Copyright © 2004-2017 Jeff P.. All Rights Reserved.
You know how people say, "Their life flashed before their eyes" once realizing the end is near. Knowing I have literally the equivalent of about two human life times stored in this brain, actually makes me wonder how long that flashback is going to take, if it is in fact going to happen at all. Knowing there is going to be no pain, since shutting down all of my systems, other than cognitive, visual, audio and logical, I lean over the railing and stare at the wide open ocean, lapping at the sides of the freighter.
"Hey, kid!" A voice booms from behind me.
I turn and look in his direction. 'The man must be the captain or something.' I think to myself.
"Don't lean over the railing! You might fall overboard!" He bellows with an aggravated tone before muttering, "Stupid kids..." as he turns to walk away.
Once I was sure he was out of sight, I lean back over and think to myself that finally I'll find peace. I look up to the sky and say a final prayer to whoever might listen...
'If anyone up there is listening, please let this work. My time down here ended a long time ago, I have nothing left to live for now. Kevin, if you can hear me, please wait for me...'
I climb over the railing, lean foreword and let myself fall into the water below. It took well over an hour to finally reach the bottom. I let my body drift downward loosely, thinking of the day of my death as a human, the day of my birth as an android, the many years I had with a loving friend and family and the lonely years that would follow. As dark as it was on the ocean floor, I could make out the shape of what looked like a sunken ship, or sub so I made my way over to it's hull, and sit on the ocean floor with my back resting on the side of the cold lifeless sleeping giant. 'Just like you.' I think to myself, 'My existence will end right here where yours has.' I pat the side of the ship and decide the time is right, reach my hand to the back of my head and pull open the access panel. 'Weird, I thought I wouldn't feel anything.' I think as even with my senses shut down, I can actually feel the water rushing into my synthetic brain, and the pressure from the deep cold ocean be relieved from the surface of my entire body.
Moments later, the salt water finally penetrates my circuitry and I begin to feel my cognitive control slip, as involuntary twitches wrack my body before my mind begins to cloud over. My thoughts interrupted with bright flashes of light. 'Kevin...' I think one last time, not able to finish my thought as my brain gives its last attempt at a rational thought...
* * * * * * * * * * * *
"Where am I" I attempt to say; my voice only able to produce a loud mechanical hum. I am blinded by a bright white light that seems to be all around me. I attempt to move but can't. I don't feel anything, not even parts of my own body as a voice breaks into my thoughts.
"Shush, don't try to speak, you're not ready yet." The voice says. 'It's a child's voice.' I think to myself as once again the voice returns, echoing through my ears as if heard through a loud speaker submerged in a swimming pool. "Dad, he's trying to talk." The voice says.
Suddenly, I feel a tickle in my brain, and all goes dark.
"Do you think it's really him?" I hear clear as a bell as the darkness leaves me once again and is replaced with that same blinding white light.
"Where am I?" I ask thinking it odd that even in death I have retained the voice of my mechanical self. Rough sounding, but still the same.
"Can you hear me?" The child like voice seems to ask me.
"Yes, is this heaven? Kevin is that you?" I say, trying to reach out, but feeling as if I have been tied down and begin fighting against the restraints.
"Calm down, you're going to hurt yourself." The voice says, soothing me a little and convincing me to be still. "Can you see me yet?"
"I can't see anything but white." I reply as I try to focus my eyes. "Am I dead?"
"No, you're safe now." The voice says.
"Safe?" I ask. "Where am I? Who are you?"
"My name is Marc, my dad and I found you while we were exploring the wreckage of an old sunken ship. My dad works for a company that designs exploration subs and let me come along on one of his test runs. That's how we found you."
"No, no, no..." I mutter rolling my head back and forth. "It was supposed to end." I say, feeling tears begin to roll down my cheeks. "I can't be here anymore, you have to let me die... please, just let me die!" I beg the voice which has slowly become a silhouette in the brightness.
A silence filled the air and brought a calmness over me as well. The bright light was beginning to fade and I could almost make out the face that belonged to that voice. He had a beautiful, almost angelic face from what I could make out and hair so blond I could have sworn it was white. "I'm sorry." I said with a sniffle as I regained my senses a bit. "If you only knew what it was like, to be forever trapped in a body that wasn't yours. No escape, never to rest. Destined to love but cursed, and forced to watch that love grow old and die forever."
The boy remained silent for a moment, then cleared his throat and said. "I do understand, I'm an android too."