Starting Point: The Elite

Johannes Holm

My name is Neil Renard, though you probably know me as VND01-15-01. Contrary to popular belief I was born human, to human parents in the industrial city of Falcon Scott, Antarctica. I received no genetic enhancements and no implants before my service began; such things were more than my parents could have ever have hoped to afford. And yet from those humble beginnings I was to become one of the most influential and respected members of the machine autocracy.

This is the story of how I was chosen to become one of the elite, and how despite my humanity (although some might say because of it) I rose to the top of the most powerful network in the entire Solar System…

How would you continue this story? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.


Written by Mark Ball

Image credit: Johannes Holm

  • Leonardo Faria

    Neil Renard is a con man who made a living in Falcon Scott by selling with amazing ability unlikely estate packages in the most adverse and inhospitable regions of Antarctica. His worthy confr√©res used to call him The Vendor because he could sell a refrigerator in the South Pole (almost literaly). The Vendor became VND01-15-01, by the machines’ penchant for acronyms.
    His nerve went to the the lenght of trying (and succeeding) to sell cybernetic spare parts made in Mozambico to the mechanical overlords of the new government. When the latter realised they had been majestically conned first thought to punish Neil Renard, they they thought they could use for their plans his knowledge of the human nature and appointed him to a high office in the government. Now he’s cooperating to bring the machines’ dominance to an entirely new level, winning astutely the trust of humans, instead of forcing them into obedience.
    But maybe Neil Renard has his own plans, not fully coinciding with the machines’…

    • Brayden Watkins

      I was thinking more of something like this. Here’s the short version: Neil was cybernetically enhanced due to a war between mankind and aliens form the X(Choose a system from the random generator)system, called Y(choose an alien species name from the random generator) He eventually joins a squad of other enhanced humans and is deployed on the front lines. Throughout his career, he gets along nicely with his squad, helps beat the aliens, and even falls in love with the leader of the squad. But on Saturn, he’s faced with the difficult choice of either abandoning an entire colony to die at the hands of the aliens, or leaving the men and women he love to die. How would you guys continue from there?

  • James Pailly

    Wow. I can’t remember ever seeing so much world building done in so few words. This is a brilliant beginning.

  • are these elite also… dangerous?

  • Kirov

    Oh my god! You’re back! This place was pretty much my home on the internet for a while, but I stopped checking in so often during the cryosleep. Time to break out the writing tools again.