Colors, Part II
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Out-of-universe note: This is a sequel to Colors. It is recommended you read Colors first for thematic and tonal reasons.


Most of us aren’t aware of this, but we actually didn’t have color video until the turn of the century. Before that, it was black-and-white, or it was grayscale, or it was this sickening sepia tone created from an amalgamation of too many materials and images that lost all potential appeal within a few seconds of observation. I remember seeing the first color video as a child, remember seeing the brilliant hues of our brilliant limitless spectrum displayed on a screen. It was fascinating. Motion capture alone is nothing compared to color. Color is of what we, as individuals, as souls, are composed; it is both the contrast setting us apart and the chains that bind us together.

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Our world is colorless. Our bodies are gray and our walls are white. Our workplaces are brown and our mines are black.

There is blue, yes. That’s one of the colors we do have. It grows on the plants originating from the western fields, but I think more subspecies were recently discovered in the humid territories south of here. The fields where blue once thrived now are an unnerving emptiness of gray. We take all the little flowers and we put them in little pots in our homes. Each a spot of color in a white-walled room.

Blue wasn’t enough, after a while. Every specific wavelength of it started to look the same to us. How could we enjoy ourselves when the medium of our pleasure at the time was only 2.3 percent of our visible spectrum? What about green, and yellow, what about the far ends of orange and red and terramaroon and the II-4/VS-II series and the microwave frequencies and all those colors beyond? Blue wasn’t enough. Blue isn’t enough.

Other plant types were synthetically developed as time wore on. We had green and purple in our vases after a while. The colors started to blend together. Life went on, life progressed; life went on and life wasn’t satisfying. We started to dismantle the colored plants. Pulled their stems from their bases and revealed the bright and untouched hues of their inner structures. We found they were even more beautiful when spread open and exposed and damaged, and from their exposure we gathered the scientific information necessary to understand them and to appreciate them. Suffering has a color of its own.

I try to be as self-aware as I can, and I’m aware of the irony of picking those plants out of their growth in order to bring color into our own homes. I’m aware of the irony of the blue fields turning gray. I don’t worry too much because I know that Hcet-V, the biotech company, will keep making more; there’s really nothing to worry about when those plants are easily regenerated and serve no other purpose than to brighten up our lives.

That all grew old, after several years. The plants, the housepets thereafter, all of it. We had to force ourselves to find color to enjoy, we realized. The nuclear science developments and space race of the 40s in the 49th century helped to distract society, yes, but those were gray concepts: Gray colorless metals and colorless plastics and colorless reams of paperwork detailing their composition. We had to force ourselves to synthesize plants, we had to force ourselves to find unaltered color in the wild places of our industrialized world, we had to force ourselves to feel pleasure in a sea of gray deadness and it was tiring and absurd and it did nothing but brew hated between us. We didn’t understand why color was so hard to find. We didn’t understand why color couldn’t come to us.

That’s when Hcet-V and the organizations of the 40s space industry told us it could.


Most of us aren’t aware of this, but we actually didn’t have color entertainment until the turn of the century. Before that, it was black-and-white video, or it was grayscale industry and construction, or it was this sickening sepia tone created from an amalgamation of too many colored flowers shoved into one pot that lost all potential appeal within a few seconds of observation. I remember seeing the first color entertainment last year when it was developed, remember seeing the brilliant hues of our brilliant limitless spectrum displayed on a screen. It was enchanting. Motion capture alone is nothing compared to color. Color is of what we, as individuals, as souls, are composed; it is both the contrast setting us apart and the chains that bind us together.

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Our world is colorless. Our bodies are gray and our walls are white. Our workplaces are brown and our mines are black. Our world is colorless, yes, but your flesh is bursting with a billion glistening hues and when we pull your petals and flowers and delicate parts from your body in slowness and in agony a billion more spill out of you, each more enthralling than the last. Suffering has a color of its own.

You were the answer to the unwanted tedium of growing and synthesizing color. We needed you; I needed you. I didn’t understand why color was so hard to find; I didn’t understand why color couldn’t come to me.

But you did. You came to me and you continue to come to us, without conviction and without obligation. You do it of your own accord, unlike those plants and those squealing incoherent lesser creatures that dwell in their growths and in our homes. They held no value after long enough. We needed more. We needed intelligence. We needed you.

You are everything to me, and without you our world would be colorless. You’re so obedient. I can tell how desperate you are to please me. You're observant. You’re beautiful. You’re perfect. And you keep coming back.

Thank you for bringing color into my life.

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