Jacer's Lament.

I watched as Aster fled, confused by the action she had taken. My hand lay back at my side and I lie on the table, as ordered. It was true that my skin was fabricated. This fact still seemed to be at the front of my mind, for some reason. It made sense, didn't it? I had no recollection of before the other day, when I awoke to see my sister. My thoughts were different than other people. I didn't even require food or sleep.

Was it so bad, being artificial? I had no worries of dying, since this was the case. I would not fall as easily as Falme, and my body could be repaired to perfection. I did not know how I knew so much about this, but it seemed to just flow into my mind. Humans were fragile. They died often. I, however, was not human, despite the human brain I held in my head. My body was not limited to the decaying of time. 

Then why did my state cause me to be uncomfortable?

It made no sense. I had only to protect my sister. Aster's emotions were of no concern to me. Nor was the death of anyone on this ship. If it was not for my own will to understand, I wouldn't have bothered trying to read the emotions of others. I did want to understand myself, though. I knew this. Why did I feel fear when I went to sleep earlier? Why should I ever feel fear? That was the first time, but it still caused me to worry. 

Worry, another emotion I was not used to. Well, I suppose that was what I felt when Edwina was placed in a threatening situation. There was no other way to explain my sense of protection. It seemed natural, but...

I sat up, realization hitting me. 

It was not worry. I was an artificial creation. I had no emotions. I had to accept that. The only thing I did have was my programs. All robots and computers had programs they followed. I was no different, then. My orders were to protect Edwina and to ensure my own safety so that I could carry out that duty. It made sense. After all, why would a contraption have emotion?

Although it made sense, I still felt cold. It was hard to understand, really, but I knew something must be wrong. Instead of think on it, though, I simply ignored it. All I had observed until now was useless. Protecting Edwina was all that mattered. My distrust of Jericho, my lingering feelings about myself, Falme's death, and even the feelings of others. They did not matter. 

Like Edwina had said, I was not a real human. 

The door to the room opened, but I did not look. It was Edwina, but I felt no danger. I was a machine, and my purpose was not needed. All I had to do was sit there and wait for commands. Like a good object. 

"..might have tore the skin!" Edwina was saying to whom I guessed was Aster by the sound of the footsteps. 

"I made him lay back down, at least," came Aster's voice. It sounded a little quiet, as if upset. I payed no attention, though. I was a machine, meant to only perform my duties. Edwina made that clear. I did not need to pay attention to others unless they threatened her.

"That's good, I guess." 

I looked straight ahead, not looking at Edwina as she came into view and started examining my 'skin.' She took a long time, making sure every inch was properly placed and set up. I didn't pay attention, though. I was a machine, made to perform as a guardian for her. There was no danger or orders to follow. I was useless for the time being. 

My sister.... well, no. Not my sister. My creator. She looked at my face, obviously worried about my blank expression or lack of movement. "Jacer, are you ok?"

"Yes," I replied, "My body is running fine and I am capable of performing any tasks needed. I am a machine, after all."

The End

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