Disclaimer: JtHM is the sole property of Lord Vasquez.
Authors Notes: I look at this, compare it to the previous chapter, and cry. Why is this? Because the previous chapter was practically twice as long - in my opinion, this chapter is far to short to be posted, but it's really as far as this chapter can go without digging into the next chapter.
Either way, a new chapter for SD is overdue, I think. I did do a fair bit of thinking while writing it, though. Well, that and I wound up having to re-write a good half-page after accidentally exiting Open-office without saving the updated Doc.
This chapter, I finally introduce Android-Johnny. He was the primary focus of this chapter, and I hope I wrote him well enough to satisfy all you out there that hate a badly written Johnny. (like myself)
I hope you enjoy this new chapter!
She didn't quite know what the scientists wanted from her now – they didn't usually use her for minor experiments, only the big ones that they knew would require somebody who operated well under pressure. They never talked to her, never took the Alien away, nothing. She was being allowed 'free' time that she was very much unused to having. Not that she was complaining; it allowed her time to get to know her new -and currently only- friend. And thankfully, her cell was not bugged. There was a camera, but only video – no audio.
"So... what is it like, over there?" They were currently discussing the Aliens homeworld – how it's society worked when it was one part of a greater whole; it had explained earlier that while they had individual personalities and bodies, they were ultimately a single piece of one gigantic creature. A hive mind.
'Huge – Creatures all over – plants grow big' Devi could see images flowing over to her from it's mind, eager to show her what it's home looked like – images filled with creatures as big as skyscrapers and as tiny as mice, as different from one another as all the colors under the sun. Plants entirely different from anything she'd ever seen, each of them looking like they belonged more in a sci-fi movie then in real life.
"It looks wonderful." Devi admitted, wishing she could see it herself. It was one thing to see images, and the projected memories of another were better than pictures by far, but nothing could quite compare to seeing something yourself, with your own eyes.
'Miss it... - Wish I could go back' Devi understood; she too wished she could go home. And though she was already hard-pressed to agree with the idea of letting her new, and currently only friend go, it seemed like an inevitability.
"Yeah. This place isn't very fun, is it..." She turned her gaze to the metal door that led out of her cell. She wasn't sure when the Scientists would want another session from her, but she knew that next time, it would most likely involve her alien friend.
He did not remember if he'd ever been outside. It had probably been deleted, or the memories had simply been worn away – corroded from all the experiments they'd performed on him. It wouldn't surprise him – take away his memories, take away the urge to escape and return to where he'd come from. If he didn't have any memories of anything besides the Company, he wouldn't feel the urge to escape. Or at the very least, he wouldn't feel it quite as strongly.
A... thing would occasionally communicate with him. It was an organic something, because his mechanical systems did not recognize the thing talking with him, but apart from that, he had no idea. He couldn't even guess if it was in the same room as him – the doctors here kept him more or less knocked out, the only reason he could think coherently was because of his mechanical parts, his electronic systems that prevented him from truly losing consciousness.
To be honest, he never understood what the thing was saying – just knew that it was talking. For all he knew, it was a virus messing around with his systems, but with the way the scientists reacted, it was a real thing; not a glitch.
"See? Still in standby. Can't hear a thing." His active sensors told him that two of the scientists had entered his room, apparently the lot of them still believing that he was entirely unconscious. He wasn't – he was just immobile.
"But... his eyes are open..." Observant. This one seemed smarter than the rest. Or at least more paranoid.
"Doesn't mean anything – look, he's in standby. I can link to his system and prove it." Oh... The more confidant man was stupid. He was going to open a pathway from the computers to his own system? This was just the opportunity he needed.
Slowly, he felt the pathway opening. Little by little, a link between him and the server was opened, and before either scientist could realize what was happening, he shot dozens of probes into the Companies server – and dozens of data caches where stolen in the few seconds it took for the idiot men to realize what they'd done, and shut the link down.
"I told you! I told you he's still awake!" The parts of him that where still organic tingled with excitement,
and he felt his fingers twitching slightly, a small burst of adrenaline running through him from the rapid-fire thievery he had just performed. "You see? He's awake – and now he's got who knows how many files. We should report this to-" The other man cut him off.
"No! Do you realize what kind of trouble we'll get in if the boss hears that we connected J to the server? No, it's best to just... forget this happened. Awake or not, he is on standby... He won't be able to tell anyone anything until somebody wakes him up, and we all know how likely that is." The two then left, leaving the bio-mechanical man to himself.
It was only after a few minutes that he began delving into the files he'd stolen. Many of them were uninteresting reports on old experiments, but when he stumbled upon a very recent entry detailing the discovery of creatures from another world, and the only test subject who had not been terribly injured by them, he grinned as best he could. The girl, named in the report as ' Devi', had been sent into a sealed room with one of the aliens, and come out as it's host.
The man who had written the report detailed it as a symbiotic thing; that unless the creatures got proper 'nutrition', they died. That linking consciousness with another was the only way to get it. Interesting. The report also noted that it was highly probable that they were telepathic, due to the one-sided conversations the subjects usually had when sealed in with the aliens.
After a few hours of reading the stolen files (his first new method of killing time in forever, it seemed), his sensors alerted him to a noise, jolting him from what could be considered deep concentration; the door to his room was opening. One person this time. Differently built from the previous two. The man (women?) did not interact with him, however; merely walked over to the computer and turned it on.
The new person did not speak – mumbling to him/herself, and 'J' could not be bothered enough to force himself to catch and 'translate' the mumbled words. He didn't care what these people said. None of it ever concerned him, anyway; he was just a forgotten experiment that nobody cared about. Had been left to his own devices after that damned portal had been discovered.
'J' switched his attention to his system – he could feel what he knew was routine system maintenance fiddling around with his OS. He knew it never actively deleted files, but it didn't stop him from making copies of the stolen reports and hiding them away deep in his 'drive' for safekeeping. You never knew.
The person who had started the maintenance on his system was obviously new – they'd left a big pathway open, one he could exploit with ease. And as they left, he dove into the machine, stealing around the server and hijacking whatever files looked important – not that he was built for file storage. Any free space his system had was there in case the people here thought he needed 'updates' or 'additional coding' to prevent him from doing certain things. Which, to be honest, they hadn't done any of yet, so he had plenty of space free to store stolen files; several terabytes worth, due to the complexity of his system.
It was after he'd decided to explore the server that he came across the odd section of data. He'd been digging past firewalls and passworded systems, not realizing that what he was hacking might have been more important than the rest of the files he'd been stealing.
The coding was different then mere reports, or video diaries recorded by various scientists documenting the progress of certain experiments. It was more complicated; he'd never seen this sort of coding before and... oh. OH. If he could grin, he would have – he'd just found the controls for his own room, for the device that held him restrained.
He was tempted to release himself at that very instant, but knew it wouldn't do well to run just yet. He had to wait, had to be patient. If he was lucky, he might be able to take a few lives along the way; like the man that had done this to him, that had stolen him away and performed so many torturous experiments that he no longer remember a thing about himself.
But, he thought, as soon as the system maintenance was done, he would be shut out from the server. He had to establish a connection to it – had to wire it just right, so that even as he was blocked from the majority of the company's files, he'd have constant unwavering access to the controls to his room; and he'd have to do it carefully. If it was done the wrong way, it would be easy for any tech to come up, examine the programming, and undo whatever he'd added on. This would take some time, time that his maintenance didn't give him. Oh well.
If that was the case, he'd make time.