The end of the short entrance hallway opened through a curtain into a vast room. She felt the heat hit her and unzipped her jacket before lowering her hood. It was dark and Lena’s face was cast with subtle colored lights as she was met with a wall of people. She couldn’t see the opposite wall but the ceilings were covered in exposed ventilation pipes. There were also a few reflective panels that shot light back down to the crowded floor. Masses of people swarmed across the glowing dance floor as it changed color to the heavy beat of the music. Lena stood for a moment, attempting to comprehend the overwhelming stimulus.
To her left the floor rose a meter to a stage that bore half a dozen dancers, each illuminated by colorful lights. Although they were perfectly humanoid in shape, they seemed to be composed of concentrated light. Various patterns on their bodies changed in cue with the music. One light-dancer was a vibrant fucshia with brilliant silver hair that glittered as she swung her head. Her body was infused with thin, dazzling lines of sparkling tinsel that trailed upwards along her curves, accenting every feature as she moved. Another’s skin was gridded with squares. One-by-one, the squares would spin, continually transforming the color of her skin. Atop the closest platform, a bold red “light-dancer” swung up and around a pole of light with a supernatural grace. Lena realized she could see through the dancer. They’re holograms, she thought.
Heavy clouds hung in the air. They obscured Lena’s vision more than the strobe lights. Threadlike beams pierced the clouds as they crisscrossed each other, creating geometric symbols and patterns. This was the last place she expected herself to be conducting business.
She turned to her right where a stairway continued up to a landing, then switched back to another set of stairs. This stairwell was all black walls with violet lights under each stair step. She was met at the next platform by a dark-haired woman leading a man by the hand. Both were dressed in clothing that accentuated their synthetic features. They both briefly made eye contact with Lena before moving around her, carefully minding their drinks.
At the top of the staircase she found a wide bridge that spanned the dance floor below.
From atop the bridge, patrons could see the entirety of the club below. To the left was another dark hallway. She walked down this hallway, passing several colorful doors. Finally, Lena found herself standing at a dead end in front of a simple black door.
There was a screen built into it at eye level. On it, in red gleamed the name JAEL. She knocked and the screen spoke to her.
She didn’t know where to direct her voice and felt stupid talking to a door. She leaned forward, unsure if she should speak normally into some hidden microphone or yell through the door.
“Uhhh...it’s Lena,” she said loudly. After a brief pause the door opened into the room.
When she got her first look at the man she assumed was Jael, Lena immediately felt that something in his face was unnatural, even for a blatant synth. It took her a moment, but she realized the peculiarity she sensed came from a face that had been edited for perfect symmetry. He was tall, nearly a whole foot taller than her, with defined muscles that fit his dark shirt perfectly. He had a thin layer of stubble that mapped potential for a voluminous beard. His skin was olive colored from what the warm light within his office revealed. He greeted her with a wide, genuine smile before stepped back from the doorway and extended his free hand into the room.
She gave him a reserved smile as she walked in.