The Prize – Second opinion
by HoD Ro' Matlh & Soghla' Marie St. Helene & Sogh Germite Ephilom

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Title   Second opinion
Mission   The Prize
Author(s)   HoD Ro' Matlh & Soghla' Marie St. Helene & Sogh Germite Ephilom
Posted   Fri Apr 28, 2017 @ 12:47am
Location   Pleasure Sphere 9
There was a faint shimmer and Marie and Germite appeared on the street outside one of the many edifices. It was hard to define the line between opulent and gaudy, but the world around them did not even try. If there was a way to laminate tinsel in glitter and paint it gold, this city had found it.

The street was deserted, but an occasional sleek transport flashed down the road. The Transporter had not been able to put them down inside any of the homes, as they were all heavily transporter shielded. So they would either need to find a way in on their own, or make their appraisal from the streets.

“You!” an official but very plum voice called. “I! Papers.” A person walked over. The uniform she was wearing was crisp and clean, pressed to within an inch of its life. “No-one is allowed on the streets unless of official business or they have the correct pass. You,” distaste dripped from her tongue, “do not look like you could afford a pass. And do not think to bribe me. That you definitely can not afford.”

Germite narrowed his eyes at this official. He had to take the correct tone with this type of person to put them off... either that or she would need to be eliminated.... That was in fact what they were here for, to determine if there was a reason to not eliminate everyone on this planet. He adopted an aggressive posture. "Who do you think you are!!! To question me as if I was some cur, not allowed to be out here!!! You will give me your identification and your supervisor's name!!! and I will decide if you are to be reported for insubordination!!!" He stuck out his hand and continued to glare at her.

Micro-circuits buzzed in the official’s central processor unit as it tried to calculate what to do next. No-one had ever answered back before, let alone demanded its supervisor’s name. It was not even sure what a supervisor was. Eventually – four microseconds later – it fell back on what it knew best and repeated its demands.

Marie smiled. “I think you’re going about this the wrong way, Germite,” she said. “That might work if you were talking to a person: one who’s part of some law keeping organisation. What I think we have here is an android. I don’t think it’s answerable to anything but its own programming.”

The Android guard was not used to authority being questioned. Everyone on this planet was an authority, and therefore expected authority to be followed. While it was used to arrogance, and even apathy, resistance was... new. And certainly not futile. It tried again, "Papers!"

Gemite pretended not to notice the droid's demand, turned to Marie and nodded. "You're probably right." He thought for a moment. If his old buddy Zeke were here, he'd blast the droid. If Kodo were here, he would reprogram it, If Allen were here, he'd psychoanalyze it. Since they were not here, those weren't options. Germite pulled out his tricorder. He scanned the droid. "Hmmm, it's just what I thought." He looked at the droid. "You are experiencing a malfunction. Return to base for further diagnostics and reprogramming."

The droid was confused. It was not used to direct disobedience to demands. What would be the point? If you were here you had a reason to be. If you were not then you tended to run away. However, it did understand following instructions form superiors.

"Yes, sir," it responded. "Cybertech apologizes for any inconvenience caused by this unit's malfunction without accepting any implied liability for that inconvenience."

With that the robot guard turned on its heel and marched off, leaving Germite and Marei to decide how best to explore for their report.

Marie slapped Germite on the back. “Well done!” she said. “Even I would have been proud of that little stunt. Now, let’s see if we can find a real person: someone in control. I get the feeling that’s going to be a lot more difficult.”

With that she headed off down the road.