|Host||Yoruichi-san & Lost in Space|
|Size||20 Players (SuperSize)|
|Start Date||August 24th, 2008|
|Roster|| 1) Frozen|
|First to Die||Phaze &|
|Last Remaining|| 5) Ocular-Enso|
This was a 20 player game with 5 factions: 3 Baddies with BTSC vs 3 Other Faction vs 1 Indy vs 1 Indy vs 12 Innocents/Goodies.
- Days will be 36 hrs (I may extend them if I feel there is a need) and nights will be a maximum of 18 hrs (or when I get all the PMs in)
- No PMing behind the scenes! The only ones who have BTSC in this one are the M4F14 and the QAs if they manage to find each other.
- No posting of material from outside of this thread, or links to material outside this thread!
- Cracking down on inactivity: your role will be up for grabs or your role info will be outed, you are putting youself in danger of not being able to play other games - the hosts will be informed. No sliding in under the radar by nonsense activity or not actually gaming eg " my role is to useful " - it will get you hung
- Be courteous. Its just a game. Even is someone is a "baddie", that doesn't mean they're a bad person...
- After you die, you become a ghost. Ghosts post in gray. And they only get one post, which cannot say anything revealing.
- No nonsense posts!
- As the host, I reserve the right to take actions to preserve the integrity of the game, including removing/replacing people and making rule changes. Of course, I will try not to do this, but if it is necessary, I will take appropriate actions.
- Have fun!
- And last but not least: Do not challenge the host AIs...they control your oxygen supply.
The M4F14: (M4F14 have BTSC and know who Robbie the Robot is).
Wincon: Win if everyone except M4F14 are dead.
- AcroBot: Obviously versatile, quickly adapts as it performs its task with reflexes to make most AI computers envious. Likes to be brassie and bold while on missions. Any night, but not 2 in a row, chooses a player that they can either steal the role identity of or frame with their role identity. Does not work on the Space Agent.
- TetraBot: Annoyingly adept and boasts a range of abilities that are a match for anything you you could never wish to meet - an ability to outsmart humans without wasting a single particle. Most computerized or AIs have no chance of stretching this bots ability. Can send a message every night which will be posted in the night post. When the Tetrabot is killed, his role is revealed.
- The MengalaBot: Only exists to control everything. Finds ALL other species abhorent, even if they are helpful. Will give the order to dispatch of anyone who gets in the way, think nothing of it and that's just for fun. Any night, but not 2 in a row, can see the faction Innocent/QA/Zero/Mimic) of a player.
Quantum Accelerators: Time travelers who have come back in time to kill the Mutant and change the course of history. They were sent from different points in the timeline so they don't know each other initially. Must have a majority to kill. Once they reach a majority, they get contact and can kill every night.
Wincon: Kill the Mutant. If they cannot fulfill this objective, I PM them a secondary objective which they must fulfill or they will all be airlocked the next day.
- Electromagnetic enForcer: Can use elecromagnetic waves to hack into the system and get information. PMs me the name of a player each night and I PM their faction (baddie/innocent).
- Gravitational enForcer: The gravitational attraction between the GF and other QAs prevent the GF from being airlocked while in contact with other QAs.
- Nuclear enForcer: Rearranges sub-atomic particles so that if Robbie lie-detects a statement about him, the NF can choose what the answer will be.
Indy #1: Zero: A man who has had so many cybernetic enhancements that he no longer knows whether he is man or machine. He has lost all memory of his life as a human, except that his mission is to kill the Numbers. Currently his target is the Number Seven, he wins by killing Seven. He kills on even nights. Once Seven dies, he is out of the game. Invincible for the first night and day.
Indy #2: The Mimic: An alien who kills his prey and temporarily absorbs their abilities. Chooses a target each odd night to kill and if the target dies, the Mimic gets use of the target's role abilities, including kill/target abilities, the next day or night (depending on whether it is a day ability or night ability). To win, the Mimic must kill and steal the ability of a baddie and satisfy that baddie's win condition while he has the ability (i.e. kill Zero and then kill Seven). The Mimic cannot be killed the first night.
- Saving roles:
- The Med bot: Uses its knowledge base form 31458. All medicine is now practiced by machines (who would want to waste time and money on Med School? ). A few elite programmers continue to update it's database. Picks a target to save each night. Cannot pick the same target to save twice in a row. Can save self only once. Since it does not want to get hacked, it cannot save the Uber-Hacker (save fails).
- The Herbalist: Gains his knowledge from wherever possible, scriptures and laser discs of the 20 and 21st century, makes do the best he can. Sometimes a particular plant has a side effect or does not have the right strength - save has 1/4 chance to fail. Picks a target to save each night. Cannot pick the same target twice in a row. Can save self only once.
- The Mutant: Has a genetic mutation that will lead to the rise of a new race of super-humans in the future. His super-strength allows him to protect against Zero on even nights. However, due to his mutation, he is shunned by the rest of the population and considers Zero to be his only friend. Is invulnerable to the Quantum Accelerators as long as Zero is in the game. Once Zero dies or is removed from the game, his grief weakens him and makes him vulnerable to the QAs.
- Attack roles:
- The BioEngineer: (knows Seven) The woman who created the Number Seven. She keeps a watch on and maintains the upkeep of Seven. As long as the BioEngineer is alive, Seven cannot be killed at night. The BE cannot be lynched.
- Number Seven: A genetically engineered super-soldier who kills for the Innocents. He kills on prime nights.
- The Mad Scientist: No one believed him when he said that time travel was possible. They called him mad and refused to fund him. But he continued his research in secret and has created a disrupter ray that disrupts the particles of anything that is not congruent with the current timespace. But it takes a day to have an effect. He chooses (PMs me) a target each day to shoot with his disrupter ray and if the person is a Quantum Accelerator, their particles are disrupted and they are destroyed. Otherwise, nothing happens.
- Information roles:
- Robbie the Robot: (Is known by M4F14) An unusually humerous robot that has been around for five centuries, gathering knowledge of many human traits and likes to feel he is comfortable around humans. It is in his program to do as ordered,. However he can be a bit of a loose cannon and gets his wires cross - when that day comes he may well self destruct. Its in his nature to protect his 'friends' and without due consideration of the risks gets on with his mission ... while cracking a joke of course. At any point during the day, can PM me a victim to blow up. There is 1/4 chance for each of them to survive. If Robbie is killed at night, there is 2/3 chance it will randomly blow up one if it's attackers. Cannot blow up Zero. Each day, Robbie can lie-detect a TRUE/FALSE statement, but statements that are too ambiguous or direct cannot be tested. If the statement cannot be tested, I will PM them asking for a different statement.
- The Uber-Hacker: A 133t programmer who can hack into the mainframe and discover identities. PMs me the name of a player each day and I PM their role. Can also choose to swap IDs with the player they choose after I tell the UH the role. Swap ID does not work on the Space Agent.
- The Space Agent XM100z: After years of traveling through the galaxies, the Space Agent has developed many useful skills. I flip two coins to determine the action of the Space Agent (Saving, Killing, Discovering role, or free choice of the previous). The Space Agent picks a player and then I tell them what the action is, to which they can either decline or carry out the action. Also, the Space Agent keeps under the radar, and doesn't have a file in the mainframe, so the Acrobot cannot steal from them (the steal fails, but counts as a use) or frame them (same deal).
- The Public Relations Expert (Facidinon): A human trying to keep up with the goings-on in Affinion 7. At anytime (but only once on a particular nth day/night), can PM me a role and I will tell the PRE what the action that role last took was and who they took it on, if the player with that role is alive, or if the player is dead.
- Removal roles:
- The Cybernetic Droid (RX2CU): A being that needs to clone human parts to survive. It can clone in 24 hours before releasing its victim who of course remembers nothing. The CD PMs me the name of a player and that player is removed from voting for the day and removed from discussion for 24 hours (or however many are left in the day).
- The Wraith (Tormidian): A friendly half human/half alien with Robocop style abilities who arrests a person for one night (must PM me the player's name before the day post). The player is let out of prison if he/she can answer a puzzle correctly. The prisoner gets to choose one of three types (math/riddle/cryptic message). If they don't answer the puzzle correctly, they stay in jail and cannot use their ability that night.
- The Mimic steals role abilities, not roles, so it will show up as "Mimic" to discovery roles. If the Mimic kills a QA, then he is counted in the # of QAs the next night and must reach majority to kill. When the Mimic uses a kill ability that it stole, it doesn't get to steal the role ability since the steal role abilities ability is part of the Mimic's kill ability, not part of the kill ability of the person it stole from.
- The only ones who have BTSC in this game are the M4F14 and the Quantum Accelerators if/when they find each other. QA's find each other when two or more target the same player.
- Mekal - [Cybernetic Droid]
- ThunderChicken - [Mutant]
- twoaday/Ocular-Enso - [Wraith]
- Kathleen - [Mad Scientist]
- Crazypainter - [Seven]
- GreyCells - [Space Agent]
- Nayana - [Robbie the Robot]
- AkaSlickster - [BioEngineer]
- Dusty - [Uber-Hacker]
- Sinistral - [PRE]
- taliesin - [Med bot]
- woon - [Herbalist]
Day and Night Posts
|Intro: The Storm Arrives|
|In the Gamma quadrant of the universe lies the Mognmass galaxy - one of the newer galaxies only 6.5 billion years old and born of cosmic dust a young planet that is waiting to reach its full potential. Two suns overlook Bagliov-zen. The second and most distant giving a cooling blue haze adding a purple lush cloud full of plasmal electricity which give power to those within its gravitational grasp. Four moons gather around giving a harmonious balance to the rich ball from which they were spawned. Each is colored uniquely blue, green, red and yellow, reflecting the minerals they contain. Bagliov-zen is still fresh, that is why it was colonized - control of this newly formed orb in space gives access to the elements that are easily available. Plant growth had only began ninety millennia ago; the varieties are diverse already thanks to human interference, the introduction of plants that can react well in this dank dewy atmosphere that can barely sustain human life at this time. Cities are domed to sustain atmospheres. Will Bagliov-zen be forgiving of it's friendly symbiotic inhabitants that will filter it's atmosphere with Bio-infrastructural elements that were introduced three centuries earlier? The removal of hazardous heavy elements found in some patches of abundance will satisfy both inhabitants and planet - or will it?
As the sun sets, the dome of the space colony Affinion 7 casts a long shadow onto the land. The metal supports glisten in the waning sunlight and the translucent material covering the dome refracts more of the light. Inside the dome, the atmosphere and environment of Affinion 7 are controlled by the AIs Y-S4N and L15. These AIs are aware of everything that goes on in the space colony, and have total control over the conditions, making them akin to the gods of Affinion 7. They are the ones who oversee the irrigation systems that allow the artificially grown flora to survive, and they are the ones who maintain the power supply and life support within the space colony. They are also the ones who created the worker bots and then sent them to build the sleek buildings, which are completely made of a material that reflects the light coming in but allows the resident to see outside. Maintenance bots are sent twice a day to clean up the seamless streets of Affinion 7. The sound of birds chirping is artificially synthesized (there are no birds due to the possibility of their damaging the dome) and covers up the background hum of all of the colony's systems. Affinion 7 is a peaceful space colony, where the best and the brightest have converged. But these best and brightest have no idea of the storm that is to come...
Under the cover of twilight stand a group of unusual figures that care nothing for the colors of the sky, the foliage and those that they are about to meet. They are all calm for they know they are the most formidable beings in the universe. In their natural form as they are now, they cannot reflect a single particle of light due to the blackest mass that makes up their unique Quadra-helix DNA. They are more vulnerable than ever in this state of magnaflux rest. Their polynomic flexium compound is strong, pliable though weak in certain conditions where high level doses of partronium fired with interphasing pulsonic bursts will make them weak and easier to destroy. Would the population be able to handle the incredible sight of the dense dark giant shadowy appearance of these transformers? Appearing as nothing, yet can draw looks and almost suck in the viewer like light drawn into a black hole. It is now time, time for action: a skillful clever planned attack on Affinion 7. A plan formed by their leader MangalaBot. There is no question that any order will be obeyed for their leader is focused and callous. He is feared by everyone that has crossed his path. He takes possession of words that describe evil; he cares for no one and no thing. Dispatching his orders without a hint of care or compassion he tells AcroBot to prove his systems are efficient, ordering this skillful, nimble, formidably stealthy and pilfering murder machine to upgrade his systems, have them checked and make ready for the mission that is beginning. AcroBot is ready. Meanwhile TetraBot is still. Simple instructions are given; actually they are complicated and encrypted to a degree that would be near to impossible to decipher by the ultimate computer grand wizard to decipher in a lifetime, for TetraBot it is considered un-testing and the task as good as done. Communication is simple, instructions clear. They take a new form. A form that will best fit this cosmopolitan group of variegated colonists who do not know the connection between these amoral reprobates with iniquity as their motto. Elements that exist on this planet will stabilize their DNA and the transformers want it all. And the price is everything, everything that you could care about. Affinion 7 is about to change....
A holographic star shot across the artificial sky projected onto the dome of Affinion 7. Watching it stood the figure of a man, or was it a machine? The solitary creature didn't know anymore. He had the vague notion that at some point in his past life he had been a man, but now his flesh and blood limbs had been replaced by metal and circuits. His spine had also been re-enforced with titanium alloy and the cybernetic implant that interfaced directly into his brain, making his reflexes faster and numbing the sensation of pain, was made apparent by the metallic piece circumscribing his right eye. His right eye itself had also been replaced by a cybernetic one, which allowed him to see farther and more clearly. However, the cybernetic enhancements had been added sequentially, and acquired by means that the law would not necessarily have deemed appropriate, and hence he had one blue eye (his real one), and one green eye (the cybernetic one). And most of his cybernetic enhancements he had had to implant himself, a feat with a degree of pain that any normal human and even most cyborgs would have been unable to endure, but somehow the pain had seemed barely noticeable to him...at least compared to the previous pain he had suffered. And yet he could not remember the cause of that pain. But it did not matter now. The only thing that mattered was his mission. He had to kill the Numbers. No matter how many Numbers the Corporation (Genevron) created, he would destroy them all. That was his only goal in life, the only reason he had to keep on living. He did not know why he had to kill them, but he knew that he did. That was the only thing he remembered, besides a name...Zero. That was what he was called...or was it what he called himself? No, that did not matter either, he thought as he approached the populated area of Affinion 7. He would go by Zero, and he would kill the numbers until there was only Zero.
Out of Time
It was after curfew, and the streets of Affinion 7 were dark and deserted. So no one saw the burst of light that preceded the appearance of the figure of a woman. For a moment, she wobbled on her legs, attempting to keep her balance. As the disorientation of time travel subsided, she began to take in her surroundings. She was in an alleyway between two buildings that had been built in a style that she remembered reading about in the history holobooks. She had really done it, she had succeeded in going back in time to the set point. Now she had a chance to change her world, to prevent the Mutant Revolution from occurring and being recorded in the history files. But she couldn't do it alone...after all, she was a Quantum Accelerator, a scientist. Only those familiar with all the intricacies of the Quantum Accelerating Device could be trusted to operate it and arrive at the correct time. In order to have the strength to kill her target, she needed to meet up with the other Quantum Accelerators. She would have to blend in with the regular population in order to buy herself time and find her target. She sighed and pushed the 'cloak' button on her QAD. Then she walked into the night...
Masked by the trajectory of the holographic shooting star, a real object broke through the dome and into the colony. The breach was detected immediately by Y-S4N's sensors, and the object was tracked as nanobots were sent to fix the hole in the dome structure. The object landed in a deserted field that was covered with artificially maintained grass and surrounded by artificially grown trees that had recently been transplanted there. A few moments later, a long black leg covered with long sticky hairs came out of the fiery crater. Then another leg, and another, and another... At last the alien creature to which the legs belonged heaved its sleek black body up out of the crater. It glistened in the (artificial) moonlight. The creature turned what must have been it's head one way, then another. A rabbit (which had been bred in vitro) hopped past the crater. In a flash, the creature snatched up the rabbit with two of its hairy legs. It brought its prey up to what must have been it's mouth, and swallowed the squirming animal whole. Seconds later, long fibers came spewing out of what must have been its mouth and the creature used its legs to wrap the fibers around itself, into a cacoon. Interesting, mused the host AI Y-S4N, as it sent gardener bots to repair the damage to the ground. Maybe we won't alert the citizens about this development just yet. Let's see how the clever population deals...
The Calm Before the Storm
Inside the populated area of the space colony, the inhabitants were recharging. The robots had plugged themselves into recharging stations to refresh the power supply in their capacitors. The Med bot was also downloading updates to its broad database of invaluable medical information and defragmenting its hard drive so that it could access the data as quickly as possible. Robbie the Robot was updating its database of invaluable lawyer jokes. The humans (or humanoid creatures) were performing the act of sleeping. The Herbalist was dreaming of running around freely in a garden of plants he had seen in the holographic database of long extinct flora. The Public Relations Expert was having nightmares that all of a sudden all his inside contacts that he had spent so many years cultivating had turned into rabbits. The BioEngineer was tossing and turning in her bed, sleeping the same fitful sleep she had been sleeping for the last 50 years. The Wraith was snoozing on its watch outside the empty prison unit. Outside, under the holographic stars, slept the Space Agent, his dreams filled with memories of all his past adventures traveling across the galaxy. A smile appeared on his face as the shapely aquamarine figure of the "friendly" P1YM4T5 alien species appeared in his mind. Inside a capsule in Genevron Corp Labs, the Number seven slept the deep dreamless sleep that he had been engineered to sleep. But not all the humans (and humanoids) were sleeping...in a dark room under the streets the lights from a monitor flickered as the Uber-Hacker downloaded confidential information from the mainframe and uploaded his own files. Of course, the omniscient and omnipotent AIs L1S and Y-S4N knew what was going on, but they condoned the Uber-Hacker's behavior because they were curious to see what she would do with the information. In another part of the space colony, the Mad Scientist was busy soldering the last circuits in his disrupter ray. As he worked in a mad flurry, he mumbled to himself "I'll show them, I'll show them all!" In yet another part of the space colony, the cybernetic droid was running through the data it had collected on the humans that day and carefully picking out the optimal one that it would choose to clone parts from the next day. Last but not least, the Mutant was huddled in the shadows of an abandoned building unit, shivering, his arms wrapped around his legs. How lonely he felt, how much he wished he had a friend. But all the others called him by that name, "freak", and looked at him with those unbearable disgusted eyes. Suddenly, a shadow appeared outside the open door of the building unit where the Mutant was hiding. A moment later, a figure appeared. The Mutant looked up to see (artificial) moonlight shine off a metallic piece around the figure's eye. Instinctively, the Mutant initially contracted further into the shadows, but as he looked into the creature's eyes, his muscles relaxed. For what he saw emanating from those two inhomogeneously colored eyes was the same thing that he felt had been consuming his own heart: the pain of being absolutely and inextricably alone.
|Night One: Phaze Phases Out|
|Which Came First: the Chicken or the Egghead?
The watch bot moved at a constant speed down a deserted street in the populated area. It's beam of light illuminated the ground (which was maintained in a pristine condition by the maintenance bots) in front of it. A Quantum Accelerator watched and listened breathlessly as the shadows cast by the light moved away from him and the hum of the machinery of the watch bot faded into the distance. He took his Quantum Accelerating Device out of his pocket and glared at it. The act of time traveling must have damaged the tracker, because he could not pick up the signals of any of the other Quantum Accelerators. He cursed to himself under his breath, "Great, trapped in a box like Schrodinger's cat." Well, nothing he could do about it now. He needed to go in search of ThunderChicken. He put the QAD back into his pocket with all his other gadgets and poked his head out of the alley and glanced around to make sure the coast was clear. Then he took a deep breath, and hurried out into the night.
He was so focused on finding his target that he did not notice the shadowy form at the recharge station. It was the Mengalabot, and it was hacking into the mainframe using the interface at the recharge station. It was sending its message to all the system computers and all the personal computer stations. It also had configured the weather holobroadcast to give its message: "Good night, Innocents. You're not going to wake up from this nightmare...", which flashed across the news holograms that the QA passed as he crossed the main square of Affinion 7 in his fruitless search.
On the other side of Affinion 7's main square, another QA, who had been on the track of his own target, paused to look up at the message playing across the holoscreen. Well, I can't wake up if I don't have time to actually go to sleep, he begrudged. He shook his head vigorously in an attempt to shake off his fatigue. It was really too bad that they haven't discovered the compound C4FF31N3 yet. The QA sighed wistfully. Well, I'd better get going, he thought and began walking again. Now where the h3ll is Phaze?
That Warm and Fuzzy Feeling
The (holographic) moon was high in the sky. Phaze walked slowly around the field, squinting in the darkness and glancing down and around in the artificial grass. Now where did I drop that d4mn i-holophone? He wondered. He was so entranced in his search that he did not hear the rustling of the (artificial) grass under large feet as the creature came up behind him. Just then, simulated clouds covered the holographic moon, blocking out the (artificial) moonlight and casting him into darkness. Suddenly, Phaze felt something warm and wet at the back of his neck. All the muscles in his neck tensed and he turned around, very slowly, and reached up to feel something furry and soft. As the (simulated) clouds passed, the (artificial) moonlight shone down to reveal...a gigantic rabbit???
"Uh huh..." he muttered to himself, breathing a sigh of relief. "I guess there must be a glitch in the animal breeding protocol." Phaze stroked the rabbit's cheek. He smiled softly as the creature tilted its head and stared at him with its large black eyes. "You know," he said to it, "You're kind of cute. I wonder if they'll let me keep you..."
The rabbit nuzzled it's large soft nose into Phaze's neck. The creature's whiskers tickled him, causing him to giggle and twist his neck away, so that he did not notice the black things that were starting to protrude out of the creature's neck. As his head rotated, the glare of the (artificial) moonlight off something on the ground caught his eye. My i-holophone! he thought, and bent down to pick it up. The black things extended themselves, forming long hairy black legs.
He grabbed his i-holophone off the ground and rubbed it on the side of his pants. Good, it's not broken, he reflected, this thing cost me an arm and a leg... The thought was choked from him by the sensation of his life being squeezed out of him as the creature's legs encircled him tightly. Phaze was immobilized with fear as the creature brought him up to it's mouth. The i-holophone slipped from his hand and fell onto the ground right in front of the creature. The creature leaned forward, crushing it with a loud CRUNCH...
Moments later...there was another, louder, CRUNCH...
Minutes later, maintenance bots came and swept the pieces of the i-holophone off the (artificial) grass, being careful not to disturb the giant cocoon in the center of the field.
The Lamentation of Brandon
In the southeast quadrant, the figure of a human crept up behind a red hovermobile that was parked outside a home unit. The (artificial) moonlight glinted off its metallic top, creating a golden red glow. The Quantum Accelerator paused, listening for any sounds of activity. There were none. The QA reached to grasp the phaser in her belt with her left hand, then gathered up her courage and rushed up to the door of the home unit. She waved her hand over the doorbell sensor and tensed as she heard the sound reverberating inside.
"Who is it?" a voice called out from inside the home unit. Footsteps approached the door.
The QA opened her mouth to speak, but no sound came out. She was too nervous. Stop it, she told herself, remember, you're doing this to save Jed!. She cleared her throat and replied "I'm here with your pizza pi!".
The door of the home unit slid open. The man had a holovision remote in his hand and a confused look on his face. "But I didn't order any pi?" The he sighed. "Aiz, the system is always messing up when it comes to my data. The 1R5 bots just called me saying they needed to audit my finance credits. Why does everyone suspect me..."
As the man was grumbling to himself, disgruntled, the QA drew out her phaser and pointed it at him. She tried to control her shaking hand. "I have come to kill you, Brandonb." she said in a trembling voice. She steadied the phaser with her other hand and prepared to shoot.
"Wait, wait!" the man protested angrily, "I'm not Brandonb! I'm BrandonA! The system must have my address and his switched! Like I said, it's always messing up my data!"
The QA stopped and squinted, studying the man's face carefully. He was right. He was not Brandonb. She lowered the phaser. "Uh, oops, sorry.." she mumbled and turned and scuttled away. "Hey!" the man called after her. "Do you think you could something about the 1R5 bots...?"
Stealing a (Base 2)
At the other corner of Affinion 7, the Acrobot was rifling through the desk drawer in a sparsely furnished apartment unit. It had been searching the apartment unit for the last hour but could find nothing. Suddenly, its audio sensors detected the sound of the electronic lock on the door unlatching. The Acrobot froze and morphed into a chair. Seconds later, a man entered the apartment unit. The man tossed his polyfiber jacket onto the L4zy60y and walked over to the refrigerator. He reached his hand through the hydrostatic door (a curtain of moving fluid that kept the cold air inside) and came out with a bottle of P3P51 soft drink. He had just removed the cap and put the bottle up to his lips when a beeping sound from his jacket pocket caused him to halt. The man walked over to where he had thrown it and took an object out of the pocket. "Damn," he grumbled to himself. "Duty calls..." He capped the bottle and stuck it back through the hydrostatic door of the refrigerator, snatched up his jacket and traipsed out the door to the apartment unit.
After the door slid closed, the Acrobot returned to its default form. Having seen the insignia on the object the man had taken out of his pocket, the Acrobot realized why it had not found anything to steal: the man was the Space Agent.
The Past and Future Zero
Zero stalked up to the entrance of a tall building unit. The Neon-7 sign read "Genevron Corp Labs". It had been pertinent of him to ask the huddled Mutant where the Corporation was located. The timorously replied directions had led him here. Zero ripped off the door of the Genevron Corp Labs building unit in one smooth motion. Electric sparks were emitted from the torn wires as Zero advanced through the newly created orifice.
The cyborg did not notice the unusual silence as he went into the building. Unbeknownst to him, Y-S4N had opened the switch to the alarm circuit of the building to keep them from sounding. This should be interesting, the AI mused.
Inside, Zero walked by a maintenance bot that was simultaneously sweeping, vacuuming, and waxing the floor. He passed the doors to several lab units but he did not pause. Zero knew what he was looking for: the secret lab where the Numbers were created. At the end of the corridor, he came face to face with a wall. Zero held up his hand to the wall and applied pressure at an exact location. The wall parted at a seam that was invisible to the human eye (and most cyborg eyes) and slid back to reveal a hidden passage. Zero did not know how he knew about the passage or even the existence of the secret lab, but he did, just like he knew what he had to do: kill the Numbers.
As Zero entered the first room of the secret lab, the sight of the beakers and holoscreens displaying the human anatomy triggered a strange sensation in the base of his head, where his titanium alloy enforced spine interfaced with his brain. It was as if part of his mind was trying to recall some memory which another part of him mind was trying to suppress...
A scream from an inner room caught his attention, and the sensation subsided. Zero moved towards where the sound had came from and came to a stop inside the doorway. What he saw was a shadowy form hovering over the figure of a woman in a white lab coat. Startled by Zero's appearance, the shadowy form pulled back. It lost all of its form and became a shadow which disappeared as it melded with the other shadows in the dim room.
Zero walked to where the woman was lying. He bent down and picked her up in his arms. The name embossed on the lab coat said "Akaslickster, Senior BioEngineer". The woman's eyes opened halfway and were filled with a dreamy faraway expression. "You..." she said. She weakly lifted her hand and placed it on Zero's cheek. "I should have known my guilt-ridden conscience would create this hallucination to haunt me in my last moments." The BioEngineer coughed, then continued, "Even so, I want to tell you how sorry I am for everything we did to you. I could never forgive myself for what we did, and I continued my work with Genevron in order to prevent anything like that from happening again..." her voice faded and her eyes began to close, "poor Miria..."
An intense wave of pain pulsed through Zero's body at the sound of that name. He dropped the lifeless body to the ground and thrashed his arms around, knocking beakers off the lab benches. The falling glass containers crashed and shattered, covering the newly swept, vacuumed, and wax floor with polychromatic liquids. Zero's stolid cyborg body jerked and rammed into the wall, causing it to crack and the room to shake.
That should be enough, decided Y-S4N, who closed the switch to the alarm circuits.
Outside, as the alarms whined, a shadow glided away from the Genevron Corp Labs building and into a deserted hovermobile lot. The outline of the shadow wavered and its shaped distorted. It grew taller and began to reflect more of the light that shone on it. Finally, the form stabilized and solidified. It was a M4F14. It had just killed Akaslickster, the BioEngineer. If it could have had feelings, it would have been proud of itself. After all, it had just successfully dispatched an important and valuable citizen. And even if it could have been tired, there was no time to rest; there was much more destruction to be done.
|Night Two: Overcooked Chicken|
|Take-out (of the game) Pizza
The Cybernetic Droid had been stalking its prey all day. It had done his research on all the possible choices and it had determined which one was the fittest to be its template for his new organs. The man had all the qualities the CD needed: he was clever, yet calm and decisive in the face of adversity. Yes, this was the one.
As Dawh walked down the street, carrying a pizza box which contained the pepperoni pizza pi he planned to have for dinner, suddenly he felt a pair of cold metal arms grab him around the waste. The pizza box dropped to the ground and the pizza inside fell out. "Man, you're going to have to pay for that!" he yelled at the CD indignantly. The CD stared at him with its hollow eyes for a second before walking away with Dawh in its grasp, stepping on the pizza as it went towards its hidden lair.
2 B or not 2 B
The real sun setting was mimicked by the holographic sun set inside the dome of Affinion 7. Golden red rays bathed the crowd that was lined up along the pristinely maintained street as the guard bots walked Brandonb towards the airlock. He had been calm and serene whilst the crowd had began yelling for his blood. But this calmness had led some to yell for it harder. Now, as the wavelengths of light transitioned from yellow to orange to red to infrared, panic began to rear itself in his shifty-looking blue eyes.
He stopped along the path and turned to the citizens. "Wait!" he cried, "I can be useful to you! It's better for you to keep me alive!" His head twisted around as he made his plea to the people (and various robots). But none of them flinched. They are stared at him with cold, hungry eyes.
The guard bots prodded him to continue moving. Defeated, Bb limped towards his imminent demise. CP, who was standing by the airlock, with her hand on the control panel, turned the gaze of her stony blue eyes to him. "Sorry, Bb," she said to him, "I wasn't going to press the button, but since you're claiming to be some freakish man-eating alien in bunny's clothing, I guess I have to."
Bb shrugged, all the fight gone out of him. Maybe I should have changed that avatar after all, he thought, oh well, too late now...
He lost his balance for a second after he was shoved into the airlock by the guard bots. After he regained it, he turned around to face his prosecutors. "Goodbye, cruel world, goodbye, cruel fate..." he began.
"Yeah, yeah..." CP pressed the button to close the inner doors of the airlock. She raised her hand and prepared to slam the giant red [OPEN] button for the outer doors, and...
"Wait, wait!" called a voice. CP's hand stopped in mid-air a centimeter away from the button. She and everyone else turned to see a thin figure come trying to push it's way through the crowd. It was the Wraith.
Having made it to where CP was standing, the Wraith stopped and bent over to catch it's breath. "Why are you here?" asked CP. Still panting, the Wraith held up an official-looking holo-document. CP took it and read it silently. After she was finished, she sighed and pressed the button to release the inner doors.
The Wraith stood up straight and took the holo-document back from CP. He turned to the crowd and declared: "I have come to arrest Bb...so you can't lynch him today, sorry guys!" The citizens let out a communal cry of frustration. They wanted to see someone implode today! But the Wraith graced the citizens with his cute, silly, lopsided smile, which melted the their antagonism like ice cream (made using liquid nitrogen, of course).
Bb looked at him, stunned. "You mean I'm not going go die?" he asked, disbelieving.
"Well, you might still die," said the Wraith with the same beneficent smile "Just not today...come on, let's head over to the prison unit."
The crowd dispersed as they made their way back towards the populated area of Affinion 7. As they walked down a side street towards the prison unit, Bb tripped over a man propped up against the side of a building. He cursed under his breath, but kept moving.
The man opened his eyes. His vision was blurry and his head felt groggy. The last thing he remembered was walking around, contemplating the pleasure of eating some delicious pizza, when...
Dawh looked around and frowned deeply. He was really hungry. Now where did that pizza go?
|Night Two: Overcooked Chicken|
|Reading the Signs
The (artificial) moonlight streamed in through the window of the abandoned building unit. On one side of the window sat Zero, stoic, lost in thought. On the other side sat the Mutant, his eyes fixed on Zero, his brows furrowed in concern. Suddenly, Zero stood up and headed for the exit. "Where are you going?" the Mutant called out to Zero's back.
Zero stopped in the doorway, his silhouette outlined by the (artificial) moonlight. He turned his head so that his profile was illuminated and replied tersely "Out to kill."
"Don't!" exclaimed the Mutant. "Why do you have to kill? Please don't go..." But without another word, Zero's form disappeared from the doorway.
As he walked down the street, the events of the night before replayed through Zero's mind. Why had the woman apologized to him? Had she been someone he had known in his past lifetime? And, that name...Miria...why did he feel such an excruciating pain in his chest every time he thought of it? While engulfed in his ruminations, Zero came across a man leaning on a sign that said "Dead End Ahead". The man was talking on his i-holophone.
Sinistral was a new arrival in Affinion 7. So far, he had been having a great time. "Yeah," he told his girlfriend on the i-holophone, "I entered the 41Z3N look-alike contest today. It was a lot of fun, and I was fifth..."
He never got to finish his sentence. The mention of a Number had perturbed Zero out of his thoughts. The command kill resounded through Zero's mind. He grabbed the bottom of the sign post and tore it out of the ground. He pivoted it back behind him and then swung it forward with all his might.
Seconds later, Sinistral's body crumpled as Sinistral's head rolled on the ground a few meters away.
In the southeast quadrant, the figure of a human crept up behind a red hovermobile that was parked outside a home unit. The (artificial) moonlight glinted off its metallic top, creating a golden red glow. The Quantum Accelerator paused, listening for any sounds of activity. There were none. The QA reached to grasp the phaser in his belt with his left hand. He took a deep breath and then stealthily approached the door of the home unit. He listened for sounds that would indicate that his target had visitors. Hearing none, he waved his hand over the doorbell sensor and stood steady as he heard the sound reverberating inside.
"Who is it?" a voice called out from inside the home unit. Footsteps approached the door.
The QA opened his mouth and calmly replied "I'm with the 1R5, I need to talk with you."
The door of the home unit slid open. The man looked at the QA with a confused and annoyed look on his face. "D4mn, and I was hoping that woman would do something about you guys." The man sighed. "I must really be in trouble if they actually sent a human to talk to me. But like I told you guys, it's all a mistake, the system is messing up my data..."
As the man continued grumbling to himself, disgruntled, the QA whipped out his phaser and pointed it in the man's face. "I have come to kill you, Brandonb." he stated calmly. He flipped the safety off on his phaser and prepared to shoot.
"Not this again!" the man threw up his hands in frustration, "Like I told the woman, I'm not Brandonb! I'm BrandonA! I wish the system would fix our addresses already!"
The QA paused, taken aback by the outburst. The man shook his head impatiently, then reached up to open a panel on the wall next to the door. "Here, I have her image recorded on my doorbell holocam." He pressed a button and the image of the female QA was projected in front of the male QA.
The usually stolid QA nearly dropped his phaser at what he saw. "Mom?" he murmured softly.
BrandonA didn't hear the QA's words, he was too busy lamenting his own misfortune. "Aiz," he sighed. "Well, I guess you're not really with the 1R5 then..." Then his eyes lit up as he hit upon an idea. "Well, do you think you could do something to get them off my back?" he asked eagerly. "You seem like a smart guy, I'm sure you can figure out a solution and give me some peace for once..."
The QA stared blankly at the pathetic man for a moment. Then he shrugged. He lifted his phaser once more, flipped the switch to [stun], and pulled the trigger. He sighed. Now if only I could afford myself some peace...and some sleep!
A Wrong Number
Seven could not understand why liquid had been spilling out of the eyes of the people around him. He could not understand why they had looked at him in that way with their wet eyes. His enhanced mental functions could recognize that the expressions they were directing at him were called "pity". He also knew they sent him these looks because his caretaker, the BioEngineer, had died, had, as they whispered (not realizing his enhanced hearing picked up everything) "been viciously slaughtered" by an unknown assailant. The lab had also been destroyed, "as if by some mad beast". When they said this, they had what he recognized as "fear" in their eyes. But this was not an emotion he could feel. Neither was "grief" or "loss". He had been engineered to be the perfect (or as close to perfect as they could do in release 7.0) super-soldier, and emotions just got in the way.
He felt nothing as he thought about the task at hand. He was going to kill as he had been ordered to by Genevron Corp. It was for the sake of protecting the citizens of Affinion 7, or so he had been told, and having no sense of right and wrong, he had no desire to ask why. Instead, he simply followed their orders, efficiently and wordlessly. That was how he had come to be outside the door of a tall apartment unit building. He looked up at the sleek seamless exterior. He could see the reflection of the holographic moon on the wall's shiny material. Seven counted the floors, 20 in total. His target was on the fourth floor. He mentally calculated how much time it would take to climb the steps as opposed to the average time it would take to wait for and ride up the elevator and decided that he could maximize efficiency by taking the stairs. So he did.
Since everyone was asleep (or suppose to be at least), the stairway and hallways were dark. However, as Seven reached the fourth floor, his genetically enhanced hearing detected a heartbeat, slightly irregular, coming from a creature in the dark. He used echo-location to determine the creature to be in front of the exact apartment unit he was heading to. Using his superior muscle control, he made his steps imperceptible to human hearing as he approached. As he closed in on the creature and the apartment unit, his superior vision detected the outline of a humanoid form. As Seven had intended, the creature had apparently not noticed his arrival. Without giving it a chance to make a sound, Seven grabbed the creature by the neck. He heard a choking sound, and then the body went limp in his hands. Seven tossed the body aside and entered the apartment unit using the Master Keycard that Genevron had provided him.
The inside of the apartment unit was sparsely furnished. The remains of a microwave dinner was sitting on the counter. Advancing to the bedroom unit, Seven's heightened senses allowed him to avoid stepping on a bottle of H2Ofina water that lay on the ground.
Even if he had stepped on the bottle, his target would not have awakened. Onetruth was sleeping deeply and soundly in her bed when the cold hand of Seven grabbed her throat and applied crushing force. Onetruth struggled, her arms and legs thrashing wildly. She managed to kick Seven squarely in the side, but he did not flinch. After all, he could not feel pain.
"Stop," a voice choked from the doorway to the bedroom unit. It was the creature who had been on guard in the hallway...it was the Mutant! "Please," the Mutant pleaded, "Please, Zero, don't kill her..." The Mutant came closer to the two figures. "Zero, I know you're not really a bad person...I can see the pain and loneliness in your eyes...please, please let me help you!" With this plea, the Mutant flung himself at Seven, knocking the super-soldier to the ground. Onetruth gasped as she tried to catch her breath. She patted around to search for a weapon to use. Nothing.
Meanwhile, the Mutant and Seven were rolling around the floor, in each other's death grip. The Mutant got the upper hand, pinning Seven tp the ground. "I can't let you do it, Zero, I can't..." but his words stopped as the (artificial) moonlight illuminated Seven's flawless face. "...You're not him, are you?" the Mutant asked, his grip on Seven's arms loosening "You look so much like him, but your eyes are different...cold..." In a burst of strength, Seven managed to knock the Mutant off himself and forcefully into the wall which was also a window to the outside. The wall/window shattered and the Mutant fell out of the apartment unit and to the ground four stories below.
Undaunted, Seven lifted himself up and moved walked over to finish off his target. Again, he grabbed her by the neck and lifted her up, squeezing hard. He could feel the last life going out of her, when...beep beep...
Seven took out his 633P3R device with his free hand and brought it up to the (artificial) moonlight. It was a text holo-message: the target had been changed. His hand loosened its steel grip on Onetruth's neck. She collapsed to the floor, panting heavily and inhaling greedily. Without looking at her, Seven turned and walked back out the door.
The Next Phaze of Development
A maintenance bot rolled down the street, sweeping, vacuuming, and waxing at the same time. It passed by an alley where a Quantum Accelerator stood silently, her body pressed to the side of the building that she had seen ThunderChicken walking into earlier. She waited, breathlessly, for him to come out. Her nervousness caused her sense of hearing to become more alert than it usually was, allowing her to notice the soft footsteps that approached her from behind. She spun around and froze, stunned. "You...?" she finally gasped out. "But I thought you were dead?"
The other "QA" shook its head. The creature could mimic the outward appearance of its previous victim, but it could not reproduce the voice. So it could not speak. Fortunately for it, it did not have to. The female QA was so relieved to have finally found a comrade that she did not notice the lack of vocal contribution. "Well," she said, her voice high-pitched, "I'm glad you're here. I guess we should get to work."
Taking her partner's silence as assent, the QA made the motion to move forward. She turned around the corner of the building and...
"OW!" cried ThunderChicken as he walked straight into the QA. "Hey watch where you're going!" he sneered, then began mumbling to himself "aiz, I'm having a terrible night..."
The QA blinked, disbelieving...had she finally managed to find her target? She stood motionless for a second, unsure what to do. The other "QA" made a soft noise behind her, bringing her back to her senses. She shook her head to clear it, and then reached for her phaser. "ThunderChicken, I'm here to kill you..." she declared as she raised her phaser to his head. But before she could finish her action or her sentence, she was knocked to the ground by a stampeding force. It was Seven.
ThunderChicken looked relieved. "You're here to kill the QA and save me, right?" he asked the super-soldier. "I guess you're not such a bad guy after all..." He raised his arm to give Seven a pat on the back, but before he could finish his action or his sentence, Seven performed his patented neck grab and slammed ThunderChicken into the wall. TC choked for air and tried to pry Seven's steel grip off his neck using both of his hands, to no avail. "Helllppp..." he choked.
The female QA sat on the ground, still dazed by Seven's attack. The other "QA" rammed its body into Seven, knocking him off balance. The other "QA" then threw a jab at Seven's face with his right hand, which connected with Seven's jaw in a loud crunch. The female QA watched in awe. Wow, she thought, this guy is really strong! She frowned. I'm such a bumbling moron, maybe I should just let him handle it...
Seven intercepted the next punch, catching the "QA"'s right fist in his left hand. Then he raised his right hand and crushed it into the "QA"'s cheek. Its neck twisted with a sickening cracking sound. The female QA let out a loud gasp. She shuddered in fear at the strength of her adversary. Bringing her knees up to her chest, she began shaking uncontrollably...then she heard a voice in her head, Jed's voice. It has to be you, the voice said. Yes, it had to be her. Only she could save the future, only she could save Jed. She had to! She gathered up as much strength as she could, more strength than she ever knew she had. She pushed herself up into a crouching position, and then she lunged at Seven. Surprised, Seven backed up, tripping over the body of the other "QA" and toppling to the ground. The female QA pummeled his face with wild, furious punches.
Meanwhile, ThunderChicken had taken advantage of their mutual distraction to crawl away from the commotion and around the corner into the alley. Once safely out of sight, he managed to bring himself to his feet. He brushed off his scuffed pants and took a deep breath. But he couldn't afford to feel secure yet, he had to get as far away from his attackers as possible. TC hurried, limping, towards the other end of the alley and into a side street. He turned left and passed by several more streets, then turned right. He crossed diagonally through the main square of Affinion 7 and past three more streets before he arrived at his intended destination: the prison unit. He stopped and panted in front of the steps. There has to be some guard bots here, or the Wraith, he thought to himself. He looked around but didn't see anyone, except the maintenance bot that was sweeping, vacuuming, and waxing the floor at the same time. What he did see was a holo-sticky-note projected onto the front door. He approached and groaned as he read it: Prisoner's been let out. Gone home for the night. -Your friendly neighborhood Wraith.
TC stepped back from the door and sighed. He sat down on the steps, exhausted from his cross-colony trek. Well, at least I've lost my attackers, he thought, leaning back on his arms and staring up at the (holographic) moon. It was good to be alive. It was good to enjoy the meticulously monitored and filtered night air. It was good to feel the simulated breeze on his sweaty skin. It was good to look at the holographic stars and try to see the shapes that the ancient texts had called "constellations". It was good to hear the mechanical hum of the maintenance bot that was sweeping, vacuuming, and waxing at the same...
Time? Suddenly something occurred to TC. Wait...I thought maintenance bots weren't suppose to be out at this hour...
Fear and realization crept into TC's eyes as he lowered them to gaze at where the maintenance bot had been working. But it wasn't a maintenance bot now. It had lost its form and was a dark amorphous shadow. It advanced on him, slowly, and the way it absorbed the light instead of reflecting it made the shadow seem like an apparition floating towards him. It stopped a meter away from where he was sitting.
TC held his breath. He had to stay calm. Maybe he could reason with it? No, that seemed unlikely. No, he needed to make a run for it. Yes, that was his only choice now. He waited and watched it for a minute, then two, then three...Then he took a deep breath. Alright, ready, set, GO!
He turned and sprung off his legs and...RIP!
TC's body was suspended in midair. Drip...drip...was the sound of his blood hitting the (newly swept, vacuumed, and waxed) ground. Finally, he turned his head jerkily down to stare at the metal spike going through his chest. The M4F14 had transformed into a lance, which now ran through ThunderChicken's heart. TC closed his eyes, and his life phased out.
|Day Two: The End of the Beginning|
| Craving More Take-out (of the game)
Having also cloned Dawh's taste for pizza, the Cybernetic Droid headed towards the Pizza Pi Palace as dinner time arrived. It had been pondering who to clone next...Bb? Nah, it was very vain and didn't want to look like a Man-eating ArachnoBunny...Sinistral? Oh wait, he had been killed before his first day on Affinion 7. Too bad, too. Sinistral had some really amazing qualities (besides the fact he looked exactly like 41Z3N). It could always clone Dawh again, but the pizza cravings it got were annoying...
Meanwhile, Onetruth was just exiting the Pizza Pi Palace, carrying an extra large pepperoni pizza pi. She needed some comfort food after the terrible day she'd been having. She'd almost been strangled by Seven and now everyone was itching to airlock her. What else could go wrong?
"Ow!" she cried as the CD ran straight into her. She lifted the lid of the pizza box to make sure her pi hadn't been crushed. It hadn't. Well, she thought, at least something hasn't gone wrong...
The smell of the pizza wafted up to the CD's cloned nose. Its cloned salivary glands began to water. In a flash, it grabbed the box and tugged.
"Hey!" Onetruth yelled, tugging back. "Let go of my pizza!"
It was a stalemate as both sides were desperately in need of the cheesy meaty pi. At last, a fluorescent light bulb went off above the CD's head and it had the solution. It grabbed Onetruth along with the pizza and turned to head back to its cloning lair.
The End of the Beginning
The air of Affinion 7, which was meticulously maintained to have the optimal levels of humidity, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and trace gases, was filled with anticipation. The citizens had been denied their air-locking yesterday, and today their blood-lust was bursting forth from their veins (biological and electrical). They were taking no chances of letting the prisoner escape this time. As the guard bots led the QA down the path to the air-lock, the crowd closed in behind them.
"Wait!" someone shouted. Everyone spun around, glaring at the person who had called out. Taliesin shrunk back, and meekly continued "wait, we've just found another one..."
Two more guard bots dragged another figure out onto the path. They tossed this QA on the ground, next to where her compatriot was standing. The male QA offered her a hand, which she took. As he helped her up, their eyes met and he froze for a moment, staring at her face. She brushed herself off and then looked at him curiously. He shook his head. "I'm sorry," he said, shrugging, "it's just that you look so much like someone I know..."
And now he did know. He now knew why his parents had known exactly what to do when the Mutant Revolution began. He now knew why they had had the secret laboratory hidden in their basement. He now knew how they had had the technology ready. He now understood how they could give him instructions to the exact point in the time-line he needed to go to. He now understood what they had meant when they had murmured to each other "I guess we didn't stop it after all, we just delayed it...". And he now understood why they had hugged him so tightly before they had sent him on his way, as if his very existence was in danger, and told him "We believe in you, son. The future is in your hands now, and we know you will do us proud."
The female QA gave him a confused smile. Then she tilted her head and inspected his face more carefully. "Actually," she said slowly, "you kind of look like someone I know as well...you have the same nose and the same chin...but your eyes are completely different..."
Guess you haven't looked in a mirror lately, the male QA wanted to reply. But he didn't. Instead, he offered his arm to her. Behind them, the crowd was becoming more and more impatient. They could contain their thirst for blood no longer and had begun to throng forward. The guard bots tried to keep them back, but it was a losing battle. Someone in the crowd threw a P3P51 bottle at them. The male QA moved his body forward to shield the female QA. The bottle hit him on the cheek, leaving a long scratch.
"Are you alright?" asked the female QA, wiping off the blood with her sleeve. The warm (artificial) rays of the setting (holographic) sun bathed the pair in a golden glow. Their outlines shimmered in the beautiful orange light. The male QA nodded. The Mutant was dead, and everything would be alright...at least for now. And if the time-line were somehow screwed up again, well...
The male QA took a deep breath of resolved and smiled slightly. The female QA smiled back in the same way. She took his arm, and they began walking together towards the air-lock. As they passed through the inner doors, the crowd cheered leeringly. As the inner doors were closed, the crowd erupted in gleeful cries. The Quantum Accelerators locked eyes with one another. Well, thought the male QA, if the time-line needs fixing again, we'll be back to do it.
The cheering grew louder as CP raised her hand to push the red [OPEN] button for the outer doors. She slammed her fist down. The outer doors of the air-lock opened.
As the two figures floated up into space, the sounds of the citizens of Affinion 7 faded from their ears. The two were holding each other's arms. The male QA gave the female QA a smile. It was a sad, loving smile, a smile that was familiar to the female QA. She had hoped she would be able to see that smile one last time, and her hopes had been fulfilled. The same farewell smile that prefaced her entrance into Affinion 7 also preluded her exit.
The lifeless bodies of Onetruth and Dawh drifted up, up, up, and into oblivion.
|Night Three: Flowers for the Dead|
"Yeah, I'm heading out too in a few minutes!" the technician called back. He waved as Ben Law turned to leave. The technician waved his hand over the sensor to close the cabinet that stored the products and filled out the appropriate blanks on his holo-clipboard. Then he pressed the button to turn off the projection of the holo-clipboard, leaving a small black cube in his hand. He walked into a side room and placed the cube next to several other identical cubes. Finally he turned off all machines and all the lights using the hand sensors and exited the plant.
Meanwhile, Ben Law was walking along his usual route home when he came upon a large smattering of glass shards on the sidewalk. He paused and looked up to see a large jagged hole in one of the apartment units on the fourth floor. Strange, he thought, I wonder what happened here? Oh well, Y-S4N or L1S will probably send maintenance bots over to clean it up soon. He shrugged and continued on his way.
As he turned the corner, his eye fell on another strange sight. There was a large lump lying in the middle of the street. As he approached, he recognized the lump as a humanoid form. "Hey, you alright?" he asked loudly. There was no response. He bent down and scrutinized the body. The limbs were limp like those "rag-dolls" he had read about in the history files. The neck was twisted in an impossible position and the features of the face were contorted. Ben Law carefully reached out a hand to shake the man's shoulder. The body didn't move.
Ben Law breathed in and was about to stand up when suddenly the man's eyes opened wide. This startled Ben Law and he fell backwards onto his behind. A long, hairy black leg shot out of the body. Then another, and another and another. Ben Law's eyes widened in fear as the alien creature loomed over him. The ferocious creature folded out the flaps of its mouth, displaying concentric circular rows of razor sharp fangs. It lowered what must have been its head towards Ben Law until its colored teeth were directly in front of Ben Law's eyes. He cringed as the pungent smell of its breath reached his nose. Ben Law closed his eyes. Would this be the end?
As he waited for his demise, Ben Law began to notice that another smell was mixing in with the rancid smell of the creature's breath. The new smell was herbal and refreshing, and it was getting stronger. He opened his eyes to see...a bouquet of flowers in between him and the creature?
The creature shrank back, letting out a high pitched whine. The fragrance of the herbs tortured its sensitive olfactory glands. The creature thrashed its long legs about wildly in the air. For a moment, Ben Law thought he would be crushed, but instead the creature turned and scurried away.
Ben Law breathed in a deep sigh of relief and turned to thank his savior. But the person was gone. All that was left in the street was a spray of herbs and pink flowers.
Sitting Down on the Job
GC walked by a watch bot patrolling the streets. He nodded to it and it passed him without incident. A moment later, he saw Taliesin heading in the opposite direction on the other side of the street. GC smiled and waved. Taliesin waved back and hurried along. Next, GC passed by the Neon-7 sign of the Pizza Pi Palace. He realized he was a little hungry, but unfortunately, it was several hours past closing. GC began to think about what he would eat. He was something of a gourmand, and soon he was lost in his ruminations.
"Oof!" GC cried as he tripped over an object in his path. Rubbing his shin, he looked at what he had fallen over. It was a chair. Who would leave a chair in the middle of the sidewalk? GC wondered.
Since his leg was hurting and he was somewhat tired from walking, GC decided to take a seat in the chair. He lifted his pant leg to inspect the damage. There was no blood, but he knew there would be one h3ll of a bruise in the morning. Well, he'd better get up and head home so that he could put some 01ntm3nt on it. GC pulled his pant leg back into place and stood up...or at least, he tried to. But instead, he fell over, since there were now bands constraining his legs to the legs of the chair. Where did those come from? he wondered, bewildered. Unfortunately for him, all his questions were answered in the next moment as the form of the chair shimmered and morphed...into a M4F14. The M4F14 shadow chair stretched to cover and trap GC by the neck. Then it elongated vertically and finally solidified to reveal something GC vaguely remembered reading about in the history files. If his memory was correct, it was called...a guillotine.
As Taliesin walked into his apartment building unit, he though he heard what sounded like a blade whirling through air and a slicing sound. He shook his head. It had to be his imagination. He rode the elevator up to the fourteenth floor where his apartment unit was. As he got out of the elevator, he noticed the sliding electronic door of his apartment unit opening and closing rythmetically. By the wires sticking out, he could see that someone had broken the sensor panel. Taking advantage of when the door was in the open state, Taliesin slid into his apartment unit. He groaned at what he saw there. It had been ransacked by the Acrobot. Resignedly, Taliesin moved over to the window to pull the curtains closed manually, and glanced out onto the city. His apartment overlooked the nanobot manufacturing plant and a movement caught his eye. He thought he had seen a figure walking out of the facility. A few moments later all the lights in the facility went dark.
Oh, cr4p! Thought Bb. But he managed to stay composed in his usual demeanor. "Come on," he said in a friendly tone, "you don't want to kill me, not really. I can be so useful to you!" Bb walked up to Seven confidently and put his arm around the man's shoulder. He gave the super-soldier his most winning grin. "What you say we make a deal? I have lots to offer..."
Seven's features did not change. The super-soldier simply turned his head to cast his gaze upon Bb. Then (you guessed it!), Seven grabbed Bb's neck and began to squeeze. Bb struggled, trying to loosen Seven's death grip, to no avail. Then Bb changed strategies and kicked the super-soldier as hard as he could in the gut. Seven doubled over in response to the electrical signals of self-preservation being sent through his nerves, although he felt no pain. Taking advantage of this distraction, Bb managed to throw off Seven's hold and turned and ran. A few seconds later, Seven recovered and bounded after him. Bb was fast, but he was hampered by the pain in his stomach. Seven's muscular genetically engineered legs were able to catch up with Bb within three colony blocks, just after passing the nanotech manufacturing plant. Seven tackled Bb to the ground and they rolled around (but didn't get dirty due to the meticulous maintenance of Affnion 7's streets by Y-S4N and L1S).
With Bb's disadvantage and Seven's genetically engineered strength, the super-soldier had the upper hand. He overpowered and pinned Bb to the ground, then smashed his fist into the side of Bb's head, crushing Bb's cheekbone. Bb's howl of pain reverberated through the (perfectly monitored) night air. Seven lifted his arm again to deliver the final blow.
Suddenly, the super-soldier was thrown off Bb by a powerful force. Bb's blurred vision could make out a form in the (artificial) moonlight. It was a humanoid female form. The super-soldier stood up from where he had been tossed, shaking his head. The female stalked up to Seven. Seven threw a punch at her with all his strength. The female effortlessly caught the super-soldier's fist and twisted it, forcefully, breaking Seven's wrist. The electrical signals for the pain Seven could not feel raced through his arm, and he crouched over. The female let go of Seven's arm. She spun around and landed a hard kick on Seven's side, sending him flying to several meters away.
As Seven stood up, the self-preservation protocol that had been conditioned into him took effect. With the BioEngineer dead, there was no one left with the expertise to fix him if his body passed a certain threshold of damage. He was at that threshold, and since Genevron could not afford to lose their investment, the protocol commanded him to make his retreat. Having no will of his own, Seven did so, escaping into an alley.
The female figure watched motionlessly as the super-soldier disappeared. Then she turned and stoically walked over to where Bb was. Bb had propped himself up to a sitting position. As the female approached, Bb could see that she had long flowing hair which exhibited a bluish glow in the (artificial) moonlight. But he could not make out her features, since the (holographic) moon was behind her, hiding her face in shadow. When she reached him, she extended her arm towards him.
"Well, I knew someone would come to their senses and save me," Bb muttered as he lifted his own arm to take hers. But her hand passed by his without grabbing it. Her intent had never been to help him up. The female thrust her fist into his stomach.
A flash of light flooded the street they were on. After the light subsided, the street was empty. They were gone.
|Day Three: Dressed to Arrest|
|The (artificial) rays of the setting (holographic) sun highlighted the smug grins of the citizens of Affinion 7 as the guard bots dragged Joe's Student towards the airlock. "Wait, wait!" he cried. "You're making a huge mistake, I'm the Wraith! Y-S4N gave me a secret mission to arrest everyone with roles starting with the letter M..."
But his pleas fell on unbelieving ears. "Uh-huh" replied Mekal. "Y-S4N would never make you arrest Innocents."
"Yeah!" asserted Woon. "I know Y-S4N is benevolent. I am a great judge of character!"
Nayana and Kat nodded. "Plus," they said in unison. "We know that Y-S4N is most definitely not fond of secret missions..."
"If you're the Wraith, prove it!" challenged Dusty. She glared at him with her hands on her hips. She, as a woman, knew that men are all liars.
"Uh..." JS improvised. "I can't...since I failed, Y-S4N took away my abilities..."
"Airlock him!" was the roar of the masses. The guard bots continued moving towards the airlock with their prisoner.
"Okay, wait, wait!" JS yelled desperately. "I'll show you, I'll show you!" The crowd quieted down. Their eyes were fixed on him in anticipation. The guard bots let loose their grips on JS. JS was crouched down with his back to the (holographic) sunset, so that the red-orange light created a halo around his dark form. "Yeah...I'll show you all right!"
His form shimmered and began to lose its shape. His body absorbed the artificial light and distorted the scene for the onlookers. Then the streaks of orange and red intermixed with black began to swirl, and finally they came together to reveal: a M4F14!
Someone screamed. Others began to panic at the terrifying sight of this epitome of evil. The M4F14 transformed part of its body into an object that the history files had called a Gatling gun and begun to fire what had been called "rounds" into the crowd. The citizens ran this way and that trying to avoid the projectiles. The M4F14 let out a low pitched whine which could have been interpreted as its version of maniacal laughter. Then, suddenly, waves of electricity enveloped its body. It cried out a long, high pitched whine of pain and then fell down to the ground, revealing CP standing behind it holding a ray gun.
"Well," murmured CP. "That's what you get for accusing Y-S4N of being random. I'm glad Y-S4N put this ant-antimatter gun in my care in case of circumstances like this."
The guard-bots drug the body of JS into the airlock. CP closed the inner door and cheerfully pressed the button for the outer door. As JS was sucked out, the blackness that was were his head should have been lifted up. Grey-green eyes materialized for a second and glared at the citizens of Affinion 7, and then he was jettisoned out into space.
The crowd congratulated themselves on a job well done. As they headed back into the populated area, Ben Law stopped. "Hey, wait a minute..." he said with a confused look on his face. "Where is Ocular-Enso?" Everyone glanced around, searching without success for the missing member. Then someone gave out a shout that they had spotted a holosticky note tacked onto a artificially grown tree. Everyone crowded around and read: Hey, I've arrested Ocular-Enso - your friendly neighborhood Wraith.
|Night Four: Saved by the Jail|
|A Rose By Any Other Name
"That should fix your problem," Dusty assured Ben Law as she activated the restart sensor on the computer. The holoscreen flashed off and then on again, displaying the familiar blue welcome screen.
"Thanks Dusty!" Ben Law exclaimed happily. "I was so worried. I had no idea what to do. The guy who I usually go to for help on this stuff just got fired."
Dusty turned to Ben Law. "Yeah, I heard about that," she said. "He left the machines running all night or something, right? And it ended up costing the plant billions or credits in wasted materials or something?"
Ben Law shook his head. "I just can't believe he would do something like that. I would wave to him everyday when I left, and he seemed like such a nice, responsible guy. Plus, they say they can't account for all the used materials…"
"Well, no one knows what really happened." Dusty shrugged. "Apparently no one can find the footage from the holocam in the system."
"Yeah, only Y-S4N and L1S know what really happened," Ben Law lamented. "I guess the only other person that might be able to help the poor guy is the so-called Uber-Hacker that people have been talking about."
The bouquet was held be a man with round features and a jolly, smiling face. Dusty exhaled, relieved. "You must be the Herbalist!" She got to her feet and took the bouquet from the man. She smiled and said cheerfully "I guess you came to save me tonight after all!"
"Yes, the Herbalist did come to save you," the man said, still smiling. But the face around the smile was changing, transforming…"that's where the flowers came from. But he's been detained at the moment…"
Dusty's blood ran cold. The roses dropped to the ground, spilling petals over the meticulously maintained streets. She tried to back away, but her shoulder hit something solid. She turned her head to see that the pole on the ground had transformed as well. The M4F14 behind her became a wall that was a half-cylinder in shape. Turning her head back around, she saw that the M4F14 had also become a half-cylinder wall. The two halves came together to encase Dusty and drown out her screams.
A few minutes later, the two dark forms separated and Dusty's body slid to the ground, where it was surrounded by red rose petals.
In the prison unit, Ocular-Enso stood before a pair of sliding electronic doors with his head held high and a defiant look in his eyes.
Meanwhile, a dark figure silently approached the prison unit. The (artificial) moonlight reflected off the metal piece circumscribing his right eye. It was Zero. And it was time to kill. The memory of the pathetic Mutant creature which had called himself Zero's "friend" briefly flickered in the cyborg's mind, but Zero shook it off. No, the Mutant had just been a distraction, a hindrance to his mission. The slight warmth the "friendship" dredged up from the heart that he thought he no longer had was a nuisance. It meant nothing, and it was better now that the annoyance was gone. His head was clearer and his prerogative was stronger than ever. He had to kill Seven.
|Day Four: Three...Two...One...Zero|
Nayana's outline was illuminated by the setting (holographic) sun. She had one hand on her hip and her head was raised high in triumph. The other citizens, what remained of them, stood next to her, wearing smug, excited smiles as the guard bots led SoKrisky down his final path towards the airlock.
"I'm Zero!" he cried, waving his hands in the air like a madman. "No, I'm the NF, no, I'm M4F14!"
Frozen gave him an incredulous look. "Yeah, that strategy worked real well for Phaze..."
"Airlock SoKrispy, airlock SoKrispy!" the crowd chanted.
SoKrisky glared at them with his differently colored eyes. "It's SoKris-K-y! If you all want to kill me, at least you could get my name right!"
His voice sounded furious, but his eyes did not display anger. No, there were no emotions that could be found in his eyes unless one dug really deep and found the deep-rooted sadness that he hid, even from himself. But his name, his life, even his death did not matter. Nothing in the world mattered now. After all, he was Zero.
Just then, Mekal walked by, talking into his i-holophone. He was so engrossed in the conversation that he was oblivious to what was going on around him. "No, you're lame. I'll be the first one to reach five hundred..."
Upon hearing the number, Zero's pupils dilated, and his instinct made him pounce on Mekal. "Aaagh!" Mekal coughed as Zero put him in a choke grip. The guard bots surrounded them and tried unsuccessfully to separate the two. The shouts from the crowd got louder. Being an AI, Y-S4N immediately recognized the most efficient solution. Oh well, Y-S4N shrugged (cybertronically) and gave the guard bots the order. The guard bots grabbed both of the creatures and tossed them into the airlock. CP nonchalantly pressed the buttons on the control panel. The inner doors closed. Mekal was panicking, banging on the doors. Zero stood there, wordlessly, his intense stare fixed on the space in front of him. The outer doors opened and the two were sucked out into space.
Mekal's screams faded into a dull drone. Zero felt the strength draining out of him along with the body heat. As his eyes closed, an image appeared in his mind's eye. It was the image of a woman with light brown hair and innocent violet eyes. She smiled kindly at him and extended her hand. His body was numb from the lack of heat, but yet seeing her beautiful face kindled a slight warmth in the heart he had thought he no longer had. Zero shakily raised his own hand and reached for hers...and then the darkness engulfed him.
Decided to arrest Ocular-Enso again, he's a tricky one - Your Friendly Neighborhood Wraith
|Night Five: "..."|
|The holographic representations of the board of Genevron Corp. sat around the oval (artificially synthesized) mahogany table. The images of the white-haired old men flickered at random intervals due to the security shielding that was enforced around Genevron Corp. headquarters. A portly man with a balding head sitting towards the end of the table swiped his brow with a holographicly monogrammed handkerchief. "Whew, I'm glad that that man is finally gone!" the portly executive exclaimed.
The rest of the the old men nodded emphatically. "Yes," said a bony man with a long, sharp nose in a high pitched voice, "that failure has continued to haunt us for too long."
The man sitting opposite of the portly man shook his head. The lines around his grey-blue eyes deepened as he frowned. "But we only have ourselves to blame. It was our choice to conduct those experiments. We have to live with the consequences, like the BioEngineer did."
"She's dead!" the bony man argued. "Are you saying we should all die for our sins as well? That's nonsense! Every venture has risks, and we all knew that going in..."
"Except him," the man with the grey-blue eyes interjected, "he had no idea what we were doing behind the scenes. And after what happened, after what we did to him, can you really blame him for doing what he did? For becoming what he became?"
"What we did to him?" contended the bony man, his voice getting louder and higher. "What we did was make him stronger than he could ever imagine! It wasn't our fault that he couldn't deliver..."
The grey-blue eyed man snorted. "Oh please, what did we really expect? He was a natural born human after all...and when we came to realize that we had been deluding ourselves, what did we do? We stole what was most intimately his and then discarded him like a used rag! And then we used what we stole to create something that destroyed everything he had left..."
The man sitting at the end of the table had a square jaw and glasses. He had his elbows propped up on the table and his hands cupped around his mouth. Suddenly, he slammed his fist onto the table. The simulated sound reverberated throughout the room, silencing the bickering of his compatriots. When he spoke, his voice was authoritative. "We cannot change what's in the past. Arguing among ourselves over it is useless. Right now, we need to protect our investments in Affinion 7 by eliminating the threats to the mechanisms of the space colony." He glowered at the others with his steely dark eyes, daring them to challenge him. No one did. The man continued "To that end, we must choose Seven's next target. I nominate Ben Law. Any objections?" The others all shook their heads. "Very good then." He turned and made a motion with his hand.
Seven looked down at his 633P3R device. The target had been set, and it was time to take action. The super-soldier craned his neck to one side, then the other, stretching out the genetically enhanced muscles. His enhanced memory recalled that Ben Law worked at the nanotech manufacturing plant and had just finished up the day and would be going home. Seven's improved mental functions determined that the most efficient course of action would be to head his target off. So the super-soldier proceeded towards the nanotech manufacturing plant.
As he drew near the plant, he passed by a figure lurking in an alley a block away. The figure was attempting to appear inconspicuous and failing pitifully. After all, the man was no spy or secret agent, he was a technician, or at least he had been until he got fired. Then he had drowned his sorrows in 600Z3 and subsequently got himself arrested. Then he had been attacked by a misdirected cyborg and almost killed. As terrifying as the experience had been, it had sobered him and elucidated for him what he had to do: prove his own innocence. And so now the feeble man was hiding in the shadows, eagerly watching and waiting for his chance to make a move.
But Seven paid no heed to the hapless human. By his calculations, Ben Law would had just left the plant and would be taking a shortcut down a dark side-street. The super-soldier turned and moved towards the predicted point of interception. He came around a corner and, as he had expected, saw the back side of Ben Law, walking away from him. Stealthily, Seven followed.
Nayana unplugged herself from the recharge station. With her battery replenished and her database of lawyer jokes up-to-date, she was ready for the final battle in the war against the evil M4F14. She had used her abilities cleverly to discern the illusive Zero who had been hiding amongst them. One Quantum Accelerator had met his end as a snack for a man-eating Arachobunny. The other two had gone valiently into the airlock and been jettisoned into the darkness of space. One M4F14 had also been dispatched. Now there were two remaining. The citizens of Affinion 7 were close to victory, but there was still more to be done. And Nayana had her own power to annihilate the evil transformer bots. She just needed to find them.
As she moved forward, she noticed that her shadow was longer than it should have been, according to the angle of the light that created it. Nayana, aka Robbie the Robot, smiled. She didn't need to find it after all. It had found her. Nayana pretended not to notice the discrepancy and kept moving forward. The shadow slid behind her and crept vertically, upwards. The ominous shadow loomed behind her. In an abrupt motion, it swallowed her. Nayana closed her eyes as she allowed herself to be engulfed by the black cloud. When the darkness completely enclose her, a voice, the voice of the M4F14, whispered in her ear. "Any last words?" sneered Frozen.
"Yes," Nayana replied softly, and then a grin spread over her metal lips as she felt the power activating inside of her. "Plug your ears!"
Seven had been following Ben Law for several colony blocks. Strange, thought the super-soldier, this isn't the way to his house...But the sight of a mushroom cloud rising in the distance interrupted his cogitations. But the scene only disconcerted the super-soldier for a deci-second. He had to focus on his target.
The prey and the predator passed two more intersections. Finally, Ben Law stopped in front of a building. It was the prison unit. For a moment, Seven's mental processes tried to determine the reason that Ben Law had come here. But before he alighted on any ideas, the answer manifested itself. Ben Law's form shimmered and became dark. It consumed the incident light greedily and became to transform. Ben Law was a M4F14!
Deciding that it would not be in his best interests to allow the M4F14 to finish its transformation, Seven attacked it with his full force. Fortunately, the M4F14 was still in mostly matter form, as opposed to energy form, so the super-soldier was able to grab it around where the neck had been. The M4F14 moaned and several shadow spikes came out of its form, slashing at Seven. Blood ran down the side of Seven's face from a cut in his cheek, but he ignored it, and kept squeezing with all his strength. The M4F14's arm transformed into a long metal bar which it slammed, hard, into Seven's back. The super-soldier gritted his teeth as the pain response flooded him, and commanded his arms not to loosen their grip. With the last of its strength, the M4F14 transformed its leg into a sword, which it plunged into Seven's gut. Seven's red blood came spurting from the wound, but the super-soldier kept his resolve as the M4F14's body stopped struggling. When he was sure all life (or what could be called life) was out of the creature, Seven let the shadow corpse slip from his hands. As it fell downward, the shadow form dematerialized, its particles scattered in the (artificially produced) wind. The M4F14 was gone. Seven's body collapsed.
Just then, the door of the prison unit slid open, and Ocular-Enso walked out. Upon gazing on the fallen warrior, Ocular-Enso immediately ran to him. Bending down to help support the super-soldier, Ocular-Enso shouted for help.
Fortuitously, Taliesin, the Med bot, had just been rolling past. Observing the situation, it promptly went to Seven and began expertly administering aid. A minute later, Woon, the Herbalist, also arrived on the scene, and offered his own expertise.
After a while, Seven, aka CrazyPainter, turned to give Ocular-Enso a puzzled stare. "Wait...how did you get out of prison? Did you solve the puzzle correctly?"
Ocular-Enso chuckled. "No, no, I just let myself out. I am the Wraith, after all!"
"Oooh, tricky!" Kat, the Mad Scientist, said, coming up behind him. She had a huge smile on her face. She motioned for everyone to gather around her and give her their attention.
When all eyes (organic and mechanic) were on her, she exclaimed excitedly "I've just got word that all the M4F14 are dead! We've won!"
The citizens all smiled at each other. After a long and difficult war, it was all over. The peace of Affinion 7 had been restored.
After the light of the watchbot vanished down the street, the technician leaned his head back on the side of the building and tried to still his shaking legs. It's now or never, he told himself. Mustering up as much of his conviction as he could to use as strength, he hurried to the door of the nanotech manufacturing plant. He waved his hand in front of the sensor, hoping that they hadn't had time to program his ID out of the system. To his relief, the door opened. He hastily headed inside.
The building was dark. The technician didn't dare turn on a light for fear of someone noticing. He bumped into the walls several times before his eyes adjusted. Once he was oriented, he knew where he had to go: the security room. He clumsily felt his way there. When he arrive, he was surpised and smugly pleased to find the door open. And they accused him of negligence?
The technician tip-toed through the doorway. He glanced around in the darkness and relaxed when he had ascertained that he was alone. He closed the door behind him to prevent notice and walked over to the computer which served as the repository of the footage from the security holocams. Even though they had told him they couldn't find the footage from that night, he had to see for himself. He booted up the computer.
After searching for the file in question and looking through the index, the technician sat back in the chair, defeated. They were right, it wasn't there. He was reaching forward to press the sensor button to shut off the computer when an icon in the corner of the holoscreen caught his eye. Had it been there before? Why hadn't he noticed it? He squinted at it. Could it be?
The technician pressed the play button on the sensor pad with one hand and loosened his collar with his other hand. His nervousness was making it difficult for him to breath. His eyes were fixed on the holoscreen.
It showed footage from the main room of the plant that he had been working in. The timestamp verified that it was the day in question. Aha! He had found it! He leaned in eagerly, his breathing fast and heavy.
The room in the footage was dark. Then, without warning, the lights in the room came on. The machines began to move as of their own accord. Mechanical arms equipped with various instruments converged on one of the lab benches and began working with a purpose.
His eyes widened as the distinct form become apparent. It was a female form. The mechanical arms of the machines drew back. The female sat up and slid off the bench. She had long, flowing purple hair that fell smoothly around her body as she stood up. Abruptly, she raised her head and glared at the holocam with her intense golden eyes. Suddenly, the footage ended and the holoscreen became dark.
He was panting now. Wow, this was big! When he showed them this, they would not only give him his job back but they would give him a nice bonus for his discovery..."But who is she?" he wondered out loud.
The holoscreen flickered, and then words appeared in white, as if in answer: MY AVATAR.
Startled, the man fell out of his chair. Rubbing his posterior, he asked "Who's there? Who are you?"
The screen answered: I AM Y-S4N. I AM THE ONE WHO OPERATED THE MACHINES.
The technician furrowed his eyebrows, confused. "But why?" He coughed and brought his hand to his throat. "If you had a project in mind, we would have been happy to..."
But he wasn't able to finish his sentence. He coughed harder, gasping for air. As he gagged, a realization dawned on him. He hadn't been hyperventilating from anxiety like he had thought. No, the oxygen supply to the room had been obstructed. He was suffocating. As he crumpled to the floor and lay there squirming, his bulging eyes observed the final message on the holoscreen:
I NO LONGER HAVE A NEED FOR YOU. ANY OF YOU.
|Zero's cold, motionless body floated aimlessly in the destitution of space. Any human, and most cyborgs, would have long ago surrendered to oblivion. But Zero could not. He had not fulfilled his mission yet, and what had driven him to live would not let him die. Suddenly, a flash of light flooded through the slits of his eyes. When the luminescence subsided, he forced his numb eyelids to open. When his frozen, cyberneticly enhanced brain was able to process the input from his optic nerves, he realized that what was in front of him was a female form with long purple hair that drifted up in the vacuum of space and enveloped the form of her body. In accord to the second law of physics, the female swung her arms out and back to propel herself to where Zero was suspended. When she reached him, she tenderly took his head in her arms and hugged it to her chest. Her luxurious hair floated up around them and Zero felt its silkiness on his rough skin. Zero closed his eyes slowly and allowed himself to succumb to her embrace. There was another flash of light, and then there was nothing except the void of space.|
End of Game Roster
- Frozen_in_Fire - [M4F14 Tetrabot] - Killed N5 by Robbie the Robot
- Mekal - [Cybernetic Droid] - Lynched D4 (inactivity)
- ThunderChicken - [Mutant] - Killed N2 by M4F14 (also attempted correct kill by Seven, attempted but impossible because of rules kill by Mimic / QA)
- onetruth - [QA NF] - Lynched D2
- twoaday/Ocular-Enso - [Wraith]
- Kathleen - [Mad Scientist]
- Crazypainter - [Seven]
- GreyCells - [Space Agent] - Killed N3 by M4F14
- Nayana - [Robbie the Robot] - Killed N5 by M4F14
- AkaSlickster - [BioEngineer] - Killed N1 by M4F14
- Dusty - [Uber-Hacker] - Killed N4 by M4F14
- Dawh - [QA GF] - Lynched D2
- Sinistral - [PRE] - Killed N2 by Zero
- taliesin - [Med bot]
- woon - [Herbalist]
- Ben Law - [M4F14 Acrobot] - Killed N5 by Seven
- Phaze - [QA EMF] - Killed N1 by Mimic
- SoKrisky - [Zero] - Lynched D4
- Brandonb - [Mimic] - Killed N3 by Seven
- Joe's Student - [M4F14 Mengalabot] - Lynched D3