In this portion of the book we begin to learn what not having the feed would be like. It is written in English and quite unaffected compared to Part 1. We can really begin to understand how powerful this connection to the feednet is. It really controls them and being without seems so frightening.
Titus describes having nothing in his head. This is referred to as credit. Having no credit meant he had to speak to people directly. His hospital room is described as “nothing but the walls” and the picture on one…uninteresting. Without the feed everything is quiet. They are in the hospital after being hacked. The police are present and everyone looks horrible. As they are waiting for their parents, the major concern is the feed.
Acceptance of the situation is a process. Through Titus we learn a little history of the feednet. He doesn’t know life without it. Being able to have your desires understood and your questions answered has made these people lazy. To use your brain and make a decision has never been necessary. Dealing with real time is something they cannot understand.
Feeling their frustration made me sympathetic to the situation. These teenagers should not be struggling with making a sentence. They should be able to rest assured that life will continue and everything will be okay. As they start to open up, the relationship between Violet and Titus changes. Her father does not come and she is having a feed problem unlike the others. They are forced to deal with each other and they form a bond. It was the newness of this friendship that enabled them to get through this event. Actually, they seem to begin to enjoy themselves.
Learning about Violet is different. She calls herself “pretentious” and we begin to see her personality emerge. Titus has feelings for her and actually expresses himself.
Being trapped in the hospital has made this group very anxious and they cause chaos at some point. They are bored and destroy some stuff in the hospital. All this time, they seem to be having fun. They get away with the behavior because everyone feels sorry for them.
I want them to go home without the feed. As they begin to act like real people with vulnerabilities, personalities and opinions, you can begin to imagine life without the interference. Although it would be a struggle to survive in this crazy world they live in, it may be a possibility. They seemed almost happy for the first time. The language used sounds a little more complex. With time, maybe they would be able to function. With strength, maybe it could happen. This time in the hospital has changed them and they are scarred in some way. They may be traumatized but they seem better off. After all, they are kids and normal development can’t be a negative.
Just like that, the confusion is over. The ordeal is over and they turn the feed back on. And they forget how much fun they could have without it. They forget the tears and talks and fears and real time. As the narrator said, “and the feed was pouring in on us now” and just like that they were lost in it. They were “dancing in it” and this to them was cause for celebration, for now.

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