What everyone knowsEdit
- Robots and humans fought. Robots won. Humans barely survived. That was a long time ago.
- Cyborgs are humans with robotic parts, originally in order to replace lost limbs and for other medical purposes; but now they are used solely to enhance humans.
- Androids are the main force of the Robot armies. They are shaped like humans, but they are artificial, and they are hard to kill. They do not have skin, they have a metal armor.
- The conflict was a long time ago. Now humans try to stay alive, and stay alone. Robots search for the largest groups of humans first; the smaller the group, the longer it lives.
Chapter 1; FrailtyEdit
A road stretched forth in two directions. Cars with broken windows and pieces from the decrepit buildings littered it. A man was standing by one of the cars wearing what looked rather like a gray and brown robe with a hood drawn up over his face and long sleeves.
He smiled, glumly. He was leaning rather heavily on the car beside him. He seemed as if he were waiting.
"Old Guy!" a young voice shrieked in the tone of a question.
The man who had been waiting now looked around, the voice had come from behind him. He took his hand off the car and turned, then leaned his back on the car for support.
He saw a young man standing off at a distance. He smiled again slightly.
"I'm not going to hurt you, you know." His voice was dry and he might have an accent in other conditions. He looked at the boy, who did not move.
"I need a car to stand, I have nothing which could be a weapon." He stopped for a second, a change of tact; "I need a cane if I am to walk."
The boy took a step away from him.
The man sighed. "Go away" he said dismissively, waving his hand. He turned and sat down on the car.
Unseen by the man the boy took a step forward.
The man turned his face forward, allowing his eyes to lose focus
"Who are you?" asked the child
The man was startled, he moved back onto his feet rather suddenly, as though he had thought he was alone again.
He looked over at the boy, smiled.
"My name is what I need to walk." as he was saying this he was leaning against the car again.
The boy frowned.
Yet again, the man was smiling, though every time he smiled less. "I need a cane. And that's my name."
The boy looked at him with a puzzled expression.
Cane pushed himself away from the car, standing on his own now. It seemed to take much effort. "Come Here" he said, while motioning to the boy.
The boy approached him.
"You are going to be my cane." said Cane.
"My-" Cane began, then he thought for a moment "I have to lean on you so that I can walk"
"Turn around and I'll put my hand on your shoulder." The boy complied.
"What is your name?" Cane asked the boy
"My name is that which I walk." he smiled "Miles, sir."
Cane was quite for a bit, in his head he was marveling at how the boy suddenly had the manner to call him sir, but he was walking now and his leg hurt so he surrendered the thought.
Chap 2; PowerEdit
"Sir, where are we going?"
"Judging by our speed, not very far" Cane's smile had regained it's humor. After a few moments, Cane spoke again "Uhh, well. I suppose I should find a safe place to rest before nightfall. Do you know of some place near?"
After that Miles looked as though he were thinking. Eventually he nodded his head and said "There is a building nearby." and motioned with his hand towards an alley opening.
They moved down the alley for a short distance before Miles stopped.
They were standing beside a building, the wall they were standing immediately next to had a hole in it. There was no hint as to what caused the damage.
"What caused that?" Cane asked curiously
Miles shook his head and shrugged. Then he helped Cane climb through.
The hole went through into a small 'room', the wall opposite had fallen sideways, the top of that wall was now leaning against this wall, they touched just above the hole. It was diagonally limiting the space within the room, making it cramped. But the room was warmer then outside.
"Thank you, my friend." Cane thanked Miles, through the hole.
Cane lowered himself to the floor, groaning softly. He flinched as he sat down against the wall. Miles was still visible, standing just outside the hole.
"Before you go; something for your troubles." Cane drew a piece of bread out of his right hand coat pocket. It was a large piece. He ripped it in half and handed one of them through the hole to Miles. Miles started eating it instantly.
Cane took a bite. It was hard and cold, made his teeth hurt for a moment. It took some amount of force to brake it apart from the main piece.
Miles was already nearly done with his piece.
Cane took another bite, then put the rest of his away; reaching into another pocket.
"Here, take one of these." He pulled out a small bottle filled with yellow pills, and tossed it to Miles. "They're vitamins, they help keep you healthy." He took one himself from another bottle.
Miles hesitated for a moment. Then he took one. He reached forward to give the bottle back, but Cane waved him off. "Keep it. Take one each day after breakfast."
"Now, will you rest here, or do you have somewhere else you must go?" Cane asked, looking up at Miles' enshadowed eyes.
Miles paused for a moment before answering, almost as though weighing the sensitivity of the information "I must go to my... Group, sir." He added the last in only barely.
Cane seemed to come to understand much out of what Miles had just said. "Hm. You can at least tell me it is near? I don't want you endangered."
Cane's brow was furrowed slightly in concern.
Miles momentarily smiled at this, then he repeated something he had clearly heard often "Danger is all around us." After which he shifted the weight of his legs and leaned away from the hole as if to walk away, but then he stopped, and leaned forward slightly, "Don't worry sir, it is only a few miles away." Then he did walk away.
Cane leaned back against the wall more comfortably now that he was alone. Then he said, breaking the silence, "But the moon is only a few miles away too." he was apparently talking to himself, and he soon drifted off to sleep.
He was awakened by an abrupt noise, he looked around for a moment, his eyes blurry.
The noise returned.
It was a not-so-gentle rapping against the wall beside him. "Hello sir, are you there?" Miles' voice asked through the wall. Cane shook his head for a moment to try to clear it of the grogginess. Then he stood up and climbed out of the hole.
Back outside again, he stretched and yawned.
Miles was standing next to him, holding a cane with a broken handle. He held it out to Cane.
"Thank you, Miles." Cane graciously accepted the gift. "Would you walk with me? Helps the healing, you know." With that Cane turned and, using his new cane, started walking. Miles went with him.
Miles was watching him walk, watching the way he held his legs.
"What?" Cane sounded curious
Miles indicated his leg.
"Hmm? Oh! Yes. Right; it's almost healed now, I think." His mood seemed considerably more jolly and less serious then it had the night before.
Miles looked away.
They walked for several more moments, out of the alleyway now, they were walking along the road they had met on. Not toward any particular place, they headed down the road.
"What is it?" Miles asked at last
"Your leg, what is it?"
Cane smiled slightly, but then, he answered the question Miles had meant to ask; "It's an old injury. It comes back... Every now and... -and then." at this, Cane's eyes glazed over as he looked off into the distance. He seemed to be remembering something.
Miles shrugged and continued looking around as they walked.
"Why are you here?" Cane asked suddenly, pulling Miles out of his own reverie.
Miles looked at him curiously, silently asking him to further explain his question.
"Ahh..." Cane was obviously trying to think what words were right "Where do you sleep at night? Do you have a family?"
Miles looked at him, he nodded, as if to say "yes" to the second question. He made no attempt at answering the first.
Cane grimaced slightly. He could sense something was amiss about Miles right now.
"What are you doing alone? Does your family let you" Cane was clearly lost for words again, trying to recover, he quickly added "walk about, randomly?" He seemed worried.
"My mother sent me out to gather supplies."
Cane's eyebrows arched, "From where?"
Miles motioned around, encompassing the entire area, as if to say 'everywhere'.