Chapter 0:

Opening Act

4-6-8


The show is starting. I wonder how many there are tonight.

What am I saying? It's the same every night. A packed house with cameras broadcasting to others. I just need to put on a good show. That's all you have 4-6-8. It's all you have.

The curtain is rising. Remember your timing. Don't forget to smile. Don't focus on their eyes. Just focus on the routine. You added that extra kick. Don't get too far. Remember what happened to 7-1-3.

The curtain is up. The show is starting.

1. 2. 3. 4.  1. 2. 3. 4.  1. 2. 3. 4. Still on beat. That's good. How am I doing? I wish they could cheer. That would tell me "You're doing good."

Ah. So much pressure. I wish they could smile or frown or just do something. Even blink. It's so hard to get these shows ready. I mean how hard is it to color correct the lights when you have this constant red gaze on you. Surely it can't be that hard.

Halfway done. The silence from the crowd is killing me. Why can't they wear masks instead of just looking at me with their metal faces? I mean if they had masks, they could change them out & show me what they feel.

Do they feel anything? have robots learned to feel yet? How much longer until they do? Tell me before my Use Gauge starts plummeting. Anything.

The final beat. Strike the pose. And BAM!

Silence as always. Come on. Tell me. What are my numbers? Please be green. Please be green. I'm still useful. I'm in my prime. I can be transferred. I can be a birther. I could pump out 20 children.

I know I'm still useful. Just give me my numbers.

78%. Still green. I can keep going.

"SUCCESFUL SHOW IDOL 4-6-8."

"Thank you. Would you like an encore?"

"OBSERVATION PERIOD FINISHED. PLEASE RETURN TO STORAGE HOUSING."

"What did you think?"

"OBSERVATION PERIOD FINISHED. PLEASE RETURN TO STORAGE HOUSING."

"Yes sir."

I'm still an idol. I can keep going.

Is that good? I'm still alive, but am I?

Vforest
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Ataga Corliss
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4-6-8