h1

Glint – Part 1 – Piece 9

May 11, 2011

“He found a way to live forever?” The robot asked.

“In a way, yes he did. And, it’s not without some mixed emotions that I tell you that we helped too.

“Let me explain,” Tomas said. “Inside a person there is a thing, an eternal spark, if you will, that most people simply call the ‘spirit’ or ‘soul’. A man from Umber, an inventor and ‘futurist’ as he called himself, Mr. Bree, thought that the problem with people is that however indestructible their souls may be, their bodies are prone to getting old and dying.

“Simply put, this man found a way to transfer this indestructible spirit out of a person’s body and into another vessel. As he set to work developing his technique and refining it, he put us in charge of creating the vessels. We called them mechanic men, robotons, robots.”

“But they soon got new names,” Bernie said. “Titans, saints, furies, freijgilten – they became almost mythic. Sacred.” He screwed his mouth up in a snarl. “I’ll not apologize for the work we did – our work was that of artists. Chrome, platinum, silver, bronze, copper, gold…these were our palette. Look at yourself.” He stood and pointed out the robots features. “The bronze wings on your shoulders, the fine etchings of spirals and waves running along your whole body, the way the golds mix with the different shades of bronze so that the light shines just right. It’s magnificent…there is no evil here. Never was.”

***

“But, you’re missing the point Guus.” Tomas said. “In the beginning we only made a single robot for him. The prototype. So for him to test his experiment properly with just one robot he must have been able to take the souls out of the robots or replace them. It’s obvious if you can move a soul from a body into something else then you could do it the other way again.”

“Maybe. Maybe not. No one knows how he did this stuff,” Bernie said.

“But, I’m right. He must have been taking people, transferring their souls, taking them out again, and getting new people. He had to test it on a lot of people because he had to be sure it would work on everyone. He had to prove that it would to the emperor.

“And you think the emperor would have gone through with it if it couldn’t be reversed? That’s why at first it wasn’t the end when Bree died. But when he lost the manor and all the information, well, no wonder he exploded.”

“Well, it’s too bad for him, now he’s stuck like that and…” Guus bit his lip. “Oh, sorry, I didn’t mean anything.”

Bernie stood up and clipped Guus over the back of the head.

“What’d I tell you about that mouth of yours?”

“Yes, well, that’s about the end of the story anyway.” Old Bubble said. “And that is where we are today. But, we don’t just have a freijgilten for an emperor; we have you. And we’ve been so worried telling stories that we haven’t even asked the most important question. Who are you in this story?”

AJG

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