0264 - Musing. - 2022.10.24



We haven't seen much of Patricia Hightower yet, have we? All we really know is that they're an authority figure at Rosenthal, and they were a big meanie to our protagonist. Well, here you go: you now also know that they're awake near midnight thinking about Lee, they have a synaptic booster like Caleb does (probably why Orb recognized it so easily), and they have at least two spouses, one of whom is named - or nicknamed - Mycroft.

Yes, obviously, polygamy is legal and socially accepted in 2167. I feel like that one's a no-brainer.

Context is important. Perhaps we, the audience, would feel differently about Patricia if we had started the comic from their point of view, seeing the stress and the bullshit they have to deal with. Perhaps we'd feel differently about them if we had seen them getting ready in the morning, preparing breakfast, getting a smooch on either cheek from their spouses. Certainly, we'd feel differently about them if we saw how deeply they care about the college and the education it provides, or how many hours of overtime they put in, making sure Rosenthal is safe and accessible for all of its legitimate students.

Then again, maybe we wouldn't. I suppose it depends on how your personal empathy works. Do you get sympathetic for movie villains when they reveal their tragic backstory? How sensitive are you to having an authority figure yell at you? Does stress excuse impoliteness? Do you consider being in a longterm polyamorous relationship to be a redeeming characteristic, or evidence of positive qualities? Plenty of shitheads are married, after all.

Anyway, I needed a way to indicate that we're timejumping ahead a few hours. Here it is.


0264 - 2167/07/06/23:35 - Patricia Hightower's bedroom
[PH is in comfortable clothing. They're swirling a drink and looking at their full-wall display]
[PH looking at various angles of LC]
PH: Who are you...
PH: ...and what do you really want?
[the display focuses on Zoa]
PH: Mm. Yes.
PH: Perhaps the question is... what does it want?
[Mycroft Hightower, one of PH's spouses, mumbles from the nearby bed]
MH: Nnnrgh, your spouses want you to turn the damn wall off and come to bed.
PH: I'm musing, Mycroft!