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Scrapmetal Circus: Wayfinder


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Xen peered across the terraced decks of the spaceliner as her crystalline dome covering the forward star terrace deck shifted opacity to allow for a more Earth-like viewing, being that four large sister stars were hovering in a sea of blue as the ship allowed for a partial orbit, essentially slingshotting it between them as it entered the orbital gravity wells of the stars themselves. The potted plants around him seemed to beckon him to them, the perfectly manicured rose vines letting their lovely and enticing aroma drifting on the air. Xen smiled, and he allowed himself to sit in the soft breeze generated by the air controlled environment. This garden was the pinaccile of artificial environments, little ecosystems unto themselves. Truely, the Starry Night was every bit the magnificent display of elegance and comfort that it had been made out to be in advertisements. Though perhaps to be picky, Xen knew he’d been aboard luxury far more excessive once upon a time. He suddenly shuddered, pushing his more unpleasant memories to the back of his mind as he accessed the ship and her smorgasboard of data.

While his body enjoyed the sensations a cool spring day, his mind however was much more satisfyingly occupied. His cyber-brain was hooked up wirelessly to the Starry Night’s data center, enjoying the many sights and sounds of the ship all at once. One of the benefits of a completely prosthetic body, he supposed. Xen gazed down at his own hand, and how perfectly flawless and lifelike his skin appeared, albeit he had quite litterally no arm hair. In fact, the only ‘hairs’ he had were where he had designed them to be. Having had such a body since he’d been a child himself had been an inspiration to not only create and enhance prosthetic body parts, but to then offer said parts to those who needed them most at no charge. And that, in turn, had led him here to today.

But perhaps his body was a different story than his mind. His personal cyber-lobby was joined up in the stream of the thousands of other devises’ lobbies linked to the ship. Some had direct neural interfaces like him, and others had devices that linked them neurally to the network. The different devices were easily to detect in the network for Xen, especially since so many of his aftermarket parts were installed with infiltrating networks in mind. It wasn’t something he broadcast out loud, but he was considered to be a wizard class hacker which was achievable by very few humans, even those as heavily cybered as he was, and even more so those cybermechanized for battle, like he also was, but even then there were those far more fearsome than he. There did come a point that enhancements could be only so lifelike depending on their nature, but Xen himself was a sucker for lifelike appearance.

The device signatures Xen was observing allowed him to differentiate between low-intelligence robots and human/alien interfaces easily and even then the secondary versus primary type human/alien interfaces were discernable from one another, and where everyone and thing was venturing. Of course, as Xen groaned upon realization, the Net’s smut storages were being accessed by over 65% of the guests aboard. What was fascinating Xen was the amount of people accessing the star maps and the constant chatter between guests aboard the Starry Night, while their physical bodies were on complete opposite sides of the ship. The Age of Digitizing and Cyberization had its perks of bringing people together, though Xen shuddered to think of the data abuse he was often hired to discover. His prosthetics company had become more of a side-job due to the many contracts outside of his buisness contacts for various governments, salvage operations, and so many others he could hardly name them off the top of his head. Wizard class programming skills were a hot commodity, something that had come with age and rather also hand-in-hand with the prosthetics design carreer participation in his company’s subcontracts with galactic military, police, and scientific organizations. Indeed, it was as much his programming skills as his various other talents that kept his presence in high demand, on the books and off. Wizard class programmers was the polite name for ‘hacker’ in these glorious times. Paired with the fact he was one of the best operators of a cybermechanized body in the known galaxies, Xen was often out on business for weeks at a time. As to whether he was allowed to discuss what work he was doing was another topic entirely. Not that travelling aboard this luxury Spaceliner was truly something to behold, but his memories repeatedly came rushing back as he ventured through the Starry Night. It wasn’t too bad this time, but he was still shaky at times while aboard these marvels of space travel. But those were memories for another day to confront, the now was too positive to just get lost in his nightmares.

The gardens of the gracefully aging spaceliner were simply breathtaking, the plants landscaped in ways that defied the laws of physics. This truly was a vacation from the hum drum day to day of planetary life. Flashbacks of his times in gardens so much like these echoed in his head as he scanned the constant flow of information aboard the ship, searching for irregularities in the various streams. Nothing was out of the ordinary, so Xen gave it a rest and shut his connection down, leaving behind a few scanner programs to notify him of anything fishy going down if it occurred. He stood up, and stretched his muscles. His lifted his hand up to the third and largest star, looking at his bio-tech flesh and chassis. He sighed and lowered his hand as he began walking along back into the ship proper, headed for one of the many restaurants somewhere deep within. The hardest part was being able to decide what tickled his fancy more.

He accessed his mental phone, and left a voice message for his assistant, Jade, to meet him at the China Food restaurant on the forward B-deck as it had a lovely poolside atmosphere with delicious food and some potent cocktails.

Xen stopped in his tracks when his personal e-mail beeped within in his mind, and he paused to take a look. As he read the e-mail, he began to smile. New job prospects were in order, and they were suitable to his pandering whims. Death Planet exploration… with suitable volunteers to go to make the job easier. He had, in fact, just finished his business on Terra-2 and he really wasn’t wanting to go back to Seraphim Industries to do all the hum-drum day to day activities that running the company entailed.

Xen began to go over the details of the message as he began walking again Several screens popped up in his mind’s eye, each one containing the different aspects of the mission. He brushed most of his programs aside as this took his focus. As he was expecting, he found out upon inspecting the first tab he was to foot the bill, with compensation for expenses to be paid on completion of the mission parameters. Xen immediately began the arduous task of providing the advertisements for said mission, and started to bombard various planetary network points through the Net as he continued to go over the various tabs his e-mail had opened. It should be only a matter of time before applicants began to apply to him. He left the advertisements surprisingly devoid of information, listing the details minimally as he was still going over the files himself. As an after thought, he decided to mention his company name as the lead sponsor, and not so subtly hinted at substantial monetary rewards for participation in the mission at hand.

Zen began searching the documents detailing the mission in search of the location they were headed off to. It was only once Xen discovered the star system they would be going to that his jaw dropped, he stumbling into an elderly woman from the shock. “Well I never! How rude!” she scoffed, and turned her snobby nose up and indignantly walked away. Xen, however, didn’t even hear the old bat.

Falo. They were going to Falo…

Falo… The Star Ocean… the Pirates… all of this and more whirled through Xen’s mind. His knees buckled as he began to hyperventilate. It was like all of the ugly monsters hiding in the shadows had all appeared at once, and Xen was struggling to cope with so many nightmares coming at him all at once. As Xen struggled to deal with this sudden onslaught to his mental state, he gripped a railing to help himself up.


Looking to the railing he had just used, Xen signed as he realized he'd gripped it so hard, he'd completely bent the metal tube completely in on itself, his handprint all too visible. "I'll need to have that repaired...." he muttered, and began taking his first tentative steps to the restaurant he'd intended to go earlier before seeing this e-mail. Using his mental phone again, he sent Jade another voice message... to order Xen the strongest drink they had for him.
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Jade was In his quarters, having his tv on in the background as he was running a scan on his heart, making sure it was still up and running smoothly. His phone rings and he sees that it's a voice message from Xen. He listens to it and turns the screen off on his phone and finishes his scan. He shuts his tv off and gets up, putting on his vest and shoes before walking out the door.
He walks through the halls, greeting people as he walks by on his way to the Chinese restaurant. His scythe hangs from the strap around his waist as it is retractable. The same strap has the satchel of knives hanging from it. He wondered to himself what has Xen troubled.
He comes up to the restaurant and walks in. He's greeted by the hostess “Hello. I'm meeting Xen here.” The hostess nodded and brought Jade to the table where Xen was sitting. “Hey Xen.” He said sitting down across from him.
The noises of the night filled every space of the diamond city, even in a cramped alley way. The noises, however, had become a lullaby to those who inhabit the merciless pit they called a city. A pair of figures shrouded in black walked along the wall of an alley, and paused at the brick wall at the end. A gentle, feminine hand was placed on the brick, and with a quick movement she moved a brick away. Following the brick , the rest of the wall seemed to fall away into digital code that formed a fragmented doorway that lead to a small, dark room. The two figures slid into the room, and the wall automatically rebuilt itself upon their arrival. A sigh escaped the taller one and she flipped the hood off her head. Silver hair trailed down around her shoulders from a loose hair band at the base of her neck. The second figure removed their hood and lit a digital beacon that gave off a gentle yellow light.

“That was another successful day I’d say.” The woman spoke softly with a hint of exhaustion under her breath. A bag was removed from underneath her cloak and set out on a glass table at the center of the room. As she emptied the contents, fruits and packaged dried meats piled into an empty bowl waiting to be filled.

“Wow mom you really did score, but you know I don’t eat that much.” The second figure was a boy, having the same hair color as her. His hair was brushed to one side covering his left eye completely. In his hands were papers that he collected from all around the city. Most of them were job opportunities that peaked his interest.

“Yes but you’re a growing boy. You need to eat.” She said sternly and sat on the couch that was falling apart at the seams. It was very old fashioned to say in the least, having stuffing falling out of the cushions at all corners and stains from years of use. As the boy went through the papers, he took a bite from a very small fruit, only less than half remaining. Most of the ads were for mechanics and marketers trying to suck you into doing their work and being stuck for years. However, there was one that really made him stop and think.

“Hey mom, here’s one for you. It’s about checking out a death planet. Hey! It’s funded by Seraphim Industries! They’re the ones who made the parts for my arm and are the best in the field! We should check it out!” J said excitedly. His mother gave him a sceptical look looking through some similar papers.

“I don’t know J. That’s pretty dangerous for a kid to go to a Death Planet.” He frowned and read more into the details. Of course they were very vague, but there was one thing that could convince her, which made his smile return.

“The expedition is all paid for. You know I can handle myself and I won’t let anything bad happen to you. It’s not like I don’t know how to fix you.” J spoke with a little smirk on his face. A defeated sigh was exhaled as his mother’s silver eyes looked up at him.

“You really want to do this one don’t you?” She sighed. Every time he wanted to do a job, there was no shaking him, and Yuriko knew that. The boy nodded excitedly, and held the paper close to his chest.

“If they’re the ones funding this then I might be able to have access to tools and supplies to make specialized weapons and defense systems. It’s the best one out of all of the rest of the offers.” Yuriko got up and looked over the paper her son held so tightly. He was right, of course, and it was better than the jobs they were doing now. A shiver ran down her spine at the thought of the next customer she had to please.

“Alright J. We will set out in the morning. We have to prepare our stuff anyway if we are going to be away. Do you still have the compact storage unit?” J rummaged through the small bags attached to his hips for a few moments then smiled as he pulled out a small cube. That small cube had the capability to hold the digital code of all of their personal belongings and remove them whenever they needed to use them.

“Alright. Eat some more then get some rest. I’ll start putting things away.” The boy quickly scarfed down several more fruits before laying down on the makeshift bed they had made. A part of him felt sad for leaving this small hubble they called home for a few months now, but he knew that perhaps if they could finish this new job, they could find a permanent home. As for his mother, all she wanted was a place for her son to be safe. Perhaps if they get through this last horrible job, they could be somewhere safe.


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Xen smiled faintly, leaning forward. He waved his hand to the neon green drink sitting next to him, shimmering and swirling away of its own accord. "I had hoped you would have this waiting for me."

"I'm sorry, you were too fast for me. What has you so bothered that you of all people needed a drink?" Jade lifted his hand up to motion a waiter come over. "I'll have whatever that is." he told her, and she smiled. "Right away, Mr. Indigo." Off she went, leaving the two to their own devices. "So nice to be so famous, everyone aboard knows us by name."

"I suppose it has its perks. I'm just thankful I'm not a movie star with the paparazzi after me constantly. We do get to enjoy drinks without cameras in our faces." Xen lifted his half full drink. "Drinks you'll be enjoying, too."

"What is that, by the way? It looks amazing."

Xen nearly choked on the very drink being discussed. "You don't know?"

"No. It just looks like a lot of fun. Besides, Boss, it's on your dime anyway for dragging me along on these incredibly boring trips."

Xen laughed, and began to feel better. One of the best things he'd ever done was hire the Osc on a whim after finding him drifting alone in space, perhaps in an homage to his own cloudy past. The Osc was incredibly capable, and Xen could think of no one else he would rather drag along.

"It's called Vallem, and it comes from Grena grapes. The juices squeezed from them never quite mix together, and once alcohol is added to it, it amplifies and adds to the fruit's natural effects. It's quite the euphoric sedative." Xen knew his alcohol buzz wouldn't last long, his body was already hard at work breaking down the poison he was filling it with. The waitress then approached again with two drinks nearly identical to Xen's, though rimmed with blue sugar crystals and deep red in color. "I'm sorry, but Mr. Seraphim has already ordered the very last of the Vallem Green, would you care for the Red?"

Xen motioned to her to place the drinks at the table. "Yes, thank you. Even better for my fleshy friend here, the Red is even more delishious." Xen smiled as he tapped his wristband against her own wristband. Instantly, funds were transfered, paying for the drinks and leaving the waitress a tip. "Thank you, Mr. Seraphim!" she said, happily surprised. Xen winked at her, and replied, "Nothing to it. Think of it as a surprise gift from an adoring fan. Keep up the practice, and I expect to hear you over interstellar radio one day." Xen smiled wide as the girl looked pleasantly puzzled/shocked for a moment, but walked away still happy. Xen had just left her a $100 Earth currency tip.

"You're a generous one, aren't you?" Jade was looking at a mobile tablet he had pulled from his pocket. "$100? Out of our non-existent pretend budget for this trip?"

"Shhhh, it's not pretend, it's just... on a sliding scale." Xen closed his eyes, watching a video of the very same girl practicing her violin in the gardens in her off time. "I have my reasons. She's a violinist, and I've seen her playing. She's good, and it's always good to nurture the arts." Xen finished the rest of his green drink in one swig, and then looked to Jade pointing to his still untouched Vallem Red. "Well come on, it's not going to drink itself."

Jade shook his head. "Forgive your 'fleshy friend' for not wanting to die of alcohol poisoning." he said, and delicately lifted the drink.

Xen smiled and lifted his second drink to Jade. "A toast. Here's to you, my friend. Thank you for putting up with an old fool."

"And thank you for the best job ever, even if it is boring sometimes." They clinked their glasses together, and Xen downed half of his to keep his pleasant buzz going. Xen placed his drink down onto the table once more, staring into the remaining liquid as his smile faded.

"We have a new job." he said, his voice suddenly without his normal giddiness and vibrance. Jade was taken aback by this sudden change in his friend and boss. "And this job is...?"

Xen looked up from his drink, his eyes devoid of the spark they always had. "We're going to Falo. A death planet."

And so it was Jade's turn to choke on his drink. "A death planet? Are you out of your mind?" He stared Xen in disbelief.

The old cyborg let out a garbled laugh. "I must be. However, it is a job my company is expected to handle." Xen shook his head in sheer overwhelming confoundment.

"Seraphim Industries is to go to Falo, and investigate the damage to the crust of the planet, as well as retrieve several artifacts still residing planetside. We also are to see how the planet is still holding together, and if it can possibly sustain life."

"Falo...." Jade wrinkled his brow in trying to remember where he'd heard that name before. "Wait, wasn't that the planet hit by Gravity bombs around 500 years ago? As some sort of terrorist attack or something?"

"The one and the same. We are to see how the planet is faring, more or less." Xen sighed. "The planet isn't the problem; its something else. Falo is relatively tame when compared to other death planets." Xen shrugged, and took another gigantic swig from his beverage.

"Then what is? You can tell me, Xen." Jade's concern was touching but Xen only shook his head. "I'm sorry, but I'm just not ready to talk about something like that." He stood up, and his sad smile reflecting his thoughts. "But you'll be finding out soon enough. Everyone who signs up will. And one of the biggest mysteries of the ages will be solved, no less." Xen began walking, mostly to get away from his emotional vulnerability. "I have applicants already filtering in. I'll check them through, but please see to it their trips to Seminol taken care of. We will embark from that space colony once the Starry Night docks there. Give the applicants I forward to you their shuttle ticket reservations and then instructions to make their way to the Hotel Moscow on arrival. Tell them to ask for the Seraphim party, and they will be shown to a room until I am able to speak with them. If they are going to work for me, they will be taken care of while under my employment." Xen paused before he got too far away, looking back to Jade with his face masked in the same sad smile. "And thank you, Jade. Order anything else you like. I need to take a walk." And with that, he took off to see more of the ship and distract himself from the darkness eating away at his very soul.
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Junior Member
Zeke Remmington, Destructive robot at large... it had a nice ring to it, though was a bit dated for his taste.

He smiled as he neared the Spaceport, his logic attacks had already crumpled any semblance of defense or offense. His broadcasts of what the government of Murrulk had done both to him and to the civilians was working like a charm. People were actually leaving the planet, as was the only option left to most of them to get away from the force destroying them. He'd already left a moderate trail of destruction on his way here, and now he'd managed to reap such fear that any police or special forces and even civilians simply ran from him now. All attacks against him had ceased, and now he was simply driving along. They had made the wrong move in coming up against him, thinking they could over power and eventually destroy him to develop technology like his for themselves.

Big mistake from a bunch of wealthy idiots. Granted, he'd slipped up himself in order to be found in the first place. And even then the ferocity displayed to obtain him one way or another had been appalling. No regard what-so-ever for the lives around him that might be lost, and had been at first. Zeke couldn't be more grateful for their bogus defense grid protocols. There were planets where he couldn't even hack a coffee machine.

"Just more lives on my hands..." he muttered, his memories of the special forces bursting through the shopping mall walls and crushing people beneath them, just to get at him. They had killed their own people first and without any warning. Now this planet would take years to recover, if ever. The people were better off anyway somewhere other then where their government disregarded them as peons to obtain something. Those innocent civilians had no clue what was going down and now they were gone. Men. Women. Children. This planet had underestimated him and discounted her own people, and now the government was paying dearly.

Zeke sighed as he pulled his bike up to a vacant shuttle. Using his innate robotic abilites, his eyes glimmered slightly as he forced the hold bay doors to open and for a loading ramp to extend down. He was already accessing all of the data for the shuttle. Fuel capacity versus amount of fuel available, star maps, food storages, Universal Positioning Systems, spaceport lockdown protocol overrides, all of it. The fuel was nearly at a quarter amount, enough to get him to one more planet provided he was thrifty about it. And even then, he might have to coast part of the way there. As Zeke managed to make his way to the cockpit, he felt a little weirded out by all the empty passenger seats. These things were never meant to be going out on solitary cruises.

He eventually sat down at one of the cockpit seats, and let his abilities take the helm. The Net was bubbliing with images of a red haired woman with chiseled abs and red eyes attacking militant forces on the planet Murrulk. Zeke smiled faintly as he started pulling at his neck. Little by little, the skin began to peel off, revealing his true flesh beneath. Suddenly he pulled the entirety of the female face and cascading red hair from him, revealing much shorter but still vibrantly red hair and a more decidedly male face. His eyes faded from their mechanically glowing sinister crimson to his more natural green. As a finishing touch, he pulled fake breasts from under his vest and sat them on the next seat rest to watch them jiggle with the vibrations of the ship. He still couldn't believe they'd thought he was a girl. He thought he looked too masculine in his musculature to ever pass as a woman. But, apparently, the rich were not only idiots, but stupid too.

But as the shuttle began to rumble down the runway, he focused again on the Net. Something else was causing a stir as well. Seraphim Industries was hosting... something. Zeke began navigating his way through the complex maze of Net traffic to get to the source of such commotion. Apparently, Net points across the universe were getting linked invitations to join a Seraphim sponsored inspection and salvage operation. As he accessed the invitation itself, he found more information as to the mission details.

"Death planet Falo..." Zeke's cyber lobby began to bring on the hunt for information on the planet. Falo had been a thriving City Planet, meaning that her wilderness was considered to be more of a park and recreation series of zones. It was also a man-made planet. Images of the planet began surfacing, and even Zeke was taken back by the horrible scarring of the planet. Images of the before and after were startling to say the least. Zeke watched the satellite footage of massive reddish orange cracks spreading across its surface, spider-webbing out from sudden glowing indentations on the surface. He watched the clouds fade from white to a sickly yellowish hue, signifying the toxic gases being released into the atmosphere from the exposed mantle. Rolling plains, thick with vibrant plant-life faded from a life-giving green into a dirty muddled brown. Vibrantly blue waters turned into a greyish teal. Very, very few ships fled from the Spaceports. If the gravity bombs had not been defective, then no one would have. Hundreds out of billions survived. And not just humans, but all of the races in the Federation. Time passed rapidly in the footage, recording the seismic magnitudes of the shifting crust. They were alarming, to say the least, and by all means the planet should have broken up or stabilized. But it hadn't. Enter the present day, 500 years later. The imagery hadn't changed much, the magma within the cracks and craters was still terrifyingly visible in some places, and the atmosphere looked like it had tamed somewhat. Green plants were coming back, especially within the old residential areas. The seismic activity on the planet was surprisingly mild in a lot of areas, major portions of several population data heavy hubs were still completely in tact, while others were nothing but overgrown rubble. Power was still running in certain sections as well, given the monitor readings of the planet.

Zeke shoved the images away, and returned his attention to the invitation proper and all its detail, bare-bones as they were. Zeke flexed his arm, knowing surviving in such a place would be child's play. An easy enough job, Zeke was smiling as he responded to the invitation, hailing the colony Endor as his point of origin. Now the trick would be to manage to get there in the next few days to look legitimate.
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The moonlight brightened up her room. Vivenne lay on her bed, tears running down her face. She felt useless and stuck, not sure what to do or where to go next. She had her radio blaring music as she cried in the darkness.
The music was interrupted by an ad for an exploration: “Seraphim Industries is looking for a group of people wanting to leave their normal lives, or who are looking for a job opportunity. If that sounds like you, please sign up at our website!”
Vivienne wiped the tears from her eyes and went to the website on her laptop and signed up.
Meanwhile, Jade got an alert of someone that signed up for the job. He scrolled through the application. "Hmm. She seems capable. She's also an Osc, interesting." He sent an email back giving instructions and a digital ticket to board onto a shuttle.
Vivienne waited a few minutes for a reply. She got notified of the reply and instantly packed up her important items and necessities. She walks out her door and makes her way to the location of the shuttle.


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Ms. Doyle has requested I post this for her, as she's currently locked out by accident to her account. As such, this post was sent to me via-e-mail for this reason. Sorry, mods!

Yuriko did not get much sleep that night. Many thoughts rambled around in her head, fears she dared not bring up in front of her conscious son. While she waited in bed sitting beside her son, she emailed their resumes to the email on the poster. Her son shifted slightly in his sleep, and groaned softly. The android shifted her attention to J, and ran her fingers through his hair. She vowed to give her life to make sure her only real love stayed alive.
The sun shone between the spaces of the smog that drowned the city as the two emptied out of their tiny abode. A large bag hung on both of their backs, and were also at their most cautious, having been drawn into traps in the past.
“Alright. Let’s get to the station and board a shuttle. You know the code to hack them, so have your tablet ready.” Yuriko pulled her hood up and almost instantly, she seemed to disappear. The only clue of her being there was a shadow from what little light there was. J followed suit and began the trek to the shuttle station all the way across the city. J pulled out his hoverboard and activated his cloaking bubble around it once his mother stepped on behind him. She never truly liked that machine, but it was the fastest way.
“Alright mom. Hold on tight.” A small smirk twitched at the corners of his invisible lips and they burst off into the air, leaving a dust cloud behind them. The air traffic in this part of the city was tame, and the ships were easy to avoid. Other citizens often flew around hoverboards in these parts, and a male Arak Miir flew by casually wearing loose dreads in a ponytail his coak flapping in the wind behind him leaving his bare pale chest visible. The gills on his sides opened and closed rapidly, taking in the city air with a struggle.
The traffic soon rapidly increased and they had to begin the bullet hell. J’s body professionally maneuvered the machine in the air, calculating the best routes around the incoming aircraft. A small private machine soon flew in too close and the bubble around them burst, sending them both spiraling to the ground. J grabbed his board and landed skillfully behind a large storage container that was waiting to get filled with goods to be shipped to another planet. People crowded the entrance of the station, going every which way. Yuriko landed behind a large shipment of microchips that was one of Seraphim Industries necessary components for their products. The two snuck behind the building, quietly dodging a couple of guards patrolling the area. The docking area was rather baren of life considering the foot traffic at the entrance.
“Okay, we are looking for a ship that is assigned to Seraphim industries.” J whispered to his mother. Her eyes scanned the area, reading into the owners and sponsors, and found a small private ship lounging next to a few others with Seraphim Industries written in silver on the sides. Yuriko nudged her son to follow her and they both snuck over to the ship with butterflies starting to flutter in their stomachs, removing their hoods. A hand scanner was presented to them and they both looked at each other nervously before Yuriko pressed her hand to the pad. Her scanned fingerprints was essentially her ticket to board, and the door opened quickly for her, a green light shining at the top of the door. As she passed the threshold, the doors closed behind her, showing a red light now. J admired the simplicity of the entrance, and could not wait to get ahold of some of the Seraphim Industries tech. He imitated his mother with a large smile on his face and entered the lounge. It was luxurious and had three seats waiting for them.
“Maybe there is one more,” J inquired as he took a seat closest to the large screen. Yuriko inspected the logistics for any familiar code, but it was all new and highly protected. She was nervous about a third person, but perhaps it would make the trip less grueling.


Junior Member
Zeke's devilish smile was bright against the dim metallic hold of the shuttle. The red beauty he was oh so very proud of sat quietly, almost like she was just waiting to roar to life. As if knowing her time to shine was coming quickly. Zeke's eyes glimmered in the darkness as he watched the shuttle's external cameras from his cyber lobby. Endor was looming into view from the starry abyss.

Endor was no planet, but a space colony turned way point in the cosmos. Those who made a life there were always dealing with guests, as Endor was situated near intergalactic traffic routes. It had become something of a shopping center, industrial complex, residential, theme-park, and truck stop, all in one. Only 300 years had passed since its founding, and to behold it today from its humble beginnings was nothing to snub.

Endor-1 as it was officially listed, was a massive space station hovering in the midst of the camera view. The bulk of her flagsteel hull rotated along a central spire, separating the mechanics of artificial gravity from the more civilian aspects. Though it was obvious industry had its sway everywhere; Zeke could see the thick smog blanketing portions of the many zones of the colony, even from a distance. They were like thick, grey fog clouds roiling around the industrial complexes and all of the surrounding areas. Attached to the underside of the massive rings were several collected asteroids, each housing its own gravity generaton and impressively large themselves, but minuscule compared to the sheer size of the colony proper. Many of these were docks for the various craft that came to port that were simply too awkward or too large to accommodate readily at the space port proper.

Zeke revved the bike up, and pressed a button on a touch panel on the bike near the digitally rendered speedometer. Instantly the tire treads on his bike began to glow an iridescent blue. He knew the time to bail was coming. As the shuttle burst into the shields keeping the atmosphere in, the shuttle trembled violently. and was suddenly travelling much more slowly. As he'd predicted, the shuttle would crash in a sparsely populated area. Zeke adjusted the shuttle as best as he could, though burning through an atmosphere at completely wrong angles had crippled it. He started erasing all flight data, and then furthermore scrambling all systems, while retaining control. How the shuttle had gotten here would be a complete mystery. Watching the news on this colony would be entertaining later.

He readied the bike, gripping the throttle tightly. If he didn't time this properly, he'd be burning along with the ship or worse yet, discovered again because he was picked up on monitoring scanners while bailing. He needed to do this under a mere 200 feet above the surface, where monitoring scanners were generally useless.

"Steady, steady... NOW!" He gunned the bike forward as the bay door suddenly dropped pressure and completely blew away. Zeke was suddenly a hundred feet in the air and hurtling towards the sculpted 'wilderness' park. He floored the thruster boosts, slowing his decent nearly completely. The shuttle sailed behind him directly into a lake, as he had hoped. There was a wicked, gut-wrenching noise as the shuttle collided with the surface of the water. Zeke watched it sink beneath the waters as his bike drifted lazily down to hover above the paved road adjacent to the lake. With a sigh of relief, he gunned the engines again and shot off toward the spaceport.

His trip was uneventful til he got into populated limits of the spaceport. It was a madhouse in traffic, and he was somewhat confused by all of the traffic. He really hadn't expected this on a colony. However, as he was surveying all of the incoming and outgoing signals, he felt another peculiar code. It was a small glimmer in the sea of data, but it was there, and it was directly behind him. It seemed to be invisible, though with his eyes, he could easily see it was an optical camouflage trick with a cloak of some kind. But it was moving with him, shadowing his movements. And it wasn't the cloaking bubble attracting his attention, but the someone using it. Someones.

That code.... That... person.... wasn't human. They were like him. But not. Zeke began feeling a burning sensation in his cheeks as he began to suspect he was already discovered. He couldn't make a scene now with his face uncovered, nor had these people around him ever offended him in the multiple times he'd been here. He'd always enjoyed Endor.

Zeke slowed his bike, allowing it to drift down towards some grounded parking spaces, and began to look at UPS navigation maps, and the cloaked figures hovered on ahead, though seemingly at a slower pace now, waiting for him to decide if he was continuing along.

But it was that code. Something was not right about that code. A counterfeit ZX-04 was in his midst, and it had been tailing him. Zeke suddenly gunned the engine, whipping past the two and sending them to the ground. He gunned it again, and this time sped off to lose his potential tail. On finally arriving at the Spaceport, he smiled as he informed some airport robots that came to inspect his presence that he was here for the Seraphim shuttle. The droids bowed their heads and directed him around to the other side of the port terminal. As he pulled up, a man presented him with a hand scanner, and Zeke smiled, placing his on the presented tablet. After a check light flashed, he was instructed to pull his bike up next to the shuttle, and the hold would be opened for him. Obliging, he slowly drove into the rather ornate hold. It housed several crates and many tarped bundles.

And suddenly, that very same code he'd sensed earlier was nearby again. and was mere feet from him, moving from the side of the shuttle to just above him.

This settled it. This was no coincidence.
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Jade had the transport ship on autopilot. He figured he'd greet them over hologram interface. He saw two people board the ship and sat and waited in his room for the 3rd to board

Meanwhile, Vivienne makes her way through the city. She stops by a little shop to purchase some snacks and a drink as she was slightly hungry. She looks around and finds the drinks. She picks up a couple bottles of tea and proceeds to the snack aisle and grabs some chips, then proceeds to pay and heads out the door. She notices a woman getting mugged, she puts the stuff she just bought in her bag and walks over to the woman and the muggers.

"Hey! Leave that woman alone or else!" she says sternly as she has one hand on her pistol and the blade in her arm ready to spring out. "Hah! Look at this fellas. This little girl thinks she can stop us. Why don't we teach her a lesson." said the leader as he lunged at Vivienne. She ducks out of the way and punches him in the kneecap. As she punches she springs out her blade so it slices into his knee as her fist makes impact. He drops to the ground, screaming out in pain as blood runs out onto the pavement. "Anyone else?" she asked looking at the others, pointing her gun at them. They panic and help their boss up and run away frightened. "You'll pay for this little lady!" yelled out on of them as they faded away in the distance. Vivi goes to the woman, "You ok miss?" she asks. "Yes dear. Thank you so much! Is there anyway i can repay you?" Vivi shook her head, "No thanks. I dont want any payment for doing the right thing." she said as she smiles and walks off toward where the shuttle is.

Moments later Vivienne arrives at the shuttle. She shows her pass and gets on board. There are two others sitting down, she sits down and greets them with a smile. "Hello! I'm Vivienne Onna. Are you guys here for the job as well?" she asked as she grabs one of the bottles of tea out of her bag and takes a sip from it.
As the door opened to the ship, the two androids jumped and braced themselves for whatever terrible ship mate they would have to deal with who knew how long. As the girl stepped onto the ship, the both of them felt a sense of relief but also a twinge of fear. Who knew what this girl was capable of, but on the surface she did not look like much of a fighter or adventurer in the least. Yuriko stood up and shook the girl’s hand trying to keep things as professional as possible.

“Yes, we are also here for the job. My name is Yuriko, and this is my son J.” Yuriko tried to give the girl her best smile, and took her place next to her son. J sat there uncomfortably and just gave a polite wave. He was not a very social person, and what made this even worse was that she was a girl. Her beautiful white hair and eyes made his heart rate start to increase, but ignored that weird symptom. Sensing her child’s uneasiness, Yuriko turned to the screen.

“I wonder when we will be lifting off now that everyone is here.” Yuriko inquired quietly. Almost as if the ship had heard her, the engines started to whir and the ship jolted into movement. J watched the screen intently waiting for orders from whoever would be instructing them. He hoped to see the person who was behind the whole Seraphim Industries, but his hopes were just that. He knew on a factual level that the odds of that were very slim.


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Xen was walking along the pavement, back to the Hotel Moscow. His monitoring sensors aboard the shuttle had picked up several guests aboard, as well as a few mechanical devices and cybernetics.

"Hm... Interesting." He commented. His scanners began to start up, going in depth with his guests. His eyebrow twitched on noting the bio-androids and the human. Their compositions were remarkably similar to the more organically based combat prosthetics he himself sold from within his company. But there was a rather unique twist; the female had a uterus.

Xen bolted to his assistant's room upon the realization he had two ZX-04 types boarding the shuttle. In fact, he'd worked on technology like this once before, using his own genetics from a few cells from his own grey matter, before he left even that behind. He was going to have a field day discovering more about them.

"Jade! Open up!" Xen knocked excitedly on the room door. "We have some interesting guests!"

Jade opened the door, allowing Xen inside. "Oh, do we?"

Xen nodded. "I never imagined the fates bringing us such fortune." Xen sat down, and already the monitors around the room had been connected to his cyber lobby, displaying the very same information Xen had just seen. Jade peered at the closest one, his hand raised to scratch his head. "The bio-androids?"

"Not just any, ZX-04 types!"

Jade appeared confused. "What's the deal with them?" He crossed his arms and was deep in thought. "I'm unfamiliar with those models."

Xen sighed. "I forget you're not as versed in robotics as I am." Xen stood, and the very same monitor began to display data on typical civilian model ZX-04 models. Xen spoke, summarizing the information and various pictures and diagrams. "I've had the pleasure of working on similar projects, but to actually see one let alone two is unbelievable. What's special about these models is the ability to procreate."

Jade was taken aback. "They can get pregnant? Seriously? But then why is one of them a male then? Why create a male kid?"

Xen shrugged. "I'll be sure to ask them sometime. Most ZX types keep their origins a secret." Xen smiled. This could be interesting, and he was certainly looking forward to meeting the female Osc, he really hadn't had the priveledge to converse with many, other than Jade at least. His attention turned back to his shuttle and his guests themselves. "Do be subtle about inquiring about them, would you?"


Junior Member
Zeke was shaking in the hold with rage. How long had those two people been tailing him? He knew one was human, but his partner was definitely a fake ZX type. As he stood there in the hold next to his bike, his eyes began to glow a faint red with his anger. Things were not okay, for him. He'd dealt with others of his type before coming after him, and more than a few had met their end by his hand by not giving up their pursuits of him. Some had managed to capture him, but Zeke managed to escape.

As Zeke stood there, he watched her code as it moved around, making no attempt to reach him. He didn't feel her projecting her presence, either.

"She knows already that I'm here..." he muttered, surmising the situation. "There's no need of her to do so."

Zeke drew his magnum. He was ready to defend himself if need be, but how would he explain this to his new boss? 'Sorry, she was a robot sent to kill me?' didn't seem like it would fly. He placed his gun back in the holster just inside his vest. This was just great.

He slowly began advancing through the hold to access the upper portions of the ship, and confront the woman as to her intentions. Her partner, whoever they were, may pose a problem as well. He needed to play this by ear.

As he ascended the staircase, he was hearing small talk. The engines fired up, and could feel them taxing down the runway. "No time like the present..."

Zeke suddenly sent out a powerful and undeniable signal due to entering into combat mode. It was now immpossible the ZX counterfeit could ignore his presence, nor not know just what he was. Zeke was ready for action.

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Vivienne blushed slightly, her heart raced as she found the woman's son to be quite attractive. "Nice to meet you both. So, Whats your reason for going on this mission? I'm going to get away from this city and find a potential career and possibly have a family with someone." Vivienne looked to J as what about to speak as the screen flashed and a man came on the screen.

Jade opened the transmission to the screen on the shuttle. "Hello employees. Welcome to your new opportunity. I'm Jade, I will be your escort on this trip. Please have a safe trip and we'll see you when you arrive." he then closed the transmission and turned to Zeke.

"That Osc girl, she seemed familiar to me for some reason even though I've never met her before in my life. Also, There's this guy over here. Seems like he has a weapon drawn. You might want to take a look boss."
The ship mates watched the transmission a bit confused at how short the message was. J thought of how they should contact the escort in case of emergencies, but he did not want to think of that. J turned to the Osc girl with curiosity and gave her an awkward smile before answering her question. "We took the job to find a place to call home I guess. With the money, I'm sure we could buy whatever home we wanted." There was something about the girl that made feelings inside of him he's never felt before. The feelings were uncomfortable but welcomed nonetheless. "Right mom?" The boy turned to his mom, who seemed to be off in her own world.

The android barely heard her son speak to her. Something was bothering her. Something very familiar was nearby, which over the years she had learned that was never good. She could not quite pinpoint what it was, but she stood on guard. Her only response to her son was a slight nod, followed by wide eyes as she felt a signal burst into her system registry. It was the exact same signal code that she had. Another bio-android? She thought to herself. She was curious, but was ready to protect herself. She had never seen another of her own species, but was told that she could not even reach the same level as a true ZX type. Now was time for answers.


Junior Member
Zeke entered the room, weapons holstered but easily accessible. He turned the corner into the fancy smancy seating area, observing there was one other besides the two previously encountered. This third was an Osc female, but Zeke had eyes only for the fake. She too it seemed had eyes only for him as well. He took methodical steps toward her, hands visible and a face of dead seriousness. The ZX-04's arsenal of logic attacks was bubbling away, not yet attacking but very, very noticable.

The fake's eyes widened as she felt the surge of Zeke's telepresence abilities. Zeke spoke, his tone quiet and dripping with danger. He lifted his hand to display a finger. "One chance. Who are you? Why is a poor quality knock-off tailing me?"

The counterfeit stammered out a response. She was visibly shaken, but Zeke could feel her own arsenal of logical defenses readying. "I'm just a hired hand for this, we needed the money." She said, and in the blink or an eye, Zeke's massive magnam pistol was drawn and aimed directly for the woman's head. The others in the room gasped at the sudden display of aggression. "I said, why were you tailing me? Last warning."

The woman's partner suddenly jumped across the room, shielding her as best he could. "Where? Where were we following you? Leave my mother alone!"

It was only now Zeke realized how young this man was. The mother comment had taken him by surprise, and his gut was telling him that wasn't a lie. "Red motorcycle." He replied, and the boy jerked in response, remembering Zeke's bike toppling them to the ground.

Zeke's gun wasn't dropping, but he spoke one more time. "Why were you and the fake following me?"
Vivienne saw what was going on and quickly dashed over in front of J. Her Cybernetic arm had it's blade drawn and she was channeling an electrical output to the blade, this making little sparks surround it and pointed it to the male cyborg.

"Leave them alone or else!" She said with a serious look. "They don't even know who you are. They're just here for money and someplace to call home. So I suggest you stop right now." She said as she drew her pistol, ready to fire.


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"You have no idea how wrong you are, girl."

Zeke was suddenly in the girl's face, a second gun to her head. She gasped, realizing this man wasn't human. "You really ready to die for a machine?" He asked, his eyes beginning to glow red. His first gun was still leveled at the female counterfeit ZX as he spoke. "You should really stay out of this, Osc." Zeke's eyes were now completely solid in their red hue. "Learn your place in the affairs of machines, or else one might not take your interference so lightly next time. Consider yourself warned." Zeke spun around and knocked the Osc out of the way and into a cushy chair, leveling his weapons again, still ready to pull the trigger if need be. He'd been delicate in his kicking her aside; she'd have a nasty bruise later but otherwise would be fine. He admired such traits of helping others and really didn't want to harm someone willing to defend a stranger. His attention returned to the female ZX counterfeit. "Now, as I asked. Why were you following me, fake?"

"Because you were there! You were in traffic headed where we wanted to go! Here!" She cried, and Zeke cocked his head. "So, you mean to tell me that a fake ZX type, something illegally created in secret, just happened to be following me, a genuine model on the run from being discovered and seized?"

Zeke advanced on the woman, and she threw her son out of the way to protect him. "Yes! I swear we never wanted to hurt you! Please, don't hurt my son! Its me you're here for! I'm begging you..."

Zeke paused, this wasn't what he had expected her to do. Her mannerisms were completely different than others like her that had come after him previously. Zeke had expected her to use the boy as a shield to attack Zeke, not throw him aside to protect him.
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"I suggest you lower your weapons now, Mr. Remmington. I will not have my employees killing each other. It's bad for buisness." Xen appeared on all of the visible monitors. His pretty blue eyes were now masked in annoyance. "I've been observing for some time, hoping this would resolve peacefully. It has not."

Xen's brushed his blonde locks aside and leaned into the camera, his eyes seemingly piercing into their very souls. "Settle things if you must, but it will not be while on my clock. Do I make myself clear, Mr. Remmington?"

The bio-android glared at the camera in disobedience. "They-"

"Started nothing, you did." Xen held up his hand, silencing Zeke. "I do not care what previous encounters you may have had." Xen paused, and his smile grew somewhat sinister. "Not to mention, I'm well aware of not only who you are, but what as well. It would be such a shame to escape so far and for so long only to be turned over now, wouldn't it?" Xen's smile grew, knowing he held all the cards here. The little robot lowered his weapons and eventually holstered them.

"And be aware, ladies, that there will be no retalliation against him, either." Xen continued, still smiling. "Now that this has been taken care of, please feel free to enjoy the rest of the flight, all of you. There are beverages and prepared meals should any of you feel hungry. Mr, Remmington, I know you simply must be famished." Inwardly, Xen was quite enjoying the knowledge of the ZX types he'd aquired. This would serve to keep the man in check, at least for now. The shuttle had already lifted off, and was well on its way to meet its owner. "Once you arrive here, I will allow you to obtain transport to the Hotel Moscow at my expense. As previously instructed, ask for the Seraphim Industries party once there and then await further instructions. Should you arrive on time, you will be in for quite a treat, especially young James."

Xen waved, his face turned up in a ray of sunshine as he finished. "Buh-bye, now! Have a safe trip!" He then severed connection.
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Zeke sighed in defeat. He walked away from the group, ripping a medkit he spotted off the wall and then tossing it to the Osc. "You'll need that for my footprint." He said, before heading for the dining area to be alone with his thoughts.

It figured the old cyborg had already discerned what he was. Zeke had already underestimated his new employer. And circumstances were not in Zeke's favor by any means any more.

Zeke looked through the pantry, and found silver packages labeled with various things, preserved perfectly thanks to stasis wrap, a marvel in preserving food sometimes for months, if a food replicator was not already in place.

Zeke popped the package, and smiled as the scent of battered shrimp and some fried fish met his nose. He tilted the package to read the print on it. "Serves eight. Not any more..." he said, and ripped the package all the way open to start eating.
Yuriko looked surprised by the sudden interruption on the screens. The person that ordered them to halt was their employer. He seemed quite beautiful to her, despite the overwhelming panic in her. He knew what she was just as he knew what the other android was. He had the potential to lock her away for a long time. There was no room to mess up now. She could feel her artificial heart pound in her chest, making her arms tremble somewhat. J seemed to be in awe, hoping that the person on screen was the infamous owner of the Seraphim Industries.

"Are you alright J?" Yuriko asked looking at her son, inspecting him to ensure nothing happened to him. He just nodded and looked up at her smiling up at her. His mind was running a million miles an hour with so many questions filling his brain to the brim.

"I think that was him mother. It had to be him." J hugged his mother excitedly, then blushed deep red. He then began to explain to Vivienne how he had always wanted to be an inventor of sorts and had always admired the secret owner of the Seraphim Industries.

As J went on talking to the Osc, Yuriko had so many questions to ask the other member of the team. They seemed to have a lot in common, but were also very different when it came to fundamentals in their programming and purpose of being created. Hesitantly, Yuriko ventured to the dining area. She had not seen very many of these, but this one was the best made yet. Everything was crisp and clean. She found a drawer with various drinks and decided to make them for the kids. She felt nervous, but spoke softly and cautiously to Zeke.

"So you are a Bio android like me? I did not know that a male bot existed for the ZX type. That's pretty cool." She felt nervous, but left her shields down to show him that she meant no harm in bothering him in his alone time.


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Zeke eyed her warily. "There aren't. I'm the only one." He watched her as she went about her buisness, popping shrimp into his mouth like candy. She was making no effort to attack him, though Zeke supposed he had his employer to thank for that; after all, she was now a coworker, held to the same regards and standards as him.

Didn't mean he trusted her, but this wasn't a normal situation to him. This was uncharted territory to Zeke. Everything was weird about this.

"The only one?" She asked, and Zeke sighed. He was willingly betting his life her curiosity displayed here and now was completely genuine. Odds were she'd probably ever even conversed properly face to face with a genuine model.

"ZX-045729221. My CPU serial number registers me as the last ZX-04 made." He snickered. "The final model off the line." He picked up another piece of fish and took a big bite, hardly chewing before swallowing it. "And what's your story, counterfeit?"
“I was made in the image of my creator’s wife. She died before she could bear him a child, so I was made to do so. I do not know where he acquired the parts to make me though. He never told me.” She let out a soft sigh. She felt what would be a heart ache as she thought of the man whom she had loved for years. She somehow made herself forget about that man up until the moments J mentioned him. She shifted uncomfortably. The connection with Zeke, even though it was just the android type recognition systems alerting them, was the first time she felt connection with anything except her son. She did not feel as alone and that conforted her somehow.

“So you are on the run just as I am. However, I’m sure there are other reasons as well besides being a ZX-04 type. I won’t pry. Just know that harming you is the furthest thing in my directives as of right now.” She gave him a soft smile then went back to the cabin carrying the cups of tea with her.

J seemed to be like a damn that could not be closed when it came to speaking with Vivienne. They shared so much in common, and she was beautiful to him so it was a bonus there as well.

“Have you made any robots? I’ve constructed a leg for one pet not that long ago. His previous leg got crushed.” He started to show her the different blueprints of different tech and weapons that could be attached to the body’s frame.
Vivienne sat there listening and conversing with J. She was fascinated by his knowledge. She would ask questions and give her input on things.

She got lost in the conversation for at least 5 minutes until realizing his mom came out with tea for them. "Oh thank you." She took a cup, "Sorry. You're son is very fascinating to listen to. He's very smart." She said smiling as she took a sip of it. She was rather mad at Zeke for leaving a bruise on her.
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Xen sat with legs and arms crossed, deep in thought. His gaze turned up to his friend. "I may have overdone it a tad..." Xen snapped his fingers, an idea having come to him. "Make sure you arrange for them all to receive new attire, suitable for our guest star performer here." He smiled in shifting focus.

As he waited for his assistant to answer, he stood, and walked over to what appeared to be an oblong metal box housing what appeared to be a mass of red ruffles and lace and white mist visible through the glass face. Xen gently placed his hand upon the surface, carressing the faint outline of a woman's face, heavily obscured by the afirementioned white mist. He was smiling as he sat down upon the box, he knowing exactly what was in store for the Hotel. The Hotel Moscow was quite looking forward to their guest performance, courtesy of the real owner, Mr. Seraphim himself. In fact, the Hotel Moscow was known as a stop-over point on Seminol, Seminol itself having an identity almost identical to that of Endor. The only difference was Endor was decidedly more of free station, meaning it had a decidedly seedy reputation. Whereas Seminol did not. and athough Xen prefered the less stuffy atmosphere and laid back attitudes of Endor, he was none the less pleased with the buisness center that Seminol had become thanks in part to his influence. The Hotel Moscow itself had quite the reputation as well, though only part of that was thanks to the owner and his company. Seraphim Industries had a premiere boutique of sorts within the basement areas, and interstellar traffic through Seminol was never in short supply. The world class restaurants throughout the lobby never disappointed either.

But that was a tale for another day.

Xen sighed, knowing even with his fortune, money couldn't buy happiness when spent for oneself. But when spent for others, money did just the opppsite.

His money brought smiles to many faces. Especially children. And every 'child' body he sold could honestly be called 'pet projects' being that those were the bodies his company worked hardest on. The kids these days had it much easier than he did, most certainly. And he couldn't be happier that such transitions had come a very long way from how his own had been.

Guilt over not having looked into trying to discern the secrets of transforming flesh overcame him, of being unable to help that many more. His bodies could accommodate a Quera, for instance, but that power to shapeshift is lost on them. Most were too proud to accept anything he offered for that very reason, though there were a few here and there scattered amongst the various races. Most heavily weighing on him of all there were those even his bodies could not save, like the contents of the preservation casket he now sat on.

"Tell me, do you think I was too ruthless with the new hires?" He asked his assistant.
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Jade sat there looking at a still image of the osc girl. It bugged him to the core that she seemed so familiar but couldn't place where from. He blinked and looked to Xen. "No sir. You were fine. That osc girl is very intriguing." Jade said thinking. "Who's the girl in the box by the way?" he asked examining over her.

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