a robot’s place in the revolution.
Birth of a War Machine: A Prologue
Babies are one great, mysterious subject in which you could start a conversation about, and that conversation would never have to end. Some people don’t particularly want children. Some only want a few children, Others want multitudes of them. Some dream of having babies with blue eyes. Green eyes. Grey eyes. Brown eyes. Curly hair. Straight hair.
Babies are born to all kinds of parents, and most of the time, those parents are nice. Or as nice as they can get. Babies are born everywhere. In Germany, Russia, Zimbabwe, Mexico, Chile, Greenland, why, sometimes even Antarctica. One baby, though, is different from all the others.
Ichigo Mizushima, born in Nagasaki, Japan. Born as a female. 13 pounds at three months old. born to a nameless mother who stays in the shadows, obscured from the world. Well, how is she different from every other baby? Her mother, for unknown reasons, gave her child to Kyoto Labs for purposes of research. The last words said before vanishing and leaving the baby was “I do hope for a successful outcome.”
She was the first successful cyborg made in a large factory in Kyoto, which had failed in attempting to create a cyborg forty times already, and had resorted to continuing these unspeakable experiments underground until they had finally made the perfect cyborg. The perfect model for other androids. Her.
Ichigo never knew her parents. She didn’t even know her name. Her name became a factory number. She was told she wasn’t human. She was told she was a robot, just like the others.
The psychological manipulation went on until... She managed to become apathetic. Empty of feeling. She maintained a blank expression at all times.
She’s now finally a “robot”. Or so everyone thought.
A man named Fred, when people weren’t looking, gave her toy cars. He asked how she felt. He guided her to feel emotion again. He gave her hope for happiness. One day she asked “Fred... Where do you get all these toy cars? I’m sure they wouldn’t be allowed in the lab. There is no productive purpose for it.”
“Well, I-“ He quickly looked around, to make sure no one was eavesdropping. “I can tell you that. But you have to promise to keep that a secret. If they find out I told you this, they’ll replace me. We won’t be able to be able to talk to each other anymore. Ichigo, you must understand that they’ll kill me if they find out about this. About any of this. Do you understand me?”
Her eyes widened, eyes watering slightly at the thought of Fred dying. She wouldn’t be able to talk to anyone. She would be alone. “Y-Yes, sir.”
Fred smiled and wiped Ichigo’s eyes with her hands. “Alright, now. Don’t cry. I get these from places that give out toys to little boys and girls. People who enjoy them, like you. Why, those places aren’t even half of what the world is! There are things growing out of the ground that sprout with color. Things called animals roam the environment all over the world. They all look and act differently. There are even things living and even thriving in these large masses of water called the ocean!
A bright light shines outside and spreads light all over the world, Ichigo. It’s so the creatures can see. The clouds gather water and keep everything alive. You have already been told you live on the planet Earth. But I bet none of the other scientists told you about all that, did they?”
Ichigo stayed silent for a moment. “Professor Fred, if I am not mistaken, all that you have previously said is the truth?” She anticipated his answer. She now desperately hoped that was true.
“I wouldn’t lie to you. You know that. But words can only describe so much about the earth. You’d have to see it to believe it,” He replied good-naturedly.
“In that case... may I request permission to analyze this location? Please.”
He put a hand on her cheek, his eyes creasing from his smile. His short brown haircut was now slightly greying, his stubble emphasizing his age. “Someday I’ll take you there. They’d like to take you there as well, but... not on the mission you’d prefer. Trust me, I’m going to take you on a much better mission before they scare or hurt you with theirs. I promise.”
Ichigo was confused about what specific mission the lab wanted her to do but was glad Fred would be taking her on a different one instead. She somehow felt she could trust Fred. “Yes, professor,” she replied, bowed to him, and felt the edges of her mouth crease up her face before shortly going back to a blank expression.
“You’re more human than you think you are, Ichigo. Remember that. Save those words for a rainy day.”
After 14 years, she was deemed the “perfect model” to be a cyborg, and the factory created hundreds upon thousands of soldiers with glassy, emotionless eyes. 4 years after that, she was ready for war against two countries at once. She was scared. She couldn’t take this anymore. She had to find some way out, there has to be a world outside this factory, a world outside all this... suffering.
She put the puzzle pieces together. She was created for war. She was created to kill people. She saw it in the shooting range she practiced at. She saw it in her physical combat training. She saw it in the downloaded stimulators in the chips in her software. She tried her hardest not to show it, but she was terrified. She never wanted to look down on her hands...
And see blood on them.
The one who cared about her... Fred... Fred told her there was a world outside all this. And now she was going to find the better parts of the world like Fred had wanted her to.
She ran off into the oblivion before she could ever see a single battlefield, nameless, weaponless, and scared. And only about 18 years old. She hit her head, making her unable to remember much, except:
* She was a robot, made for the purpose of war.
*She ran away. She disobeyed orders. She was a rogue. If the lab ever caught her, she’d be crucified.
*Fred. Fred helped her. Fred saved her.
And her story only grew from there.
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