Chapter 2:


Motor (Part 1)

Running to the balcony, I ran down the stairs and threw open the door to the garage, ready to defend my bike. I noticed, to my horror, the bike was indeed gone. The helmet was lying next to where the bike was chained up, but it looked like someone was lying on the floor where the bike used to be. Did someone else hear the culprits and try to protect my bike? I ran up to the person, calling to whoever it was as I did so.
“Hey! You ok?!”
I went for what I figured was the figure’s head, and found the chains were wrapped around the person’s throat. After I got all the keys to my padlocks I quickly unlocked them.
“There, you’re free.”
I finished unlocking the vigilante, who didn’t say anything as I helped them up. I guessed the culprits must have stolen the bike, attacked this person, then tied them up with the same locks! I would have been impressed with how quick they were, if I wasn’t so heartbroken.
“Did you see who took my bike?” I asked the dark figure.
I was confused when the person stayed quiet, so I went to the wall in the garage to turn on the light. I clicked it on, and nearly screamed at what I saw. The figure that stood there looked human, almost like a woman. The figure wore a black jumpsuit, the kind you’d see in spy movies, but the arms, chest and legs were pads that looked like armor. This was the first time I saw a suit like that in real life. The woman had long, straight black hair and dark blue eyes that stared rather blankly.
“W-Who are you?” I asked, confused about who this person was. Based on its attire, it didn’t strike me as an average passerby.
“You look like a biker,” I said, “did you have something to do my motorcycle being stolen?!”
The person looked at me with a blank expression.
“Are you not going to answer me?” I asked, confused about this person on so many levels.
Then the person spoke. Her voice sounded feminine, but also hauntingly metallic.
“My name is Suzuki-Takanova number two-o-four-three. I am the mechanical transport you used today.”
I was sure I wasn’t hearing right. Was she saying that she was my bike?!
“W-what did you say?” I asked, shocked.
The person cocked her head to the side, like she was confused.
“My name is Suzuki-Takanova number two-o-four-three. I am the mechanical transport you used today.”
“Wait, hold on a second!” I said, holding my hands up for him to stop. “What does that even mean?! Are you telling me you are somehow my motorcycle?”
The person repeated himself.
“I am the mechanical transport you-”
“I heard you!!” I shouted, then paused. I looked at the person and fumed.
“I have a hard time believing you’re my-”
Suddenly, the person lunged at me. I wasn’t expecting it at all! A split second later, the door to the garage flew up, like someone was barging in. As I fell I saw two people standing on the other side of the garage; neither of them looked very friendly. They wore street clothes and had dark shades on. In the next second I was flying towards them, then past them, then down the street. I had no idea what was going, until I realized I was on my motorcycle! Somehow my motorcycle had appeared and got me out of there! It was a bit disorienting because of how quickly it had all happened.
Drive. Came a voice.
“What? Drive? To where?!”
Drive or you will be killed.
“Wait, what?! Hold on a second, what’s this all about? Who are you?!”
If you don’t get us to relative safety within the next one hundred and twenty seconds, you will die.
“Wait, two minutes?! Why two minutes? Are those two people after me?!”
Because they are after me.
“Did you do something?”
Besides being created, negative.
“So these guys aren’t the police?”
They are part of the same corporation I was built by: a special design program trying to manufacture forms of artificial intelligence. They’re masked as a multibillion dollar pharmaceutical company called Rimoss. Their goal is to create consentient artificial intelligence to use as weapons. I escaped, and now they’re after me.
“I’d heard about things like that, but I figured they were all a hoax. Why were they trying to destroy you?”
I can get the word out, and I plan to.
We drove on in relative silence after that, then I pulled off towards the back roads of the next town over. We drove through an alleyway before I climbed off the bike and it changed into a person again. I couldn’t see how it was done in the darkness, but it had.
“So, do you think we’ll be safe here?”
“For the time being.” The figure replied.
“Ok, most of what you told me makes sense, even if I don’t understand it, but explain something to me.”
The person cocked her head again, like she was curious.
“Why show up in front of my apartment with my name stuck on you.”
The person looked down for a second, as though processing his thoughts, then looked back up.
“You were a feasible target.”

I nodded, looking the person over. She was around my height, looked around my age (if she had an age), and despite her ridiculous costume which I figured was part of her robotic body, looked like a pretty normal person. There’s a lot of things I wanted to argue the sensibilities of. I wanted to argue that none of this could exist; that artificial intelligence of any kind was impossible and that this was all fake. But it was real. It was here. So, I decided, as much as I wanted to ignore what was happening, to suck it up and do what I had to.
“Ok, what happens next?”
The person didn’t move as she replied.
“We might need to change locations two times or more before this night is through.”
I was at first appalled that she wanted us to stay up all night, but it occurred to me the people who were looking for her might have worse things planned for me if they caught us.
“Ok.” I said. “Let’s go.”
In a moment the person was back to a motorcycle. The back bag, which I realized the person wore like a satchel when in human form, was where I got my helmet once we started riding again. After driving through town then a couple back streets, we stopped for the second time in a similar back-alley location.