Ages of Irony

Chapter 1: Network Error

This is a new start.

Chris Weber
8 min readJan 7
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Our story started somewhere completely different from before. We were there.

Now, we are here.

Ada trodded away from the vast plain. She stumbled towards the rows of grey trees in the distance.

Her uniform, once a perfect, white, flight suit, was now a spectrum of browns. Dark and dirty at the bottom. Ada’s ankle cuffs were ragged. The muck slowly faded upward to dull ivory at the collar.

The trees, in a comparable condition, were all nearly barren of leaves. Ada imagined that they had been planted in long rows. They were arranged in all shapes and sizes in some undetectable order.

Ada stepped up to a leaning wooden sign at the edge of the skeleton forest. She pulled her matted orange hair out from in front of her eyes.

The red skin on her forehead was sore. Ada could not see them, but a few freckles had appeared near the corners of her eyes. Gifts from the sun and the wind.

Ada read the faint white words painted on the sign and could tell they had been written in rough English.

You ched the Gates
The me has come to play a role.
Cho sely now or pay the toll.”

While the sentences she saw resembled a language she understood, Ada had no idea what the sign meant. A black stain ran down the center, obscuring part of the words. She wondered who would be making signs in her language.

“This is another weird new world,” Ada thought.

The word “hell” was one of a few that she could not define. Ada thought she had read it on the lips of an actor in one of the movies she had watched on the ship. It couldn’t have been good.

She said it aloud.

“Hell.” Ada felt slightly better. It was an airy word. She thought she might have been acting silly. It was probably nothing to worry about.

As she walked forward past the strange old sign and hurried into the forest, She had no idea where she was going. She followed the path. The old way, the river that had bought her here, was…



Chris Weber

I am a curious communication scholar. I write about the things that I learn and attempt to understand. Poetry, fiction, and everything else.