Mary Wesson lives in the small town of Kent. She's used to a world where major decisions are made for her, and is used to the cybornetic people who keep her town safe from rebels who wish to destroy everything. She's content in her life, until she meets Theo, a town police officer. Immediately smitten with a love she cannot outright have, her life is changed forever. She is presented the choice: stay in a horrible monotony, or run away and become part of something more?
The Bots looked just like us: a group of people of varying heights and skin tones who were at their absolute physical peak, entrusted with keeping our little town safe, keeping it orderly.
"Show me your ID," one would say as you passed, holding out a hand, radiating authority. And you, without hesitation, would hand them your identification card. All the while trying with all your willpower not to look them in the eye, to not stare in morbid curiosity at the abnormal purple tint to their irises.
That's just how things were in the town of Kent. The tension here, between us and them, wasn't as bad as it was in other cities, or so I'd heard. We treated them as if they were a dog we didn't particularly like: pleasant enough, but not willing to interact with them outside the necessary boundary. Then we would get word down the grapevine regarding some fight just beyond the town fences, shocking us into fear of these unnatural, manmade beings. After a while, we would slip into our normal routine, as if we had forgotten what the Bots could do. Rinse and repeat.
I had, personally, subscribed to the idea of simply keeping my nose clean and being as friendly as I could. Simple pleasantries, a polite nod and I was on my way.
But even so, it was impossible to avoid the gossip of the most recent squirmishes which passed through a crowd like the chattering of excited cats. As I worked my shifts behind the counter of a modest coffee shop in a modest town, I listened to the patrons.
It was a slow Tuesday afternoon, with the sky darkened by clouds that threatened to unleash hell and kept people inside their homes. Only a handful of people sat inside, our regulars. I was leaning on the granite counter, hands cupping my chin with a soft smile gracing my lips, watching a large man talk with my co-worker, Lola, who sat beside him on one of the old fashioned barstool.
"I'm tellin' ya," he was saying, waving his big hands around, "the Outlanders are getting crafty. I heard that they've got this sniper who's a crack shot, but his eyes aren't right. Robot eyes." He ran the nail