so the truth was: wendy was just a minecraft bot

welcoming wendy
wonderful wendy
wendy who wins wholesomely

she wasn't a player
she was a part of a game     a bot     a mob    

just a piece of     code
in a game

no, that was not regular minecraft, to be sure
wendy's was a super minecraft
meaning, it's projected on top of reality

and it's almost seamless
hard to tell from reality

unless you look real close  



sëbus had no idea

he was playing with wendy
he wasn't playing wendy

he had no idea this was even a game

he had no idea some virtuality was being projected upon his reality
no idea his wendy could be virtual

not real

her family, too
her dad samuel, her mom ella

also the planet where they all met
it wasn't real either

there were no fantastic trees and beasts there
nor even a sea

it was all projected upon a boring gray rocky planet  



and this was the very very worst:

sëbus and wendy can never ever —
never ever ever —

they can't touch

they can see each other
they can hear, perfectly, best headphone quality
they can talk as much as they want
they can have adventures together

they just can't touch

and sëbus then remembered: indeed
in all this time

he never touched her

they never hugged  



sure! you can simulate touch
technology can do this

like, imagine it's a pin art hand
made up of millions of tiny pins
they form a smooth surface and go up and down by tiny bits

and it's warm: the pins are being heated up by electricity too
warm and smooth and soft

would you want to touch that, zë?     no?     why?

how is it any different from seeing?
what you see on your screen is also made out of little pixels
pixels, pins, what's the difference?

but perhaps there is a difference

seeing is seeing     light     waves
but touching —

touching must be real

the hand must be real  



so there we have him

our famous first captain sëbus

he's on his bed
his forehead is against the wall

usually, that wall is a big window
captain sëbus likes to survey cosmos when he's in bed
the stars
the darkness

but today sëbus wants to be a clam
he wants to close up in his shell

so the wall is totally opaque

and he is crying
crying for himself
he wants no consolation  



dad sighs
dad and mom exchange silent looks

they lie down
on their son's bed

they are silent
he doesn't tell them to go away  



slowly, the first captain's sobs subside  



"remember?"     dad whispers to mom     over their sleeping son

"remember when i came up with that plot twist —"

"of wendy jumping into the next universe"
"where we can't cross"

"but! since adjacent universes are nearly similar, at the same time —"
"another wendy from the previous universe jumps into ours?"

mom nods

"and i was thinking, like: what's the difference?" dad whispers
"you want wendy, here, you got her, exactly like the old one! just from the other side!"

"and he was like —"

"— and he was like, noooo!" mom laughs quietly     "like, give him his own wendy back! no substitutes!"

parents reminisce in silence

dad sighs

"so of course i made the change for him"
"so our son can follow his dear girl"

"into the next universe"  



mom frowns

"i remember     i remember all your stories, only —"
"this is not a story now, is it?"

"this wendy is not a plot twist of yours? she is     real?"

"even if she's a     minecraft something"

dad wants to reassure mom
but he also wants to pursue his paradoxal ideas

"minecraft! but every minecraft has someone — some kind of creator —"

mom grimaces in displeasure

but dad presses on:
"so this wendy does have an author, again     even if it's not me"

mom chuckles: "jealous?"

(jealous means: you love someone but they love someone else, so you suffer)
(you can even be jealous of a kid, wishing you were the kid's parent)  



and the next morning, sëbus wasn’t crying

he was a little embarassed by his crying the previous night  




this doesn't make her bad     does it?
doesn't at all

she's good

and she exists! she is real!
see, i can call her     or message
she always answers

and she comes to me to play
she likes to play with me

touching is not that big of a deal, dad

we're still friends  



why i cried, oh, you know why? (sëbus thinks for just a second)
because my sheep crowded me so!

a full room of sheep! to the ceiling! i could not breathe!

(sëbus imagines his thoughts as sheep)

you get it easy, dad, with your penguins     (dad's thoughts are penguins)
penguins are cool and wet
pleasant in hot weather

but my sheep, they are warm
very fluffy

my throat just felt sore     and it made me cry

but i'm not crying now, see?

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