Sonic just stared in disbelief. “In the internet? We are stuck...in the internet!?” Sonic asked.
“Yeah, we are only able to give a command via binary, and I bet you that current I got stuck in earlier was a digital circuit. Come on, let’s ride it and see where it takes us,” Tails suggested somewhat excitedly. Sonic wasn’t sure, but at this point he would do anything to find Blaze. He really hoped she did not get lost deep inside the internet; a place that was very hard to reach. Lost in the zeroes and ones of unknown certainty. “I think it’s kind of interesting if I think about it. We will be seeing what goes on inside the digital world!” Tails said happily. He grabbed Sonic’s hand and took off in the air and hovered up to the digital circuit above. Tails flew for what felt like hours. Suddenly, Sonic was blown out of Tails’ hands by a frigid watery air and was pulled along with it. Tails followed suit. “This is the circuit!” Tails explained to a relatively shocked Sonic. The best friends sped rapidly through the circuit. As Tails explained, it was cold, airy, and dewy, almost like riding along a thick fog. “We have now become nothing but mere digital logic; we are travelling at about roughly 5 gigahertz. To put that in perspective, it’s about the speed of light in fiber optics,” Tails explained. Of course that made no sense to Sonic, it was too big of a concept to grasp. The digital circuit sent them around right angles and straight up or down.
“When does it stop?” Sonic asked.
“Whenever we want it to. Hey, let’s get out here,” Tails grabbed Sonic’s arm suddenly and they exited the circuit and landed on an invisible platform much like the one in the first area they were in. Everything looked the same, except this area was more circular.
“I don’t know where we are, everything looks the same to me!” Sonic moaned.
“We are on another blank webpage, only this one is for a different internet browser. Hmm...I guess we actually need to order in a location. How about Google?” Tails said. And he spoke the binary code for Google, and immediately the invisible platform below Sonic and Tails dropped, and they were falling to the endless abyss below. They fell amongst the endless walls that had that unidentified color, which Sonic decided to just call No Color, even though it was relatively a combo of different colors. It just had no English name. The No Color walls darkened, and soon Sonic and Tails were falling into darkness. Both were too confused and stunned to yell about the fact of falling. The internet had no definite gravity, so it was hard to tell where the hell they would be going. The blackness ended, and was replaced with a huge white space. They landed--thankfully unharmed--on another invisible platform. This time everything around them was white. Though instead of blank white walls, there were all kinds of strange coding that Sonic did not understand. There were “div ids”, “scripts”, “classes”, “heads”, “heights”, “body’s”, and more. That coding was plastered on the walls all around them. “The hell? This is Google?” Sonic asked.
“Yup,” Tails said.
“What’s all the coding? It doesn’t say ‘Google’ anywhere!” Sonic cried.
“It’s HTML Sonic...boy, you need some IT stuff to learn,” Tails shook his head.
“Okay...so...where do we find Blaze?” Sonic asked.
“We can’t Google her, unfortunately. Well, we can, but we won’t find the actual Blaze. What we will most likely find, however, is many different representations of her.”
“What do you mean?”
“She put pictures online, people like to draw pictures of her, yadda yadda. I won’t go into much detail on that one.”
“In order to conduct a Google search, we need to use binary.”
“Knock yourself out.”
“I might have an idea where Blaze could be...she might be on one of the websites I had left tabbed. We will go visit each one and see if she’s in any of them. Alright.”
“Afraid not. Binary is the only language a computer can understand,” Tails replied.
“My brain hurts,” Sonic sighed.
“I have to search for the mechanical parts I searched earlier, that way I can go to the webpage where Blaze is at,” Tails explained.
“It’s an open tab, though,” Sonic said.
“Yeah, but we are on a separate tab. While we can easily shift between tabs while we are on the internet, it is a WHOLE different story INSIDE the internet,” Tails said.
“UGH! Tediosity!” Sonic groaned. Tails spoke more binary, and, another drop later, they landed on an invisible platform. To their luck, Blaze WAS there. “BLAZE! You are okay!” Sonic exclaimed happily.
“What’s happened? Where are we? What’s all this coding?” Blaze asked, running to them.
“We are inside the internet. What you will see is binary and HTML. Don’t worry, I understand it all. I can help navigate through it and get our way out of here. Now that we are all together, we need to come up with a way to get out of here!” Tails explained.
“Hmm...maybe we can send ourselves in an email around and around until we get to a computer with a flash drive. There we can get on to the flash drive and free ourselves,” Sonic suggested.
“Good idea, but, how will we get out of the flash drive? Right now, we are digital codes. We need a way to...devirtualize somehow,” Tails said.
“I’m getting this kind of deja vu right now...wasn’t there some kind of cartoon that was a lot like this back then…? It was like these kids that saved the world on this virtual video game or something,” Sonic said.
“I don’t know,” Tails shrugged.
“These kids were able to get virtualized and devirtualized off this video game thing.”
“I dunno, but that was a cartoon show. This is real, and we need to find a way to get out of the internet. We are digital inscriptions right now!”
“What if we went back the way Eggman sent us?” Blaze asked.
“We don’t even know how he sent us in! Some kind of...installation, I presume…” Tails said.
“Couldn’t we delete the installation?” Sonic asked.
“Doing that would delete us as well. We are part of the internet. If we were to delete our surroundings, we would be deleting us. And we don’t want that.”
“What if we contacted the outside world?” Blaze asked.
“Like...aliens?” Sonic chuckled.
“No. You mentioned emails earlier. We can send an email to Knuckles, and maybe he can figure out information from Eggman,” Blaze suggested.
“GREAT IDEA! Only thing is...Knuckles may mark our email as spam...he may not believe us!” Tails cried.
“We have to try!” Blaze said.
“Alright, we will do that. I will go to Knuckles’ email software and send him an email,” Tails said. He flew up into the air and started speaking in binary, and suddenly they were falling again. Tails swooped after them. Blaze immediately grabbed onto Sonic because of the height. When she did, Sonic’s entire body relaxed and warmed up immediately. And not just from her unusually feverish body temperature. When they landed on another invisible platform with more white walls and code, Blaze let go as if nothing happened. Sonic felt slightly disheartened by this. Tails spoke more binary, and the coding nearest to them separated and became a giant rectangle. Text appeared inside the rectangle, in English, as Tails spoke them in binary:
Hi, it’s Tails. Listen, we are in a bit of a predicament. Eggman pushed us into the internet. Now we are stuck in here as digital codes. We need your help to figure out what Eggman did. Maybe try figuring out how he got us in, and possibly how we can get out. Email me back for more credentials.
“Okay. We need to get out of here fast, because if Knuckles deletes that email, we will be deleted along with it. And if he marks it as spam, we will be locked here and will never be able to escape,” Tails said hastily.
“Sheesh. The internet is cruel,” Sonic remarked.
“But how will we get notified if he emails back?” Blaze asked.
“It will notify me in binary. We are stuck in the internet, but we are also stuck inside my laptop. Therefore, we have access to the files on my desktop. So we can perform tasks off the internet as well,” Tails replied.
“So what now?” Blaze asked.
“Well, I’d hacked into Eggman’s computer. But he had caught me. An option we have is I can try rehacking into it, but it will be more dangerous. And Eggman might delete us. But it will be the only way out because the vortex that sucked us into the internet is installed into my laptop. I can’t get the file that will uninstall us without accessing Eggman’s credentials. That’s where Knuckles can help, he can give us information on a specific file that will uninstall us. Problem with that is, we are digital files. So the only way we can get out of here in normal forms is how you would normally get things off the internet into physical form…” Tails began.
“Printing…” Sonic said.
“Yes. Luckily for us, we were sucked into the internet after 3D printing was invented. Otherwise we would have to make extra measures that would make it more difficult for us to escape safely. If we come out of this with 2D printing, the software Knuckles would find would help us escape, but we may lose parts of us because we will essentially be losing depth once we are printed out,” Tails explained.
“But Eggman MADE the file that virtualized us. I highly doubt he’d make one that would reverse engineer things,” Sonic pointed out.
“Ahh. But if Knuckles can get access to Eggman’s computer, he will be able to find the file Eggman installed onto my laptop. And he can simply uninstall it to give us a ride back home. Thing is, though, that’s the halfway point. Uninstallation is the ride home. But we need the printing information to make the house exist,” Tails told him.
“So….what?” Sonic asked dumbfoundedly.
“More simply put:
1: Knuckles gets to Eggman’s computer
2: Knuckles clicks uninstall
3: The software that digitalized us will uninstall, and we will no longer be an actual part of the internet. We will be free radicals, so to speak.
4: We get 3D printed out of the computer back into our forms,”
“So after uninstallation, we will still be stuck in the computer, but we won’t be digital codes anymore?” Sonic asked.
“Correct. The problem with that is, the computer will recognize us as viruses. So we would need to get printed out ASAP at that point. Because we will be roaming in a digital cyberspace OUTSIDE of the internet. Kind of like in some sort of limbo,” Tails replied. Sonic just scratched his head. This information was going in one ear and out the other. Tails saw his perplexed look. “Just let me take care of this,” Tails said. Sonic shrugged and looked at Blaze. Even in the digital form, she looked beautiful. Her eyes still looked as golden as ever.
“Blaze...listen...we left on kind of a situation. Wanna talk about it…?” Sonic asked her.
“Sonic, now is not the time,” she told him somewhat snappishly. Sonic’s heart sank back into its original disheartened abyss.
“Yeah, we should get back on the digital circuit before Knuckles deletes or reports this. I am going to go back to the original mainframe, to try and rehack into Eggman’s computer. We will remain safe on that blank webpage,” Tails said. Sonic did not care where they remained. He just wanted to talk to Blaze. Tails grabbed them both and flew back up to the foggy digital circuit. Sonic and Tails rode it casually, but Blaze was yelling as they went. Sonic wanted nothing more than to grab her hand and reassure her, or something, but he knew she wouldn’t have liked it. After another ride, they came back to the original room they started in with the No Colors. Sonic felt somewhat at home here. Tails started to speak in programming code again, to start the process of hacking into Eggman’s computer. This time they remained in the room even after Tails sent in some different codes and requests. “This is much more difficult since it’s it’ll be in binary,” Tails explained. But Sonic wasn’t listening. He approached Blaze.
“I need to know. What’s going on? What happened to our friendship?” Sonic asked.
“Why do you keep asking me that!?” Blaze demanded.
“Because...I care about you...I care about this friendship,” Sonic replied slowly. “I don’t understand why you don’t. What happened? What changed?”
“I never said I don’t!” Blaze barked.
“I’m just trying to understand. Please, Blaze. Tell me. I am here for you,” Sonic told her softly. Blaze just shrugged her shoulders. “Blaze, I need to know. Please.”
“I wanted to see Silver when I got here. Is that a problem?! Are you jealous of Silver and I’s friendship?!”
So they were just friends. Sonic felt slightly better, he still had a chance...maybe.
“I am not jealous of you and Silver. I just want to understand why we were so close, then you left, then came back, and it was as if we were never friends,” Sonic said.
“Why!?” Blaze hissed.
“You came back, and didn’t even bother coming to see me. What did I do? You were okay with seeing Silver, but not me?”
“NO! I AM JUST TRYING TO UNDERSTAND!”
He didn’t want to raise his voice but he was feeling passionate about the situation. He longed to know; he DESERVED to know. Blaze paused, then looked away for a minute, and Sonic immediately regretted yelling. “Blaze…” he began sadly, knowing he was just letting her slip away between his already greasy fingers. That metaphorical grease was caused from whatever he did the first time that caused her to turn away.
“You want to know why I did not come to see you after all these years?” Blaze asked.
“Yes!” Sonic cried.
“...you let me go,” she said.
“What!? What are you talking about? I couldn’t pull you back away from the portal sucking you back to your dimension. I wanted to; OH CHAOS, I WANTED TO! But you needed to go back, it was for both of our dimensions. And the Sol Emeralds,” Sonic explained.
“No. You let me go,” Blaze said.
“Blaze, I said, I wanted to. But I COULDN’T!” Sonic cried. Did every single women beat around the bush all the time like this?
Blaze took a deep breath, then she gasped, “I thought we were going for something. But you never even made a move.”
“W-What do you mean?” Sonic asked, but he fearfully had an idea of what she meant.
Blaze hung her head. “The night before I left...I thought we would move on...from there. We would make something out of the night. But you never did anything. You never showed a reciprocating interest, you never seemed to wanna go further. So I just let it all go,” Blaze sighed.
“Blaze, please….what do you mean?” Sonic asked, choking back a sob.
“I WAS IN LOVE WITH YOU!! OKAY!?! But you never did anything! That night, before I left. I felt like you showed an interest back, but you never took the initiative. You never acted upon your feelings, and I felt heartbroken. Because I thought you did not love me enough to try and take us further, that you weren’t courageous enough to tell me how you felt!” Blaze’s beautiful golden eyes were saturating with tears.
Sonic’s heart did a somersault when he heard her first sentence, but then his heart sank in sadness. “You were in love with me?” he asked slowly.
“Yes, but...you never acted upon it…” Blaze began.
If I can’t change your heart, let me blow your mind. Give me one more chance, don’t draw the line. Can’t decide what to leave behind. Should I lose my soul? Or just my mind?
“I didn’t know...you liked me back,” Sonic told her, trying to hold back tears.
“So you DID like me! You just confirmed it there! But why….why didn’t you act on it?” Blaze asked sorrowfully.
Sonic just blinked, not sure what to think or say.
“I didn’t...know you liked me back…” Sonic began.
“Answer my question please!” Blaze wept. She swallowed a round of tears and turned away, probably trying to hide them.
“No, Blaze. At the time, I didn’t think you liked me back…” Sonic told her quickly.
“You still could’ve taken the initiative!” Blaze hissed.
If I can’t change your heart….let me blow your mind….all I need is one more chance...leave it all behind...if I can’t change your heaaaart…………
Let me blow your mind.
“Blaze, listen...I wanted to. I wanted to tell you how I felt, but...you were leaving the next day!” Sonic cried.
“So?” Blaze asked.
“I know, I know...I’ve scolded myself for this too. I should’ve told you before you left, that way I wouldn’t have lost you. But, I was thinking about you. I didn’t want to say, ‘Before I go, I am in love with you. Goodbye.’ I did not want to leave you with that message, and not be able to give you physical affection,” Sonic explained.
“I would’ve loved going home knowing that you returned my feelings…” Blaze began.
“I...I dunno, I just didn’t want you to go right after I told you, and then you were unable to get a kiss, or something,” Sonic said.
“I don’t care about that. You could’ve told me, and I would’ve left smiling. But instead, on my way back, I started crying. Because I loved you, but you did not seem interested in me back.”
Sonic felt a sudden strong wave of self-hatred. That he had let this beautiful angel go without telling her he liked her back, that he let her cry back to her dimension, that he wasn’t there for her. And that he was pestering her and Silver to get answers. Who was he kidding, he did not deserve her. Not if he kept negatively affecting her like this. He didn’t even deserve to be her friend.
“I’m sorry, Blaze…” he wept. He let a few tears leak out.
Should’ve opened my eyes, whatever it takes, before my heart breaks. If you, want to, have a part of me. Should’ve let me know back then cause I want to let you have that part of me. But now I just let go. Tried all the roads so I’d see. Which of those paths, would lead you to me. Driving in circles again. I wish I knew how...to stop it back then.
Blaze just stared at him, her eyes swimming with tears. Sonic did not know what to say, she was probably interested in Silver now. He’d lost her, he could try winning her back. But she probably was happier with Silver, and probably deserved him more.
“GUYS! WATCH OUT!” Tails’ voice interrupted Sonic’s troubles. A giant, flaming hot wall came sliding right for them. The trio ran out of the way just as it consumed the rest of the room and swallowed up the No Color.
“The hell was that!?” Sonic asked.
“A firewall. One of the many complications of hacking into Eggman’s computer. Keep an eye out for them, because if one hits you, you’ll be reduced to digital ashes,” Tails explained. Sonic was then reminded they were still stuck in the internet.
“Any updates?” Sonic asked Tails.
“Still trying. I managed to breach the first ten passwords again. Eggman’s definitely upped his game. But he shouldn’t expect me to hack into his computer from INSIDE the internet, so he should be more off guard,” Tails replied.
Sonic looked to Blaze, who refused to even look at him. “BLAZE!” Sonic cried. She still wouldn’t look. “Blaze, I am still in love with you...right now. And I want to be with you! But...if you’re happier with him, I’ll let you go,” Sonic hung his head.
“Why do you assume Silver and I are a fling when we hang out? We are just friends. He’s interested, yeah, but I want him as a friend. For now. I might change my mind,” Blaze replied.
“What about me…? Do you hate me?” the tear flow came back to Sonic. Two more firewalls came roaring past, both of them thicker than the first. The three heroes dodged them with ease, and Sonic and Blaze continued their conversation as if it never happened.
“Do you want to give me a second chance?” Sonic asked her sadly.
“I don’t know, Sonic,” Blaze replied.
“You know I love you, now, right?” Sonic asked her.
Anywhere I...would’ve followed you. Say something I’m giving up on you. And I...am feeling so small. It was over my head...I’m nothing at all. And I will stumble and fall. I’m still learning to love, just starting to crawl.
“Yeah, but you might be too late, because I am starting to fall for Silver,” Blaze replied.
“But you said you only saw him as a friend,” Sonic told her.
“Yeah, I do. But he is starting to grow on me.”
“Blaze...I’ll let you go if he makes you happy…”
And I...will swallow my pride. You’re the one, that I love. And I’m saying goodbye!
“I don’t know, Sonic. We must talk about this later,” Blaze said, and she turned his back on him. Sonic’s entire body felt like a vacuum right now. He felt the heat draining from his limbs as the depression sank in and dropped his body temperature. He turned his back too, thinking he did not deserve to look at her. He just stared at the No Color walls. All was silent in the No Color Room, except for Tails speaking in rapid binary and HTML. Suddenly, the room started to tremble.
“Ooh! Got an email from Knuckles!” Tails announced. He hovered up in the air and spoke EVEN MORE BINARY, and this email came up from Knuckles. It appeared on the No Color walls in a white rectangle, unfortunately in binary. So Tails translated it for Sonic and Blaze, with a bit of a difficulty since Knuckles was a bad speller and did not know very good grammar:
Is this some kind of joke? If you are stuck inside the internet, how can you read this? Or send an email? I am not as gulible as I used to be, come on, seriously.
But...you’re not Eggman, so I will take your word for it; sceptically, of coarse. I will go to Eggman’s base. I honeastly have no idea what your talking about, but I will go. But if I see no sign of activty, I will not be very pleased.
“Alright, that’s a step forward,” Tails noted after he read the email. “In the meantime, I will continue to hack into Eggman’s computer.”
Sonic just stood there with his back to Blaze’s. There was definite tension between them. Sonic was awfully bored as well, since he could not go anywhere without binary. Tails looked up and saw the two standing apart, and Sonic looking troubled.
“Here, will this help? I’ll give a quick lesson. Binary is difficult, I get it. But a lot of programmers use hexadecimals to speak to computers. It’s easier to read. Hex, or hexadecimal, is a number system of base 16. This number system is especially interesting because in our casually-used decimal system, we have only 10 digits to represent numbers. Hex system has 16 digits. The extra needed 6 digits are represented by the first 6 letters of English alphabet. Hence, hex digits are 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 and 9 A, B, C, D, E, F. So let’s say we have 1111 1111 in binary. We add backwards from that by counting 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, so on and so on. To convert it, we just add the ones backwards. We do NOT add the zeroes. So in the case for 1111 1111 we would add 1, 2, 4, and 8 backwards for both of them. So 1111 1111 is 15 hex and 15 hex. Or more formally: FF,” Tails explained enthusiastically.
“Tails...can I have some time alone? I might need a run,” Sonic told him calmly but firmly.
“Oh….” Tails’ enthusiasm drained quickly as he worriedly looked at his best friend. “...okay, Sonic. Sorry. I’ll get back to rehacking.”
The room fell silent again, except for Tails’ translations. Sonic took off running across the No Color floor. He knew distance still did not apply, but he wanted to leave Blaze alone. When he got to a hundred feet, he looked back and saw Blaze still standing there with his back to him. It looked like she was only five feet away. Sonic started running faster and faster, pushing himself to his limit. Maybe he can overexert himself, that way he could die from physical exhaustion and make Blaze happy. He ran faster than he could ever bear to handle; he felt his heart palpitating so fast, it could explode any second. His lungs screamed in protest as he continued to sprint. His legs were burning, and he was actually creating flames behind him from the drag friction.
“SONIC! SONIC! STOP! YOU ARE GOING TO OVERHEAT THE LAPTOP HARDWARE!” Tails screamed; he did not know his best friend was trying to run himself to death essentially. Sonic did not listen, he kept on running. When things plateaued in his body, Sonic picked up the pace. His heart sped up to the pace of a dangerous 300 beats per minute. He could feel his entire body start to get an excruciating pain. Suddenly he felt a blast of heat at his back, knocking him down. He skidded several feet, obtaining a few bruises and a bloody head wound. While he laid there, his heart began to slow down gratefully. After about ten minutes, Blaze ran up to him.
“Are you trying to give yourself a heart attack!?” she cried, going over to his fallen body. “I had to burn you to stop you!”
“I’m….s...s-s-sorry Bl….” he panted, his lungs were exerting faster than ever as they tried to oxygenate his blood as fast as they could. Luckily as his heart started to slow, his lungs were able to catch up faster.
“C’mon, breathe! Breathe! BREATHE!” she begged, holding onto his body frantically.
“Sorry Bl….” Sonic gasped; he could see Blaze’s panicked face in his blurry vision. His lip was dripping blood from him biting it upon impact of the invisible floor. “Bl….Bl….aze,” he wheezed. “I’m sorr…..y, you des…...erve better….”
“BREATHE!” she ordered him. But she couldn’t do anything, neither could he. He just needed to rest so his lungs could compensate. It took a few minutes, but his heart and lungs returned to a normal pace. “How could you be STUPID!?!? You WORRIED me!!” she bawled.
“You deserve….better,” Sonic sighed weakly.
“Sonic, I did some thinking. It was wrong of me to just ditch our friendship. I now understand your intentions when you did what you did. I am sorry, Sonic. I am sorry I did not come to see you when I came back. Can you forgive me?” Blaze moaned.
She did not mention anything about love, but she wanted to be his friend again. That was a step in the right direction. Sonic remembered their peaceful and blissful stargazing the night before she left the last time, and a smile cracked his face.
“I can always forgive a beautiful princess,” Sonic responded in his normal way, though it was less energetic than normal. Blaze hugged him. Feeling that was an instant sedative to the wounds on his face and his aching heart and lungs. Sonic shakily reached up and hugged him back. He lightly caressed her back. He felt the soft cotton of her shirt. While he preferred her fur, it was still on her body and he liked the feeling. Blaze let go and reached down to help him up. Just as he did, these creatures started crawling out of the No Color walls. They had round heads and lizard-like bodies. They had no eyes or mouths.
“We’ve got competition guys; looks like computer viruses are also interested in getting into Eggman’s computer!” Tails flew over to them quickly. “If they touch us, we will be completely wiped out...we need to get going…” Tails cried. But Blaze started throwing flames at the viruses. “Blaze! WAIT!” Tails shrieked. The flames hit all of the viruses swarming in, and they all exploded into a dust of zeroes and ones.
“That killed them though!” Blaze told him.
“Yes, it did, but...did you notice the dust of binary they left behind? That is essentially their residue. And since I am pretty much into Eggman’s computer now, Eggman’s antiviral scan will detect the residue and send out an anti-spyware scan, and that will fry us in seconds. If we had left the viruses alone, the scan most likely wouldn’t have happened. And even if it did, it most likely wouldn’t have picked up those viruses,” Tails explained.
“Where do we go now?” Sonic asked.
“The only way safe place is either back, or onto an external hard drive. Because even Eggman’s pre-installed computer applications will also be scanned. This includes documents, pictures, games, and anything that does not require internet connection. So we can’t go to Eggman’s actual computer desktop because that will be scanned too. We need to quickly get into an external hard drive, because that is not installed onto the computer!” Tails cried hastily.
“How do we do that?” Sonic asked.
“We need to search the desktop for any removable storage units!” Tails answered desperately. He started speaking in binary again, and the No Color walls brought up a display of Eggman’s computer details: 4 TB, 6 GHz, 12-core processor, and other gibberish. The menu came up for removable devices. There had to be at least twenty.
“How does Eggman fit so many devices into his computer?” Sonic wondered.
“A scientific genius like Eggman needs to have a LOT of USB ports. I really am envious that his computer holds more ports than my laptop. His system unit looks like Swiss cheese!” Tails moaned.
“Which one should we get on?!” Sonic looked at the options displayed on the wall. Most of them were named, luckily, and they all contained files and blueprints of plans or locations. Tails browsed all of their choices, and found that most of them were maximized in storage space. Then he found one. “THERE! A thumb drive with a gig of space left, it’s more than enough for our data codes!” Tails pointed at the 14th USB he saw.
“How much do our codes take up?” Sonic asked.
“Hmm...mine is probably roughly 20 kilobytes. Sonic, yours might be around 30, and Blaze 25. We don’t take up a lot of space,” Tails responded.
“How do you know?” Sonic asked.
“We’re minuscule, we’re but mere scripts in this computer. We’re not like a fourteen minute long video or anything. C’mon, let’s head there,” Tails said. And he read the name of the 14th USB in binary and they dropped through a hole again. This time instead of falling all the way down, they fell into another cold digital circuit. This zipped them in a jagged spiral, up a very steep wall, and through many weird yellow rings. They were more stretched out than the Rings Sonic used for currency. Sonic cocked his head at them curiously.
“That is essentially the USB port pins. We are in between the USB port and the flash drive,” Tails described. He was examining their area like a kid in a candy store; an absolute haven for this kid geek. Sonic, however, was only mildly interested. The only thing he found somewhat interesting was that some of the patterns of the circuit boards around them reminded him of the shape of chili dogs. Though really it did not resemble them at all; he was just hungry, and anything reminded him of chili dogs. Even Tails’ mouth, because he would envision Tails eating a chili dog. The digital circuit took them into pitch darkness.
“Wow that was fast! We are inside the micro-oscillator now!” Tails explained. After riding the digital current through darkness, they were spat out into a dark area. However, when they landed on a platform, a panorama of files appeared right in front of them. It was in a fan layout, and Sonic reached out and touched one of the folds, and is if it were a touch screen, the fold popped out a picture of handdrawn blueprints of Station Square City Hall. Sonic didn’t like the look of the huge red X’s, and the bomb in the middle. This plan seemed really unfamiliar; was it a future last resort plan Eggman would attempt? Because by the looks of this particular plan, it involved manslaughter.
“Looks like these are Eggman’s files,” Tails explained, using his hand to sweep past the folds that all contained a document or picture of some kind. Finally Tails came across a fold that was only half a document. “This is the remaining space in Eggman’s flash drive. We must go here, and try not to interfere with that document in there,” Tails instructed, and as if it were a door, Tails walked right into that said fold. Sonic looked at Blaze and raised his eyebrow. For never being inside the internet, Tails sure knew how to navigate through it. Whether it was because he was a superiorly intelligent programmer, or whatever, Sonic wasn’t sure. Sonic and Blaze followed after Tails in this fold and they came out onto more black area, yet the three were still able to see each other.
“Now what?” Sonic asked.
“We wait here until the antivirus scan is done,” Tails responded.
“How long does that take?” Sonic wanted to know.
“Depends. Could take minutes, could take hours,” Tails shrugged.
“UGH!” Sonic groaned.
“But at least here we are safe from deletion; Eggman is too concerned about his future plans that he’d never delete one off a flash drive,” Tails assured him.
“Meh, whatever. I am pretty irked with that Egg Hair right now. This is what I say about his files!”
Without thinking, Sonic did his Spin Dash and plummeted into the document next to them containing one of Eggman’s plans. The document vibrated and started to crack.
“UH OH! Eggman will be informed with ANYTHING that happens to that document!” Tails yelled. He ran up to the cracking document and started to massage it to repair it, but it was too late. Sonic backed away, suddenly regretting what he did. Then the document shattered. It became many cubes of pixels that fell onto the floor.
“What...happened?” Sonic asked worriedly.
“You know how when you unplug a USB before it can properly transfer files? Well, you Spin Dashing into the file essentially corrupted it, and Eggman will be notified about it. Eggman will figure out he did not tamper with the flash drive, he will suspect something is up so he might check it out and find the missing document...and who knows what will happen…” Tails replied.
“Sheesh, the digital world is brimming with peril!” Sonic mocked cockily.
“Let’s hope Knuckles has gotten to Eggman’s computer by now!” Blaze added.
“Ugh!” Tails rubbed his head in frustration. “Eggman might remove this flash drive from his computer, so we will be stuck in it with no way of safely returning. The end circuit of the flash drive will close up, sealing in all of its data. Because when you connect the flash drive to the computer, the digital circuit in the USB port and the flash drive connect; this is what allows transfer of files to and from the computer and flash drive. And when Eggman unplugs the flash drive, the end circuit will close to store data here in the flash drive,” Tails explained.
“Okay...is there going to be a test after this?” Sonic mocked cockily. “But seriously, Tails. Can you stop elaborating everything that is going on? It is probably completely boring to everyone, and we just need what’s going on--straight and to the point!” Sonic insisted in frustration.
“I’m TRYING to inform you guys what’s going on,” Tails said defensively.
“Yea, but not everybody is as tech savvy as you, okay buddy? You can spare us the tedious details, tell us how to get out of here, and we will be on our merry way!” Sonic argued.
“I just thought it would be useful if you guys knew about every little technical thing that happens here, I thought you’d be interested,” Tails hung his head.
“It is interesting, in a way. But we don’t have time to stand around and talk, okay? We should probably get off this flash drive now; I highly suspect Eggman is done scanning his computer, huh?”
“C’mon, Tails, don’t look so blue. Only I can be blue.”
Sonic gave Tails a thumbs-up to show that there were no hard feelings, and Tails’ head perked immediately.
“Alright, Sonic’s right. We should get off this flash drive immediately!”
Tails walked out the fold they came in on. Sonic looked at Blaze and smiled, and she smiled back. Just wanting to test the waters, he held out his hand. She willingly took it, and upon feeling her soft and warm hand in his, Sonic’s heart fluttered. Happily, he lead her out the fold while still holding her hand.
End of Part 2