Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Dawn on Jefferson, Chapter 18: Lessons Learned Before Maven

The bell rang at that point and we all ran off to our respective classrooms.  We knew we would have to continue the discussion as to what we were going to do and how when lunch came.  That was the next time all five of we, the Merry Pranksters, would be together.  The thought of having the face Maven was not going to be fun.  It made me queasy, actually.  


Maven the Raven from whom there was no haven.

Classrooms had Shadwell School were not exactly what was in the past.  It wasn't even what they had on Earth.  While what classes we took adhered to what Washington, DC required back on Earth, how we did them was probably more than a little different.  Or perhaps not.  I've never been to a school on Earther America.

When we got to our classrooms, we checked in our boosters with the teacher and picked up a limited one.  This allowed us to link to the lessons and school computers but did not allow some of us to hack our way through the lesson plans.  Some how that just seemed unfair.  If you have the ability...why not?  But, no.  We were randomly given cripples to prevent us from preloading software for ourselves (and hacking) and they were wiped and reloaded each night.  This forced us to actually LEARN.  


Oh, ok.  I do like learning and we even move at a pace of our own choosing, so long as you met minimum requirements.  If you could absorb information very fast, then you could unpack all sorts of backstory, side stories and extra information without slowing down others, boring them or dragging people who were not as fast along with you like they were on a wild sleigh ride.  

The experience was mostly virtual.  Today, after we said the pledge of allegiance, was history.  American history.  The last four hundred, almost five hundred years of the US of A were being covered in the class.  From the attempts by England to settle Roanoke to the present day while Earth's greatest nations settled the stars, we learned.  Some eras were more important than others and covered in more detail: walk the battlefields of the American Revolution, get narration, explanation and more, but if you wanted to WATCH the Battle of Yorktown, you needed to take a quiz immediately and get 8/10 right.  If you wanted to PARTICIPATE, as a Redcoat or a French soldier or as an American, you better get 10/10.  Revolutionary War, Manifest Destiny, Slavery, Civil War, Industrial Revolution, World War I, the Great Depression, World War II, the Cold War, Great Recession, the Rise of China, the Long War, Global Warming, Robopocalypse, the Race to the Stars and Escheria.  Each could be viewed, participated in and grasped not just as dry statistics and boring desiccated words, but as events with people in them, places and how they shaped the our country and later my world.

Every day, at the end, we'd get a test.  It would cover all that we learned and participated in.  Three hours of history could be fun.  It could be exhausting.  It could be devastatingly depressing: slavery did that to me and I got the light version for tweens, not the full blown one for seniors in high school.  I saw Natasha Ricardo come out of that day green as a Terran plant and lose her lunch in the waste basket.  Fortunately, that was six grades away.

And I was in the Great Recession.  It WAS rather depressing: how could all those people get away with doing so many illegal things!  Didn't they have auditbots?  They could have easily seen the data was corrupt and caught the criminals!  But, no, no auditbots yet.  This was before the robopocalypse and actually one of the seeds that spawned it.

Ever seen a car that could NEVER self drive?!  That's just odd!  And how dirty things were in San Francisco.  I am surprised they didn't all die of disease.  And...there was more, but I won't bore you.  Earth is a strange place.  So easy to live in, yet so disrespected by those that live there.  

Three hours later, after I had rocked out at a concern (yes, I had answered 10/10) and virtually walked across the Golden Gate Bridge, I did well enough on my test for the day to pass.  It was lunch time.

Lunch time.

My stomach flip flopped.
That much closer to having to meet Maven.  

I was pretty sure we would do so after school.  

We needed time to plot and decide how we wanted to try to work with Maven.

But then...there would still be Maven.

Maven the Raven from whom there is no Haven.

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