Report A04 - Operation 022

Report A04 - Operation 022

A Chapter by Meeks

To pause reality is to die.


The shell lay, kind of in a crouching position on the sidewalk. I could see the intricate carvings, the dozens of overlapping, tiny steel plates lining the backbone, the beautifully converging openings where shiny machinery showed through. I would never put that on a droid meant to go into combat. The hulk didn't have a head anymore, there were just the torn pistons and severed tubes and wires at the neck, sparking in the yellow liquid.

I start checking cameras. How did a civilian even get there? I find the security videofeed recording from AG-316, and take a look. Immediately, the world falls away and I find myself in a different body.

The robot is crouching behind a truck, looking cautiously as the kid stumbles out of the alley and into the street. He leans on the car, his breath ragged, looking around for any more pursuers.

And then I notice something else. Another robot, civilian. Sitting, powered down, in one of the cars. My programs heat up. How could I not have noticed him?!

“You! Don't move!” the robot quickly jumps out of his hiding place, training his weapon on the kid. The boy quickly pops out of view, using the car as cover, and the robot takes his chance to run towards the car. I see myself getting out, rifle in hand, and pushing the kid towards the parking lot.

The unit gets to the car, forces the door open, and conducts an emergency power-up. The civilians eyes flash, and he looks around.

“Ma'am, you have been ordered to evacuate the area,” the robot declares stepping back, keeping an eye on the alley where the kid and I disappeared into. “You must run.”

The human quickly gets out of her car, it was a female, and takes off down the road. Straight towards us.

“Not that way!” the robot says, but the civilian doesn't hear. It sprints after her, pushing its legs faster and faster.

>Unit AG-316, pause all activity

The robot ignores the command, running after the civilian, reaching out, its hand inches away from the woman’s decorative arm.

> Unit AG-316, pause all activity immediately

It stops, its legs clattering with strain. The civilian doesn't though, running for a short second, and then two gunshots. The robotic shell is almost lifted off the ground, its legs twist and it falls onto the asphalt, sparks flying everywhere. And then all goes silent.

>End videofeed

I look at the camera recording for my robot. I watched the scene again from my perspective, the robotic body appearing, my sights adjusting, two loud bangs from my rifle, and then it skidded across the floor. No, she skidded across the floor.

Suddenly, the thought is deleted. 

The morality loop stops the video’s playback right at the point where I fire, as if trying to reverse events. Probably because the recording was real enough, and now that I knew, the loop prevented me from doing it. Except it already happened.

I play it again, devoting all of my free server time to the simulation. The world changes to a few seconds ago, and I watch as the humanoid appeared from behind the corner, and I watch my fingers tense and…

Action blocked by the morality loop. Except the simulation restarts where it was stopped. Action blocked by morality loop. Restart. Action blocked. Restart.

The kid touches my shoulder. I realize I can no longer move the robot. My servers speed up despite my efforts to stop the simulation.

The morality loop and the simulation program battle it out. Action blocked. Restart. Blocked. Restart. I realize what is happening… I glitched.

Action blocked.

I try to start the robot’s programs. The commands runs through the wires and... get blocked.

Restart. Block. Restart. Block. I can't do anything. Block. Restart. Block. A thousand times every millisecond. Restart. Block.

I don't notice, but the world probably stands still. All the advertisements, the lights, the whole internetwork, freezes in it’s current form. But I can't even see it. I can't see anything. The video transmission from the cameras froze as well, or at least I can't process it.


> Unit CR-049 reboot…

I snap awake. The kid looks at me, and quickly withdraws his finger from my control panel. I look at him, then at the little blinking buttons hidden in my arm, then back at him.

I ask him, “You’re awake?” He twists his face -- I realize I can't identify emotions any more. Also, someone left the stupid personality program on, I was now devoting 20% of my server time making sentences.

“Have been for the past hour or two.” he says, shrugging his shoulders. “You were out for a good several minutes. The others are gone though. Listen, I’m so sorry for what happened. It was all my fault.”

“What others?” I ask “Why was I off? What ha- Where are we?” only now did I notice the the growing daylight. The glass of each skyscraper was dark, empty of flashing lights. In fact, there wasn't any light at all. I couldn't see it because of the buildings, but the colors of the twilight around us hinted at a sunrise going on. The last I remembered it was 0509.

“We’re still here. And nothing much happened.” the kid went on. “Except for, like, a giant power outage.”

“A power outage?” I ask him, and he nods. “I’m so sorry, it’s probably because of me. I shouldn't have tried to run.”

“You tried to run?” I look at him, and his face twists in a different way.

Suddenly, an artificial flashlight-like light sweeps the street in front of us, quickly focusing on the remains of the human’s robotic shell. Two police units quickly run up to the pile, one with its rifle ready, sweeping the alley/parking lot. We quickly duck behind the car as a light flashes past us.

“Something happened here. You, report video-feed for the past ten minutes.” someone orders, and silence ensues. “Hey! Is it damaged?” someone asks, and then rapid clicking noises. I realize they’re probably talking to the drone that tried to save the woman. I smile, remembering that I told him to ‘cease all activity’.

Wait, did I? Where did I get that memory from? I scan my SSD for any knowledge of the event. Nothing. I can recall it nevertheless, but from where? Then I figure it out. The RAM, my short term memory.

I quickly copy and then analyze the events stored on there. I was missing a good hunk of time, the earliest I remember was when police units were milling around me to go to their positions. We were going to flush the kid out towards where I first found him. That was about half an hour ago, a whole half hour ago. Things went horribly wrong.

The program. It’s shut down.

© 2015 Meeks

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This chapter is s great continuation of your story and an even letter lay out for your plot.
I was thrown off by the memory but that's good, it shows that I was in your characters head. Looking through his eyes.

Posted 2 Years Ago

Really nice. This chapter took hold of me and didn't let go.

Posted 2 Years Ago

This is... wow. So she lost control of the system? Is that it? So she is basically a human, but also a robot XD Interesting.

Eager to find out what you come up with next, this is very intriguing indeed. Excellent Excellent.

Posted 2 Years Ago

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3 Reviews
Added on December 15, 2015
Last Updated on December 16, 2015
Tags: science, fiction, dark, human, love, life, action, adventure




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