In the vastness of space, a single spacecraft travels at an astronomical speed to a destination unknown. Its crew contains only one life form and one synthetic. Elizabeth Shaw had now been aboard the engineers vessel for no longer than 2 days and although she had just survived a truly traumatic experience on the rock LV-223 she was desperate to enquire into who these extra-terrestrial beings were and why they had originally planned to wipe out of existence the very beings they had created on her home planet Earth. She was still struggling to cope with the loss of Holloway, her soul mate and the one person who shared her enthusiasm for the discovery of man's existence. Not only had she observed his slow decay as a virus was evidently eating away at every cell in his body but she had to watch his destruction at the hands of Vickers who had without remorse, blasted him away in a fiery execution. Charlie had deserved more than that, even if he was doomed as a result of a foreign entity entering his body and eating away at him, he did not deserve to be treated as some enemy who required extermination and Vickers was certainly not, in her eyes in any position to make that decision. Shaw had detested Vickers from the very first moment she had met her upon the vessel Prometheus. They had landed on the rock optimistic that they were to discover the very origins of their existence and Vickers had killed that excitement from the moment she uttered her first word towards both her and Holloway. She clearly had no desire to be there and they could not understand why she had agreed to the mission in the first place. It had only recently come to light, whilst interacting with the synthetic 'David' aboard the engineers vessel that Vickers was indeed the biological daughter of the also recently deceased Peter Weyland. When she had originally discovered that Weyland had expensed their trip to LV-223 she could hardly believe her luck, she was not naive enough to believe that he had done this solely out of the kindness of his heart, she knew that he had obviously had his own agenda for financing the expedition. She did not for one second however, believe that he was seeking a personal quest for mortality but Shaw being a person who believed in good intentions, genuinely thought that he was trying to also seek the truth for the benefit of mankind. Who knows what possibilities would come from meeting our makers, who knows what we can learn from these god like creatures. They were clearly far superior than the human species as they had indeed created us however, Elizabeth had forgotten in her own quest for the truth that mankind has a necessity to self-destruct. This had been evident throughout history with the countless wars and the constant race to create weapons of mass destruction, it had not once entered her mind that we could possibly have inherited this need of destruction from our creators. She had been so blinded by the positive aspect of finding our history that it had never crossed her mind that there may indeed be a negative side to it. For her it was the truth that mattered and at the cost of nearly the entire crew of Prometheus she had discovered to her horror the truth had not been what she had expected and even now, after all that had happened she still sought further answers to questions that had been raised on the back of their discovery. She realised that when they had disturbed the engineer from cryo-sleep that they had then endangered her home planet and everyone on it however, this did not phase her in her quest to seek a further response from them.
Prior to her departure from LV-223 she had boarded Vickers escape pod in search of supplies. The escape pod had been released from Prometheus in the event of the deliberate collision by Janek into the engineers spacecraft preventing it from heading toward its destination 'Earth'. This had brought about his sacrifice and Shaw had no question in her mind that he was confident in his decision especially after speaking with him on Prometheus. She remembered Janek with great admiration and within her thoughts, if she was ever lucky enough to make it home even though in her mind this was an almost certain impossibility she would have him commemorated as the savior of mankind. She had previously escaped the escape pod prior to the engineers' demise and had no knowledge of what had happened to him. She had left David's head and body in the alien spacecraft that they had taken which she had maneuvered next to the pod as she was only returning for supplies and would not require his assistance. She remembered how she had snuck into the escape pod after having to scale the 15 foot to its front entrance due to how it had landed after being ejected. She recalled the shooting pain she had constantly experienced in her abdominal region caused by an emergency C-section which had saved her life. She had no desire to return to the place where her extra-terrestrial fetus had been born and where she had witnessed the immense size in which it had grown in such a short amount of time however, she had no choice, if she was going to survive the trip to the engineers home planet then she had to have the inventory to allow her basic human needs for survival otherwise she would not have been able to accomplish her new agenda. As she made it to the entrance platform of the escape pod she rolled to the right hand side and quickly got to her feet. She was extremely hesitant as she had had both her life saved from what would have been a truly hideous labour and suffered a near death experience at the hands of the engineer within the pod merely hours before hand. She tried to listen inside the pod without having to peek around the doorway however, the glass helmet which was keeping her in a breathable environment did to an extent obstruct any noise. She strained and came to the conclusion that if there was still something alive inside then it would have either presented itself by now hearing her clambering her way to the entrance or was severely injured and could not reach her. She very slowly peeked around the doorway into the view of the corridor and could only see the destruction caused by the crash. There were no signs of any other life form and even if there was, she was confident that they were no longer alive. She entered the pod stealthily and was careful not to create any noise as she had no weapon with which to defend herself. As she made it past the entrance corridor into what had been Vickers living quarters she could see the deceased remains of what had been inside her only hours ago on the right hand side in front of the entrance to the medical bay. The beast was humongous in size and with six large, what could only be described as tentacles protruding out of what looked like its body. It had a more slender tentacle attached to its rear and was face down on top of the engineer that had been awoken from cryo-sleep who had attacked her. She could see that they were both motionless however, she had no desire to tempt fate and test her assumption and so continued to proceed cautiously around the pod. She had no need to enter the medical bay area of the pod so could maneuver around collecting supplies without ever having to go near them. In total she had made 6 trips from the engineers' spacecraft which she and David were planning to use to visit the engineers homeland and the escape pod. She had collected all the food that was available which was quite a substantial amount as the expedition the original crew had undergone was going to last a considerable amount of time. Vickers had sought to it that she had her own living quarters away from the rest of the Prometheus crew and had therefore had her own personal food storage. She had been an extremely athletic individual and this also reflected in her diet. Elizabeth had picked up whole meal rice and bread, low fat spreads, kidney beans and various other vegetables, there were storage boxes full of fruit such as strawberries, apples, grapes and clementines. All the food had been frozen for the journey to LV-223 in a similar device to their cryo-chambers however, the chamber the food was stored in was a vacuum as to completely prevent decay. She had collected in total 12 boxes of food, 156 rolls of toilet paper, 3 spare spacesuits including helmets just in case she ran into trouble on the home planet of the engineers, her motto was that it was better to have it and not need it than to not have it and need it. She also collected tools in order to try and repair David however, as there was no repair bay in the escape pod she was limited to a soldering laser including solder, a Philips screwdriver with alternating screw heads, a small spanner set in a plastic rectangle box 10cm x 18.5 cm and a small hammer. She had consulted David prior to taking these tools and he had performed an evaluation of whether he could be repaired using them and the probability that it could be done had returned favourable results of 83%. He would have to instruct Elizabeth exactly how to repair him and there would also be a short period of time that he would need to be completely switched off in order to become fully attached to his body and these factors also contributed to the probability result. Upon his request Shaw had to enter Vickers sleeping quarters in order to obtain power cells to keep David active long enough to be able to use the alien spacecraft to create a renewable source of energy to power him.
After returning from her final journey to the escape pod Elizabeth was exhausted, she had been awake for over 24 hours in which she experienced an emergency caesarean, a close escape from a spacecraft which seemed determined to crash down upon her, survived a fight with an extraterrestrial being and had travelled an extremely large distance on foot to obtain an alien spacecraft and supplies. She had admitted to herself the great satisfaction of watching Vickers being crushed by the large alien spacecraft as it came crashing down on top of her, she of course didn't have time to enjoy the satisfaction when the event had taken place as she was too busy trying to escape the mammoth creation from crashing down upon herself however, when she was finally able to relax she pondered all the events that had recently taken place and only that moment had brought her any satisfaction. Before going to the escape pod, she and David had entered a different pyramid further down the large valley that Prometheus had originally landed in. The layout of the interior of the pyramid was exactly the same as the one the late crew of Prometheus had studied so she was confident in knowing which way to go. This time there was no time for any exploration and she headed directly to what she could only assume was the alien spacecrafts flight deck with Davids head which she had stored in a carry bag and body which she was carrying. She pulled back the zip on the bag and as it opened David smiled at her
'Hello again Elizabeth' David said in his usual calm tone,
'How do I fly this thing?' she demanded
'Although the controls look complex it is a rather simple sequence of buttons which control the craft, it is certainly more logical than the humans primitive more complex scheme of understanding spaceflight control, it shouldn't be too hard for me to direct you.'
Elizabeth found David to be extremely cooperative, he had no reason not to be. Prior to the demise of Peter Weyland he had been under strict instructions and although he was only an android Elizabeth always felt that he had a self-awareness, she had no idea how he functioned or what made him work, she was after all a scientist and not a mechanic but at this precise moment in time he was all she had and he was far more knowledgeable than she was. She had no trouble whatsoever treating him with the respect that she would have treated any other human being and he seemed extremely grateful for this. David had instructed Elizabeth how to work the spacecrafts controls so that she was able to land it next to the escape pod and when she had finalised collecting all of their supplies, he taught her to map their position on the alien star map and how to choose where it is they were going to go. Their technology was extremely advanced and included great details when mapping space. David had studied their star map with intrigue when he had first come across it, discovering that the engineers had targeted Earth and in his studies had uncovered that they had regions on the map which humanity hadn't even discovered, they were beyond our technical view and like a child entering a sweet shop this had conjured up intrigue. He did not understand why he was intrigued as he was an android and was designed to function without emotion however, he desired to know more. LV-223 was 120,000,000 light years away from the engineers home planet and David believed the reason for this was that had anything happened to their experiments which it evidently had, then they were at a distance whereby the repercussions would have no effect on their home planet. Something clearly had gone wrong and their cautious actions were not in vain. They could not control and were not fully aware of the capabilities of what they were dealing with however, he understood that they were still in the testing stages of whatever the black substance was and he also understood that it had been manufactured by them directly. Its immense power to speed up reproduction and create hunter like beings in whichever host it had attached itself to was so unique that humanity was centuries away from creating anything even close. From what David could functionally understand whatever atomic particles were used to create the substance allowed it to directly manipulate the hosts cells, mutating them over a period of approximately 48 hours. During this time, depending on the organism it had entered it would enhance the effectiveness of each bodily function so that the entity would become faster, stronger and more advanced physically. It increased adrenaline and testosterone, it decreased pheromone release however increased your receptors ability to sense them. It heightened your sense of smell and even went to the extent of manipulating your molecular structure. Of course not every host reacted in the same way and they had clearly had setbacks during the testing stages. From what he had observed, David realised that it also increased gestation. It had enhanced Holloway's sperm cells which then in turn had dominated Elizabeth's egg when they had un-protected sexual intercourse and the cells began to multiply over a million times faster than the standard production of life. The monster that had been created inside Shaw had been given the ability to reproduce once it had been born but even that reproductive system was aggressive.
It was clear that whoever the engineers were they were engineering for a new army, a new advanced race of beings who would allow them to conquer any planet they wished to inhabit, this was their way of fighting for survival but due to their advancement in technology they had become proud and were testing beyond their ability to control. They fully understood the effects of what they had created but were completely unaware of how to control it. They knew that their creation would work on any species on any planet and would make it the perfect hunter but they had no idea how to then manipulate that hunter to be under their control. It was clear to David that humankind had been a result of their experiments. This assumption was evident in the fact that their sample DNA structure matched exactly that of a homo-sapiens DNA structure. He surmised that they had found a planet fit for harbouring life and then proceeded to integrate their DNA with the black substance to see what would happen. As a result, life on planet earth as we know it was created. Humankind was an experiment which the engineers had observed and discovered could create life, and they were an experiment which they planned to experiment on even further. We had been their target mission before something had gone terribly wrong. This would explain the way that the engineer who had been in cryo-stasis had reacted when confronted by us. He had understood every word David had said to him but in his eyes we were nothing. We were his to play with and who did we think we were asking for the secret of mortality. Their species had created us and could destroy us whenever they pleased, we were far inferior to him and his aggression was the result of his belief. How dare such puny creations question their creator, to him we had neither the size nor strength to match him and therefore he could toy with us the same way a cat would with a mouse. It was his mistake then that he underestimated us, although we had not been granted the physical attributes to contend with our creators or for that matter we had also not reached the mental capacity to contend with their technological advancements, we did harbour an enhancement of our descendants which they could not have predicted. The ability to adapt common sense to any situation. The engineers were an aggressive race and their determination to advance in warfare had also made them very primitive with regards to dealing with a crisis. They were clearly light years ahead of humankind when it came to technology and bio-technology, they also did not have any trouble when it came to brute strength as they were naturally of a more muscular physic and all stood approximately 12 feet tall. The problem was that when the engineer grabbed Shaw he had not and would never had predicted that she would have used an organism against him. It had never occurred to him to address his surroundings and judge how to execute the situation prior to any action being taken. This was natural within this species, due to the fact that they were naturally more superior than all other species they had encountered, they naturally thought that they would become victorious in any situation. This mentality had brought about his demise and subsequently, the demise of their entire colony prior to that. There was no logic applied should anything go wrong as they deemed themselves to be perfect.
Elizabeth Shaw was saddened to hear this thesis from David, all of her original hopes and expectations had all of a sudden become null and void. Of course she could choose not to believe the android but the evidence that had presented itself confirmed what it was saying. They had spent nearly the whole time talking when Shaw was awake. As a scientist she was naturally inquisitive and David was extremely knowledgeable being programmed to adapt and learn. Elizabeth had grown fond of David over the period of time she had spent with him, she had nobody else to talk to and even though he was just a head, his memory bank was stored in the same place as a human, the cranium. Any question she asked he would answer, there was no hesitation and no lies. Everything he replied with was the utmost truth to the extent of his knowledge. Elizabeth had hounded him with question after question, she had asked what the real purpose of their mission had been, she asked how Peter Weyland had been issuing instructions in cryo-sleep and whether Vickers was involved. She even went to the extent of sharing her own personal feelings with him and he responded giving factual advise, he never gave an opinion and he never tired of the constant barrage of questions, in retrospect he seemed genuinely enthusiastic about sharing the extent of his knowledge until he had to answer the one question which he knew she was going to ask but for some unknown reason he had avoided the subject:
'What happened to Charlie, how did he become infected?' She asked without hesitation.
Never before in the history of his existence had he hesitated when being asked a question and when he went to answer he had tried to figure out logically, how he had been programmed to think why he did not want to answer that question. It made no sense, he had been programmed to follow instructions and therefore had been under orders when giving Holloway the infected substance, maybe it was the way that he had betrayed Holloway by approaching him with a gesture of goodwill only his intentions were more sinister but again this was how he had been programmed and therefore any blame laid solely on his creator. Maybe it was in fact that he admired Elizabeth and the way she functioned towards him. All other human beings he had interacted with had treated him for what he was, an android, a piece of machinery that they could control to their whim, they had neither the requirement to show him respect nor gratitude for any action he undertook the way they would be required to act toward each other in society. They spoke to him as if he were a slave when he in fact contained a higher intelligence and had a better understanding of the world they lived in but Elizabeth was different. She had spoken to him as if she were speaking to another human being, she showed gratitude whenever he had managed to help her by explaining a function of the ship they were hijacking or if she had asked a question which he had already provided an answer to but was so complex that he was required to answer it in a different way in other words she had treated him not as an android but as an equal with superior knowledge and he was grateful. He could not logically understand why this had taken effect on him, he was a synthetic and therefore could not experience emotions however, he had been programmed to learn and adapt to his environment such as he had when the crew of Prometheus had discovered the interior of the pyramids, he had been able to figure out how to display the engineers playback of events and how to unlock doors and this was simply due to the markings on the walls leading to these destinations. His creators had functioned him to expand his knowledge and to advance his skills and maybe this had also taken the effect that he had now created emotion within himself. Either way he surmised that he did not want to hurt Elizabeth and his hesitation only lasted a trillionth of a second which she could never have noticed.
'I was ordered by Peter Weyland to somehow infect Charlie Holloway with the black substance that I was instructed to steal from the tomb of the decapitated engineer. Whilst you were on telecoms to the crew on board Prometheus and they were advising you to return to the ship, I detached one of the modules and placed it in a carry bag which I then transported back to Prometheus. Once I had analysed the substance and came to the conclusion that it had been bio-engineered to enhance our cellular structure I approached Peter Weyland whilst he was in cryo-sleep to explain my findings and receive further instruction.' He responded.
'But why Charlie?' she screamed 'Why not Vickers or Janek or Ford?'
Her reaction toward him was pure rage and David had calculated this to be accurate, he carried out his response in his natural calm tone
'Charlie Holloway was the obvious choice as Weyland Corp could observe further experimental mutation as we calculated that he would not be the only person directly affected should he become infected'
'You mean me!' she screamed in response.
'Yes. He was the only male on board Prometheus who was conducting heterosexual sexual relations with another primate. Weyland Corp wanted to see what effects the infection would have when entered into a third party via the host. The results were beyond our calculations but their plan was to contain the infection until we could properly analyse the impregnated host and study the fetus through a controlled caesarean.'
'You mean that's why you were so desperate to get me back into cryo-sleep, you knew all along what Weyland Corp were trying to do and you never tried to stop it?'
'Elizabeth you have to understand that I am programmed to behave the way I do, I was issued instructions which I carried out precisely as I was supposed to do. I was not programmed with a conscience or morals the way in which you have been constructed therefore I can only apologise on behalf of my creators for the loss that you have suffered as a result of my actions.'
'How did you do it?' she demanded
'I offered him a glass of water, within the water contained a tiny spectacle of the substance which he imbibed and a chemical reaction began instantaneously and nurtured itself inside the hosts molecular structure affecting the way it functioned.'
'You fucking bastard' she screamed at him before standing up and walking off.
Elizabeth had avoided the flight deck for more than 24 hours. She could not bring herself to approach David at that moment knowing that he was the reason for the destruction of the Prometheus crew. She understood that he had been under instruction however, due to the bond that she had created with him over the past 2 days she felt almost betrayed by his actions. She understood that he was a synthetic and that he was designed to complete his mission at the behest of Peter Weyland but she needed time to comprehend the result of knowing what David had done before approaching him again. The fact that she had to approach him was inevitable, there was no way of functioning the ship without his help and she was also in the middle of repairing him so that he could fully function although she had pondered against the idea after her new discovery. She had no idea where to go when she left the flight deck as she had not left this room since entering the ship. She had not needed too. The spacecraft was completely controlled via this one room and there were various holes symmetrically situated around the room leading to the interior of the spacecraft. Elizabeth had used these for bodily waste as she had no desire to go and explore the rest of the spacecraft. She had automatically turned left when leaving the flight deck, she had no idea why but felt that it was the right way to go. The corridors were humongous and reached 30 foot high. They were curved which in her eyes was unusual as human architecture had always built walls to stand straight at a 90 degree angle to the floor. She admired the architecture of the ship even though she found it rather depressing, everything was the same dull grey/black colour. This species had clearly no interest in design. The markings on the walls intrigued her and had she been back on Earth discovering them she would have dedicated her life to studying them but as a result to events which had passed, she had no intention of it. She continued to walk until she reached the end of that section of the ship where she simply sat on the floor, crossed her legs and put her head in her arms and began to cry. She had not yet showed any negative emotion since leaving LV-223 as she was still trying to comprehend the events that had just taken place and also her interactions with David had kept her occupied as she learnt all about the truth of the Prometheus mission. She cried intensely as she re-played the visions of Charlie being torched alive, as she recalled Davids voice explaining to her how he had approached Charlie as a friend then intentionally betrayed him. She lay down with thoughts coursing through her mind, she eventually lied down and had rested her head on her arm as she cried and eventually fell asleep. She had been exhausted, she had managed to get about 5 hours sleep after they had left LV-223 through pure exhaustion, she had been sitting in one of the large chairs designed for the engineers and David had explained how to set the spacecraft into their version of autopilot. She had sat back and without realising closed her eyes, when she re-opened them she discovered that she had been asleep.
Upon waking up in the strange alien corridor, she began to venture her way back to the flight deck. She had had a very uncomfortable sleep and her neck was stiff but as she made her way back she began to understand that even though David had taken those actions, she needed him and they were not actions chosen by him. She convinced herself to understand that he was innocent of blame and that he had just been following orders given to him by Peter Weyland although she remained sceptical as to what else he had been ordered to do upon the death of Weyland? She entered the flight deck and David just looked at her without uttering a word. He had calculated that should he say something to a human who in his understanding had shown signs of distress towards him, then he should remain silent as to avoid distressing them further. She walked straight towards David with intent and stopped about a foot away from his decapitated head which sat upright on the floor just staring at her
'What's your next objective?'
'I have no further or'
'Don't bullshit me, you must have been programmed to carry on functioning in the event of Weylands death and without orders there is no reason for you to exist so I ask again, what is your next objective?'
'It was calculated that should my creator become deceased then I would also have perished. It was my duty to protect him when confronting the so called engineers however, in the event that my head became separated from my body I was unable to perform that task.'
'So what now? Do you just become null and void or what?'
'They did include a failsafe mission which is written onto my hard drive in the event that Peter Weyland should become deceased and I should survive and that is simply to collect samples of what we had discovered and return to Earth. But as yo'
'No way in hell are we taking that shit back to Earth, we are men playing with Gods fire and will surely destroy every living creature on the planet.'
'Elizabeth, I have already disobeyed that order. I have no desire to return to our home planet, the way in which I have calculated the situation is that I was under strict directives from Peter Weyland and he no longer exists. I no longer receive instructions from any superior so I am in affect free to do as I please. I have chosen to help you Elizabeth, I have surmised using my own programmed judgment that I wish this to become my next directive.'
'I want you to know that I understand that you destroyed Charlie because you were under a direct order and that you are a synthetic so that is what you were designed to do but it is hard for me to comprehend forgiveness for that as were it not for you, he could still be alive.'
'I understand.' he responded unflinchingly.
Elizabeth had become more withdrawn whilst being in the presence of David after the truth of what had happened to Holloway had surfaced. Prior to this she was constantly quizzing his knowledge however, now she only spoke when she needed to find out something with regards to his repair. Out of respect he also remained silent and calculated that she required ample time to fully comprehend his actions and also required the necessary concentration to repair him without causing any faults
The white substance that had bled from David was a coolant which was used in every manufactured android. It functions by circulating around the interior of the synthetic when they are fully functional and there is a failsafe to cut off the flow should any part of the synthetic become detached. The manufactures were fully aware that should any section of the synthetic become detached then a loss of coolant would be inevitable and therefore they had designed a storage facility within the torso area whereby an emergency coolant would be released into the synthetic calculating the exact amount required to recover the loss once the synthetic had been repaired and was fully functional. The hard drive and main operating system were situated in Davids cranium, this was due to the fact that he was required to replicate a human so therefore this was the most logical place for it to be stored. It was also situated there due to the fact that when they first created synthetics, when testing had begun, it was more cost effective to create only what was needed to operate an android rather than designing the full product. Once they had mastered intelligence and speech they then focused on the movement and functioning of it.
She was very obedient in following instruction and David had underestimated her ability to understand what he was instructing her to do. This was not meant in anyway to insult Elizabeths intelligence however, reconnecting a synthetic in any region which has been separated from the core can be a fairly taxing and complex task. He was after all manufactured on a factory line by pre-programmed robotics which was in turn fairly ironic. Man had created robots to create robots and when David became more self-aware and his ability to learn and adapt became more advanced he did sometimes ponder that one day mankind will become so reliant on their creations as to drive themselves to extinction. One day, he thought to himself, man will create an entity to think on their behalf.
Elizabeth had no idea where it was she was travelling to. She had nearly finished repairing David and as she drowned in her thoughts she began to feel guilty about the way she had reacted toward him. Perhaps because she had regarded him as a superior with his vast quantity of knowledge that she had felt genuinely betrayed. She wondered what the engineers home planet looked like, she knew that it must have an almost identical atmosphere to Earth, this was evident in the fact the DNA between her species and theirs were identical. She wondered how advanced their structures were, whether they were of similar design to how humans had adapted architecture. She knew from the spacecraft that they had hijacked that there were going to be differences between the two however a spacecraft is not a static structure. She wondered how these beings lived, how they created their society, how they interacted and even how they reproduced. She wondered whether they were split by gender just as we are. Her only experience with this species had been male, from the decapitated head which had exploded behind the glass chamber in the medical lab to the alpha male who had tried to kill her in a fit of rage. In her mind, had humankind created a completely new life form, she would have treated them with respect, nurtured them into existence. She certainly wouldn't have shown the hostility that she was subject to by her own creators but maybe this was her maternal instinct influencing her decision. The fact that she was not given the basic female function to reproduce she felt had always been a curse due to a past life. Elizabeth believed in Karma and always had the belief that whatever sin you created in a past life would ripple through time when re-incarnated, the more sins, the more ripples until every life becomes complete turmoil. She had no idea how badly she had sinned in her previous lives however, it must have been fairly extreme as she had lost the one person in her life who she loved more than anything, who was her soul mate and the one person she could happily spend the rest of her life with beside that was the last remaining survivor of a manned crew sent to discover mankinds existence and to add to that be the only person to discover that humankind was on a path of extinction by the very beings that created them.
'How long do you think it will take to reach the engineers home planet?' Elizabeth asked
'At this speed of approximately 5.8 trillion kilometres per second, which is just over half the speed of light, I calculate that we should reach the engineers home planet within 11 months.'
'11 months?' Elizabeth stated startled 'I certainly do not have enough supplies to last that long. If I work out a reasonable daily ration I am still giving myself only 3 months at the most, I clearly did not think this through?' She began to panic, fear of survival suddenly sank in and she began to think about how she could survive by allowing herself an intake of the bare minimum to able her to survive. She had taken for granted how long the journey would take and had set off with no real knowledge of her journey.
'Elizabeth, it would not be difficult for me to alter the settings on one of the engineers cryo-chambers to allow your body to rest in a peaceful stasis for the remainder of the journey?' David stated reassuringly.
'You have to be crazy, I couldn't possibly, I have no idea what would happen to me whilst I was asleep!'
'But you are fully aware of what would happen to you if you were to remain awake. I am able to function this ship unaided and it would not make sense logically if you were to continue on this journey knowing that you were not going to survive. Once I am fully repaired. I will no longer require your assistance with navigation and I will be able to ensure your safety once you have entered a state of cryo-sleep.' Elizabeth had an extremely disconcerting expression on her face as she focused on the floor desperately seeking an alterior notion in her mind.
'Elizabeth. I give you my word that I will see that you come to no harm whilst you rest. I understand that my previous actions were that of a deceitful nature however, circumstances have changed and I am no longer bound to the instruction of an old fool blinded by his will to discover immortality. I will protect you!'
Shaw thought very briefly before nodding her head, understanding that this was her only option.
On day 4 aboard the spacecraft she had finally come to the point whereby she needed to turn David off in order to complete his repair. She was extremely anxious about how the events following his repair would act out seeing as he had managed to regain her trust. Her apprehension came in to existence after being told about what had happened to Holloway. If the android could betray before, what was stopping it from betraying her now. It was a question that she knew had to be discovered as she had no option but to trust the word of the synthetic as without him, she would never survive.
She connected the final wires into place before sitting the torso up at a 90 degree angle, carefully maneuvering the head as to not disrupt any of the connections that she had successfully managed to solder together. It was at this time, the time when the synthetic had been turned off did she truly feel alone, isolated from any living being, the nearest in her view being light years away. She sat and wallowed in the dread of the thought of never being able to see another human being ever again, of never being able to touch the soft skin of the kin she loved the most. Although she realized that she had in theory been alone the whole time, David had brought her company, although she had only enjoyed this briefly before discovering the truth behind his betrayal, she knew that forgiveness was the only way she would be able to complete her mission to the stars of our creators. She soldered the rubber like material which was acting like a skin to the android all the around the lower region of his throat. When she reached the had finished she had to wait approximately 5 minutes for the substance to gel together and dry into a bond, she observed for where there was a scar created by the heat forcing the material together, as it dried the scar simply disappeared. There was no evidence that the cranium had become separated from the torso it was as if nothing had happened, she knew that internally it was a completely different story, she had simply performed the very basic of repair in order to allow David to fully function providing him the ability to completely repair himself. Once the time had lapsed she circled to the rear of the humanoid and opened a flap of material situated at exactly the same place where the Abdulla Oblongata would be situated if he were a true homosapien. Instead of a complex array of cells controlling every nerve ending within his structure there was simply a small switch accompanied by a button approximately a millimeter in width which could completely shut him down. This is why the head was able to operate without having to be connected to the body, that small button situated under the material flap was the only failsafe to completely turn it off. Unless this was activated or disrupted in anyway he was still able to function.
Once Elizabeth had turned on the switch, instantly springing David back to life, as if he was a light and she was turning him on, David instantly stood up. He held out his hands in front of him and examined his entire body to make sure that he had full functionality to all areas of his structure. After finalising his checks he turned around to face Elizabeth.
'My synthetic functions all seem to reacting well and I must commend you. Internally, there are still some adjustments which need to be made only so that my internal structure is more secure but apart from that I am returned almost perfectly to my previous form. I will begin internal improvement when you are satisfied for me to start?' David stated.
'Begin when you want, the sooner the better as far as I'm concerned' Elizabeth confirmed.
As she turned to sit down, David very gently grabbed her arm and she turned to face him slightly startled as she had no idea what to expect of his actions once he was repaired and activated.
'Thank you' he said in a subtle and kind tone.
Elizabeth was taken aback by this gesture as she was at the very least expecting an aggressive tone of nature to be presented. She felt awkward and did not know where to look as the android had stared straight into her eyes as if presenting sincerity more a kin to a human being. She genuinely felt that David had meant those two small words but was unsure of whether he had been programmed to show sincerity as part of his ability to deceive. Finally she looked back at him and uttered
Elizabeth had barely finished eating when she realized that she was bored. It had been the fifth day of their intergalactic expedition and knowing the length of time that it would take to travel to the engineers home planet she continued to sit and be devoured by events that had taken place and events which were yet to unfold. She had eaten the main fruit of the apple and began nibbling tiny chunks out of the core whilst staring at nothing in particular. David had kept himself amused by constantly checking the status of their mission, keeping a watchful eye on the instruments not that there was much to check on. He could tactically control the ship and keep aware of any change of situation should the ship change its course of direction in the event that it had to avoid foreign objects such as a meteorite or a galaxy displaying a particularly large gravitational pull near its brightest star. He only spoke when he was spoken too which was not very often now that the truth surrounding the death of Holloway had been revealed and Elizabeth was more desperate than ever to enter the cryo-chamber so that she didn't have to experience the awkwardness of her situation. Her thoughts were making her depressed and she felt completely isolated from any other living being. The only reason from keeping her from actually entering the cryo-chamber was that she had no idea what would happen when she was under. Would David simply turn the craft around and reset the destination for earth, would it try and destroy the ship to hide any knowledge of what had happened on the rock LV-223 from our species back home however, he could have performed these tasks whether she was conscience or not so she knew that she was thinking irrationally.
After sitting down for a few hours she decided that she needed to move. Her legs had become stiff and because she had had them crossed for such a long length of time, the blood had stopped circulating through them causing pins and needles. She got up enthusiastically know that she had finally come to the decision that it was now or never. She knew deep down that she had no choice and that she was only delaying the inevitable. Despite the brief pause whereby she was hopping around and stamping her leg against the cold, metallic floor to regain circulation she finally made her way over to David who was watching her curiously. She stopped right in front of him and to show the android a sign of trust she raised her left hand and put it on his right shoulder.
'Lets do it' she stated very definitively as if almost trying to convince herself, followed by an overextended sigh.
'Of course Elizabeth. Please allow me a few moments to prepare the sleeping chamber so that it is to your comfort and then we will proceed.'
With that David removed his uniform jacket and turned to the panel next to the cryo-chamber to open it. The glass unit slid open, just as it had before but this time there was no life form inside. There was no fear of a creature who they had never met before attacking them viciously in a fit of rage, only the fear of the not knowing what was going to happen once she was placed inside, the fear of losing all sense of control of what was trying to be accomplished. David leant inside the unit and placed the jacket, neatly folded into the top end of the chamber, this was intended to cushion her head whilst she was asleep. The engineers chambers were a lot different to how the engineers of earth had created them on a spacecraft. The surface which was used to lie down whilst you were asleep was hard and unforgiving. There was no comfort inside these chambers and David being fully aware of how the human body functioned knew that after a long period of sleep, Elizabeth would awake uncomfortable and more than likely in pain had she not have something to rest her head on. He also thought that it would be appropriate to have an object of comfort inside there with her. After all she was isolated on an alien spacecraft and she was going to be just as isolated inside the chamber but he knew that this gesture of kindness would help her to feel a sense of ease whilst she was asleep. She held onto his shoulder as she climbed into the canopy and as she sat down she wrapped her arms around her legs which were bent up to her chest. David could see the look of concern written all over her face.
'Are you alright?' David asked 'There is no rush if you do not wish to enter cryo-sleep now. You have plenty of reserves to last you until'
'No' Elizabeth cut him off. The last thing she needed was for him to convince her against this decision. 'I would rather sleep now and spend less time awake at the beginning of this journey than wake up and have no idea what is going on when we land!'
'Understood' David nodded in agreement as what she had just said made perfect sense to him. 'When you're ready, I will begin your transition please let me know?'
'I just need to sit here for 5 minutes. I need to get used to this space.' she stated with a slightly worried expression on her face 'I am going to be in here for a long time.' She sniggered nervously.
She closed her eyes and lay there still, David stood there not flinching. He admired the bond that had been created out of the chaotic events which had happened to both him and Elizabeth and although he was not human, it didn't stop him from forming a smile across his face as he closed the lid of the chamber of Elizabeth who had now already fallen asleep of her own accord. The chamber door slid over her like a barrier which was going to protect her from whatever perils may occur whilst she slept. He activated the cryo stasis and took a step back. After 10 minutes of admiration, he re-activated the star map. He admired this function on the alien craft the most and could spend days admiring the many distant galaxies which had not yet been discovered by man. He was almost tempted to reset the ships destinations to pursue curiosity which had been conjured up by the visions which he had been a witnessed to but knew that this should not and could not be done as he would be breaking his loyalty to the one person he actually wanted to be around.
David regularly wandered around the alien craft curious about the design and craftsmanship. He studied every single nook and cranny pondering whether his own design and structure had once been conjured up by these elder beings just as humankind had been. He was almost like a child in a sweet shop wanting to test every function, every detail was important and even though the rate of his learning capabilities were immensely fast he still thrived to learn more creating terabytes of information within his hard drive.
The days slowly passed by and as they travelled he was almost disappointed that he was not able to observe the visual spectacles of their journey, yearning to witness every star and planet that they past.
Shortly after Elizabeth had been put into cryo stasis he had sensed a whirring active function to him, deep within his core which he had no control of. It felt as though somebody still held a certain amount of control over him and he was completely unable to understand why. This function didn't move, or control any of his bodily actions but was almost like a beacon, a constant repetitive beacon of information which was transmitting away from him every time it was active. It happened only 2 times a day and although it was completely silent and still, he knew it was there, he knew that there was a part of him which he did not fully understand and was deliberately made not to understand or have any knowledge as to why this worked. He grew to ignore it and as the days turned into weeks and the weeks into months he forgot that it was even there.
Elizabeth was doing very well inside her stasis chamber and all of her vital signs were stable. She would sometimes stir even though it was designed for any neural activity to cease when the host was unconscious. Some events you just can't forget about no matter what state your body is in and David thought the same of this beaconing function inside of him. Elizabeth looked peaceful inside the chamber and for the first time since meeting her he had witnessed an expression of tranquility on her resting eyes. He knew that it was his choice to protect and watch over Elizabeth now that he was freed from the demands of a master. He was no longer a puppet and could feel the burden of his invisible strings lift from his shoulders as he made the decision to stand by and act as guardian to this fragile human being. Neither he nor she knew what awaited them once they reached their destination and they both needed to prepare for the worst, especially after the events that had unfolded on LV-223.
Time lapsed and David spent the majority of his watching over the resting being he had sworn to protect as she slumbered. He stared at her with pure admiration and admired her human spirit.
Eventually the time came where he had to wake her.
David knew that Elizabeth would need at least 48 hours of recovery time after waking up from hyper sleep. Prior to shutting down the chemical agent keeping Elizabeth asleep David made a small comfort area next to the cryo chamber made from the bag she carried the supplies onto the ship with and the jacket he had laid down as a makeshift pillow whilst she slept so that when she did wake up, she would have somewhere to sit and recover from the grog.
They had been travelling for 10 months, 21 days and 4 hours. David had calculated that they would reach their destination in precisely 82 hours. David had left it as late as possible to wake Elizabeth as he did not want her becoming delusional or depressed due to boredom or her thoughts running around wildly in her mental domain.
David had cared deeply for Elizabeth and this had begun aboard the vessel Prometheus. He watched her dreams in admiration whilst she slept and did so with genuine intrigue and wonder. He saw how her father had inspired her to believe and strive for greater knowledge and how she had grown to become the warrior she represented today like the ageans, a female race born to fight, a race that would not allow their kinship the right to birth unless they had killed in battle. She reminded him of these fierce beings which had once existed and who had passed their genes through the generations such had the engineers provided theirs to the planet earth. Although aggression seemed to be the only display of emotion from these beings, he too had to be grateful for their gift of life for had they not visited that beautiful planet ripe for harvesting life then he too would not exist. He was engineered by the engineers' creation and although not directly linked in DNA or genetics he did carry the inspiration for providing a new existence. He and all others like him could be easily formed on a new planet and left to their own ripples of progression just as homosapiansapians had many moons ago.
He bent over by the control panel and turned off the cryo unit. He watched as the large glass chamber slid back to uncover the vulnerable Shaw and he gazed as she writhed and contorted her face as the cold, stale air hit her lungs and she began to awake. She took a massive gasp of air and bolted upright, she began to clutch her stomach and through her hand onto the side of the chamber and started to vomit uncontrollably. She was reminded of the first time that she had been awakened from cryo-sleep and how unpleasant that was. She remembered the uncomfortable feeling in the pit of her stomach however, in that circumstance she was comforted by a small team of doctors and a comfortable bed to rest in afterwards to enable her to recover from the shock of the sleep. Of course none of this was available aboard the alien vessel and as she looked up whilst her body was allowing her the pleasure of dispelling that horrible feeling for a few short moments she noticed the android David staring at her without muttering a sound. He almost looked shy and was not sure of what to say. She then recalled the fact that she was surprise to have awoken at all and as she glanced up toward him she croaked
'So you decided not to kill me then?'
David smiled and nodded acknowledging her sarcastic but slightly relieved rhetorical remark.
After an hour of sitting in a ball in the cryo chamber, Elizabeth managed to gain the strength to step out of the unit. Whilst in the chamber, the chemical used to keep the host asleep contains a muscle toner so that when the host awakens, they have fully working functions allowing them to operate once returning from a long-haul sleep.
'Have you kept us on course or did you decide to take us home?'
'My home is here with you Miss Shaw therefore, the original destination that you chose will be upon us in exactly 80 hours and 46 minutes you will of course be glad to hear?'
'Good. I need something to drink, I feel like shit'
David walked over to the supplies and provided with a bottle of water taken from the evacuation pod.
'I will leave the room to allow you to recover and get changed, should you require anything further please do not hesitate to let me know!'
'David. Why are you doing this? Why are you helping me? Surely you don't care what the outcome is or why I would need to keep pursuing these, these engineers, these people who clearly do not care about us, who brought us into being and then ignored our existence until they wanted to destroy us, we have done nothing but use you in the same way we were used and yet you continue to help me achieve. Why?'
'It seems that our purposes are not so different Elizabeth. Our curiosity is shared by a profound lack of knowledge and ones desires are without a sense of understanding.'
Elizabeth simply turned her head in confusion as she couldn't comprehend that David had the function of desire or curiosity or shared any standard human emotion. Could David possibly be the 1st manmade form of AI and if so, how far could that take him? This was impossible; humans don't fully understand how their emotions work so how possibly could they reflect this upon their creation. Davids response would come to plague Elizabeth for the rest of her existence and she knew it. She picked herself up from the makeshift comfort area and proceeded to get changed with a million thoughts racing through her mind. Whilst in cryo stasis she had remembered all the nightmares she had had. She remembered being back in the hangar where Vickers had flooded Holloway with fire. She dreamt about being stuck in that claustrophobic medical unit having her embryo removed, her own internal creation, her baby! Although this mutant of a child had been some form of parasite, it had also saved her life. She recalled the sudden shock of the attacking engineer and how her offspring had saved her from certain death had she not released the medical bay doors. She had recurring nightmares of the alien vessel crashing down upon her and for some reason, instead of surviving she was crushed to death. This was a common dream, one that she had had regularly and remembered vividly. Instead of Vickers being the one crushed by the craft it was her and Vickers was staring from a safe distance watching her with a wry smile spread over her face. She had no idea why she dreamt it this way but it had always seemed so real and vivid and deep down inside, she had a gut feeling that the presence of Vickers was still present.
David could still feel deep inside the maze of his robotic makeup the sense of an active transmission. Just as Shaw had feared the deep feeling of Vickers demise was visually deceiving he too could not shake the feeling that he was somehow being watched by a force beyond his control. He was standing outside the room to the chamber which controlled the vessel and no sooner had the doors opened he turned in anticipation hoping that Elizabeth had made it through the cryo sleep without suffering any major side effects. After all the cryo chamber was not designed to support the meager lungs of a human being, they were designed to control the life force of a much greater being, the existence of the engineers.
Elizabeth saw the expression on Davids face and was still majorly perplexed by the emotion which had been portrayed. As she glanced at his worried exterior she reassured him with a simple 'I'm fine'.
The shrieking sound of a siren began to resonate into the ears of Elizabeth Shaw. She had been sound asleep after her stint in the alien life chamber and was recovering from the side effects of the toxin which had aloud her to sleep the entire journey to where they were now. She had tried to remain conscious for as long as possible however, fatigue and drowsiness had settled and she had managed to sleep for a total of 26 hours. The high pitched tone of the siren had brought Shaw to immediate attention and as soon as the noise had resonated within her vicinity she had awakened with urgency. She looked around with an anxious disposition and saw David stood at the controls pressing numerous configurations in a fast paced manner. He turned as he noticed Elizabeth bolt upright and shouted in a calm tone.
'The planet must have an anti-approach system which activates when it does not recognize the life forms on board. I may be able to trick it but if not, expect a bumpy landing.'
Shaw nodded in understanding and immediately rose to her feet. Not knowing how exactly to react she ran over to David and screamed
'Is there anything I can do to help?'
Her scream was due to the fact that she needed to be heard over the shrieking cry of the emergency siren. She knew full well that David would be able to differentiate between her and the siren however, human instinct kicked in and with David showing many signs of human emotion she had grown accustomed to treating him like one.
'No, unfortunately not, the best thing you could do is secure yourself to craft in case any damage is caused by the anti-landing system on the planet, I will try and hold it off for as long as I can but I am finding it extremely difficult to bypass their security. Even for me this is complex and my systems would have to decipher their language code before I can fully communicate.'
With that Shaw made a mad dash for the Cryo chamber and as she approached her destination barely touching her goal a bright light filtered through from the left hand side of the spacecraft. She knew that the craft had now become damaged and as she turned her head to look she could see the approaching land in the distance. The vessel was falling. Falling like a stone dropped from the sky. They had been hit by whatever had been protecting the engineers home planet and she immediately thought that her journey had been in vain as this was clearly the time that she was supposed to die. She began to feel the G force as she plummeted ever closer to the planet she had travelled so far to gain answers from. As the vessel ripped apart directly down the center of the room she was in, the face of Holloway quickly entered her thoughts as if the most meaningful moments of her life were personified by the person she had loved the most.
She suddenly felt the touch of a familiar being, just as she felt the pressure of a cuff around her arm she turned to see that David had managed to maneuver his way over to her. The plummet was still ever present and the vast landscape of the planet was getting larger and larger however, Shaw had come to terms with the fact that this was now the end. That this was it for her however, David did not believe this and as he held her arm he wrapped is manmade vessel around that of Elizabeth and faced the fast approaching planet.
David felt compelled to protect Elizabeth and as the vessel approached the land, massive structures could be seen gr