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Adam Jensen’s diary (fan fiction)

J’ai beaucoup aimé Deus Ex: Human Revolution, et notamment le soin avec lequel sont abordées les problématiques cyberpunk. Avoir la possibilité de se faire greffer des implants ou des membres cybernétiques pour améliorer son corps, ses facultés, et mêmes ses possibilités mentales, cela pose pas mal de questions sur la définition de l’humain, sur la perception de soi-même et de son corps… Mais aussi sur la liberté de pensée alors qu’une partie de soi dépend d’une fabrication industrielle qui nous échappe… Ou encore sur l’égalité entre les êtres humains alors que certains n’auront jamais les moyens de se faire « augmenter », tandis que d’autres y sont forcés pour des raisons de concurrence commerciale, comme les prostituées… Tout ceci était abordé de façon très intelligente dans le jeu.

Ce qui m’a toutefois manqué au niveau narratif, c’est un feedback de la part du protagoniste. Adam Jensen se retrouve presque totalement « cybernétisé » suite à un terrible attentat – qui lui a aussi coûté la femme qu’il aime, il ne l’a pas choisi. Il doit redécouvrir son corps et faire avec. Il est un surhomme malgré lui. Il peut en choisir d’en assumer les responsabilités, ou pas. Il découvre également différentes choses sur son passé et son identité au fil de son enquête. Cependant il ne commente jamais tout ceci, à la manière du « personnage-véhicule » qui se contente de servir le joueur sans avoir ses propres opinions.

D’un côté cela servait en effet très bien le gameplay qui permettait au joueur de suivre sa propre voie, et d’obtenir une fin différente en fonction de ses choix. De l’autre, cela brisait parfois l’immersion quand on découvrait quelque chose sur son enfance et que Jensen ne poussait même pas un début d’exclamation. Cela laissait un certain vide, même pour un personnage de RPG, que personnellement j’aurais aimé voir comblé. Je ne pouvais que l’imaginer, en regardant par exemple ce très bel artwork où l’on voit Jensen dans un contexte plus intime.

J’ai imaginé qu’Adam Jensen aurait pu avoir à prendre quelques notes sur sa condition, ses impressions. Je n’en ai écrit que le début, juste pour le plaisir – et très modestement, mon niveau d’anglais n’étant pas suffisant.

 

Adam Jensen’s Recovery Notes


Day 5 Nothing to report.

 

Day 10 Nothing to report.

 

Day 12 Eye-Know Retinal Prosthesis temporary failure. Spent one day in the dark. Nothing else to report.

 

Day 15 Nothing to report.

 

Day 16 So, Dr Marcovic isn’t satisfied with my “recovery notes”. She wants something more personal and less “military”, as part of my treatment.

Well. I’m not really the kind of guy who comes home to write to his “dear diary” how life’s been a bitch.

I’ll do my best Doc, for science’s sake, if anything.

 

Day 20 Nothing to report. OK, I don’t know what to say. Spent 2 hours at the rehab gym. Arm augmentations seem to respond fine.

 

Day 26 Still feeling dizzy most of the time. Marcovic says it’s caused by nervous hypersensitivity due to the various operations I had. It should get better in a matter of weeks. Everyone is very cautious and patient with me.

 

Day 32 This morning I went for a walk for the first time since forever. It felt good to be on my own, among normal people. Mostly normal people. Without anyone recording my vitals at least.

Something weird happened though. I was leaning against a balustrade, just thinking. I didn’t hear a woman nearby asking me something. She put her hand on my arm. It startled me and I guess my body reacted defensively. I sensed her so distinctly it felt… wrong. Embarrassing. A flow of information was prompted on my retinas. I could tell the exact temperature of her skin, her heart rate. I must have given her an awkward look because she stepped back and went away. This sensitivity should be adjusted. I’m glad not to be a lifeless robot, but this super-acuity just weirded me out all the same.

 

Day 33 According to the clinic staff there is no way of “adjusting” anything. My whole perception is simply more precise, more immediate and more thorough, as if the nervous input was going faster and stronger to my brain. It must be the case actually. I’m supposed to get used to it eventually, and to learn to control it. I’ll just try and avoid being touched or touching anybody for a while.

That part should be easy. The one person I cared for is gone, and the others are afraid of even talking to me. Everybody feels sorry for survivors, but nobody wants to be their friend. Fine by me.

 

Day 40 Been at the rehab gym all day. Running, jumping, weight-lifting… everything went well. My performances are far better than they used to be. This new “Me” is quite impressive. Too bad he’s also two months late.

 

Day 47 Couldn’t get much sleep last night. I can’t get used to this continuous flow of data going through my head. I can hear, see and feel everything so well. Marcovic is right when she advises me to take time before activating any more augmentations. It’s not painful; it’s not even giving me headaches. It’s just that I feel so perfectly awake and aware, as if an invisible spotlight was perpetually dazzling me and forcing me to focus. I wish I could turn everything off. Turn my brain off and have a break.

 

Day 50 I had to buy some new clothes. They told me they had created the prostheses exactly to my natural measurements; but somehow I feel uncomfortable in my old clothes. It’s as if I had gained some muscle mass. Must be part of the “better than life” design of the product. I guess all of this should make me feel better about myself.

Well at least now my clothes size won’t ever change anymore.

 

Day 62 Finally come to the point where I’m feeling a little less self-conscious. I even manage to think about unrelated stuff.

The dizziness is gone.

 

Day 70 A guy in the street praised the quality of my augmentations, and asked how much I had paid for them. I almost punched him in the face. I don’t want people to put a price on me, for fuck’s sake. I’m not for sale.

I know, I know. Is it any different from asking someone how much he makes at work… or rather asking a street-worker how much she charges. You can’t go and ask someone how much money their guts are worth. How much it costs for them to be alive. That’s just wrong.

No matter how futuristic I look, no prosthesis or augmentation will ever be worth what I have lost.

The tiny scar on my left knee that I got when I was six. Playing in the junkyard.

The scraped rib which took a bullet but did not break. First mission with the SWAT.

The freckles on my shoulders that Megan used to pretend to count. It was a joke between us; she used to say that knowing their number would help her identify my body, If I were to be killed in action. Godammit.

 

Day 71 Listen, Dr Marcovic I’m sorry. Please don’t go Freud on me. I was angry, I drank too much. It won’t happen again. But I’m fine, really. I’m a big boy, I’ll manage.

 

Day 82 Sarif asked me what I’d think of going back to work. I said I wanted to.

I am alive. That’s a stupid thing to say, but for these past few months I thought I was kind of dead. In Limbo. I couldn’t even stand to look at what I had become. I thought nothing mattered anymore. I saw myself as someone else’s tool and that was a relief.

I still haven’t replaced the smashed mirror in the bathroom. But I feel that what is left of me is alive, and that I’m still part of this world.