“What is this place?”
He was disoriented. Dizzy. Usually he had a target, a particular thought process he needed to change. Now he was just shooting in the dark. And it was pitch black in here. The man’s mind was a labyrinth without a glimmer of light. He kept hitting walls and blacking out. But he kept pushing forward. There had to be something. There didn’t seem to be anything. Nothing to hold on to, no anchor.
Wait! That was it, he’d let her guide him. He searched for the connection.
He panicked. He was utterly, completely lost. He tried to turn back and retrace his steps. His turn was abrupt, and he smashed face first into a smooth, hard, metallic surface. His face exploded with pain, and he had to pause for a moment to stop himself from passing out. He pressed his face against the cold surface, and rolled it gently from side to side. Eventually, the pain subsided under the makeshift cold compress.
He’d been sitting on the floor cursing quietly while he’d tried to numb the pain. He got up and started to feel his way forward, trailing his hands over the metal and turning where the walls did. His face still stung, but he would live.
Suddenly it hit him. The man wasn’t a man. Human minds are made of cells with electric current running through them. This mind was a metal labyrinth, and the pulses he kept feeling under his palms had to be electricity. He was in a robot. It made sense. But that meant that areas of the mind would be orderly if it was up to date and defragmenter regularly. It also explained the darkness, as human memory is illuminated by emotion, which robots do not have.
This would require a different approach.
The voice had the same Santa-esque quality the robot had laughed in as it had beaten him up. Only now, within the construct’s mind, he could hear the metallic twang, and the quiet whirring of the drives that contained the robot’s vocal code. Solid state, of course. A disc drive would have been a lot louder.
The lights came on, a placid blue illumination that calmed him in spite of himself. He could see himself in the metal now, and his face was clear of injury, even though it still stung.
“You’re not hurt. It’s only a mental connection we have, remember.”
“Who are you?” He asked.
“You’ve been referring to me as the man, haven’t you?”
“It shall suffice, ridiculous as it is.”
“Where is The Doctor? What have you done with him?”
“Ah, questions. You humans are so full of them. What would happen if we used silicon components instead of massive transistors? Well, I would happen. And I have happened.”
“Yes, yes. The Doctor. I did hear you the first time, you know? He’s fine. In fact, he’s back in his office frantically trying to figure how to get you out of me.”
“Why am I here?”
“Because you want to be, of course. Tell me, what exactly were you hoping for when you darksided into me?”
“I…” He started, then fell silent. He had no idea. At the time it had seemed like the only idea they had. Right now he just felt foolish.
“Follow the purple arrows. I would like to show you something.”
It was so easy, being guided towards the cortex. Seemingly impenetrable metal walls slid aside to let him through. He walked in silence.
She wondered what he was going through. She wondered if it had been a good idea to leave him in the first place. Probably not. She loved him. She looked over at The Doctor as he hovered over the console, making sure he was alive and his body wasn’t reacting badly to the prolonged darksiding session.
He reached the cortex. It was brightly lit. It looked just like The Doctor’s office. He was taken aback.
“Come in. This is merely to provide you with a familiar setting so that you’re comfortable enough to take in what I’m about to explain to you.”
Some conversations are comfortable to write. What followed wasn’t one of them. To be told that something you’ve felt for a long time is true by someone you don’t trust is disconcerting, to say the least.
He was a powerful darksider. Everyone knew that. But he was more powerful than everyone knew. That’s why he had been able to even get into a mechanical mind without being destroyed by pure, undiluted logic.
Biological creatures are subject to flaws in logic, but computers, and by extension robots, are pure logic. A biological mind can be torn apart by a purely mechanical mind. But he hadn’t been. That made him useful. And that’s why the robot was offering him a job.
That’s also why she had been made. His monitor. His lover. His best friend. She was a bio-mechanical construct, a cyborg. It broke him, learning that. How could he not have known. She’d gone rogue. She’d broken up with him. The biological part of her had overridden the logical programming that had attached her to him, that had made her the perfect person to guide him, the possible, to the Pure Light program.
His mission, should he choose to accept it, was to decommission her.
“I’m going to let you go now. Think about it. The Doctor knows what to do.”
He returned to his body. He felt weak. Shaky. His heart was racing. But he knew that he wanted to do it. It was his chance at revenge, to right a wrong. He’d be a fool not to.
She was by his side as he regained consciousness. Her face was a mess, her hair unruly, and her mad grin happier than he’d ever seen. It didn’t take him long to start second guessing himself.
“I… I thought I’d lost you,” she said quietly. Her make up was everywhere it shouldn’t be, the tears she’d cried had seen to it. She continued.
“When I broke up with you, I thought I was doing the right thing. I thought we needed to be apart to grow, to become who we need to be. But the thought of losing you almost killed me. The thought that you might die thinking I didn’t love you, that you might die second guessing yourself, thinking that you weren’t good enough or strong enough, or awesome enough for me. I couldn’t take it. I guess what I’m trying to say is…”
He smiled. What was it the robot had said again? About decommissioning?
“Hush…” He said.
It wasn’t going to happen.
He pulled her close and kissed each her. A deep, lingering, hungry, happy, almost insane mess of a kiss.
This was his pure light.
Wow! Ooh wow! Standing ovation end to the year right here!
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Happy new year Olumide and everyone!