The click of shoes on concrete comes down the hall: moments later, a grey-haired researcher wielding a clipboard steps into view. She smiles: an ID card on a lanyard around her neck announces her as “Dr. Nadia”.
”Hello, new recruits! Welcome to Lumia Island!” She sing-songs. “You’ve been enrolled in our clinical trials of Human 2.0. On behalf of the AGLAIA project, I’d like to thank you for your help, however unwillingly acquired.”
“I’m honestly sorry about this, but I have a job to do and Thomas has a bet with me on - never mind. What you need to know is that this island is a battleground: in about ten minutes, you and eight other test subjects will be released from cells around Lumia Island. Certain areas of the island are restricted: if you enter one of these zones, the bracelet on your wrist will detonate and you’ll be retrieved from backup for the next round.
Over time, more and more restricted zones will be announced, until eventually there is nowhere left and everyone dies. This progression will only cease once there is only one test subject alive.”
She frowns. “Or less, I guess, but I’d advise against suicide. The whole point of this is to iron out glitches in our immortality tech, so if you die there’s no guarantee we’ll be able to revive you every time.”
She looks from Naomi to Lauren and back again. “Clear enough for you two?”