Oct 21, 2018 9:04 PM
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Sadness and Aether in Milliways
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"Does Riley like them?"

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"She hasn't been remembering them much lately. She likes some of the ones she remembers."

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"I mean while she's having them. Do humans in your world have nightmares?"

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"They do. She doesn't enjoy the dreams about being lost when she's having them, she enjoys some of the other dreams she has though."

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"It seems sort of mean to make someone have dreams they won't like and don't know why they're happening to entertain other people."

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"I suppose so. Do you think we should try to get them to only give her happy dreams? I think Fear, Disgust, Anger and I would find it annoying to never get to be in control while she's dreaming, but I guess we can cope.

Though that's still assuming we can convince the dream producers to do things differently, and we might not be able to."

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"What exactly is the, uh, relationship between you - emotions - being in control and the dreams' content?"

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"Well. I like dealing with stuff like Riley losing important things forever or realizing she made a terrible mistake, but I don't have much idea about what to do about Riley flying through a beautiful landscape. So even when it's just a dream and it doesn't really matter if she reacts to things appropriately, I'd rather operate the controls during the dreams about loss and let Joy handle them during the dreams about flying. But I suppose I could try to stay away from the controls at night even when we get dreams about sad stuff."

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"Is it a, uh, skill thing? You not having much idea what to do, such that you could pick it up? Or do you need to - be - a, um - a Sadness?" Is she being racist against Sadnesses? She hopes she is not being racist against Sadnesses.

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"I don't think I can not be a Sadness. I tried not to be for a while when I was younger and didn't manage. And it wouldn't have been good if I had; Riley does need to be able to be sad."

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"I'm not saying I'd want to limit her emotional repertoire, but most people who are sad a lot aren't benefiting from it, so it seems like if her life got to be very nice you'd maybe get bored, if you're, uh, doing your job as described."

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sigh

"I guess so. I don't think I make her sad more often than is good for her but it's hard to know. I want her life to be nice."

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"Maybe people with emotional disorders have, uh, emotions who don't want their lives to be nice. If emotional disorders even happen in your world. I'd think subtle artists could notice if people on my plane worked that way."

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"Maybe that happens. Some people in our world have problems with their emotions but we haven't heard much about how. Riley had something wrong with her emotions for a day when Joy and I got lost, maybe some peoples' emotions get lost for longer."

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"How did you get lost?"

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"We got into a fight and dropped the core memories into the tube to long-term, so we went after them to get them back. Then the Personality Islands started collapsing and cut off the route we'd meant to take back to Headquarters."

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"Personality islands collapsing sounds really bad."

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"It was really bad. We've managed to rebuild most of them now."

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"What does collapsing personality islands actually do? What are personality islands?"

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"They're islands that define aspects of Riley's personality. When Goofball Island collapsed she stopped being a goofball, and when Friendship Island collapsed she gave up on her friendships, and so on."

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"What made them collapse?"

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"The Personality Islands are powered by the core memories, so they collapsed when they got stress put on them while the core memories were missing."

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"...and what's a core memory?"

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"Core memories are memories of events that were especially important to Riley and helped her become who she is. Like the first time she scored a goal in hockey or the first time she told the truth even though it was hard."

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"Hm. This is all really interesting, although it's - hm - did someone have to build those islands or decide that those memories were core or did they just happen?"

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