Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Ewok_Slayer, Jan 9, 2015.
More trouble for I-five it seems. But glad he is 'alive'
Wow, fascinating developments. Definite sense of identity confusion there LOL
I have a feeling hilarity is going to ensue from this.
Oh no. This is actually kind of tragic. How can you take away I-Five's newfound humanity? The poor guy is traumatized. Great update with a twist I never expected.
The trouble with a Diary is you know he's not dead if he is writing it. But from the recent post we know he suffered some memory damage and he did recover and started posting in his journal again. It sort of puts a damper on the suspense when it comes to the person whose journal you are reading.
Thanks! Poor I-Five. He was thinking about wanting to be human before he was shot. I have a feeling that was what did him in.
I hope there will be some fun moments, but there are going on a serious adventure for now.
Thanks. He was already sentient. I think he is just confused. It can't last for long because eventually he will realize he can't do regular biological stuff like eating or drinking. He can't remain in denial very long. But after he comes to terms with his droid issue, he may still feel like a man trapped in a droid body.
Thanks everybody for reading.
When I woke I found Den sitting in a chair by my side. He smiled and stood when I started to move. “You’re back.”
I rolled to my side and propped myself up on an elbow. “How long was I unconscious this time?”
“Eighteen hours. We've been taking turns watching over you.” He looked toward the door leading to the crew cabins. “I should let everybody know you're awake.”
I reached out and grabbed the sleeve of his tunic. “Wait. I need to talk to someone and you’re my oldest friend.”
A small smile formed under his dew flaps. “Sure, we can talk.” He grabbed his chair and pulled it up closer to me. “Just don’t get too worked up. I am still trying to determine what’s wrong with your memory core.”
“About that.” I looked down at the deck not knowing what to say. I already adamantly protested that I was human and not a droid and look what that got me. “I know you all say I’m a droid, but everything in my memories tell me I’m not. I recall working as a medical assistant in the Clone Wars on Drongar.” I turned to him and smiled. “That’s where we met. We used to play sabacc together. One time you got me drunk and we got into a bar fight at Rimsoo’s Cantina. You can’t tell me that didn’t happen.”
Den blinked his large dark eyes a few times before answering. “It did happen. You somehow managed to get yourself electronically drunk. If you recall you had your arm pulled off by a Wookiee during that cantina fight.”
I sat up and swung my legs over the edge of my cot. “Yes, I did.” I ran a hand over the shoulder that was injured but couldn't locate any scars. I looked to Den and shrugged. “Cybernetic limbs are common and they’re indistinguishable from the original.”
Den’s shoulders slumped for a moment before he gave me an excited grin. “I know how to prove it. I can put your droid brain into your 501Z police droid body.”
A feeling of abject terror surged through me. “No!”
“Why not? You’ve done it dozens of times before.”
“How would you like it if I told you I was going to scoop out your brain and put it into a droid body?”
Den shook his head in frustration. “Since I am not a droid, I would find that prospect a bit disconcerting…because it would kill me.”
“How about if I gave you a very convincing story that you are really a droid. Would you have confidence in the procedure based on my word?”
“I see what you mean.” Den blew out a frustrated breath. “Wait. I don’t have to do the transfer. Most of your body is sealed shut and you need a special tool to reseal the skin, but the entrance to your brain cavity is at the back of your head and the seams are concealed by your hair. I just have to peal that back and bring a couple mirrors to show you.” He gave me a quizzical expression. “Would that work?”
I sat there feeling torn. I would like to put this argument to rest, but at the same time I know I won't react well if what Den claims is true. Would I go into shock again? “I…umm,” I mumbled nervously not knowing what I should do. I received a reprieve from answering when Magash exited the crew quarters area and walked into the cargo bay. She obviously had just came from the ‘fresher. She was wearing a knee length bathrobe and little else. She smiled upon seeing me and walked over to my location.
“Are you well?” She came to a stop directly in front of me. The cargo containers I was perched upon were tall so I sat about a head higher than Magash.
“I…ummm…yeah,” I managed to mumble as my eyes moved from her mesmerizing green eyes, along her perfectly proportioned face, down the curve of her neck before ending their journey at her ample cleavage.
At that point I realized Den was full of Bantha scat. I felt a fluttering in my rib cage, my breathing grew rapid and I was becoming embarrassingly excited by her presence. There was no way I was a droid!
I tried to say something but only incoherent disjointed thoughts coalesced inside my brain. Magash must have noticed my discombobulation. She turned to Den concerned. “Is he going to be okay?”
To my relief, my friend realized my problem and covered for me. “He’ll be fine.” He reached up and put a hand on her elbow and guided her to the large storage room she had commandeered as her private quarters. “Just give him some time to get back to normal.”
When Magash was in her room and behind closed doors Den returned to me while chuckling. “You have it bad for her!”
I threw my hands out in a frustrated gesture. “That should be proof enough that I’m human. A droid wouldn’t notice…or get flustered by…stuff.” I was totally rambling at this point—another indication that I'm human.
Den’s grin grew wider. “Stuff? You mean breasts?”
I shook my head exasperated. “I didn’t say that. And please don’t objectify her in that manner. She is a friend. We’re just friends.”
“Kissing friends,” Den joked.
At that moment a memory flashed through my mind. It was an image of me and Magash kissing. “That’s right! We’ve kissed before.” I pointed toward her quarters. “Why would she kiss a droid?”
Den stepped back and settled down on his chair before leaning forward and whispering to me conspiratorially. “So, you remember the kiss?”
I nodded. “That is not something one would forget.”
“Do you remember why you two kissed?”
I thought back but the details were fuzzy. “I assume because she finds me handsome and with a pleasant personality.”
My friend laughed. “That may be her reason, but your reported motive was to see how a Human Replica Droid reacted to kissing a female.”
I made a face. That was the stupidest thing I have ever heard. “That doesn’t make sense.”
“Okay, why do you think you were in her room that night of the attempted abduction?”
My eyes went wide as I realized I indeed was alone in a hotel room with her. “Are you saying we’re lovers?
Den make a choking sound that morphed into uncontrollable laughter. He had both of his hands over his mouth in an effort to muffle his amusement. “No, you’re not lovers.” He gave me a wink. “Unless there’s something you haven’t told me. No, she didn’t want to be alone and you were a droid in an Artoo chassis. She felt comfortable with you in the room with her.”
“That’s ridiculous.” I frowned at Den. “You’re just jealous, aren’t you? Jax is with Sacha, I romanced Magash and there are no female Sullustans for you.”
Den chuckled while shaking his head. “That must be it.” He stood and patted me on the knee. “If you want to believe you’re human, that’s fine. I suspect your full memory will return by itself in a few days to a month.”
“But I am human!”
Den brought his hands up in a gesture of surrender. “I am not going to argue. All it does is upset you. Besides, there's no real danger in believing you're human. Now if a human thought he was an Artoo unit, that might be a problem. A human can't survive the vacuum of space and I would be worried as to what appendage they would use to access a computer port…but take my advice.”
“Don't eat or drink unless you are hungry or thirsty. Okay?”
I nodded. “Okay.”
“Good. I’ll let the others know you are up and about. We may need your assistance. We got hired to do some private investigative work here on Phindar.”
“Does it have to do with Magash’s attempted kidnapping?”
Den grimaced. “Unfortunately, it does.”
Very interesting! Whatever happened to I-Five, he definitely thinks he's human! This will make for some interesting dynamics.
Ahh, so they will behleping out to catch the kidnappers. I love I'Five's staunch insistence.
Love the interaction between him and Den and the reaction to Magash
This is so sad! Poor I-Five. Those memories are so close to the reality -- and maybe he'll be able to see and process that in time. Still, poor baby. He wants so much of the social life that organics have that this is like his secret wish... to be something he's not. Pardon me while I go cry forever.
And the crush on Magash persists. That's just -- don't know whether to laugh or feel terrible. Bit of both, maybe.
Lots of funny moments, as always. I'll be interested to see how the new investigation goes -- though I think they already know that this isn't a planet where they want to be for any longer than they absolutely have to. Too much trouble all around.
I just caught up! These last two entries are both hilarious and incredibly sad. Poor I-Five suffering from... I don't know, electronic schizophrenia?
He thinks he's human. I wonder if it really matters whether his body is organic or synthetic, when he seems determined to be "one of the gang." It's interesting how they treat him differently because they know he is a droid, but if they didn't already know he was an HDR, they would be none the wiser and treat him as a human man.
I am really enjoying this and can't wait to see more!
Thanks. Hopefully I-Five's situation will make for some interesting reading.
They have a mission. I only have a rough outline in my head. I hope it will work out.
Thank you. He has a major crush on the Zabrak.
Sorry, I didn't mean to make you cry forever. They definitely don't want to live there, but they also need a cash flow. So they need to take jobs when they come up.
When he got shot he was thinking about his limitations in that droid body and he wished he was human so he could better assist Magash. I think when he got hit that thought reverberated through his memory banks.
True, he is basically human. The thing is he is going to have to watch Sacha and Jax being all kissy-kissy and then there is the pregnancy. I-Five might see these things and feel it is something he cannot have. There are some limitations with his HRD body.
Thanks everybody for reading. I really appreciate it.
Den and I left the cargo bay and found Sacha, Jax and Norro sitting around the galley dining table looking at datapads. Sacha and Jax appeared to be in deep concentration while Norro’s amused expression and quick movement of his fingers over the touchpad told me he was probably playing a game. When I entered the room Jax smiled brightly.
“What a relief!” He walked over and grabbed me up in a brotherly hug. “Don’t scare me like that. I was worried sick.”
He stepped back and allowed Sacha to approach and embrace me. “How are you feeling?” she asked.
“I am fine.” I glanced back to Den standing behind me. “I was told we were hired to do some investigating about the Magash’s attempted abduction.”
“That’s correct.” Jax motioned Den and me toward the table. When we were seated Jax handed me his datapad. “Remember the man who came up to us in the restaurant looking for his daughter? His name is Ralf Soren. His daughter is named Sondra. He wants to hire us to look for her.”
I examined the datapad handed to me. On it was an image of a comely young lady with long brown hair and a friendly smile. “Since the scarred face man from the restaurant perpetrated Magash’s attempted kidnapping, it stands to reason that he might be the person who orchestrated the abduction of that man’s daughter.”
Jax nodded. “That’s what I think. Unfortunately he and his accomplice disappeared and the third coconspirator that's in custody is not talking.”
I nodded my head slowly. “What information do we have?”
Jax leaned closer to me and punched a few keys on the datapad I was holding, setting it up for a split screen option. “On the right is the list of reported missing human females from Svang. On the left is the list of all incoming and outgoing ships from the capital city of Laressa during the same time periods of the kidnappings. We figure if a female is snatched on planet she might be transported to an unknown location from the spaceport.”
I looked up from the datapad. “True, unless the missing women are being held hostage in a secluded location. Svang is a town with a high demand for women. It would be counterproductive to kidnap what few women available there and take them to a more populated location. They would command a much higher price on Svang.”
Jax nodded at me knowingly. It is obvious he had already came to this conclusion. “Unless they are being moved to the other human mining town on the other side of the planet. It is much smaller than Svang and it is also more isolated. They do have a small docking port out of sheer necessity. They are far too isolated to move supplies by speeder like they do from Laressa to Svang.”
“If the women are going there they have to be transported out of the spaceport in Laressa,” Sacha added. “I plan on trying to do a remote slice into the city’s surveillance system.”
I heard the cargo door open and turned to see Magash enter the crew area. She was now dressed in a green, one-piece, coverall. She smiled at the group before taking a seat at the table. “Have you determined a mission for me?” She was addressing Jax. Despite Jax’s determination to stop training of Sacha and Magash to be Jedi, both women look up to my brother as their mentor and leader of our group.
Jax nodded. “I thought you, Sacha, Den and I-Five would stay here in the capital city and see if you can find evidence of the missing daughter at the spaceport or anywhere else in Laressa.” He turned to Norro. “Norro and I will go back to Svang and pose as miners. I think Norro is old enough to pull that off.”
“Do you think the miners are involved in human trafficking?” I asked.
Jax shook his head. “Probably not directly. I do think if the women are secreted away in some criminal underworld brothel in Svang, the only possible customers for that type of illegal activity are the miners. I thought I could pass Norro off as my younger brother. I could ask around as to where to get him a girl for his birthday.”
Everybody startled when Norro jumped up from his seat excitedly. “Woohoo! I’m getting a girl for my birthday!”
Jax frowned. “I’m not really getting you a prostitute, Norro.” He shook his head. “What type of father would I be if I did that?”
“A great one!” Norro grinned and then laughed. “I’m just joking.”
I had to smile at the boy. He was probably thirteen or fourteen years old, but he spent his entire life on a prison planet with hardened criminals. I don’t know how he managed to keep a jovial outlook on life.
Still he was young and probably shouldn’t be put in such danger. “Will you two be safe alone? Perhaps I should join you? We can be three men looking for female company.”
Jax laughed. “No, I think we’ll be fine.” He pointed at Norro. “He’s street smart when it comes to criminal activities. People talk in prison. Also, I think he has a Force talent when it comes to knowing who to trust. It’s the women I worry about. I’ll feel much better if you and Den are with the ladies. I know they are both great fighters, but I think having two males with them will act as a deterrent for would-be kidnappers.” He motioned towards Norro. “Besides, this will give us some father-son bonding time together.”
Norro’s face blossomed into a wide grin. Since Jax saved the teenager from Despayre, the boy has followed the former Jedi around like a lost pittin. It is obvious that Norro has a bad case of hero worship when it comes to his savior. I can’t blame the boy. All my life I heard how proud our father was of Jax the Jedi Padawan. Lorn Pavan might have hated the Jedi Order for taking his son, but he always held his boy in high esteem.
I closed my eyes momentarily at the thought of my father. In my mind Lorn Pavan was my parent, no matter what my friends say about me being a droid. I shook the thought from my head. I don’t want to think that the man I remember as my father actually found me in a junk yard. I won’t believe it.
“What’s wrong I-Five?” Jax asked.
“Nothing.” I handed him back the datapad. “When do we start?”
Jax looked to the members of our group. “Tomorrow morning.”
This mission should be good. Looking forward to reading more!
Sound strategy. Jax is a great planner Norro is a hoot and a typical teen, thankfully, given his history he could be all screwed up
Yikes, I-Five still misses some crucial pieces about his identiyt it appears.
I-five still believing he is Jax's brother
Good to see Norro and Jax going on that mission
Everybody startled when Norro jumped up from his seat excitedly. “Woohoo! I’m getting a girl for my birthday!”
Easy there, Slick. Down, boy. No, you aren't getting a girl for your birthday.
Too funny! I still like how they are letting I-Five think he is human. He may as well be, since they treat him as a partner. Can't wait to see what happens in the mining town.
Thanks! I'm glad you are enjoying the story.
I am fairly sure that he would be screwed up in real life. Perhaps his slight Force ability to figure out who is a good person and who is not kept him among friends most of his life. I-Five is messed up, but, from earlier posts, we know it only lasts for a few months.
I-Five was basically created by Jax's father. Without Lorn Pavan tinkering with I-Five's creative dampeners he would have never became sentient. I-Five was more of a son to the elder Pavan than Jax ever was. I could understand how I-Five feels connected to Lorn Pavan in a father-son way. This relationship is extended to Jax because Jax's dad managed to keep tabs on the boy and told I-Five all about Jax as he grew up among the Jedi.
Norro wouldn't mind meeting a young lady. I probably have to work that in somewhere down the line when the boy is older.
Thanks everybody for reading!
Jax and Norro rented a speeder today in preparation for their return to Svang. Before they left Jax pulled me into the Laranth’s cargo hold for a talk.
“Do me a favor, I-Five.” Jax whispered while looking over his shoulder nervously. “Don’t tell Sacha I asked you…but will you keep an eye on her for me. She’s stubborn and reckless and I don’t want her doing anything to endanger the baby.”
I tried not to laugh, but a deep chuckled burst from me. “She’s reckless? This is coming from the man who snuck away from his friends so he could infiltrated Kantaros Station alone in an ill-conceived attempt to rescue Whiplash resistance leader Thi Xon Yimmon?”
Jax frowned at my comment before his lips turned up into a grin. “And if you recall, you, Sacha and Den independently decided to perform an equally suicidal rescue mission to Kantaros Station.”
I was about to argue, but realized he was right. “I guess we're all a bit rash.”
“That’s what I mean. Sacha is a great fighter, but I don’t want to take any chances when it comes to her pregnancy.” He put his hands on my shoulders and gazed at me solemnly. “Promise me you won’t allow her to take on anything dangerous. Please.”
I nodded. “I promise. I don’t want anything to happen to her or my future baby nephew either.”
Jax smiled warmly. “Thanks. I have a feeling I’ll have my hands full with Norro. He’s eager for adventure. He has already asked me if he can wear a blaster.”
“A teenager with a blaster. What could go wrong?”
Jax laughed and gave me a brotherly pat on the back. “Hopefully this job won’t take too long. I want to be off this planet as soon as possible.”
I walked him to the crew quarters and said my goodbyes to Norro. I noticed the young man appeared a bit peeved over his lack of weapon.
After a long tearful goodbye with Sacha, Jax picked up his luggage and left the ship with his informally adopted son.
With any luck they won’t get into too much trouble.
The reality of my situation has started to sink in.
My epiphany occurred while in the ‘fresher. I suppose epiphany is not the proper term because it wasn't a sudden flash of insight. It occurred slowly as I stood in front of the toilet, seat up, feet apart, and trying my best to urinate. From what my friends have told me it has been four days since Magash’s attempted abduction. I recall going to dinner that evening. I don’t remember what I ate or drank, but I am sure I did imbibe in something. I must have. Therefore I should have an urge to urinate or defecate, but I don’t. In fact I haven’t been hungry or thirsty since I woke up.
I gritted my teeth in frustration as I zipped up my trousers. I went to the sink and washed my hands while gazing at my reflection in the mirror. My face was human, but there is something about my complexion that looked odd. My skin color is too uniform. I don’t have a blemish, pimple, or even a clogged pore on my perfectly toned skin. It is a handsome face, brown hair and eyes, strong jaw with pleasant features. I ran a hand over my smooth jaw. I didn’t have any stubble. Of course, neither does Jax. He has all of his facial hair permanently depilated. There was a chance that I had the same procedure done.
I dried my hands and left the ‘fresher knowing I was just fooling myself. There is no other way to explain why I don’t sweat, cry, drool, urinate or defecate. There is also no reason my friends would continue to lie to me about my…condition.
I went into the ship cabin that I once shared with Den and Norro. According to them I didn’t have a bunk but ‘slept’ in a chair. When they told me that I decided to continue sleeping on the makeshift cot in the cargo area. I wasn’t going to prop myself in a corner of a room like an appliance.
When I entered the cabin I found Den sitting at his desk and reading his datapad, most likely doing research for this mission. Since we are private investigators we can’t barge into the police department and demand their reports. We have to submit requests for public records, search flight manifests, and trawl the holonet to see if we can find any interesting chatter. Sacha tried to do a remote slice into the Public Security building located downtown, but experienced interference. Tomorrow we plan to relocate from the ship to a hotel with line-of-site to the governmental buildings.
Den looked up from his datapad and smiled and waved me inside.
“How are you feeling?”
I sat down on Den’s bunk and stared at the floor. “Does it matter? I’m a droid.”
“Oh,” Den blew out a breath before turning his chair around to face me fully. “What brought you to that conclusion?”
I shook my head sadly. “I can’t do normal ‘human’ functions. I tried to drink an hour ago and it just triggered a gag reflex and I spit the water up. I attempted to urinate but…nothing came out.” A feeling of utter hopelessness washed over me. I don’t understand why I can feel these emotions if I am actually a droid. “Why did this happen to me Den?”
He walked over and put his hand on my shoulder before sitting down next to me. “I don’t know. In the past you have expressed frustration about how people treat you when you were not in this…body. You always felt belittled by biological sentients. I know it is frustrating, but they don’t know any better. A sentient droid is rare.” He gave me a small smile. “You are the only one I know of. People see droids as…”
When he struggled for the right word I supplied it. “As machines or tools. Things to use and then throw away.”
Den looked down and sighed. “Yes, but droids are not the only ones treated as such.” He looked up and gazed at me sadly. “We both served in a medical unit during the clone wars. You remember how the clones were treated.”
I ran a hand through my hair as I thought back to those awful times. “They were called wet droids.”
Den nodded. “They were created to be warriors, denied citizenship, and hunted down and killed if they didn’t serve the Republic. They were slaves. The politicians that sent them to war didn’t see them as human, or unique or having personalities.”
I glared at Den in confused frustration. “Is this supposed to make me feel better? Because if it is, I have to tell you, you are not good at consoling.”
Den rolled his eyes. “No, it’s to show you that how you are perceived by the general population doesn’t determine who you are. The clones we knew had unique personalities. They loved and laughed. They gave themselves names and became individuals. It didn’t matter what the rest of the galaxy thought of them. They knew they were real people, that they mattered.” He stood and started pacing the room while pointing a finger at me. “Don’t let others cubbyhole you into the category of droid. You, my friend, are so much more. You are creative, adaptive, self-aware, intelligent, kind, and self-sacrificing. You have all the good qualities of being human and none of the bad.” He paused with a grin. “Well, that is if you don’t count sarcasm.”
I had to chuckle at that last comment. “I’m still a droid.”
Den shook his head. “No! No, I don’t think so. You are unique. I see you as a newly discovered mineral life form.”
I scoffed at the idea. “Even if I am a mineral life form is not the same as being alive.”
Den sat down in his chair and starred at me for a long moment. “Jax can sense you in the Force. Do you know what that means?”
I shook my head. “No.”
He clasped his hands together in front of his chest. “It means you have a connection to the Force. Almost every religion in this galaxy sees this link as a sign of a living creature. I-Five, you are alive!”
I smiled at his enthusiasm. “Maybe, but I’ll never have what Jax has. A companion and children.”
Den gave me a dismissive wave of the hand. “You don’t know that. You may not be able to father a child, but you can adopt a stray like Norro. As for companionship, you have been a great friend and I believe you can find someone to share your life with one day.”
I shook my head in doubt.
“I-Five, you can’t be the only one of your kind. You might be able to find others like you.”
I blew out my breath. “That would be great if I didn’t feel…human.” I ran a hand down my face in frustration. “Den, I may accept the fact that I am a droid, but deep down…I feel human. A human with feelings, needs and desires.” I lowered my voice so if they women walked down the hall they wouldn’t hear. “Den, I am attracted to human females.”
“Or Zabraks,” Den teased.
“Or Zabraks,” I conceded. “The point is, I’m not attracted to Threepio units with female programing.” I threw my hands up in frustration. “How long will I feel this way? It is a curse to feel human and not be human. Why did this happen?”
“I don’t know. You have had memory damage before and you self-repaired. This feeling of being human may go away.”
I made a face as I shook my head. “I don’t know if I want it to go away.” I gazed into his dark eyes. “Den, if you were told you weren’t really a Sullustan, would you wish you didn’t feel like one?”
He chewed on his bottom lip in thought. “I don’t know how I would feel in that situation.” He walked over and sat next to me, giving my shoulder a squeeze. “Listen. You are getting too wrapped up about this. You are among friends who have always seen you are special and a real person. Just take things day-by-day and see what happens. Nothing has really changed except your perspective on things. All of your friends care for you deeply.” He stood and patted me on the shoulder. “Come on, let’s go see what the women are doing.”
I stood and walked to the cabin door. “They are probably doing what they always do…talking about the men in their lives.”
“Oh,” Den grinned. “Those droid ears of yours are at it again. Do they talk about me?”
I laughed feeling a little embarrassed. “Sometimes. They thought you were attracted to the Drall that worked in the dining hall on Toprawa.”
“What!” He shook his head. “The ladies need a class on species anatomy. That Drall was male. And even if he wasn’t, just because we are both burrowing species doesn’t mean I would be interested.” He gave a shudder. “Dralls are head-to-toe hair! I like my females pink and hairless.”
I grinned. “It’s nothing that a razor won’t cure.”
He gave me a playful punch to my side as we walked out of the cabin. “I’m glad to see your sardonic sense of humor wasn’t altered by that blasterbolt.” He gave me a curious look. “Does Sacha or Magash they ever talk about you?”
I shook my head feeling disappointed. “No, not that I remember.”
“Where have you two been?” Sacha called out as we entered the dining area of the ship. Sacha and Magash were sitting at the table reading datapads and sipping stimtea.
Den grinned. “We are just talking guy stuff.” He slid into the chair next to Sacha leaving me the seat next to Magash. I had to smile at Den, knowing he did that on purpose.
I grinned as I sat down next to her. I realize there is nothing romantic about scrutinizing digital ship manifests, but I have to admit that I enjoy the company.
Glad I-Five realizes he's a droid, but it's too bad how he feels.
Den and the Drall.
Enjoyed the conversations with Jax and Den. And I-Five's mixed feelings.
Great discussion between I-five and Den. Liked the things about the clones
Thanks guys for reading. Cover art by AG88.
Looks like I-Five is at least starting to merge back into his old self, but it's still difficult for him. Always enjoy the banter in this crew. Dralls indeed.
I caught up! The last two updates, with I-Five realising that he *must* be a droid but still feeling like a human, were once again funny and sad at the same time. "I’m not attracted to Threepio units with female programming" -- as funny as this sentence is, I wasn't sure if I should laugh or cry. As usual, you do a great job at building relationships between your characters. Jax/I-Five interaction is always a pleasure to read, and Den/I-Five interaction perhaps even more in this case -- Den is such a good buddy. Somehow I sense that I-Five is going to get more than he bargained for by accepting the task of keeping Sacha in check.
Thanks! I'm glad you liked that entry.
I loved Karen Travis' clone novels. It is too bad that we probably will never find out what happened to the group of clones that went AWOL to Mandalore.
Even the most stubborn person would have to realize that if you are human you should be doing human biological things. It was only a matter of time before he had to face reality. The thing is he might accept the truth, but he still feels human. It has to be frustrating to him. I think it helps that his friends always treated him as more than a droid.
In the novels Den is so attached to I-Five that he gives up going back home to be with a sexy Sullustan female and starting a family. Den was also a bit jealous that I-Five felt compelled to find Jax and stay with him. That jealousy faded though. The group is now more than friends. They are family.
How do you like the photomanip of I-Five? lol! No wonder Magash kissed him. He's got a great set of abs.
Thanks everybody for reading. I have been busy this month getting enrolled for the Fall college semester and fighting for some of my previous college credits to be accepted to this new college. If the title of your college class doesn't match theirs exactly they will ask you to provide the course syllabus for review. Are you kriff'n kidding me? Once I finish a class I sell the textbook and throw away my syllabus. Arggghhh!
This is a short entry. I hope to have a longer entry early next month.
We paid for a hotel room near the governmental center of the Capital City of Laressa. I am sure the species diversity of our little group raised a few eyebrows at the check-in desk. A Sullustan, Zabrak/human hybrid, human and a Human Replica Droid walk into a hotel and asked for a room—that sounds like the start of a tasteless joke.
We rented a room facing the governmental office and planetary courthouse. I was also told the building a block down was the Government Communications Headquarters. It was a huge building reportedly occupied by huge mainframe computers used by the Phindian goverment for processing bulk data such as census, industry and consumer statistics or public surveillance vid feeds.
Sacha had a small computer with her that she set up on the room’s writing desk. She intended to slice into the Communications Headquarters and try to access the public imagers that cover the streets, parks, public parking areas, spaceports and other public transport interchanges. I am not an expert at slicing, so I asked Sacha how she intended to break into a governmental security system.
She activated the computer before turning and giving me a wide smile. “Slicing into the surveillance recordings might be a little harder than accessing the real time surveillance. You see all surveillance cameras built are given a default username and password. Most of the time the security technicians don’t even bother changing the settings, especially if the camera is for public surveillance. It is supposed to be accessible to the public by filling out request forms. Because of this I have discovered that many cameras are still on the default settings. I just needed to know which company produced the surveillance system. When we walked here I saw a few close up and I realized they were designed by a company called WQuintar security systems.”
“And you know the default for those imagers?”
“I have the default commands for over a hundred security companies. You would be surprised what information the Antarian Rangers had in their possession.”
She turned back to the computer and pushed a series of buttons for about ten minutes before she exclaimed, “Ah ha!” She turned to us. “I have access to real-time feeds. Now I have to work on getting into the recorded data. I’ll stream the real-time images to your datapads while I continue to try to slice into the mainframe. Let me know if you see our missing woman.”
Den, Magash and I pulled our datapads out of our luggage and looked around for somewhere to sit. Sacha was occupying the only table and chair in the room. The only other furniture in the chamber were two large beds, a dresser and a nightstand. Den jumped onto one of the beds and stacked two pillows against the headboard to act as a cushion for his back. He leaned against his makeshift backrest and began monitoring his datapad. Magash decided to do the same. She began to take both pillows on the other bed but then hesitated before holding out a pillow for me. “Do you want a pillow for your back?”
I shook my head. “No you can have both. I can sit at the edge of the bed.”
I sat down at the foot of the bed and hunched over my datapad. “I’m looking at feed from quadrant J25.” I looked over to Den wanting to make sure we were all looking at different feeds. “What are you looking at?”
“H53.” He turned to Magash.
I nodded and returned to watching the datapad. This continued on for the next hour until I heard a soft snore coming from behind me. I looked over to see Den slumped over to the side and sleeping. “He’s some help.”
“I-Five,” Magash called out. “Come here and look at this.”
I stood and moved to the head of the bed and sat down next to her. “What is it? Is it our missing girl?”
She shook her head. “No, but she looks familiar. Do you recall where I might have seen her?”
She pointed at her datapad to the mass of sentients walking down a sidewalk, but it was obvious who she was referring to. It was the only human among a throng of greenish-brown skinned Phindians. I scrutinized the poor quality video trying to make out the woman’s features. It definitely was not our missing woman, but she looked remarkably similar to another woman supposedly abducted from Svang. “That looks like Ksassa Lengrada, reported missing eight months ago.”
Sacha heard our conversation and got up from her desk to take a look. On the way over to our position she gave Den a shake of his shoulder. He gave a surprised snort and he blinked his big dark eyes in confusion before he spotted the three of us staring at Magash’s datapad. He hopped out of bed and strained to see around Sacha. “Did you find something?”
“I believe it is a woman reported missing eight months ago.” Magash turned the datapad so Den could see who we were looking at. “I may be wrong.”
Den gazed at the datapad. “Doubtful. You rarely make mistakes.”
I was going to argue that to err is human, but then thought better of it. I may believe I am a fallible human, but I have to accept the fact that I’m not. If this woman’s image is recorded in my droid brain, then my identification of her is most likely accurate. “What should we do?”
Sacha analyzed the live feed for a few more seconds before she straightened and walked back to her computer. “We need to contact her. I’ll pull up a map of that quadrant and try to get a fix on her exact position.”
Den turned to me. “I-Five and I will approach and question her.”
Magash frowned as she watched the woman on her datapad. “She is not accompanied by anybody. If she was kidnapped why would she be allowed freedom of movement?”
I shrugged. “Perhaps she wasn’t kidnapped but she left on her own accord. She is young. She may have decided to run off with a boyfriend.” I went over to the room’s closet and retrieved my coat and pulled it on. I don’t use the coat for warmth as much as to conceal my blaster. “There is only one way to find out. We need to talk to her.” I motioned to Den. “Let’s get out there before she disappears. Sacha keep in comlink contact and let us know where she's going.”
Magash stood and motioned for Den to sit down. “I think it is best if I-Five and I go together.”
My brow rose slightly at her suggestion. “Why is that?”
She picked up her jacket from the end of the bed. “Having a strange male and Sullustan approach a lone woman may be intimidating. Women are less likely to be nervous if they are approached by a couple.”
I smiled slightly. “A couple?”
Sacha turned away from her computer screen. “Two women might be even less intimidating. Maybe it would be better if Magash and I went together to talk to her.”
I shook my head. “No, that might be too much of a temptation to slavers. I think Magash is right. This woman is less likely to get spooked if approached by a couple.”
Den gave a smirk. “Especially such a cute couple.”
I gave Den a warning glare, but that just made him grin wider. He made a shooing motion towards me and Magash. “You two better get moving if you are going to catch her.”
“I’m sending you a map of the area to your datapads and I will update you on her position,” Sacha said. “I also used an online app to call you an airtaxi. It should be here any minute.”
Magash pulled on her jacket and secured a small blaster in an interior pocket. “Are you ready to pretend to be my paramour?”
I heard Den muffle a chuckle, but I ignored him as a huge smile crossed my face. “I am more than ready.”
Excellent - they really seem to have a solid strategy for solving the mystery and nabbing the criminals. I agree that a couple would be less threatening and two women would be too vulnerable.