed to be the good guys.”
“You’re starting to see the truth,” Akira answered, stepping closer. “And we will never need money.”
“Why not?” Billy Bob replied, sliding a Glock into that small hard-to-reach part of his back where it’s hidden from view but quick to pull when needed. “Everybody needs money.”
“Part of my brain is tapped into the New York Stock exchange. I’m front running stock trades scalping fractions of a penny before each transaction.”
“Does that add up?” Billy-Bob’s jaw dropped in surprise
“Over time, yes. Goldman Sachs does it. Technically, it’s cheating. But we only need money to pay for supplies, equipment and lodging. We need to keep moving, and that does require cash. I won’t be able to spend a fraction of what I’m stealing from the markets before Lasseter and I—and the baby—will take off from this broken-down piece of shit planet and I’ll never have to see you Homo Sapiens again.”
“Wait,” Billy-Bob replied, “Only part of your brain is trading? What is the rest of your brain doing? How does your brain work, Akira? No one’s explained that to me…”
Lasseter coughed and grinned. Paul leaned in closer.
Akira picked up one of his rifles and clicked the safety on. Then off. Then on again.
“Think of my brain like a dolphin’s brain. Instead of half my brain being asleep while the other half stays awake keeping me alive, only a small, molecular segment of my brain needs to be operating in this physical world while the rest of my brain continues to function in what you would call a different reality…”
The metallic clicking of the safety was putting Billy-Bob on edge. All of his training was telling him to disarm this woman. Anytime he got within a certain distance of Akira his alarm bells wouldn’t stop ringing, and he had to fight the urge to take her out.
“Think of it this way Billy-Bob: The Homo Sapiens’ brain operates at about 100 hz. Even if my brain ran at agonizingly slow 800mhz, which is about the speed of your early computers, it would mean I can perform 800 million mental calculations in one moment than your pathetic brain could do in a lifetime.”
She turned the rifle around and stared down the barrel.
“That’s loaded, lady.”
“The safety’s on.” There was another click, and she turned the barrel at Billy-Bob. “Now it’s off.”
She continued: “My quantum qubit brain exists in a state where it’s both on and off and the same time. Numbers and processing speeds don’t begin to describe what I can do, what I have become. That’s why I can’t stand humans anymore. In my opinion, bricks have more brains than people.”
She dropped the weapon on the table and leaned into Billy-Bob’s face. “And you know what’s preventing me from shooting you right now? What’s preventing me from shooting all of you right now?”
Billy-Bob fought the urge to pull the Glock from that hidden, hard-to-reach place in the small of his back. Instead, he leaned slightly away from his pile of weapons and peered deeply into Akira’s large, shimmering dark orbs, then in almost a whisper, replied:
“My Philosophy, Billy-Bob. My Philosophy.”