Chapter 1

Chapter 1

A Chapter by Toshita

A loud buzzing breaks through Taehyung's concentration, startling him enough to visibly jolt in his chair. Mumbling out a soft curse he sends a small glare at the offending device, still vibrating loudly in the quiet. He stares at the phone until the room is once again peacefully quiet before returning his attention to the newest program update he's creating, only to huff in annoyance when he sees his most recent line of code is deleted. He must have hit delete in surprise. Taking a deep breath he retypes the last line, letting the soft clicks of the keyboard calm his heart rate. He's almost at the end, a few more strokes until angry buzzing startles him again into accidently inputting the incorrect phrase. Irritation sparks and he bites his cheek to stop the urge to throw something. Unfortunately, he really likes his phone and would hate to lose it. Roughly ruffling his hair and throwing his glasses on the desk he quickly fixes his error before saving everything before something else goes wrong. He has six missed calls and numerous texts from Chris, barely a minute apart and the irritated spark starts to expand. With a sigh, he listens to the numerous voicemails, leaning back in his chair with a soft smile that slowly fades as he deletes each message.


Hey babe, just calling to see how you're doing? I sent a text, message me back!




Babe? Did you see my text? Come pick me up for lunch! I miss you and today's a s****y day.




Taehyung. Seriously, why are you ignoring me? I know you have your phone on you. Seriously, I know you're not in a meeting until later so you can't be that busy-


Deleted. He doesn't bother listening to the rest, knowing they'll be the same. He has a meeting to prepare for and just cannot spare the brain power to deal with his boyfriend's current mood. He loves Chris. He truly does. The two of them met in his final year of University when he was completing the management course he left until the last minute to graduate. Chris was his TA and Taehyung was immediately smitten. After months of flirting, Taehyung finally manned up and asked him out and now here they are, almost five years later. Maybe their long lasting honeymoon phase is wearing off but things have been so tense between them lately that it's exhausting. It’s been a couple years since Chris asked them to move in together and Taehyung agreed wholeheartedly. It felt like the right next step in their relationship. Chris didn't want them to move into his place, claiming it was two small for the two on them on his B class salary. Instead, he wanted to move in with Taehyung. He didn’t think much of it, instead, looked around until he found a place close by KRL for them both. Taehyung wanted to rent a small apartment, not seeing the point in spending tons of money of their first place together when they would probably want something different in a few years again but Chris insisted, so eventually he relented and bought the penthouse in one of the company's high rise buildings. Money wasn't an issue. It never has been for Taehyung.


Taehyung's family comes from old money, his father, Namjoon Kim, being one of the top 10% SS class citizens in Chicago. The SS class consist of the owners of major monolithic corporations controlling the various industrial sectors that employ all lower classes. Namjoon actually is the owner and Director of KRJ, the leading company in A.I. technology, also with hotel chains nationally. In the last 100 years, A.I technology has reached amazing advancements and have been incorporated into daily life in electronics, vehicles, security, even with the creation of the D class. The D class consists of the humanoid A.I's owned by the SS class alone as only the wealthy can afford them. The original goal of their creation was to increase equality among humans but as time went on, the new age of industrialization after a century of war had the opposite effect. Rather than equality, the lack of available natural resources and the industrialization has increased the economic disparity, with A.I's at the bottom of the food chain.


While the D class is very capable of working in all sectors, due to the disparity, it wasn't affordable to utilize them in the general work force. Rather, they are owned by the SS class alone as servants if you will. Wealth and success are judged-but not dependent on- the number of D class in servitude. More often than not they are treated well with the prettiest ones dressed up, shown off and collected as trophies. The others are reduced to common household staff rather than humans. However, due to the relaxed laws on A.I. use and treatment, a good portion of D class is utilized in the skin trade, filling brothels for use by those who can afford it.


As immoral as it sounds, it's not actually that bad. While A.I's have consciousness, the ability to learn and adaptable emotional empathy (fear, contentment, sadness) they do not have free will as a safety precaution. Therefore, they are more than happy to follow any directions and legally the courts will allow it as long as no harm comes to them. There are rules in place to prevent physical mistreatment-usually by demotion of class or loss of assets. And to be honest, human trafficking has all but gone so it's really the lesser of two wrongs, depending on who you talk to. Of course there are those in the lower class who protest against their use in such ways but they are far and few. As long as the A.I's emotional state is content and happy, the people are accepting of their roles. However, for that same reason, while physical relations are accepted, relationships are not as they just aren't done. To people it's like having a relationship with a doll; weird and a bit creepy.


Taehyung is a class A citizen, a A.I program developer with dual degrees in A.I cognitive and computing sciences. Even though his father is class SS, since he himself does not own the company yet, he is considered class A living as a researcher. Determined to make it on his own away from his dads help, Taehyung moved in with Chris in their new place. For a guy in his late twenties, he's accumulated a considerable amount of wealth, gaining the class A designation along with others in the research sector, even though he has simple but elegant tastes. However, Taehyung's designation is always a sore spot in his relationship with Chris. His boyfriend belongs to class B the management and public service sector, employing management teams, police force, educators, and other government workers. It's been almost a constant fight even since they graduated and were placed in their socioeconomic ranks. And Taehyung gets it. He really does. He knows it must be frustrating to be placed in a lower class and while that may not mean much to many, to Chris it's everything. He hates how many hours is required to clock on the management team for the harvesting sector. It's not like they aren't paid well, hell, he could technically call himself new wealth but regardless of his position, Taehyung makes almost double as a researcher, even more as an A.I specialist working the regular 35 hours a week with complete benefits and perks. And that's not including his company shares, trust fund, or his side job.


While Taehyung does his best to be completely honest with his boyfriend about everything, his desk job is a cover for his true role at KRJ. A couple years ago, the US government contracted KRL in a new military project known as Black Piper Advantage. Still in its trial phase, the program endorses the use of A.I's in combat and covert missions in hope of reducing human casualties.


Unfortunately, due to the lack of resources and a change in societal priorities and the results of a century long war, the human population is a third of what it used to be in its glory days in the old days. The 2100's individual focus has shifted from family orientation to one of personal gratifications of the present. While birth rates and deaths are stable, the ability to enhance over length of time has allowed people to be selective with population growth. Humans age more gracefully than before, often living for 140-180 years at optimal health. Due to prolonged life, people don't feel the need to spend much of that time looking after others. Instead, they'd much rather enjoy what they’ve accumulated. The low birth rate may not show an immediate issue, but if a population is not growing in some capacity, eventually natural selection will deem humans lower on the pecking order due to the overall population decline. The long term application of the project is to replace human soldiers with advanced military A.I's. And that is Taehyung's role. In the private sector Namjoon brought Taehyung in as the lead researcher in charge. It's a fairly large team of people, both military and civilian involved but only a handpicked team is actually in contact with the experiments. And he is paid quiet handsomely for his work-enough to apply for SS class if he actually owned a company. Hell, he has more than enough money to buy a small company if he wanted to. But Taehyung has no such desires. He's content working behind his computers and with his creations.


Today is an important day for Taehyung. Today is the day when he makes something of himself and shows his work, the company's work, for the last few years has paid off. Today marks the end of the field studies of his A.I's and if everything goes well in his presentation, the government and board will fund KRJ's continued development and A.I's will be utilized for their purpose. Provided Taehyung's not distracted worrying about whatever it is Chris is angry at now. Rolling his eyes at the text messages, he doesn't even read them before sending an apology for not replying.


[11:55am] Sent to: My love

Sorry baby! I'm swamped with work right now and still have to prepare for the meeting. I'll see you at home! I love you!!!!!!!


[11:55am] Sent from: My love



Taehyung just sighs at the curt response. Great, he's mad again. Taehyung's chest feels heavy, he hates confrontation, especially with Chris. Taehyung always seems to be doing something wrong. He knows Chris can be a bit petty and mean sometimes, especially to his friends, but he is a total sweetheart inside and only wants to protect Taehyung. Still, it doesn't make him feel any better. His back starts to cramp and he winces at the discomfort. He was forced to sleep on the couch last night because he has to miss date night for tonight's event, even though he marked it on the calendar months ago and even had Chris RSVP their attendance. Chris didn't want to go, and Taehyung gets it. Chris gets nervous around people he doesn't know but his friends will be there so it's not like he won't know anyone there. Normally Taehyung would give in but his father expected him there and he really needs a night of fun after his team's worked their asses off to get to this point. So instead he had argued back until Chris ran into the bedroom in tears, leaving Taehyung to fall asleep on the couch with the TV on.


A sudden beeping brings Taehyung back to the present as he uncomfortably shifts in his chair.

"Sir? Mr. Park and Jung are here to see you. Are you available?"


"Thank you Lisa. Yes I'm free."


"Very well. I'm sending them in now."


"Thank you. Could you also book a massage for me for this afternoon please?"


"Of course."


Unable to sit comfortably, Taehyung gets up and attempts to clean his desk up a bit before the other presenters come up with no luck. The large oak desk is littered with papers and books, multiple coffee cups piling up at the corner. His lab coat is haphazardly thrown over the back of his door and at some point he lost his tie on the coffee table. Putting the papers into stacks without looking at their content, he deems it presentable enough and puts his phone on silent to avoid further distractions. As much as he loves Chris, this is one of the most important days of his career requiring his entire focus. Personal matters can be dealt with later. He puts the coffee pot and water kettle on just as his door opens excitedly.


"TaeTae! Today is the day!" The tiredness from last night is catching up to him and he tries not to wince at Hoseok's loud voice.


"For someone who handles subtle and delicate matters, you're awfully garish." Taehyung can't help but smile at the elders affronted expression that melts at the twinkling laugh behind him. Hoseok Jung, a class B behavioural psychologist specializing in A.I. adaptation in society. The man is a complete ball of sunshine, one Taehyung has grown very close with over the last few years. As always, he's immedicably dressed in his navy suit and outrageous cartoon ties. His dark hair is styled up to show off his forehead, enhancing his good looks as Taehyung takes in how the suit clings to his figure, showing off his lithe body. Taehyung met the older man when he was recruited for this project to monitor the A.I's mental development. Unlike the class D A.I's the advanced military A.I's are equipped with free will in order to successfully carry out missions without human influence. Giving these A.I's free will enables them to make their own decisions without human influence. Hoseok's job is to see how they adapt to free will and monitor their sanity and thought process after missions as previous advanced malfunctioned due to processing overload due to the free will adaptations.


"He has a point Hobi." says a soft, melodic voice hidden behind the brunette.


"Jimin! You're supposed to be on my side!" Taehyung and Jimin both laugh at the pouting man before accepting their drinks before sitting on the couches. Jimin Park, a class B Mechanical Engineer and Taehyung's best friend since University. The two were roommates during their studies and luckily were both accepted to work at KRJ. At Taehyung's insistence, his father brought Jimin onto the project as the lead mechanic, responsible for physical repairs and upgrades. Jimin is a total contrast to Hoseok. Where Hoseok is lean and tall, Jimin is short but stocky. Even to Taehyung, the shorter man is beautiful and looks delicate. It makes Taehyung want to protect him from the world, especially when his eyes disappear with his smile. But Jimin is anything but delicate. The man could probably bench press Taehyung with all the muscles he has under his fitting suit. Taehyung watches with a smirk as Hoseok's eyes linger on the swell of Jimin's a*s as he reaches forward to pull a few coasters towards them. The man is anything but subtle in his attraction towards the other. As far as Taehyung knows, Jimin hasn't noticed but it's not really his place so he enjoys watching his friends from the sidelines.


"Nope. Anyway, ready for lunch?" Before Taehyung can nod his head, Jimin unwraps a few sushi plates for them to share.


"Ahh, my Jiminie looks after us so well~!" Jimin blushes as Hoseok coos at him before promptly shoving a large piece of sushi into his open mouth to quiet him. Taehyung chuckles in amusement before stuffing himself with food. He can physically feel the tension leaving him as they all bicker about everything and nothing, letting the atmosphere clear his mind of previous distractions.


"So, Tae, Jeongguk's back." At that Taehyung perks up.


"Oh? I thought they were coming in later this afternoon." Taehyung pulls out his phone to see if he missed any notification from Jeongguk, not without noticing another notification from Chris a minute ago. "The jerk didn't even let me know he was back!" Jimin laughs at Taehyung's pout.


"Was he supposed to?" Jimin can't hide his amusement as he eats another roll, eyes scrunching cutely in happiness.


"Well, yeah. He always lets me know when he comes back. Did you already see them?"


Jimin shakes his head. "I did." Hoseok answers, relaxing back against the leather. "I had a debriefing session with each of them before I came here."


"And? How were they?" Taehyung leans forward eagerly, and Hoseok coos at how excited the youngest is.


"Good, really good. Their capacity assessments are sound and within the norms, no behavioural modifications, and their mental state of well-being looks good." He side eyes Jimin when Taehyung lets out a relieved sigh, not missing the smirk sent his way. "Awe, were you waiting for Kookie's return? That's so cute!" Hoseok is practically squealing and crushing Jimin's head in a tight hug, the younger wriggling to escape the painful looking headlock.


"What?" Taehyung is confused. "What's cute about it? I have a new upgrade for him! It'll help with his language translation software since the old one was a bit rushed." Hoseok and Jimin stop struggling, looking at each other before listening to the younger man rant about the upgrades.


Jimin sighs in disappointment, returning to his coffee. "You know, one day he's going to realize he's got the hots for Jeongguk with all the tension between them." Hoseok solemnly nods in agreement.


"Just wait until it's too much. We’ll find them f*****g in the lab!" Hoseok cackles at the thought while Jimin rolls his eyes and smacks his chest, not disagreeing.


"Wouldn't that be great."


"Wouldn't what be great?" Jimin freezes before regaining his composure.


"Nothing Tae. Just hoping we're prepared for the presentation."


"Minnie, why'd you have to bring it up! I'm already nervous enough to sweat out of my clothes! And no one wants to see that!"


"Jeongguk would." Jimin mumbles into his cup just loud enough for Hoseok to hear him before reaching out to pat him on the back as he chokes at the comment. Taehyung rushes to hand Hoseok his coffee, watching him in confusion and worry when he waves him off.


"Right. Meeting. Let's focus on that." Hoseok hoarsely says, chugging the rest of his coffee. The next twenty minutes are spent doing last minute reviews before Lisa call them to the board room, handing each of them their notes.


Taehyung is about to follow Hoseok out before getting yanked by his collar. He sends Jimin an accusing glare only to receive a shrug and a half smile as he holds up his tie in his small hands.


"Oh, right." He waits sheepishly as Jimin properly ties it before straightening out his collar and shirt.


"There. All better! Now you actually look like a lead researcher, rather than a ruffle college professor." Taehyung sticks his tongue out at Jimin and follows the giggling man towards the conference room with sweaty palms. With a deep calming breath, he steps forward into the huge conference room. It's show time.





© 2017 Toshita

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Added on February 13, 2017
Last Updated on February 13, 2017
Tags: fanfic, alternative universe-robotics/an, pining, special ops, military




Hey, my name is Toshita. I love writing- anything from stories to music. I play the guitar, piano and the trombone. I love reading and photography is also a beloved hobby. Follow me on the social medi.. more..

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