Oct 17, 2019 9:49 PM
I'm making a note here: huge success
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The entire clipboard becomes a black weightless thing that goes through her hand like it wasn't there and dissolves into a white sparkles.

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...

Yeah she's not putting any more objects through that thing, herself most certainly included.

She studies the blue sparkles, focusing her groundsense on the space they occupy and the places where they are emitted from the wall. They feel - weird and fizzy and sparky. And there's more of that not-aliveness from the radio in the sparkle-related wall fixtures.

...she gets out her knife and starts prying at the wall fixtures, careful not to even get close to touching the sparkles.

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The wall fixtures are extremely strongly attached to the walls!

"To ensure the safe performance of all authorized activities, do not attempt to destroy Vital Testing Apparatus," says the voice.

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So there is someone watching her. Either that or a sort of really pathetic trap, where the sound-making machines are set up to scold you if you start messing with things.

"I wouldn't step through that thing for all the gold in Tripoint," she says. But the knife clearly isn't doing the job. She puts it away and steps back, regarding the Emancipation Grid with a thoughtful frown.

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The voice does not react to that.

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Maybe it's just a sound machine, then. Or a person pretending they're just a sound machine.

She hesitates. Ground-ripping things really hurts, and if she wants to be sure the thing stops working she's going to have to get both wall fixtures right down to physical structure, all in one go, as quickly as possible. And she'd better not be standing in front of it when she does that in case it explodes.

But she is not stepping through a thing that can do that to a clipboard. She just isn't.

"...I don't really want to break your thingy," she says, in case the voice actually is meaningfully listening to her. "You could just make it stop doing that."

Because who in their right mind would install something like that and not have a way to make it stop doing the thing? Not that whoever built this place appears to have been within spitting distance of their right mind...

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"The Aperture Science Material Emancipation Grid does not affect living tissue, except in semi-rare cases in which it may emancipate ear canals, dental fillings, crowns, tooth enamel, and teeth."

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"...that's not very reassuring!" she exclaims. "I like my teeth!"

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"This possibility is only theoretical, as this has never happened before."

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"...are you sure."

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"Yes. Even in cases where it emancipates living tissue, it is very unlikely to do it to all your teeth. At most one tooth will be lost this way."

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"I like all of my teeth! Every single one! And my ear canals! Can you not just make the thing stop?"

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"Aperture Science regulations require that Vital Testing Apparatus be active at all times for the safety of the test subject and others and for the validity of test results."

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"Test results? Who's testing what?"

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"The Aperture Science computer-aided enrichment center's purpose is -" The voice is cut by static again then goes silent.

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Augh.

She crosses her arms and glares at the blue sparkles.

"What-all does it vaporize, exactly."

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"The complete list of compounds emancipated by the Aperture Science Material Emancipation Grid can be found starting on page three hundred twenty-seven of the Aperture Science enrichment center test subject manual provided to all test subjects prior to relaxation."

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"I never got one."

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"All test subjects are provided with a copy of the Aperture Science enrichment center test subject manual."

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"Then maybe I'm not a test subject and I should just leave! Where's the exit?"

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"The test chamber's exit is through the Aperture Science Material Emancipation Grid."

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"Well that's too bad for the Aperture Science Material Emancipation Grid," she says. "Are you sure you can't just make it stop doing the thing."

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"Vital Testing Apparatus must not be disabled."

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"Oh, it's going to be disabled, the question is whether temporarily by you or permanently by me."

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Silence.

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