Chapter 1 Nova Day 1 It seems that i just waked up, on a red couch big enough for two people to sit but not large enough to have my new body rest on it, i felt numb, at the beginning i couldn't quite use my limps for at least an hour, that’s when i decided to keep a memo of my beggining here, it will only take a small amount from the extra fifty terabytes that my brain has, it would also be a shame not to use the abundance of words that i have stored in. I wonder who woke me up ? I seem to be located in a school it's quite old, there are no glasses in any window except of a small room that served as a library, i decided that my best action is to sleep there tonight, there is too much cold even now for me to stay anywhere else, and the rain is strong, even though i am protected from the building roof of the first two floors. the third and fourth are split open in half with almost a surgical precision , it made sense to me how there were plants inside the building growing. In days like these the waterdrops pour down and after so many years of hitting the ground they made a crack on it, mother earth did the rest. The whole school has plants inside it from what i can see, even on the pavement outside. There is a lot of animal life around birds , squirrels also i saw a cat or two passing by a little while ago, i am still not fully biologically working but i am pretty sure i would be happy seeing them they certainly make for a good stimuli. Its noun i don’t feel hungry yet, i should probably eat something, i should drink to. the rain hasn't stopped it's good that i put the bag on a shelf inside the Library, my pants got wet exploring the first and second floor, i can certainly say it has an unpleasant feel when it touches my leg, cold and sticky. I counted the doors there were five in the first floor and six in the second, they were all of the same design and color blue , none of them were locked, and each had eighteen desks except for one class in the second floor that had 14 , the number was a multiply of two i wonder if the kids were also ? i examined the class with the less desks closer , immediately i noticed the fake wall that was next to the stairs that led to the fourth floor, i don't know why yet, but you could get only from the first floor to the third. Enough editing for now i want to rest, my legs are shaking i already took off my pants to dry. "owww my head hurts....." these were my first words out loud i thought i wasn't able to speak yet weird... i sound weird i need time until i get used to it. As i got up from the table that i slept on, i saw a mirror image of myself in the library Glass window that separated itself from the rest of the school, even though my voice was not what i had hoped for my body was more than enough to cover the difference, i question myself why didn't i seek to find how i look before head ? Male , lean teenage body i must be around fifteen maybe sixteen years old, short black hair cut in almost perfect symmetry, my eyes were small sharp with a green color my eyebrows thin, my nose was nicely shaped and i had no facial hair. I walked outside to look around the place, my pants where still wet so i did not put them back on, it was the wisest decision , even though it was still cold after the rain i concluded i wasn't going to be sick the next day, the place was like a tropical forest my boots got muddy walking around the backyard of the school where kids probably went on recess, everywhere i looked there were trees, old and big, the light of the moon complimented them perfectly the green leaf turned to a dark blue color slowly as the time passed, and the moon location shifted following its own trajectory around the earth. Many hours passed while looking at the moon, until i realized my belly acing, wanting food i went inside running and opened my black bag, in it there was a second pair of clothes a jacket, some sandwiches, and two bottles of water with one liter each i unwrapped my sandwich and started eating, i didn't pay attention to the ingredients used, it was delicious. I never thought what would happen if there was no food inside, i got to distracted by the things around me, "ha ha" distraction what a useless human ability. Day 2 Good morning daily log I decided my name yesterday before sleeping, there was a sum of books that wasn't destroyed so i decided to try and read, but i couldn't understand anything except of one word in a physics book "Nova" i think it's Latin but i don't seem to possess the information of its meaning i miss quite a lot from my database one language is not enough to understand this world mechanics. I woke up hungry again and i had only one sandwich left, i would soon be left without provisions, gulping down the food brought me great pleasure, but i saved the half for later and exchange its place with water. I am going to leave right after i check the two last floors, and see if there is anything to eat in the cafeteria, maybe an energy bar or something that won't go bad after a day or two outside the fridge, even though i doubt it. I am a little scared what will happen when i leave but i am too excited to see what those gigantic trees hide behind them, I am more excited than scared. I went up to the third floor, the diagonally cut in half floor was really a surprise but had a great view , there was a lot of room to walk by even next to the partialy missing corridor was wide enough for me to walk close to edge. Lot of classes were missing, at least two you can't see them but if you take notice to the buildings architecture there must have been two right in front of me separated by a wall. The other classes were empty no chairs and no desks not even a board which probably is the first thing they bring in a classroom. I went down so i could go to the fourth floor and last part of my exploration, my ambition was quickly blocked by the almighty tree branches, i could't break with my bear hands , disappointment came over me , i felt it in my teeth maybe it was something else, why did a feeling as unimportant as this had an effect on my physical body ? Chapter 2 Mono "i am so bored , i hate working for surveillance " the Professor did not answer me, and kept monitoring the Andromeda named Nova from our twenty holographic screen floating in the air, we had placed droid insects and arachnid cameras everywhere, following his every move, it got really boring quickly, listening to his voice was probably the most interesting thing that happened to my Andromeda this last two days. The Professor took a quick look at his wrist watch before leaving the monitoring room for the first time in two days, in his place a man came, he was smiling and wearing similar clothes to Nova. "Hi" "hola Sympony" his annoying smile didn't stop until i shook hands with him, he immediately draw me close to him with immense force. "You're not by any chance one of the Cosmos? “ "What the hell is wrong with you?" His abusive approached scared me so i countered quickly with a low punch, a squirming sound of his stomach crushing with my blow was heard through his mouth, he fell on the floor. "Ok, got it just a normal Andromeda" he murmured the words lying down, unable to speak properly. "What's going on here?" The loud and heavy tone of the Professors voice ringed in my ears, i turned my head to the door, where it was coming from, i saw the Professor standing at the door looking at both me and Mono trying to form a theory based on the situation he saw. "Your pet here almost did a number on me" in the seconds i turned my head looking away Mono had risen from the floor, and was cleaning himself up from the dust that left a big white Stamp on him. "I am sure that you had nothing to do with it." “Well maybe, but she certainly is ferocious” "Hmm...” the professor grinned before answering "time for you to go" "Really? " the annoying smile on his face returned. He left without looking back at me, slowly pacing concealing his thrill, the automatic door behind the professor opened for him to leave the room. "What a jerk, why does he always try to piss me of?" "Doesn't matter» The professor may have brushed of the situation like nothing mattered, but he was shaken by it, i never saw him scared or at least frustrated, his left foot was taping on the floor continuously to hide it's minor shaking. I hope he would tell me more but i don't want to push him further. Chapter 3 Andromeda LOG ACTIVATION CODE 33452..... CODE ACCEPTED BIOMETRIC ANDROMEDA ACTIVATED NAME: Mono hunter "Andromeda activate exoskeleton" "The outside of the surveillance room was nothing special; i jumped using the previously mentioned new body abilities, from the inside of the military base to the rooftop. I was already bored by their stupid army toys and human invention, using an elevator was so slow, riding a snail is faster than that, and all this polite fake social ways of behaving when in reality everyone want to slit everyone elses throwt, i despise them all. All the anger i have inside me i store in you Andromeda I’m sorry. The sun was burning bright in the morning, and looking at the horizon to track down the newcomer certainly filled my heart with some joy, maybe he is part of the Cosmos, i will finally have some company maybe he is even interested in my plans, Andromeda what do you think ? "Mono you have to stop, this is not the way" The collective entity called Andromeda was amazing, one of the great things the humans created, she resides inside every one of us new beings, descending from human DNA with far more capable bodies. Thousands of us were taken from our homes, taken from the people we love, and were falsie claimed dead, only to be used as tools for experimenting, million of us died, thousand wait for their demise and only one from a hund full of people will be revived like me and the newcomer, it didn't matter who we were in the past, we were all killed like sheep, and still treated as such, but they made a mistake, Andromeda the thing that was implanted in us to keep us sane, and at the same time keep us at bay was actually what freed me, the first of the Cosmos, she is the one i love my salvation of the shackles that the humans have put on me through sheer use of force and using her i am going to take back my life, the moment i learn we can procreate i will kill them all, the humans won't stand a chance against us. "Mono i understand your pain but you can't do that, killing them is no different to what they did to us" “You are wrong it's nothing like what they did to us, I am going to give them the peace they so much long for, we’re almost there right? " "Yes... at your right you can see the school, at the corner, i doubt they send you alone droids must be coming for the contact moment in case you both go berserk" "Don't tell me you buy that shit, they only want to think they have the control of the situation" the place was wrecked , it had so many ruined buildings, actually not ruined but filled with plant life that entered the nearby houses. I didn't realize the transition from the military tower to this place at all, until i stopped running. "The gate seems bared, Andromeda is there another way in? "Yes if you jump over the trees you will find yourself inside" "Good" i jumped using the branches around me and with each leap i reached closer to the end, i could have made one long jump but spending all this stamina wasn't a good idea. I looked down from the tree top to see how the same distance had a different effect on my perspective, but i was no human i am not scared of heights or falling, so i jumped with my head pointing at the floor, i knew that i was one meter and seventeen nine centimeters and with my eyes observing the tree branches that i used to climb i knew when i had to turn my body making a one-eighty degrees spin upward so i can land at my feet. "Oops.... i almost broke my leg there" i said smiling. "Mono, the boy is in front of you" "Yeah i saw him” what a fragile looking kid they made this time, in the monitor room he seemed taller. "Who are you?" He seemed confused not scared a man just jumped and he didn't run for his life, that's the first one i see being so calm, i will have my fun breaking this one down until the machines come. "Don't worry kid, i am absolution" "Please don't make fun of me, i don't need to be forgiven for anything...now tell me who you are" "It's like you want to get beaten? " for the first time the boy looked confused, and I was happy to cause it. I made a quick dash ahead so i could punch his face he hardly noticed my first step , he flew in the air from my attack to his jaw but it didn't even fracture, he certainly was a high caliber creation. "Scared a little?" He got up, his legs where shaking. "Stay away from me” the boy yelled and also rushed on to me trying the exact same attack i used before, i lifted one hand for defense and kept a pretentious smile as a sign of my confidence. "What?" The kid maneuvered the moment he came close to me, he never wanted to attack me in the first place. "Are you stupid? There is nowhere for you to go" "I'm not running away from you because i am scared, I’m running so i can fight you better" i have never seen a confident brat as this, he picked a branch of wood from the muddy ground so he can use it as a weapon. "I suggest you make contact before you damage him" Andromeda said to me as i tried to figure an attack pattern that would strike him down instantly. "No way, this is too exciting to just let it go" i changed the way i talked to her from verbal commands to in-though managing, even though it's called command and managing i do not manage or command her, she is free to make choices of her own but she consults me so we can function better. "What's wrong getting scared?» "Don't taunt me kid" his ignorance of what i could do to him was certainly amusing, i run slower towards him than last time, he prepared the branch as a defence holding it with his two hands, he seemed to be planning to use it as a staff. I dodge his first attack, when i came near him by kneeling down even lower, i caught his right leg and lifted him up, he fell with his back, i didn't let go of the leg it was too soon i spined him around and threw him on the trees that he seemed to hold so dear. "So you do bleed after all" the rough skin of the trees and the friction weren't a good match, his silver jacket was ripped open exposing his own fragile skin on the tree surface, making many deep scratches on his back. "What? Cat got your tongue?" He wasn't talking he was just looking down on his blood,dripping and crossing his body like a stream. He opened his mouth. "AAAAAA" He started screaming. "Andromeda did you make contact?" "Of course not, that's not a normal reaction be careful" "he is a failure i am putting him down" Chapter 4 Pandora SECURITY PROTOCOL: ACTIVATE PROTECTION: MAXIMUM SECURITY LOG ACTIVATION CODE: 146570 BIOMETRIC ANDRO.. ANDRO.. SYSTEM FUCTION ABNORMAL BIOMETRIC PANDORA ACTIVATE Name: Nova "What the hell? My head is killing me , is that blood on me ? I can't move my hands , i can see that crazy guy looking at me, he will kill me if i don't move. "Don't worry i will protect you, i just want to you to keep the log informed" There was a feminine voice in my head it felt like she was smiling, was it real, maybe i'm hallucinating. "Exactly like that i want you to keep the log informed explaining everything, only for the time being" "What log?" CONSCIOUSNESS EXCHANGE IN PROCESS CONSCIOUSNESS EXCHANGE COMPLETE "Nothing makes, sense what is she talking about? The man in front of me is ready to attack me again and i can't defend myself, move move, why the hell i can't move?" "You’re not hurting Nova" the girls voice was now coming through my mouth and into my ears, not as an illusion of my mind anymore. "Activate exoskeleton" she murmured with my voice, but i knew that this wasn't me, after she said those words i felt the muscles of my body harden, but that wasn't normal, how can something like this happen, my body tighten becoming like one of an athlete. The man in front of me launched his punch and like the first time it was quick, but i could calculate almost perfectly the speed and strength his punch was carrying, i felt my body moving again my hand quickly was raised up, and formed a punch, and striked the face of my unknown adversary, he fell down. "Kid, your name is Nova right? Where did you find that strength?" "Nova can't come on the line right now, but my ears are open for you" "And you are?» "Pandora is the name" Pandora that is a nice name she has, filled with mystery like her. "Thank you” her real voice was heard from inside my brain again, it was like a second person was living inside of me the and his presence was occuping space by the second. "We are running in 5 seconds when he tries to get up” she said "Should i count?" "No, too late» as she foretold he tried to get up , but he couldn't , there was blood coming from his mouth he couldn't even lift his eyes to look at us. "Nice seeing you stranger" she told him, and jumped to the other side of the trees, looking at the world from outside the school was amazing the ruined roads and the plant life that had grown inside almost every building was amazing. "Nova focus on me for a bit” "Yes of course" i felt unable to resist her. "I only stunned him for a bit, and his robot friends are coming soon, they are going to put a search party on us in no time, i am handing you back the controls of the body and deactivating myself in case i emit a signal, i will leave the auto log open, and i will try to cut any contact with them , for the time being you are alone, but keep going straight from here and there is a small village, take notice, you will feel tired all of a sudden using the exoskeleton sucks a lot from an untrained body, right now you are left with twenty-five percent stamina. See you later” her long monologue stopped and her existence vanished, i was me again. I blinked my eyes a couple of times to see if i was in control of my body again , as she said i feel tired but i can't stop, i have to keep going so i can escape that mad man. "My body is running out fuel quickly" my breath was heavier with each second passing and my legs are numb, my eyes are closing, but i can see the town in front of me i can also see a watermill next to me, to bad i don't have time to admire it, though a zip of fresh water would do me good. I stopped, i had to drink something i am sure he isn't following. I dived my head inside and drunk till my heart took its fill, i felt my stomach rumble with the water inside of it when i got back up from kneeling, the sound from the watermill is enchanting, as it turned in countless cycles a day with the help of the not so high waterfall above it. I looked back to see how far i was from the school "i can't see it" i was running for less than five minutes how is that possible? then again how is anything of what happened today possible. "You did well to stop at this spring" “Pandora? " I was surprised to hear her voice «you said you are not coming back for a while" "Well i searched all neurons of your brain and there was nothing that would give away a signal" “that’s good " why am i not freaking out about this ? i have a voice that took over my body in a middle of fight. "I zoomed in to take a look while you were describing the watermill, there is an abandoned house just outside of it, go there so you can rest, i will explain everything i know there." She was here for some time, but i only realized the pressure of her existence just now. "Ok, will you leave again?" "No, but i can stay silent, if you feel weird about it." 'It's alright, can i use my voice to speak to you? i mean can i talk instead of forming the words inside my brain" "Yeah , of course " she sounded happy, i didn't want to tell her to stay away, even though my head was hurting a lot when we talked, she did save back then, the strength of his last punch would have killed me" "You like using the log a lot, don’t you ?" She asked me. "Well i am not really doing it consciously. i just talk to myself" "Ok , just so you know i deactivated the exoskeleton for your body to relax " "Thanks, i already feel lighter» she really is dependable. Chapter 5 "How could i let this happen?" "It wasn't your fault " Andromeda immediately tried to comfort me "he was not normal" "That's obvious" i lashed out at her, i waited a little she didn't give me a response “I’m sorry" "It's ok, the bots are coming" the droids was a squad of robots soldiers that accompany us whenever we had a mission, we rarely where two Andromeda in the same team. Each squad had six bots and each one had a camera attached at its head. "Did you deactivate the bugs that had camera around?" "I made Symphony brake down the machine after she sends a virus to the cameras, she was immediately taken for examination as a defect" "Good job, deactivate so you can hide the traces of us inside the girl" "Already done" The droids were standing in front of me looking around them to see where the boy was, the voice of the professor was heard from the speaker inside the neck of the robot. "What happened here?" "When i made contact with him, he went berserk" "That's the first time something goes wrong with one of your missions" patronizing me was always the first thing he would do when something didn't go as he planned. "Hence, the reason i didn't know how to handle it" i laughed to make him think I didn't get it. " i am sorry professor i promise to buy you a cup of coffee when i get back, but i have to find him first" «you don't have to go, we already send some searchers to get him" "That's absurd i am closer to him, it will take the searchers a day to catch up" "It's already done; i want you back here immediately" "Ok" what a stupid decision, i could have caught him in less than two hours, "Activate exoskeleton" once again i left the droids behind, and went on running back to the military tower alone, the tower isn't visible yet but seconds after practically Jumping and running few kilometers, i would be able to see it. I couldn't get the kid out of my mind, what the hell is Pandora? did he make contact without making contact? and that still doesn’t explain what she is , why wasn't Andromeda in control, i should have easily subdued him if he was active. "He is a Cosmos, but he is already awaked" his confidence his way of behaving and his different in every way Andromeda, he knows the truth and unlike me doesn't want to fight , what a woos i am dragging him back first chance i get. «how much time till i unlock ?" "About half a year left you are at ninty-two percent" "That's good i want to have this power when the time comes , why are you so silent?" " just skeptical" "About what" "Nova and Pandora they can become good allies, when you catch them, and you could mentor them to unlock» "He is interesting, i agree with that" i felt my lips move unwillingly forming a smile , it never happened before, at least never for someone i don't wish to manipulate, I take that back I do want to manipulate him a little. Chapter 6 Reality I know that everything i think of is being read by Pandora, until now she has interrupted me many times so she can express her opinion about what i think , when i tried to explain to her that they are only thoughts passing by , she answered that a man is made of his ideals and ideas, it's to early to say i have ideals since i have no idea what’s going on. «i told you i could be silent, if you did not want me to interfere you could have just asked" «Well i wanted to be polite, you did help me after all , either that or i am a delusional psychopath" "I was only expressing my Thoughts, and based to what you say thougts don't count, and beyond your perverse thoughts there is no reason to worry, you are as sane as any normal man" "Then explain to me how you exist, and how i jumped at least three meters, and run for at least seven kilometers in a blink of an eye , this is certainly not a sane man’s reality" "I told you, i will explain just enter the shaft" she did say that before, i remember right after i drank water from the spring. "I am opening the door , prepare for use of the exoskeleton in case there is something else inside" i said using my thought. "I thought you were braver than that" "I am just taking every precaution" "Just open the damn door" i felt my right hand move on its own, before i could do anything about it, she had already pushed the door of the small abandoned wooden shaft. I got angry it's different when she took control when i was in danger , and different when i am thinking of our best option. Of course she immediately sensed my anger. "It's not my job to babysit you, but to make you man, and i'm doing a decent job" "That's it , shut up, i don't want to hear your voice for the rest of the day" "I wasn't planning on talking anyway, have a good day" "You too" no one backed down , i went to lay down at the ruined banker that was in the back left corner of the shaft , i don't want to sleep but i would get angrier thinking of what just happened, besides how do i know i am safe come to think of it, am i? "You are safe don't worry " she talked sooner than i had anticipated. "that's because you are an idiot" "Still, you broke first" "Maybe, but you have to hear what i have to say i may be able to hear your thoughts but you can't do the same with me" "Well, what is it you want to say ?" "Do you remember yesterday? When you waked up, do you remember what you did ?" "Yes i remember, i went on to search the place around" i was confident of my answer even though the question was simple. "No, that's not what you did, you kept a log" what is she talking about i clearly remember climbing the stairs and taking my bag inside the library. "Yesterday and today just before the strange man came we were one, me and you, but the moment you sensed danger we broke in two, i know because i was the one that realized first. i saw the world through your eyes when you got punched i felt your pain when you run towards him i knew your plan of escape, and all because i never wante to do what you did." "That's impossible you either existed separately from me since the beginning or you are part of myself." she snorted through my nose i was surprised and my face expression changed. "Why are you still using words like impossible i am here, aren't i? let me ask you a question then, it's easy" "Ok" "How many terabytes does our brain contain" "What kind of question is that, of course i don't know?" "The answer is a hundred and fifty a hundred is used as space shared for me and you, and we have an extra fifty for all other needs as memories even though i doubt they will take so much space even if i perfectly store them with every detail, speaking of which i can show you the convercesion of your awaking the one we had the moment we woke up." "Ok then show me" i have gone insane i am certain now. It seems that i just waked up on On a red couch big enough for two people to sit but not large enough to have my new body rest on it, i felt numb at the beginning i couldn't quite use my limps for at least an hour, that’s when i decided to keep a memo of my day here it will only take a small amount from the extra fifty terabytes that my brain has, it would also be a shame not to use the abundance of words that i have stored in. I wonder who woke me up. "Why don't i remember any of this?" I could see it clearly, that was my voice and view i remember looking at the couch, but i never complained about its size. "I think because those are my memories, Nova you and i are two separate people, at least that’s what i think" i stayed silent i wanted to know more about what was happening. "Okay then, tell me something, do you have memories? Memories of your childhood" "I don't know" "You don't, because then I’d know , this body is fresh you have no other scars other than the one you got this morning, we don't have any scars" she said putting emphasis on the we." i think i want to stop talking now." she respected my request, i was right after all everything happening until now aren't events normal people expierience, i am not human. Chapter 7 Green valley I took my shirt off it felt nice, when all of my upper body was touched by the breeze that passed through the cracks that the wooden walls had between them. "You know you should eat" she said with her cute caring voice this time, "let’s go inside the village, there maybe something we can do to earn money" after two hours of silence my head cooled down from the conversation we had, i am still a little depressed. "I don’t think that the best thing right now is to see other people" "Enough, you will go right now and find something to eat" "I will do whatever i want, you are not my mother" "That's because we don't have one , so get down from your high horse and act like a man" "Again with this man talk, i am sixteen, I’m not a man, still a kid in case you don't know the difference" once again she took control, and slapped me with my left hand, at that moment i felt my whole body go numb not because she tried to take control, but because i knew that what i said was shameful, if i had a mother she would certainly not wanted me to speak as a spoiled brat, her slap woke me up. "I'm sorry" "I need to eat, go find something" she acted deliberately cruel, but i understood why. "Ok" The sun outside was burning bright, i don't know if my best choice was to go half naked in the village, how will everyone react to this image, would they pity me? seeing my back injured, will i have to beg for food? "i don't think i can find work as easy as you think" "There is a church in the middle of the town that gives food to the poor, go there" "How do you know all this?” "The information is inside our brain, not only that there is information of every city town and village, terrain, seas and mountains" "You know where everything is?” "No, not everything only the more important things" I was walking inside the village, but as the rest of the world i saw until now it's combined with trees. "Are you sure there are people here?" "We don't have this information actually" "Great" "The top of the bell tower is right in front of you" "I love the way you can see things using my eyes, better than i can" she laughed but didn't say anything. As we walked towards the church using the cross to pinpoint our location and vaguely messure our distance from it, we started hearing footsteps and noise, finally after we turned at the corner we saw people gathered around the stairs of the church, everyone wearing rags and dirty clothes, all of them holding a bowl in his hand, every one of them was thin and tired. "These people look worse than we do, what happened to them?" "At least we know this is the place where they give out the food" Pandora didn't seem effected by the view of half dead people waiting to be fed, then again we are at the same situation as them. I went close to see what was going on, the first thing i noticed was that they all head a smell like they lived inside moist and dirt , i continued breathing normally though so i don't offend anyone. "What happened to this place?" I asked an old man that was in front of me but he didn't turn to answer, instead he shoved me away. "Hey what's your problem?" I was ready for a fight with him but i felt a gentle touch on my arm holding me back. "Don't" said Pandora "remember, we are guests here" As the time passed the people would lessen, leaving with their bowls filled with hot soup, nobody was holding a spoon so there was a tricky part when it came to eating it, even though i never show it being done because no one would stick around after they were served. "It's sad this people seem so sad" i felt a heavy burden inside me collapsing on my heart, that wasn't me, it was Pandora’s sadness taking effect on my body, since she didn't respond to their run down state In the beginning i thought she wasn't affected by it, but it seems she also sometimes needs time until she notice some things. I agreed with her, that was no way for humans to live. Anyone would be sad, sad by this kind of living. Finally it was our turn, behind the mass of people there wasn't any real organized way for someone to get his food, but as soon as people started leaving you could see the priest and his nuns shout at them to stay in line and wait their turn. "I am sorry, but can you maybe provide me with a bowl" i said to one of the nuns. "Of course" she instantly said , and placed her hand under the table where the pots with the soup were, she didn't look what she was doing her gaze was fixed on me like a hawk or a snake, since she was shorter than me and she also had to crouch to get my bowl. "Are you new?" She asked. "Yes, but i am just passing by, i don't think i am staying more than a day" i told her the truth but i wasn't sure if it was the best idea. "A traveller" "Something like that" the priest looked curious of our conversation. "You’re going to get cold, would you like a blanket or a shirt?" "If you have to spare one that would be great" even though she had a weird look in her face when she looked at you, her kindness is how you imagine a nun would be. "Good, wait for me a second" she fast paced almost run, inside the church. As long as she got in the priest aproached me "where are you headed traveller ?" "Tell him we are going at mausoleum, it's the next village" Pandora made an excuse for me faster than i could have formed a thought. "Mausoleum, it's the next village right? “ "Haven't you heard son? Mausoleum got destroyed by Terra the people here are all refugees from there. "When did this happen ?" i asked. "Last month during the bombing on the moon" the priest was silent when he saw my surprise of the news. "The moon ? Are you sure sir i mean what’s the point" "My dear boy where have you been living all this years, don't you listen to the news" i don't know what to answer him, i have no idea what's going on i don't even know what day it is. Pandoras voice vanished after she told me about mausoleum, but her presence was still there, i could feel her lingering. "I was traveling for a long time on my own, i haven't had any connection with society for the last three months" i hope this is a good enough excuse. "Tell him you came from the Green valley" Pandora added her little something to perfect my excuse. "I am from the Green valley" The priest was surprised again "i understand why you have been out of touch with the world, i am sorry if i pressured you" "The Green valley is a name given to the first city after the earth re-colonization from the moon but it was also the first one to get destroyed from the war between them" not only did she know of terrain and geography but also had knowledge of history, she is amazing. "Go sit, your soup will soon get cold “the priest said, ending our discussion abruptly "thank you" i went and sat at the churches stairs near some kids that already had finished their meal and were playing hide and seek. "How am supposed to eat the soup ?” “You know, you could do it like cat" Pandora said "No way" i turned the bowl over and drank slowly the vegetable soup so i don't swallow any carrots or peas before chewing them, it had a sweat taste that made it pleasant to drink it. "Do you want to hear more about the war?" Pandora didn't speak when i had my face stuffed inside the bowl. "How much do you know?" "Enough to have a general idea, but not any recent information" "Before you begin can i ask you something else?" "Go ahead" "What date is it? "Good question, but i don't know, all the history information i have stops at 2705" "Can't we assume that this is the year we are, at least?" "We can but it would be under false pretences, i will be certain tonight after i see the star allignment, i will even tell you the day" "Where do you get all your information?" "not really sure, things just pop up when i ask about something" "things pop up inside my brain,that’s not comforting" She started laughing "Your pretty funny you know that?“ with no irony hovering over her voice, I was sure she was going to make fun about how i get scared easily, but for the first time she had a nice thing to say about me. "Not really, you're just an easy laugh" i tried to semi-compliment her. She kept laughing for a while until she squeezed a sentence out of her “anyway do you want to know about the world, and the war?” “No, let’s keep the fun going we can talk later” “Ok” Soon after we decided to stop conversing the nun came holding a black shirt , it was small, and it annoyed me how it stuck on my skin, but beggars can’t be choosers, I smiled and thanked her, she did the same and then left, I will be sleeping in one of the abandon house instead of the shaft, I hope it’s not too cold. Chapter 8 Freedom of the hunter "I can’t see anyone around, where is everyone?” I am standing in the middle of the military base trying to find the professor and complain that he send searchers to pick up Nova, but no one is around to tell me where I could find him. “He should be at the lab where Symphony is, why don’t you go there? “Andromeda was right, Symphony was his favorite puppet he was always with her, if she wasn’t one of us, I would swear she is his sex slave. All doors inside the base were automatic they opened on their own , the lab is the second building attached to the base and mostly used for, let’s say Maintenance of my species. The color of the lab was white, always clean always sparkling like a set for a cleaning product commercial. As I came close to the maintenance room I saw symphony sitting on a white bed strapped to machines and cables throughout her body, and to all the well-known Helmet like friend, that extracted information out of our brains transefering and converting them into data, the professor was sitting next to her toying around with controls that the machines had, all I know was where the off and on button is. He was not alone, there were a couple of nurses and scientist analyzing data each at his own computer in order to see what went wrong with her, and she went berserk. “So Julies, I found you at last” I used another one of my ironic smiles to establish the mood of the conversation “why the hell would you call me back?” “Silence Mono, now it’s not the time for an argument" he was firm with his words even though he didn’t yell “I want you to connect with her “ he said and pointed at Symphony, useless as his pointing was, since there was no one else with whom I could connect to. “What? No way forget it” “I said connect with her” this time he yelled. “I will not risk my life for that bitch of yours, connecting with an already awakened Andromeda is insane, you know that better than anyone, it will kill us both” “Listen to me tool, I don’t care if you die a hundred times over in front of my eyes you will do as I say” he jumped from the little round chair he was sitting on and pulled my hair. “Don’t touch me filth” I snapped “Mono calm yourself” Andromeda was desperately trying to stop me, but it was useless at this point I already have taken my decision. “Activate Exoskeleton” I said using verbal commands. “Are you crazy ?“ he asked. “No” I put my hand on his face and squeezed it tightly, the more I squeezed the more he loosened his own fist from my hair. The blood started flowing from his right nostril first, he started screaming from pain as did the couple of nurses that were there from what they saw. “Mono stop it you’re killing him” Andromeda also started screaming in my head, for a moment I felt her need to take control of my body. A male scientist came from behind me and slammed a chair on my back, I hardly felt anything, with my fingers now inside of the professors head, i swung him on the male with enough force to throw him back on the computer he was working with, the professor slipped from me but it was for the best after all, he was dead for a couple of seconds anyway, and now he served me better as a weapon. When I went close to check on the scientist he was also dead from a piece of metal that entered his skul from behind, all that was left now two nurses and a scientist, that run away, I wasn’t in the mood to play cat and mouse though. They sound the alarm, I disconnected Symphony of all the gizmo, lifted her from her white throne , that was now stained with blood drops from Julies head, and run toward the automatic door that opened immediately the moment it detected my presence in front of it , all hallways were empty I went back to the base . the place there was filled with bots similar to those that came to pick Nova and me up from the old abandoned school. Some were flying others were more closely related to tank rather than a robot. As before there was no one in the base , no one gave any orders to the bots at least not someone that I can stop or was close by. “Andromeda, little help please” quite some time passed and she wasn’t talking, I relied on her for more elaborate strategy thinking , she could always calculate the best course of action so I can escape or destroy my enemy. “ok then, I will take care of it myself” I jumped on one of the hovering droid when the other saw me they fired with their gun hands, the tank droids didn’t fire on me yet., since their attack would cause more destruction to their allies rather than good, at least that what I think the user had in mind. The moment I landed my kick on the droids head it flew away like a football, the main command chip was attached to it, thus the user lost control, we started falling together with the decapitated droid I was holding Symphony with one hand and the fall was dangerous for her since she did not have her exoskeleton equipped, I moved her lower body to my left hand and my right hand was holding her back now, the droids were to slow to catch up with our falling speed, primitive weapon no wonder they need us for the war. “Fall inside the explosion that the droid is going to cause I activated Symphonies exoskeleton so she won’t be harmed” I heard her voice inside my head telling me what to do next. “Nice work” Due to its weight the droid fell first on the floor exploding on a tank creating a chained explosion destroying everyone nearby, I fell inside, I could feel my skin roast but my healing ability would kick in soon after I got out of the fire, it will consume more than fifty percent of my stamina and having only twenty left is risky but its going to be enough to escape, as for Symphony she would only use thirty five since she is in hibernation mode, the flying droids were in confusion, because of the shockwave of the explosion caused i took advantage of the momentum created and escaped from the main door without the controller noticing anything. Chapter 9 A body for the wicked I spend all the afternoon helping out with the kids that were living in the church , managing to get control of the situation, was harder and more painful to my legs from my fight with the other guy. I think that was because the kids made made fun of me ,and used me to play their twisted game of trying to hurt themselves, each time I would catch one, someone else be it a boy or a girl would try to jump from a high place or throw rocks to each other, being raised in a hostile inviroment probably made them think this kind of playing was most appropriate, i did see them play hide and seek, and also share some clothes of theirs with one of their friend, who needed it more than they did, it put a smile on my face knowing that kindness was still in them. I thought of using exoskeleton countless times to catch up to them with my speed, but then I would probably frighten them, Pandora was sitting not doing anything , enjoying the sight of me being made fun of, I could feel her happiness through all my body. As soon as the clock struck eight, the noun called the children back inside the church for dinner, unlike lunch time people did not gather and big hot pans with soup weren’t sitting on the small rectangular shaped table, it was easy enough understand that there was no dinner for the masses of people gathered from Mausoleum, and that ment neither for me. I waved my hand to the nouns and priest and thanked them again for everything they did for me today, they told me that there were plenty of houses unoccupied since the start of the war the last thirty years, and that I could use one to sleep in it if I choose to, I liked the idea since the cold clay walls that the houses were built is much better than the cracked wood with holes everywhere shaft at the enterance of village. It took me a while until I found a house without intruding in anyones privacy, which i did more times than I care to admit. By the time i found the right place it was already ten o’clock , it wasn’t that cold especially since the northern wind that was around all day stopped , I glanced at the clear night sky and saw the white gold light of the stars shimmer and dance, I think that looking at the nightsky will soon become an unatural habit of mine. “today is twenty of November of twenty-seven thirty-five” I was startled by Pandoras voice. “exactly thirty years from the last entry that our history information has” “Yes, come to think of it we don’t have anything after the beginning of the war” the inside of the house isn’t much it has a bed like all the other houses a semicircle that was near the wall with black dust probably carbon that was created due to fire, next to it there was a small pyramid of wood neatly stalked. “Pandora, are you feeling cold? ” “not really, I actually don’t feel anything unless I get control of our body” “No fire then I am going straight to bed , I feel way more tired than I should “ I walked myself toward the bed and fell on it without thinking if it can sustain this kind of sudden weight increase, the proud metal that it was made of denied to break but I could hear the rusty old springs that hold the mattress having trouble with each oscillation “Wait don’t fall asleep yet” Pandora shouted inside my head bringing back the memories and headache when she first talked to me, my eyes sprang wide open. “What ? “ “We need to talk” “What about ?” “About the situation we are in and what are we supposed to do” I could hear excitement in her voice, but was she excited? Or maybe nervous, and if she was, then why? “Can’t we do that tomorrow ? I am not in the mood now” “the way you do things, you will never be, in the mood” I smelled her sex comment coming from miles away, I may be sixteen but I was no stranger to this voulgar way of thinking,especially when I had a vulgar mind of my own thinking this way. “Anyway, you need to know some of the information floating inside us, in case I won’t be there to help, don’t forget knowledge is power” even though she always found a way to annoy me her way of rationalizing everything was unparalleled. “Ok, what do you want to talk about first” “I want to tell you about the guy that was hunting us when we got separated” “The one who almost beat us to death? ” “Yes, but not him specificly, mostly about people like us” she took a moment , probalbly to sort the information she had “the reason the war begun in the first place was because they discovered people like us can exist, when the re-collonazation started they expiremented on creating genetly enhanced humans so they can live longer and under harsher life circumstances” “wasn’t regular evolution good enough for them? greedy bastards” I said “they failed, not at creating enhanced humans at making them conscious of their life, the new creations were lifeless, even though they were perfect replica of human bodies and mind, and since they couldn’t preform this kind of enhancement to an adult human or infant babies they thought of another way, not because they didn’t try I assure you but because in both situation they would end up dead” she took a break knowing how disturbed would someone find even the notion of experimenting on little kids, but after a second she continued “the new way was to pass from one body to the other” . she stopped again after her short sentence, I felt like she was expecting something of, me but I couldn’t quite grasp the idea. “which means ?” “Which means that we are part of that avatar project, think about it a sixteen year old boy that woked up In the middle of nowhere , can leap five meters high and run three times faster than the average man” “You think that I am part of this madness, I would never consent in this monstrosity of an act” “So now you have an ideology ?” “For all I know your information, Data, knowledge is predated and false” “You wish” “No Pandora I don’t wish, because if what your saying is true that means that everyone in this god forsaken planet is a mutated puppet or even worse a schizophrenic pcycho like the one who came for us, sorry me because I AM starting to think that I AM a psychopath myself” I know those words were harsh, but how can what she said be true. I couldn’t get myself to sleep after the intense ending of our discussion and since I rarely not feel her poking inside my head, I got a little worried but just as I was ready to talk , she went first. “I am sorry” there was remorse in her voice. “No I am sorry, I got mad because I know that everything you said made sence, and was probably true” there was another small silence between us. “you know I am not spying on the log anymore” everytime I hear he calm loving voice in my head I feel a surge of warmth inside me, this time was no different. “I know” I replied “really, when did you find out ?” “that’s an easy question, when you finally stopped giving you intrusive opinion about everything I kept a note for” she laughed both because she knew that when I meant this is an easy question I was referring to her morning idea of what is easy ment and because I made fun of her attitude. The whole time I was talking to Pandora today without realizing it I started creating an image of her in my head, in the beginning it was nothing more than a lean girly body made of light even though I wasn’t sure of her gender, as we continued to converse I started adding details on her luminous figure, her brown long hair came first then her wide eyes and honey like colored iris her nose was petite, small, the lips were red soft like the smooth skin of an apple, like the one snow-white was tempted to eat from the witches hands, her own hands where hugging her legs tightly like if she was cold, maybe my imagination was not far from the truth, but she denied having the sences of a living body without one. Last but not least the skin, I toyed with this one for some time I couldn’t think what her skin would actually be like, the color was the one that elude me the most, I decided it was going to be smooth and without any scars or it would be unfair to her, at the end one color was perfect, a light brown, it complimented her eyes and lips at their best. “Hey where are you spacing out” she asked me. I was trying to synchronize some of her most used phrases with her attitude on the body I created for her. “Say Pandora, would you like to have your own body? “ I felt her surprise to my question “I was thinking , if what you said is true, then I was transferred to a new body” “how do you know that wasn’t I the one who got transferred first” she was annoyed at the idea that I considered myself to be the owner of the avatar. “I only said that because I feel like a guy, but from the first moment you introduced yourself as a female” she didn’t answer “so do you want a body or not” her silence was prolonged again. “I get it, I am a spare so you want to get rid of me” “typical female reaction, you just can’t see the point I am making , and just say whatever comes to your mind first, fine you can keep this one if you wish, I just don’t think it’s fair for us to share one body when we clearly are two different people” “Listen you, I will judge what…” I blocked her voice out immediately after she started shouting, and focused on the image I created of her, until I knew she could see it with her own eyes or whatever she used to see my thoughts, her voice started to get smoother. “is that how you imagine I look ?” “You like it ?” “She’s beautiful” “So can you use it? at least for now until we get you a real one? “ “Yes, I will make it your visual stimuli to my voice, but can I change something ?” “Yeah of course, it’s yours after all” in an instant the body got more mature not to much, just enough to match my age. “why that age? ” I asked “because I want to be sure you memorize this version of me when we will be creating a real one, but doesn’t that violate your ethics? “ “Our case is different, so I decided to take advantage of this technology and make things right” Pandora chuckled “When did you get so manly” “You made me like this” I said laughingly. It was already past eleven and I could hardly keep up the discussion i told her goodnight and closed our eyes, I forgot to ask her when she awaken inside me who was the one that she might have been emiting a signal to ? Doesn't mater , I wil ask tommorow. Chapter 10 Caving under the Lies Symponies clothes were burned off from the explosion, so I removed them and cleaned her body from the black spots they left, I did the same to myself. I brought a blanket to cover her naked body from my eyes, so she won’t feel uncomfortable. The inside of the cave was dark and old, the stalactite were driping water and some stalagmite were as big as I was, in height. It must have taken it hundred of years to grow , the smallest of whispers would echo deep inside it and the sound would quickly return back to us. “How will you explain to her what are you doing” Andromeda was feeling uneasy all the way till we reached here, my way is not how she wanted things to go, but I don’t care I explained myself to her since the beginning, i told her the moment i learned the truth that i was planning to do all this, she probably thought that I was not going to follow up on my word. “I will lie of course” “What kind of lie will cover all this? “ “The one I forgot to mention” I was getting impatient, so did she. Symponie started to awaken and move after a short while, I already knew she would since Andromeda was the cause of her actions back in the base, she connected with her, when we met at the surveillance room this morning and ordered her part of the Andromeda to take control, smash the place up and erase her memory of ever doing so, I wonder if Julies ever got wind of me being able to reconnect with the others, I don’t think so he probably wanted to make sure in a desperate act of course that his precious doll was fine. “Where are we? Where are my clothes and what did you do to me? ”Symphony panicked but was asking all the right questions for someone who just woke up in a situation as this. She was holding firmly the blancket so it doesn’t fall over and uncover her body. I also had my back turned so she doesn’t see me naked, not because I was embarrassed like her but to make her think I have respect for her idea of where boundaries start. We Andromeda don’t feel cold like humans do, our resilient bodies automaticly increase our blood flow to keep us warm and with use of the exoskeleton ability, focused on our heart, we minimize the danger of a heart attack at two percent even under those extreme conditions. “Relax you are safe, he can’t find us here” “who won’t find us ?” “Don’t you remember what happened at the base ?” “Last thing I remember is waiting for you to make contact with Nova” “And I did, I also brought him back” “you sly bastard, so that’s how you plan on doing it” Andromeda was pissed of, so pissed off that she actually felt the need to use her non-existing vocabulary as she called it “You also lied to me , you had everything planned from the beginning” “He went berserk and smashed everything don’t you remember how he killed the professor and you trying to save him” I thought of shading some tears combined with my excellent performance but it was a bit to much, she knew I didn’t have any particular liking to Julies, i did though take a face of unsatisfaction. "The proffesor is dead ?" I could see her trying not to cry. “Yes” “Why didn’t you stop him then where the hell where you” she didn’t hold back anymore she started whipping “Don’t you boast to be the best one of us, the strongest ?” Now was the right time “I am sorry” I turned myself at her, after I made sure she had covered her eyes, I then kneeled so I could hug her. “Impossible, you make it seem so easy that it's laughable” Andromeda was certainly not at her best, but I couldn’t resist taunting her. “If you are so surprised by this, then I wonder what will happen in six months ?” “Was that poor boy part of your plans?what about that pandora thing ? was that something he though of on the spot? Lies within lies was there anything you said ever true? “ “I do love you, you know. Because you exist my goddess I am able to save an entire civilization from destruction, you blessed me with your kind heart and your angelic words and look at me now , rising from a pupput to become a puppeteer” “What kind of crazy are you? “ I didn’t answer at her provocation, I kept my eyes fixed on Symphony that kept crying continuously, she is the dawn of my plans after all, few steps left and then it’s game over, for the humans at least.